The UEFA Europa League threw up its usual mix of drama, surprise and excitement on Thursday – UEFA.com looks back on the round of 32 first legs by picking out ten statistics of interest.
1. With the exception of Chelsea FC, who have one victory from one game, FC Zenit St Petersburg have the best win ratio of all the teams to have played in the competition, their 2-0 home success over Liverpool FC raising their mark to 81.8% (nine wins from 11 matches). The country with the highest win ratio is Russia, which, with Zenit, FC Anji Makhachkala and FC Rubin Kazan all victorious on matchday seven, increased its percentage to 57.1.
2. Olympique Lyonnais' loss to an added-time goal at Tottenham Hotspur FC ended their unbeaten record in the competition since the inaugural 2009/10 season, whereas KRC Genk's last-minute equaliser at VfB Stuttgart maintained theirs. Genk are therefore now the only club, alongside newcomers Chelsea, to have participated in the UEFA Europa League and never lost a game.
3. Club Atlético de Madrid's 2-0 defeat by Rubin brought their competition record of ten successive home wins to an end. Zenit jumped into joint-fourth place in that particular ranking list with their sixth successive home triumph (out of six) in the competition.
4. FC Basel 1893 registered their fourth consecutive clean sheet – matching the competition record held jointly by Bayer 04 Leverkusen, Atlético and Rubin (all set this season).
5. Falcao made his 30th UEFA Europa League appearance (and first of the 2012/13 campaign) to join Rui Patrício and Ola Toivonen at the head of the all-time standings.
6. SL Benfica's Óscar Cardozo scored his 14th goal of the competition, which takes him level with Fernando Llorente in joint-second place in the all-time rankings – 15 goals behind frontrunner Falcao.
7. Sergei Semak, who put Zenit 2-0 up against Liverpool, became, at 36 years and 353 days, the third-oldest player to score in the competition – behind Pavel Horváth (37 years and 214 days) and Mario Haas (37 years and 13 days).
8. FC Internazionale Milano's 2-0 win against CFR 1907 Cluj and AFC Ajax's 2-0 victory against FC Steaua Bucureşti enabled both teams to bring their all-time goal difference in the UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League combined (qualifying and play-offs included) to exactly +100. Tottenham have the best goal difference in the combined competitions' history, raising it to +126 with their success against Lyon. The only other side with a positive three-figure goal balance is Juventus (+122).
9. Levante UD playmaker José Barkero picked up a UEFA Europa League Fantasy high of 14 points in the first legs after scoring once and providing two assists in his side's 3-0 home win against Olympiacos FC. He had managed just one point in five previous appearances, all as a substitute.
10. Scorer of Rubin's opening goal at Atlético, Gökdeniz Karadeniz tops the Fantasy rankings with 39 points. In 17 Russian Premier League appearances this term he has scored once, with no assists; in seven games in Europe he has netted three goals and made two assists.
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