FC Chornomorets Odesa will look to get back on track in Group B, with PFC Ludogorets Razgrad having made a tremendous start to their UEFA Europa League campaign.
• The teams are meeting for the first time in what is Chornomorets' maiden encounter with a side from Bulgaria and Ludogorets' first game against a Ukrainian club.
• Ukrainian teams have had much the better of previous meetings between clubs representing the two nations, boasting the record W12 D5 L4. However, there is hope for Ludogorets: PFC Litex Lovech became the first – and to date only – Bulgarian side to win a UEFA game in Ukraine when they overcame FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk 2-0 in the only previous meeting between the nations' clubs in the group stage at this level back in 2005/06.
• The record of Bulgarian clubs in Ukraine still makes pretty miserable reading: W1 D2 L8.
• This is Chornomorets' first UEFA group stage campaign, and their ninth game since entering the competition in the second qualifying round. Their longest previous European campaign was a six-match voyage to the second round of the 1995/96 UEFA Cup.
• Chornomorets won 2-1 at GNK Dinamo Zagreb on matchday one but fell to their heaviest home defeat in this competition on matchday two, 2-0 to PSV Eindhoven.
• Fellow group stage debutants Ludogorets have made a terrific Group B start, following up a 2-0 win at PSV – their biggest ever European away success – with a 3-0 triumph at home against Dinamo on matchday two, a result that matched their previous best home result in Europe, a 3-0 defeat of ŠK Slovan Bratislava in this season's UEFA Champions League second qualifying round.
• This is only Ludogorets' second European campaign. They were promoted to the Bulgarian top flight for the first time at the end of the 2010/11 season.
• Ludogorets are the only one of the nine champions in this season's group stage to have won their opening fixtures. The other domestic champions are Group B rivals Dinamo (Croatia), NK Maribor (Slovenia), FC Sheriff (Moldova), Maccabi Tel-Aviv FC (Israel), Legia Warszawa (Poland), FC Shakhter Karagandy (Kazakhstan), APOEL FC (Cyprus) and IF Elfsborg (Sweden).
• Ludogorets' Romanian defender Cosmin Moţi and Chornomorets' Albanian midfielder Elis Bakaj were team-mates at FC Dinamo Bucureşti in 2011.
• Brought in to replace Ivaylo Petev as Ludogorets coach in July, Stoicho Stoev was a stylish forward with PFC Lokomotiv Sofia in the 1980s, though he maintained a European outlook and classed Arrigo Sacchi as his coaching idol. After taking charge of a number of smaller Bulgarian clubs, the cool-headed coach led champions Ludogorets – his local side – to their first UEFA Europa League group stage campaign after defeat by FC Basel 1893 in the UEFA Champions League play-offs.
• Chornomorets coach since November 2010, Roman Grygorchuk was a successful striker in his native Ukraine, also playing in Austria, Poland and Russia before going from the pitch to the bench in Latvia. He won three Latvian titles as FK Ventspils coach but then opted to return to Ukraine. In Odessa, he won promotion to the top division in his first season in charge, while a sixth-place finish in 2012/13 opened the door to Europe.
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