Last updated 23/01/2022 15:33CET
UEFA Europa Conference League: Maccabi Haifa FC - SK Slavia Praha Match press kits

UEFA Europa Conference League - 2021/22 SeasonMatch press kits

Maccabi Haifa FCMaccabi Haifa FCSammy Ofer Stadium - HaifaThursday 21 October 2021
18.45CET (19.45 local time)
Group E - Matchday 3
SK Slavia PrahaSK Slavia Praha
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Match background Only this chapter

Yet to score in UEFA Europa Conference League Group E, Maccabi Haifa will hope to recapture their prolific form of the qualifying phase on Matchday 3 at home to Slavia Praha as they face Czech opponents in European competition for the first time.

• The Israeli champions followed up an opening 0-0 draw at home to Feyenoord by losing 3-0 away to Union Berlin, the team defeated 3-1 in Prague on Matchday 1 by Czech title holders Slavia, who then lost 2-1 in Rotterdam a fortnight later.

Previous meetings
• While Czech opposition is new to Maccabi, Slavia have faced Israeli clubs four times previously, winning three of their matches and losing the other. They beat Maccabi Tel-Aviv twice in the 2017/18 UEFA Europa League group stage (1-0 h, 2-0 a) and met Hapoel Beer-Sheva at the same juncture of the competition last season, losing 3-1 in Israel on Matchday 1 before a 3-0 home win that helped them qualify for the knockout phase at Hapoel's expense.

Form guide
• Maccabi Haifa won their first Israeli league title in a decade last season – and 13th in all – to secure a place in the UEFA Champions League first qualifying round, but it was there that their campaign ended, with a 3-1 aggregate defeat by Kairat Almaty (1-1 h, 0-2 a). Barak Bakhar's side made amends, however, by romping through the UEFA Europa Conference League qualifying phase, where they overwhelmed the champions of Georgia (Dinamo Tbilisi 7-2 on aggregate), the Faroe Islands (HB Tórshavn 7-3 agg) and Azerbaijan (Neftçi 7-3 agg) to reach the group stage.

• This is Maccabi's first appearance in a UEFA group stage since 2013/14, and their sixth in total. Only once have they made further progress, in the 2006/07 UEFA Cup, when they advanced to the round of 16. Their most successful European campaign was in 1998/99, when they reached the quarter-finals of the last ever UEFA Cup Winners' Cup.

• Maccabi are undefeated in their last 12 European home games, winning eight, and scored 16 goals in Haifa during the UEFA Europa Conference League qualifying phase before drawing a blank on Matchday 1.

• Slavia went through the entire domestic 2020/21 season unbeaten to win a Czech league and cup double, and also enjoyed a lengthy run in the UEFA Europa League, reaching the last eight for the second time in three seasons, where they lost to Arsenal (1-1 a, 0-4 h) having previously overcome two other British clubs, Leicester City and Rangers, in the knockout phase.

• This European campaign, however, did not go to plan during the summer for Jindřich Trpišovský's side with defeats in both qualifying ties – against Ferencváros in the UEFA Champions League (0-2 a, 1-0 h) and Legia Warszawa in the UEFA Europa League play-offs (2-2 h, 1-2 a). Their group stage football this term is therefore being played in the UEFA Europa Conference League.

• Slavia have lost all three European away matches this season, making it just four wins in their last 16 (D4 L8), although two of those (both 2-0) came in decisive second legs at Leicester and Rangers last spring.

Links and trivia
• Maccabi defender Sean Goldberg was in the Hapoel Beer-Sheva side that beat Slavia 3-1 at home in last season's UEFA Europa League. He did not play in the subsequent defeat in Prague.

• The Czech Republic defeated Israel 2-1 at Haifa's Sammy Ofer Stadium in a UEFA Nations League B encounter on 11 October 2020. Maccabi's Mohammad Abu Fani and substitute Sun Menahem featured for the home side, with Slavia's Lukáš Provod, Lukáš Masopust, Jan Bořil, Ondřej Kúdela and, from the bench, Petr Ševčík and Tomáš Holeš all appearing for the visitors.

• Slavia's Ubong Ekpai made Maccabi Haifa his first port of call in European football after leaving his native Nigeria in 2016 but left for the Czech Republic without playing a game.

• Maccabi are one of only three clubs yet to score in this season's UEFA Europa Conference League group stage. The other two, Anorthosis Famagusta and Flora Tallinn, are both in Group B.




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