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FC Bayern München prepare for the return leg of their UEFA Champions League first knockout round tie against Sporting Clube de Portugal confident that they can record another victory against Portuguese opponents. In the nine previous occasions they have played host to Liga visitors in UEFA club competition, Bayern have won seven and drawn the other two.
• After withstanding an early spell of Sporting pressure Bayern turned on the style at the Estádio José Alvalade on Matchday 7 with Franck Ribéry in inspirational form. The French international broke the deadlock three minutes before half-time and, after Miroslav Klose had scored a second, made it 3-0 three minutes past the hour from the penalty spot following Fábio Rochemback's foul on Philipp Lahm. Luca Toni's late double completed the biggest ever away win in the UEFA Champions League knockout round and the joint highest away victory in the competition's history.
• The precedents were there, for history also shows that the Munich giants find the target with relative ease in these fixtures, scoring six goals, five, and four (twice) in the first five occasions that teams from Portugal visited the Olympiastadion, starting with a second round tie against Vitória FC in the 1967/68 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup. More recently, however, Bayern have not had things so easy with only two goals scored in their last three home ties, the latest being a 1-0 victory against CF Os Belenenses in last season's UEFA Cup first round.
• Sporting must make UEFA Champions League history if they are to mount the unlikeliest of fightbacks. While Bayern can bask in the security of the largest ever first-leg advantage, surpassing Manchester United FC's 4-0 defeat of FC Porto in the 1996/97 quarter-finals, the most impressive comeback belongs to FC Deportivo La Coruña, who recovered from losing 4-1 to AC Milan in the 2003/04 quarter-finals first leg to win the return 4-0. The Spanish side, however, had home advantage for the second leg.
• Bayern faced Sporting in a 2006/07 UEFA Champions League group-stage contest at the Fußball Arena München which ended 0-0. It followed a 1-0 win for Bayern in the corresponding fixture at the Estádio José Alvalade with Bastian Schweinsteiger's 19th-minute goal proving the difference. The German international later blotted his copybook by getting sent off.
• The lineups for the goalless match in Munich on 31 October 2006 were:
Bayern: Oliver Kahn, Willy Sagnol, Daniel Van Buyten, Martín Demichelis, Philipp Lahm, Hasan Salihamidžić, Christian Lell (Julio dos Santos), Andreas Ottl, Roy Makaay, Claudio Pizarro, Roque Santa Cruz (Ali Karimi).
Sporting: Ricardo, Anderson Polga, Carlos Martins (Nani), Rodrigo Tello, Marco Caneira, Tonel, Yannick Djaló (Alecsandro), Custódio, João Moutinho, Liedson, Carlos Paredes (Pontus Farnerud).
• It was the only time Sporting have avoided defeat on the seven occasions they have played an official fixture in Germany. In addition, the Lisbon team have lost all four of their knockout ties against Bundesliga opposition. Bayern, in contrast, have come out on top in all seven occasions when they have played Portuguese opponents in a knockout tie although the game they will not recall fondly was the 1986/87 European Champion Clubs' Cup final at the Ernst-Happel-Stadion in Vienna, which Porto won 2-1. That was Bayern's only defeat in 21 matches against Portuguese opposition.
• When Bayern missed out on last year's tournament, it broke a run of ten successive UEFA Champions campaigns. During that sequence, they lifted the trophy in 2001 having finished as runners-up two years earlier. They also managed to qualify for the knockout rounds in four straight years between 2003/04 and 2006/07. Two seasons ago they beat Real Madrid CF on away goals at this stage after the teams were tied 4-4 on aggregate but then lost 4-2 on aggregate to eventual winners Milan in the quarter-finals.
• This time round Jürgen Klinsmann's Bayern were unbeaten in Group F with four wins and two draws and a 3-2 victory at Olympique Lyonnais on Matchday 6 enabled them to finish with a three-point advantage at the top of the section. At home they drew with Lyon and recorded 3-0 successes against both FC Steaua Bucureşti and ACF Fiorentina.
• Sporting, who will now almost certainly not match their achievement of 1982/83 when they reached the European Cup quarter-finals, had never previously progressed from the group phase in their four previous campaigns. Away from home in Group C they won at FC Basel 1893 and FC Shakhtar Donetsk and lost against FC Barcelona.
• The Portuguese side can perhaps take heart from Bayern's performances in the UEFA Cup Round of 16 in 2007/08, the German side winning 5-0 at RSC Anderlecht in the first leg before a 2-1 home loss.
• Klinsmann scored for FC Internazionale Milano in their 2-0 semi-final second leg victory at home to Sporting en route to winning the 1990/91 UEFA Cup. The Lisbon leg had finished 0-0. Klinsmann – scoring a record 15 goals – also lifted the trophy in 1995/96 with Bayern. In the third round that season they beat SL Benfica, the striker scoring all the goals in a 4-1 home win. In Lisbon, he struck twice in Bayern's 3-1 victory.
• João Moutinho and Hélder Postiga played for Portugal in a 3-2 defeat by Germany in the UEFA EURO 2008™ quarter-finals in Basel. In the opposing side were Lahm, Tim Borowski, Schweinsteiger, Klose and Lukas Podolski. Moutinho also encountered Halil Altıntop in Portugal's 2-0 defeat of Turkey in Group A.
• Postiga appeared as a second-half substitute as Portugal lost to France in the 2006 FIFA World Cup semi-final. Ribéry was on the opposite side.
• Bayern have won all three of their previous penalty shoot-outs in UEFA club competition:
4-3 v Åtvidabergs FF, 1973/74 European Cup first round
9-8 v PAOK FC, 1983/84 UEFA Cup second round
5-4 v Valencia CF, 2000/01 UEFA Champions League final
• By contrast, Sporting have lost both previous penalty shoot-outs in UEFA competition:
3-5 v FC Dinamo Minsk, 1984/85 UEFA Cup second round
3-4 v SSC Napoli, 1989/90 UEFA Cup first round
• The draw for the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals and semi-finals will take place at UEFA's headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland on 20 March.
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