FC BATE Borisov continue their quest for a first home win in the UEFA Champions League group stage when they host Group H rivals AC Milan.
• A victory would certainly be timely for BATE who will be eliminated if they fail to beat Milan and FC Barcelona win at FC Viktoria Plzeň in the section's other game. Milan overcame BATE 2-0 at San Siro on matchday three and the joint group leaders will secure their progress to the last 16 so long as they better Plzeň's result against Barcelona.
• Milan were 6-0 aggregate winners when the clubs met in the 2001/02 UEFA Cup first round. Andriy Shevchenko and Javi Moreno earned the Rossoneri a 2-0 first-leg win in Belarus and they prevailed 4-0 back in Italy courtesy of Rui Costa, Moreno, Mohamed Sarr and a Filippo Inzaghi penalty.
• Christian Abbiati and Gennaro Gattuso played in the first leg for Milan while Viktor Goncharenko, now BATE coach, appeared at San Siro alongside Aleksandr Fedorovich and Aleksei Baga – his assistant coaches today – and Artyom Kontsevoi. Fedorovic, Baga and Kontsevoi also played in the first leg.
• BATE were on the receiving end of a Barcelona masterclass in their first home game of this group stage, going down 5-0 to the defending champions on 28 September.
• It was their third defeat in four home outings in the UEFA Champions League proper, including their inaugural campaign in 2008/09. The closest they have come to a victory in the group stage in nine previous attempts, home and away, was when they led Juventus 2-0 after 23 minutes of their first home outing in September 2008 – but by half-time the Bianconeri had fought back to 2-2.
• Of the present BATE squad, Dmitri Likhtarovich, Vitali Rodionov, Aleksandr Yurevich and Aleksandr Volodko all faced Juventus in the 2008/09 season.
• The Borisov club's only other home match against Italian opposition was a UEFA Intertoto Cup third round encounter with Bologna FC in 2002, the goalless draw failing to undo the damage of BATE's 2-0 first-leg loss. Goncharenko was an unused substitute in both legs.
• Massimiliano Allegri's Milan should travel with confidence having lost just two of their last 13 European away fixtures. Seven of those games ended in draws, including their matchday one visit to FC Barcelona, which finished 2-2.
• Mark van Bommel and Mateja Kežman were colleagues at PSV Eindhoven from 2000 to 2004, winning Dutch titles together in 2001 and 2003.
• The much-travelled Kežman has scored three goals in seven matches against Italian opposition in UEFA's club competitions. After drawing two blanks when his FK Partizan side lost to S.S. Lazio in the 1998/99 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup second round, he scored against the same opposition for PSV in a 2-1 defeat at the Stadio Olimpico in the 2001/02 UEFA Champions League first group stage.
• The Serbian also struck twice when PSV overcame AC Perugia in the 2003/04 UEFA Cup third round. He lined up against Zlatan Ibrahimović when his Fenerbahçe SK team beat FC Internazionale Milano 1-0 in the UEFA Champions League group stage in 2007/08.
• Philippe Mexès's France lost 1-0 at home to a Belarus side featuring Yurevich and Rodionov in their nations' opening UEFA EURO 2012 qualifier in September last year.
• Marco Amelia and Daniele Bonera were in the Italy team that suffered a surprise 2-1 loss to a Belarus lineup which included Kontsevoi and Baga at the UEFA European Under-21 Championship in May 2004.
• Ignazio Abate's Italy ran out 2-1 winners against the Belarus of Maksim Bordachev, Pavel Chesnovski and Aleksandr Volodko at the U21 finals in June 2009.
• Yegor Filipenko, Mikhail Gordeychuk, Aleksandr Gutor and Maksim Skavysh helped Belarus eliminate Italy in a play-off last October for the 2011 U21 finals.
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