FC Zenit have fond memories of facing R. Standard de Liège, their UEFA Champions League play-off rivals, in UEFA competition.
• Dick Advocaat's Zenit eliminated Michel Preud'homme's Standard in the first round en route to winning the 2007/08 UEFA Cup, prevailing 3-0 at home and drawing 1-1 in Belgium.
• The teams for the game at the Stade Marcel Dufrasne on 4 October 2007 – in which Oguchi Onyewu was sent off after 39 minutes – were:
Standard: Aragón, Camozzato, Dante, Onyewu, Sarr, Fred (Mbokani 46), Defour, Fellaini, Toama (Dembélé 71), Witsel, De Camargo (Lukunku 78).
Zenit: Čontofalský, Anyukov, Kim Dong-jin, Lombaerts, Škrtel, Denisov (Domínguez 71), Šírl (Maximov 87), Tymoschuk, Zyryanov (Radimov 76), Arshavin, Pogrebnyak.
• Including those previous encounters with Zenit, Standard have played four UEFA games against Russian clubs with the record W1 D1 L2 (W1 D1 L0 at home – W0 D0 L2 in Russia). They have yet to lose at home to a Russian side; however, they have yet to avoid defeat – or indeed score a goal – in Russia.
• Zenit's record in eight UEFA matches against Belgian teams is W5 D1 L2 (W4 D0 L0 at home – W1 D1 L2 in Belgium). One of Zenit's two worst results in Europe came in Belgium – a 5-0 defeat at Club Brugge KV in the 1987/88 UEFA Cup.
• Standard's sole UEFA Champions League group stage campaign to date was in 2009/10. Zenit are bidding to contest the group stage for the fifth time – and for a fourth in successive seasons.
• Standard are without a victory in four European home games (D1 L3) since beating FC Minsk 3-1 in last year's UEFA Europa League play-offs, while they have drawn their last three home fixtures in the UEFA Champions League.
Links and trivia
• Zenit midfielder Axel Witsel was playing for Standard when the clubs last met, with former team-mates Laurent Ciman, Jelle Van Damme, Mehdi Carcela-González and Igor De Camargo still with the Liege outfit. Witsel will, however, miss the first leg through suspension.
• Witsel, Zenit colleague Nicolas Lombaerts and Standard defender Ciman were on duty together with Belgium at the recent FIFA World Cup.
• Standard coach Guy Luzon's only preceding experience of Russian opponents was a 4-0 home reverse for his Maccabi Petach-Tikva FC side against FC Lokomotiv Moskva in the 2005/06 UEFA Cup group stage. Zenit boss André-Villas Boas's record in four matches against Belgian clubs reads W3 D1. His FC Porto team beat KRC Genk 7-2 on aggregate in his first European tie as a coach.
• Zenit defender Ezequiel Garay and midfielder Viktor Fayzulin will make their 50th UEFA club competition appearances if they figure against Standard.
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