The Dundalk squad are settling into their Baku base ahead of Wednesday's Champions League meeting with Qarabag.  

Robbie Benson did not make the mammoth 5,000 km trip from Dublin to the capital of Azerbaijan, via a refueling stop at Timisoara Airport in Romania. 

The rib injury sustained in the first leg at Oriel Park has not healed sufficiently. Despite eight personnel changes at the weekend Dundalk beat St Patrick’s Athletic to open an eight point lead at the top of the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division. 

That advantage was subsequently reduced to seven after Shamrock Rovers drew with Cork City.

Conditions on arrival in Baku were hot and humid. More of the same is expected tomorrow and on Wednesday. This may well be a factor, despite the 9pm local time kick off. The Dundalk squad will train tomorrow evening at the 6,500 capacity Dalga Arena. 

Qarabag begin their campaign for a seventh successive league title next month. 

Dundalk must score to have any hope of progressing to a third round Champions League qualifier with APOEL Nicosia or FK Sutjeska - the Cypriot champions lead 1-0 from the first leg in Montenegro.  

Follow Qarabag v Dundalk on Wednesday (6pm) via our live blog on RTÉ.ie/sport and the News Now app.

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