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AIK seek reward from Napoli reunion

Published: Tuesday 13 November 2012, 15.47CET
Soundly beaten when the two sides first met in Group F, AIK require a positive result to keep their hopes alive when they welcome SSC Napoli to Sweden on matchday five.
AIK seek reward from Napoli reunion
AIK will seek to improve on their matchday one display against Napoli ©AFP/Getty Images
Published: Tuesday 13 November 2012, 15.47CET

AIK seek reward from Napoli reunion

Soundly beaten when the two sides first met in Group F, AIK require a positive result to keep their hopes alive when they welcome SSC Napoli to Sweden on matchday five.

AIK will look to build on a first Group F victory on matchday four as they meet an SSC Napoli side boasting the most prolific striker in the UEFA Europa League group stage.

• AIK must avoid defeat to have something to play for on matchday six. Napoli will qualify with a win against AIK, provided PSV Eindhoven fail to win against section leaders FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk.

Previous meetings
• Eduardo Vargas ensured that SSC Napoli's 100th European fixture was one to remember as he scored a hat-trick in the sides' first meeting on matchday one. The young Chile striker contributed the bulk of the Italian club's goals in a 4-0 win, with Blerim Dzemaili's deflected strike in added time finishing AIK off.

• Napoli's only previous experience of Swedish opponents saw them get the better of IF Elfsborg in the 2010/11 UEFA Europa League play-offs, winning 1-0 in Naples and 2-0 in Boras. Thus, they have yet to concede against Swedish teams.

• AIK, meanwhile, have not scored in five meetings with Italian sides, with their record reading W0 D1 L4 (W0 D1 L1 at home – W0 D0 L3 in Italy).

Match background
• AIK's Group F results have gradually improved since they last met Napoli: they lost 3-2 to Dnipro, then drew 1-1 and won 1-0 against PSV.

• Napoli have lost their last three European away games by margins of two goals or more. They have gone six games without an away win in the UEFA Europa League (D2 L4).

Team facts
• Following his four goals against Dnipro on matchday four, Edinson Cavani is the top scorer in the group stage with five goals, which have come from eight shots on target. Falcao was the only previous player to have scored four in a UEFA Europa League game, for FC Porto in the semi-finals of the 2010/11 competition against Villarreal CF.

• Napoli come into their own in the second half – seven of their nine group stage goals have been scored after the break, two of them in added time.

• With Helsingborgs IF also having qualified, this is the first time that more than one Swedish club has competed in the group stage of a UEFA competition in the same season.

• AIK striker Henok Goitom was under contract at Udinese Calcio from 2004-07, scoring in his only Serie A appearance, as a substitute against FC Internazionale Milano. Much of his time in Italy was spent out on loan with Spanish side CF Ciudad de Murcia. His Udinese team-mates included Napoli goalkeeper Morgan De Sanctis (2004-07) and right-back Andrea Dossena (2006-07).

• AIK coach since December 2010, Andreas Alm played for Stockholm rivals Hammarby before coming to his current club as a striker from 2000-03. After hanging up his boots, Alm worked as a TV summariser and then joined the coaching staff at AIK, helping them to win a 2009 domestic double under Mikael Stahre, and assisted two further coaches before taking sole command.

• Napoli coach Mazzarri spent most of his playing career as a central defender outside Serie A, and after assisting Renzo Ulivieri as Napoli boss, struck out on his own. He worked his way up the divisions as a coach, before reaching Serie A with AS Livorno Calcio and Reggina FC, guiding UC Sampdoria through the 2008/09 UEFA Cup group stage and then taking command at Napoli in October 2009.

Last updated: 19/11/12 17.59CET

Related information

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http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2013/matches/round=2000356/match=2009998/prematch/background/index.html#aik+seek+reward+from+napoli+reunion

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