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UC Sampdoria will look to maintain their 100 per cent record in two-legged contests against German opposition when SV Werder Bremen visit the Luigi Ferraris Stadium for the second leg of the clubs' UEFA Champions League play-off.
• Giampaolo Pazzini's 90th-minute header in the first leg has given the Italian side hope of progressing although earlier strikes from Clemens Fritz (51), Torsten Frings (67) – a penalty after Sampdoria defender Stefano Lucchini had earned a red card – and Claudio Pizarro (69) mean Bremen have a 3-1 cushion for their trip to Genoa.
• Fourth in Serie A last term under Domenico Di Carlo's predecessor Luigi Delneri, Sampdoria are hoping to secure a place in Europe's elite club competition for only the second time. The Genoese club's first appearance came in 1991/92 when they advanced to the final before losing to FC Barcelona.
• By contrast Thomas Schaaf's Bremen have been UEFA Champions League regulars in recent years, competing in the group stage for five consecutive seasons between 2004 and 2009. They qualified for the play-off by finishing third in the Bundesliga in 2009/10.
• Last season Bremen strolled through a UEFA Europa League play-off, beating FK Aktobe 8-3 on aggregate – including a 2-0 away win – and eventually reached the last 16.
• Sampdoria's last European campaign was in 2008/09 when they reached the last 32 of the UEFA Cup.
• Prior to the first leg Sampdoria's most recent match against a German side came at home to VfB Stuttgart in the group stage of the 2008/09 UEFA Cup when Paolo Sammarco's equaliser earned them a 1-1 draw.
• The Blucerchiati have never lost a two-legged tie against opposition from Germany.
• For three successive seasons they faced Bundesliga opposition in the early stages of the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup and came out on top each time beating FC Carl Zeiss Jena (second round, 1988/89), Borussia Dortmund (second round, 1989/90) and 1. FC Kaiserlautern (first round, 1990/91).
• The Italian club's only defeat in eight games against German sides prior to this season was in the first leg of that 1990 tie against Kaiserslautern but they undid the damage of a 1-0 reverse in Genoa where Roberto Mancini and Marco Branca earned them a 2-1 aggregate victory.
• Bremen's away record against Italian opposition is W2 D5 L6. The Bundesliga team have recorded five wins and three defeats in two-legged ties against Serie A sides.
• Their most recent encounters came en route to the UEFA Cup final in 2008/09, when they defeated AC Milan in the Round of 32 and then Udinese Calcio in the quarter-finals – on both occasions with dramatic comebacks.
• After a 1-1 home draw with Milan, they fell 2-0 behind at San Siro only for Pizarro to hit two second-half goals that earned Bremen victory on away goals. Against Udinese they won 3-1 at home but then trailed by the same score at half-time in the return only for Pizarro to send them through with another second-half double.
• Petri Pasanen faced Sampdoria's Antonio Cassano in the 2002/03 UEFA Champions League second group stage, when they were playing for AFC Ajax and AS Roma respectively. Pasanen's Ajax won 2-1 in Amsterdam, while Cassano scored in the 1-1 return draw in Rome.
• Sampdoria midfielder Vladimir Koman made his international debut for Hungary in May in a 3-0 defeat by a Germany side including Bremen's Marko Marin and Per Mertesacker.
• Sampdoria's Lithuanian international Marius Stankevicius scored against an Austria team including Bremen's Sebastian Prödl in a 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifier in Innsbruck. Austria won that game 2-1 although Stankevicius's Lithuania had previously prevailed 2-0 at home.
• Swiss international Reto Ziegler played in the Bundesliga for Bremen's rivals Hamburger SV in 2005/06.
• Bremen forward Marko Arnautovic spent last term on loan at FC Internazionale Milano but appeared only three times in Serie A.
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