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PSV Eindhoven, who made it through the group stage despite losing their last two UEFA Champions League fixtures, will be attempting to end Arsenal FC's dominance over them when the two clubs meet in the last 16.
• Having never met in UEFA competition prior to September 2002, the sides are fast becoming familiar foes. This is their third pairing in five seasons although the first in knockout format. Arsenal, bidding to go one step further than 2006 when they lost in the final to FC Barcelona, have not tasted defeat in any of the four matches between the teams, winning twice and recording two draws.
• The first confrontation came in the 2002/03 UEFA Champions League first group stage, Arsenal winning 4-0 away with a pair of goals from Thierry Henry adding to earlier strikes from Gilberto - at 20.07 seconds, the fastest-ever goal in the competition - and Fredrik Ljungberg. The game at Highbury ended 0-0. Then in the 2004/05 group stage, Arsenal prevailed 1-0 in London through an Alex own goal before earning a 1-1 draw in Eindhoven with Henry again finding the PSV Stadium to his liking by cancelling out André Ooijer's early goal.
• This season PSV had mixed form in their Group C home fixtures, drawing 0-0 with Liverpool FC, defeating Galatasaray SK 2-0 and losing 3-1 to FC Girondins de Bordeaux on Matchday 6 with their place in the last 16 already secure.
• PSV's home form against English clubs has been patchy with four wins in eleven matches and none in the last five. Ronald Koeman's team, having qualified from the group stage for the third successive year, will be endeavouring to improve on last season's disappointment at this stage when they lost both legs to Olympique Lyonnais, 1-0 at home and 4-0 away. The previous campaign, the first time PSV had progressed to the knockout phase, they defeated AS Monaco FC home and away and went all the way to the semi-finals before losing to AC Milan on away goals.
• Arsenal lost their first UEFA club game in the Netherlands, going down 2-1 at AFC Ajax in the first leg of the 1971/72 European Champion Clubs' Cup semi-final. But the Gunners have emerged unbeaten from their four subsequent visits to Dutch clubs, splitting those two games against PSV with a 0-0 draw at Ajax. They visited Ajax again in last season's group stage, winning 2-1.
• PSV coach Koeman has happy memories of north London as he was part of the Barcelona team which lifted the European Cup with victory against UC Sampdoria at Wembley in May 1992 thanks to his trademark free-kick in extra time. As Ajax coach he guided his team to two draws against Arsenal in the 2002/03 second group stage.
• Arsenal won Group G with eleven points and recorded all three results away from home, winning 2-1 at Hamburger SV before a 1-0 defeat at PFC CSKA Moskva, their first away reverse in eight matches in the competition proper. A goalless draw at FC Porto on Matchday 6 took Arsenal through with their seven goals in the six group games scored by seven different players. At this stage 12 months ago, Arsène Wenger's team went to Real Madrid CF and returned with a 1-0 first-leg win courtesy of Henry's superb solo strike.
• The second leg will be staged at the Arsenal Stadium on Wednesday 7 March.
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