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Europa League play-offs in depth

Published: Friday 7 August 2015, 17.09CET
Rematches, reunions and revenge are on the cards in the UEFA Europa League play-offs as UEFA.com picks out the most interesting facts from the 22 ties.

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Published: Friday 7 August 2015, 17.09CET

Europa League play-offs in depth

Rematches, reunions and revenge are on the cards in the UEFA Europa League play-offs as UEFA.com picks out the most interesting facts from the 22 ties.

Full draw results

Steaua Bucureşti (ROU) v Rosenborg (NOR)
The clubs are drawn together ten years on from their meeting in the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round. Mirel Rădoi – now in a coaching role at Steaua – scored in a 1-1 draw in Romania and at both ends in the return in Norway, which Rosenborg won 3-2 to progress. The Norwegian side took a three-goal lead through Jan Gunnar Solli, Alexander Ødegaard and Rădoi before the skipper pulled one back and Victoraş Iacob made things close.

FC Thun (SUI) v Sparta Praha (CZE)
The two paired off in the 2005/06 UEFA Champions League group stage. The game in Prague on 7 December 2005 finished 0-0 but Thun edged the first encounter 1-0; Selver Hodzic's 89th-minute goal earned the Swiss team their first-ever group stage points in the competition.

Girondins de Bordeaux (FRA) v Kairat Almaty (KAZ)
Kairat travelled 5,500km to Aberdeen – the furthest distance ever recorded for a UEFA club competition tie – to seal their play-off spot by claiming a 1-1 draw in Scotland, advancing 3-2 on aggregate. However, Bordeaux's tie against the Kazakhstani outfit will see that landmark surpassed, with a distance of 5,947km between the two clubs.

Odds BK (NOR) v Borussia Dortmund (GER)
Dortmund have twice tackled Norwegian opposition in European competition and are yet to be beaten in the Scandinavian country. They won 4-2 away and 3-1 at home against Lyn in the 1963/64 European Cup while Sergej Barbarez and Jürgen Kohler struck in a 2-2 draw in Trondheim against Rosenborg in the 1999/2000 UEFA Champions League first group stage. However, the Bundesliga side suffered a chastening 3-0 defeat at home in the second instalment.

Slovan Liberec (CZE) v Hajduk Split (CRO)
The Croatian team are returning to the country of their foundation. The club were formed in Prague in 1911 by a group of Split students. Fans will have the opportunity to check out the U Fleků pub where a sign commemorates the momentous occasion.

Zorya Luhansk (UKR) v Legia Warszawa (POL)
The Polish outfit are becoming regular visitors across the border to Ukraine. They took on Metalist Kharkiv in the group stage of last season's competition, Legia's Ondrej Duda getting the only goal in the away fixture and on target again – alongside Marek Saganowski – in a 2-1 victory in the return fixture. Both players are still with the Warsaw club.

Southampton (ENG) v Midtjylland (DEN)
Ronald Koeman's men, enjoying their first European campaign for 12 years, have been pitted against the Danish champions. Their squad features a former Saint in Finnish international Tim Sparv, part of the Southampton team that contested the FA Youth Cup final in 2005 – and also included Theo Walcott and Adam Lallana.

Milsami Orhei (MDA) v Saint-Étienne (FRA)
The Moldovan side must exorcise the demons of 2013/14 when they were defeated 6-0 on aggregate by Les Verts in the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round. Both legs ended 3-0 with Brazilian forward Brandão netting three across the tie.

Astra Giurgiu (ROU) v AZ Alkmaar (NED)
AZ come up against Romanian opposition for the first time in UEFA competition while Astra have never before drawn a Dutch club. Astra are into the play-offs for the third successive season, having proceeded to the group stage last year.

Rabotnicki (MKD) v Rubin Kazan (RUS)
Rabotnicki will become the first team from FYR Macedonia to make the group stage of a European competition should they oust their Russian rivals. The club have experienced the play-offs before but it proved a chastening debut: they lost 9-1 on aggregate to Lazio in 2011/12.

Last updated: 07/08/15 17.55CET

Related information

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http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/news/newsid=2270093.html#europa+league+play+offs+depth