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APOEL aim to avoid Porto repeat

Published: Thursday 20 October 2011, 9.45CET
FC Porto were the last foreign side to win at APOEL FC in 2009 but Ivan Jovanovič's surprise Group G leaders will take heart from their matchday three draw as they bid to avoid a repeat.
APOEL aim to avoid Porto repeat
Goalscorer Falcao is challenged by Joost Broerse during Porto's away win against APOEL in November 2009 ©Getty Images

Tournament statistics


Goals scored9
Attempts on target25
Attempts off target21
Fouls committed147
Yellow cards27
Red cards1
Published: Thursday 20 October 2011, 9.45CET

APOEL aim to avoid Porto repeat

FC Porto were the last foreign side to win at APOEL FC in 2009 but Ivan Jovanovič's surprise Group G leaders will take heart from their matchday three draw as they bid to avoid a repeat.

APOEL FC welcome FC Porto to Nicosia looking to make it nine games without defeat at home in Europe but they will not need reminding that the Portuguese side were the last foreign visitors to beat them.

• Surprise Group G leaders APOEL should enter the contest with confidence having maintained their unbeaten record by drawing 1-1 in Porto last time out. Yet so tight is the group, with only three points separating top from bottom, that third-placed Porto could leapfrog their hosts at the top with a repeat of their 2009 victory in Nicosia.

Previous meetings
• The clubs met for the first time in the 2009/10 UEFA Champions League group stage. APOEL gave Porto a scare at the Estádio do Dragão on 21 October 2009 by taking the lead through Álvaro Pereira's own goal (22) but Hulk equalised (33) and hit a penalty winner (48) as the hosts prevailed despite Mariano González's dismissal (74).

• No Cypriot senior side has defeated Portuguese opposition at either club or international level but APOEL ran Porto close again in Nicosia on 3 November 2009 before succumbing to Falcao's late goal (84). With that victory Jesualdo Ferreira's team secured qualification with two games to spare while APOEL finished bottom of the group.

• The lineups were:
APOEL: Chiotis, Poursaitides, Broerse, Kontis (Papathanasiou 87), Ilia (Grnčarov 57), Charalambides, Nuno Morais, Satsias, Jean Paulista (Alexandrou 61), Hélio Pinto, Mirosavljević.
Porto: Helton, Săpunaru, Bruno Alves, Rolando, Álvaro Pereira, Guarín (Costa 83), Fernando, Meireles, Hulk, Cristian Rodríguez (Farías 69), Falcao (Belluschi 90).

Match background
• Two days short of two years since that Porto victory, APOEL have since won five and drawn three of the eight fixtures at the GSP Stadium.

• APOEL's 2-1 comeback win against FC Zenit St Petersburg on matchday one was their first in the UEFA Champions League group stage.

• Porto achieved a seven-match winning streak on the road during their triumphant 2010/11 UEFA Europa League campaign, ending with a 3-2 semi-final second-leg defeat at Villarreal CF. Vítor Pereira's men lost their opening away group game of this campaign 3-1 at Zenit.

• APOEL's first encounter with Portuguese opposition was a 16-1 reverse at Sporting Clube de Portugal in the 1963/64 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup first round, a margin that remains a UEFA club competition record. They lost the second leg 2-0.

Team ties
• APOEL's Kaká faces Porto again six months after losing out to them as an SC Braga substitute in the UEFA Europa League final. During last season's loan at Braga he also suffered a 2-0 home league defeat by Porto, having also lost on four previous occasions with A. Académica de Coimbra between 2006 and 2008.

• Gustavo Manduca and Marcinho scored a goal apiece in CS Marítimo's 2-2 home league draw with Porto on 2 October 2005, a match that Nuno Morais, then on loan with the Madeira club, watched from the bench. Marcinho spent five years with Marítimo while Manduca also played for FC Felgueiras, GD Esposende, GD Chaves, FC Paços de Ferreira and SL Benfica.

• APOEL's squad includes Portuguese trio Nuno Morais, Paulo Jorge and Hélio Pinto but only Paulo Jorge has previous experience of actually playing against Porto when at Braga.

• Fernando Belluschi was in the Olympiacos FC side eliminated by Cyprus's Anorthosis Famagusta FC in the 2008/09 UEFA Champions League third qualifying round. He scored Olympiacos's winner in the home leg, but they lost 3-1 on aggregate.

• João Moutinho was a substitute in Portugal's 4-4 home draw with Cyprus in UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying in September 2010, a match also featuring APOEL's Savvas Poursaitides, Marios Ilia, Constantinos Charalambides and Marinos Satsias.

• Moutinho started the return fixture on 2 September this year, when Portugal prevailed 4-0 against a Cyprus side including Poursaitides, Charalambides and Nektarios Alexandrou.

• Sanel Jahić played in the Bosnia and Herzegovina team beaten by Portugal in a 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying play-off. The teams will meet again in the UEFA EURO 2012 play-off on 11 and 15 November. Jahić had scored in a 4-2 group victory at Steven Defour's Belgium in March 2009.

Last updated: 30/10/11 20.58CET