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Something has to give in Germany as the two qualified sides in Group D, Hamburger SV and FC Basel 1893, compete for top spot in the section on Matchday 6.
• Both clubs are already certain of a place in the Round of 32 as the top two sides in the section, but will be eager to go into the draw as group winners.
• Group winners face a third-placed side from one of the other UEFA Cup groups in the Round of 32, playing the home leg of the tie second. Runners-up face one of the eight teams who finished third in the UEFA Champions League groups, also playing the second legs at home.
• Along with Panathinaikos FC, Everton FC and FC Girondins de Bordeaux, Hamburg are one of four sides to have won all three of their group matches to date, beating SK Brann, Stade Rennais FC and NK Dinamo Zagreb.
• Along with Basel and Panathinaikos, Huub Stevens' Hamburg are also one of three teams not to have conceded a goal in the group stage.
• Christian Gross's Basel beat Rennes and Brann 1-0 at home either side of a 0-0 draw at Dinamo Zagreb, and will win the group if they can overcome Hamburg in Germany.
• Stevens will leave Hamburg at the end of the season to take charge at PSV Eindhoven in his native Netherlands. He said: "The decision was made for private and personal reasons. The move will enable me to be closer to my family, especially my wife."
• Hamburg and Basel met in the third round of the 1999 UEFA Intertoto Cup, with the German side prevailing on away goals. Hamburg lost 1-0 at home but triumphed 3-2 in Switzerland. They then lost on penalties to Montpellier Hérault SC in one of the three finals.
• George Koumantarakis scored all three of Basel's goals over the two legs - the winner in Hamburg and the two second-half strikes that pegged the Bundesliga giants back after taking a 3-0 lead at St. Jakob-Park. Andreas Fischer, Martin Groth and Tony Yeboah scored Hamburg's goals.
• No members of this Hamburg squad were involved in either leg of the tie.
• Current Basel coach Gross was in charge for both legs, while midfielder Benjamin Huggel - who rejoined Basel in the summer following a two-season spell in Germany with Eintracht Frankfurt - came on as a substitute in both fixtures.
• Including those games against Basel, Hamburg have met Swiss opponents on 12 occasions in European competition, winning six, drawing four and losing two. At home, they have won four of those games and drawn one, with their only home defeat coming against Basel.
• Basel have played eight games in total against sides from over the border in Germany, winning two, drawing one and losing five. On German soil, the painful triumph against Hamburg remains their only success, with a draw and two defeats in their remaining games.
• Basel have not lost in three European away games this season, while Hamburg have won their last five European home ties.
• Neither side have any disciplinary concerns ahead of the match.
• Rennes are at home against Dinamo Zagreb in Thursday's other Group D game.
• The draw for the Round of 32 and Round of 16 will be held in Nyon on 21 December from 13.00CET.
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