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FC Salzburg make their first competitive trip to the Eternal City in UEFA Europa League Group G with hosts S.S. Lazio looking to ensure they do not leave Rome with as good a result as their previous Austrian visitors.
• The sides have never met, and while all but one of Salzburg's previous four trips to Italy have ended in defeat, Lazio may remember that the last Austrian Bundesliga side to play them at the Stadio Olimpico, SK Sturm Graz, left with a 1-0 win in the second leg of a 2002/03 UEFA Cup third round tie.
• Lazio's only UEFA Cup group stage campaign in 2004/05 saw them fall short of a place in the Round of 32. This is Salzburg's first appearance in the group phase of a competition since they participated in the 1994/95 UEFA Champions League, finishing third in their section.
• Lazio have lost just one of their last eleven European home games, going down 2-1 against Olympiacos FC in the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League group stage. Six of those matches ended in draws, however.
• Salzburg's away form has been good in recent seasons. They have won four of their last six games on the road, losing the other two. Their most recent trip was a 3-0 loss at Maccabi Haifa FC in the UEFA Champions League play-offs.
• Formerly a player at AC Cesena, Davide Ballardini took over as Lazio coach during the summer following the departure of Delio Rossi. He had previously been in charge at Cagliari Calcio before earning a number of fine results as boss of US Città di Palermo last season.
• Salzburg are coached by former Netherlands international defender Huub Stevens (18 caps), who won the UEFA Cup as FC Schalke 04 coach in 1996/97. Salzburg are his third new club in as many seasons, having spent the last two campaigns in charge of Hamburger SV and then PSV Eindhoven.
• Salzburg defender Rabiu Afolabi spent the 2000/01 season on loan with Lazio's Serie A rivals SSC Napoli but never made a first-team appearance.
• Salzburg's Saša Ilić earned a 2-2 draw at Lazio during his time as an FK Partizan player in the 2004/05 UEFA Cup group stage. Partizan would go on to qualify, whereas Lazio missed out.
• Lazio visit PFC Levski Sofia on Matchday 2, while Salzburg are at home against Villarreal CF on the same night, 1 October.
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