Sevilla FC welcome SK Slavia Praha on Matchday 2 hoping to translate their excellent UEFA Cup home form into the UEFA Champions League.
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Two teams who are making their debut appearance in the UEFA Champions League meet on Matchday 2 with Sevilla FC hosting SK Slavia Praha hoping to repeat the home form which served them so well in the past two seasons as they clinched back-to-back UEFA Cup triumphs.
• However, while Sevilla were used to domination in the UEFA Cup, their first game in the UEFA Champions League was a different story as they lost 3-0 away to Arsenal FC. Slavia's debut was far more fruitful as they managed a 2-1 home win over FC Steaua Bucureşti.
• The two sides have never met in European club competition.
• Sevilla's home form was a big part of their recent success in European competition; in 14 fixtures at the Estadio Ramón Sánche-Pizjuán in the UEFA Cup over the past two seasons, Juande Ramos’ team have lost just once. That came against AZ Alkmaar in last season’s group stage when Shota Arveladze scored in time added on to give the Dutch side a 2-1 victory. Apart from two draws, Sevilla had won every other home fixture – 11 in total.
• Last season’s group matches also brought them face to face with Czech Republic outfit FC Slovan Liberec. The away game for Sevilla, the only time they have met opponents from that country in club competition, ended 0-0.
• To reach this stage the Andalusian club won their third qualifying round tie with AEK Athens FC 6-1 on aggregate. They won the home leg 2-0 and then came through an emotionally-testing return leg – which had been delayed because of the untimely death of midfielder Antonio Puerta – 4-1 thus ensuring they would be making only their second appearance in the European Champion Clubs' Cup – 50 years after their debut.
• Slavia have met teams from Spain on four occasions and have recorded only one victory. In fact they’ve only scored in one of the four games, the most recent meeting with RC Celta de Vigo in the third qualifying round of the 2003/04 UEFA Champions League. They won 2-0 but the Spanish side progressed into the group stage because they had won the first leg 3-0.
• They also met Valencia CF in the 1996/97 UEFA Cup second round when they bowed out of the competition, losing 1-0 at home followed by a 0-0 result in Spain.
• In the other game in Group H, Steaua are at home to Arsenal.