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Sparta hope to end home hoodoo against Palermo

Published: Tuesday 31 August 2010, 8.00CET
AC Sparta Praha will look to secure only their second home win in eight UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League group stage home fixtures as US Città di Palermo pay a second visit to Prague in Group F.
Sparta hope to end home hoodoo against Palermo
Erich Brabec's goal gave Sparta a 1-0 home UEFA Champions League third qualifying round win against KKS Lech Poznań ©Vlastimil Vacek
Published: Tuesday 31 August 2010, 8.00CET

Sparta hope to end home hoodoo against Palermo

AC Sparta Praha will look to secure only their second home win in eight UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League group stage home fixtures as US Città di Palermo pay a second visit to Prague in Group F.

AC Sparta Praha will look to secure only their second home win in eight UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League group stage home fixtures as US Città di Palermo pay a second visit to Prague in Group F.

Previous meetings
• The sides are meeting for the first time in UEFA club competition.

• Sparta have already played 18 games against Italian sides with the record W2 D7 L9 (W2 D5 L2 at home). They are unbeaten in their last two home ties against Serie A sides, having kept clean sheets in both fixtures.

• Palermo's four games against Czech teams have ended W2 D0 L2 (W1 D0 L1 away). Their only previous trip to the Czech capital ended in a 2-1 loss to SK Slavia Praha in the 2005/06 UEFA Cup round of 32.

Match background
• Sparta are competing in the group stage for the fourth time in five seasons, but have not made it through to the last 32 in that period.

• Part of the reason for that may be their form in UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League group stage home fixtures; they have won only once in seven – against CFR 1907 Cluj last season – with their full record reading W1 D3 L3.

• Palermo's record in ten European away games since they first entered UEFA club competition in the 2005/06 UEFA Cup reads W5 D1 L4.

Team facts
• Capped 52 times by Czechoslovakia, former midfielder Jozef Chovanec is Sparta to the core. He served the club for the bulk of his playing career and has continued his association since moving into coaching, taking charge for four separate spells as well as leading 1. FK Příbram, FC Kuban Krasnodar and the Czech Republic national team.

• Hired to replace Walter Zenga as Palermo coach in November 2009, Delio Rossi never rose higher than Serie B as a player, and took a while to make it to the top level as a coach. However, his reputation was cemented with a spell at S.S. Lazio from 2005 to 2009, where he won the Italian Cup in his final season.

• Sparta defender Tomáš Řepka has experience of Italian football from a three-year spell at ACF Fiorentina (1998-01).

• Palermo's last European campaign was ended by a Czech side, with FK Mladá Boleslav eliminating them from the 2007/08 UEFA Cup first round 4-2 on penalties after trading 1-0 away wins. Sparta midfielder Marek Matějovský played in both legs for Mladá Boleslav.

Last updated: 05/04/11 18.06CET

Related information

Team profiles

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2011/matches/round=2000128/match=2002923/prematch/background/index.html#sparta+hope+home+hoodoo+against+palermo

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