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Chelsea FC return to the Luzhniki Stadion, home of FC Spartak Moskva, to confront the painful memories of a long and dramatic night in May 2008. Then the UEFA Champions League trophy slipped through their fingers as Manchester United FC defeated them 6-5 on penalties after a 1-1 draw after extra time.
• Chelsea begun their latest bid for continental glory in typically imperious fashion, winning 4-1 at debutants MŠK Žilina on Matchday 1 through goals from Michael Essien, Daniel Sturridge and a Nicolas Anelka double.
• Two weeks later they faced Olympique de Marseille, easing to a 2-0 win with John Terry and an Anelka penalty supplying the first-half goals.
• Spartak have also enjoyed a fine start to the campaign with maximum points from two games. They began by winning at Marseille, a late own goal by defender César Azpilicueta giving the Russian side their first win on French soil at the 11th attempt.
• Two weeks later they continued Žilina's woes with a 3-0 triumph. Two goals from Ari and a late Ibson strike gave the Moscow club a UEFA Champions League group stage win at the Luzhniki Stadion for the first time since a 4-1 defeat of Arsenal FC on 22 November 2000.
• Spartak and Chelsea have not met before in a competitive fixture and the home team have lost three and drawn one of their last four games against English sides.
• They went down 3-1 at home against Liverpool FC in the 2002/03 UEFA Champions League group stage having won their four previous home fixtures against Premier League sides. In a total of 15 games against English opposition Spartak have won nine with four defeats; at home they have won five and drawn one with that solitary Liverpool defeat.
• Chelsea have only previously faced one team from Russia. That came in the 2004/05 UEFA Champions League group stage when they beat PFC CSKA Moskva 2-0 at home and won 1-0 away two weeks later. Terry was on the scoresheet at Stamford Bridge.
• Chelsea have finished as winners of their group in five of the last seven campaigns.
• Terry and, decisively, Anelka missed penalties in the 2008 UEFA Champions League final at the Luzhniki Stadion as Manchester United won on penalties. Frank Lampard had earlier cancelled out Cristiano Ronaldo's opener.
• Spartak, back in the competition for the first time since 2006/07, failed to win a home game in their last group campaign. They lost 1-0 at home to FC Internazionale Milano, and drew 1-1 with Sporting Clube de Portugal and 2-2 with FC Bayern München. They finished third in the group and went into the UEFA Cup round of 32, losing 3-2 on aggregate to RC Celta de Vigo.
• Yuri Zhirkov returns to his homeland and to Moscow where he spent five years with CSKA, winning the 2004/05 UEFA Cup, before his move to Chelsea in 2009. His first participation in an official game for CSKA came against Spartak in the Russian Super Cup.
• Branislav Ivanović spent two years at FC Lokomotiv Moskva between 2006 and 2008, before his move to west London.
• Valeri Karpin scored twice for Spartak against Liverpool in the home leg of a 1992/93 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup second round tie.
• Carlo Ancelotti was in charge at AC Milan when the Italian side won 1-0 at Lokomotiv in the 2002/03 UEFA Champions League second group stage.
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