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Europa League: round of 32 first-leg facts

Published: Friday 21 February 2014, 12.34CET
Jonatan Soriano became the six-goal top scorer, three teams maintained their perfect away records and only two sides won at home – UEFA.com looks over some round of 32 facts.
Europa League: round of 32 first-leg facts
Andrea Pirlo's Juventus were one of only two teams to win at home in the first legs ©Getty Images
 
 
Published: Friday 21 February 2014, 12.34CET

Europa League: round of 32 first-leg facts

Jonatan Soriano became the six-goal top scorer, three teams maintained their perfect away records and only two sides won at home – UEFA.com looks over some round of 32 facts.

• Nineteen member associations are included in the 2013/14 round of 32 – a competition record, surpassing the 17 nations that had at least one representative in 2010/11. This number includes for the first time teams from Bulgaria (PFC Ludogorets Razgrad) and Slovenia (NK Maribor).

• Of the 16 matches played only two resulted in home wins – for Juventus (2-0 against Trabzonspor AŞ) and FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk (1-0 versus Tottenham Hotspur FC). That is a record low for the first legs of the UEFA Europa League round of 32, though there were only three home victories in both 2010/11 and 2011/12.

• Eight of the 16 first-leg matches resulted in draws – another competition record at this stage.

• One of the six away triumphs was recorded by SL Benfica, 1-0 at PAOK FC. It was the Portuguese club's 20th victory in the competition – a tally bettered only by Club Atlético de Madrid (23) and PSV Eindhoven (22) – in just their 30th match. Benfica's all-time tally of 55 goals is also the third highest in the UEFA Europa League, behind PSV (64) and Atlético (61).

• Benfica have now played a record 23 matches in the UEFA Europa League knockout phase – five more than second-placed Atlético.

• FC Rubin Kazan, competing in the knockout stage for the fifth season out of five (a record matched, uniquely, by AFC Ajax), recorded their 11th draw, equalling the highest number in the competition previously set by PSV, FC Steaua Bucureşti and SS Lazio.

• FC Salzburg's 3-0 success at Ajax maintained their perfect record this season. Their seventh consecutive victory is the second best tally in the competition, although the Austrian club will have to win every game for the remainder of the season, including the final, to match Atlético's tally of 15.

• Salzburg were one of three teams, along with Ludogorets and Valencia CF, to maintain a 100% success rate away from home in this season's tournament, posting a fourth straight win on the road. The all-time record, jointly held by former winners Atlético and FC Porto, is six.

• Salzburg striker Jonatan Soriano's double at Ajax took the Spaniard to the top of the 2013/14 scorers' charts, with a total of six goals. Ludogorets' Roman Bezjak joined Jermain Defoe (Tottenham) and Olcan Adın (Trabzonspor) on five with his winner against Lazio.

• KRC Genk registered an eighth successive away fixture without defeat with their 0-0 draw at FC Anji Makhachkala – just one game behind PAOK's landmark tally, which the Greek club will seek to extend in their second leg at Benfica.

• Seven clubs changed head coach between matchday six and seven, and only one of the newcomers, Valencia's Juan Antonio Pizzi, savoured victory. There were opening draws for Gabriel Calderón (Real Betis Balompié), Garry Monk (Swansea City AFC) and Dušan Uhrin Jr (FC Viktoria Plzeň) and defeats for Edoardo Reja (Lazio), Tim Sherwood (Tottenham) and Hami Mandıralı (Trabzonspor).

• For the fourth successive season, there were fewer goals scored in the round of 32 first legs than in the previous campaign. The 27 registered this year prolonged a steady downward trend, with 43 scored in 2009/10, 40 in 2010/11, 36 in 2011/12 and 35 in 2012/13.

• Tottenham goalkeeper Brad Friedel, the UEFA Europa League's oldest competitor, increased his record mark to 42 years and 278 days with his appearance in Dnipropetrovsk.

Last updated: 21/02/14 15.36CET

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