|Attempts on target||47||22|
|Attempts off target||42||29|
1 - 1
0 - 3
2 - 5
1 - 2
1 - 0
0 - 0
3 - 1
0 - 1
Two years ago Andrés Palop kept goal in Sevilla FC's UEFA Champions League debut; now they are the old stagers against newcomers FC Unirea Urziceni but he still finds the whole thing "fresh and exciting".
In their first campaign Sevilla began by losing 3-0 at Arsenal FC but were to reach the last 16. With the Romanian champions, VfB Stuttgart and Rangers FC in Group G with Sevilla, Palop's side are tipped to reach the knockout phase again, but while the 35-year-old goalkeeper is thrilled to be involved again, he is also cautious.
"The boys are really motivated and they all want to be in the team on Wednesday," said Palop. "We may have more experience of the competition these days but as a club there is that desire to keep progressing. We have to take this competition one game at a time because we are up against national champions. We might be group favourites but we have to prove it on the pitch. I'd be quite happy if Unirea came here to defend."
Sevilla's 4-1 defeat of Real Zaragoza on Saturday reinforced many people's view of the Spanish side as among the dark horses in this season's UEFA Champions League. "We took a lot of confidence from the win against Zaragoza," Palop said. "You always feel better when you play well and win." However, memories of their group encounters with FC Steaua Bucureşti last time out, two narrow wins, makes him cautious. "I respect Unirea. Romanian football is really strong as we found out when we played Steaua Bucureşti a couple of seasons ago."
Unirea defender George Galamaz, who has experience of UEFA Champions League qualifying and the UEFA Cup proper with former club FC Dinamo 1948 Bucureşti, is certainly keen to prove that the debutants can be a match for the experienced European campaigners. "We have arrived here to do as well as we can against the best team in the group," the 28-year-old said. "We want to have a very good game and prove we are a good team. We know we are going to come up against a fantastic side."
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