FC Barcelona and Rangers FC meet in Spain in a match where victory would bring an outright lead at the top of the group and potentially even a last-16 berth.
Frustrated by Rangers FC's stubborn resistance on Matchday 3, FC Barcelona will try to improve on their 0-0 draw with Walter Smith's side in Glasgow when the top two teams in Group E reconvene at Camp Nou.
• Only goal difference separates Barcelona from Rangers at the group summit with the sides both unbeaten with two wins and a draw apiece. Victory for either in Spain would represent a major step towards the last 16 – and in the event of third-placed Olympique Lyonnais losing at home against VfB Stuttgart, would actually secure the winning team a place in the UEFA Champions League knockout stage with two games to spare.
• Prior to their stalemate at Ibrox, Barcelona had won 2-0 at Stuttgart on Matchday 2, Carles Puyol and Lionel Messi scoring in the second half. Frank Rijkaard's men defeated Lyon 3-0 at home in their opening fixture, Messi and Thierry Henry adding to the lead given them by François Clerc's own goal.
• Rangers began their campaign with a 2-1 success against Stuttgart, coming from behind to win through goals from Charlie Adam and Jean-Claude Darcheville. They built on that positive start with a 3-0 victory at Lyon on 2 October, Lee McCulloch, Daniel Cousin and DaMarcus Beasley all scoring as Rangers recorded their first away win in the UEFA Champions League since 2000/01.
• Following their unbeaten start, Rangers are on course to register their best points tally in the UEFA Champions League since the introduction of the 32-team group stage. Their best performance to date in terms of points was in 2000/01 when they accrued eight points, having recorded two wins, two draws and two defeats.
• Barcelona are one of only two teams in the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League yet to concede a goal along with Arsenal FC.
• Barcelona have won only once in six previous meetings with Scottish opposition. That victory came on their last visit to Glasgow to face Rangers' neighbours Celtic FC in the UEFA Champions League in September 2004 – Deco, Ludovic Giuly and Henrik Larsson were the scorers in a 3-1 success.
• The Spanish club's home record against Scottish teams does not inspire confidence with one defeat and two draws, most recently a 1-1 draw with Celtic in the 2004/05 group stage. Samuel Eto'o opened the scoring for Barcelona in that match only for John Hartson to level for the visitors.
• Prior to that draw, they had lost 2-1 to Dundee United FC in the 1986/87 UEFA Cup quarter-final and been held 0-0 by Celtic in the fourth round of the same competition in 2003/04, running out aggregate losers on both occasions.
• However, Rangers have a disappointing record in Spain, with two draws and six defeats from eight matches there.
• In addition, they have lost five out of seven two-legged ties against Spanish opposition, the most recent reverse coming last season in the UEFA Cup Round of 16, where they lost 2-1 on aggregate to CA Osasuna. Brahim Hemdani's injury-time equaliser earned Rangers a 1-1 first-leg draw prior to their second-leg defeat in Pamplona.
• Rangers' most recent UEFA Champions League opponents from Spain were Villarreal CF, whom they met in the first knockout round in 2005/06. The Light Blues fought back twice to salvage a 2-2 draw at Ibrox but a 1-1 draw in Spain left them eliminated on the away-goals rule.
• Barcelona defender Lilian Thuram was part of the Parma FC side defeated 2-0 at Rangers, and 2-1 overall, in a UEFA Champions League third qualifying round tie in August 1999. More recently, Thuram was in the France team beaten by a Scotland outfit featuring four Rangers players – David Weir, Alan Hutton, Lee McCulloch and Barry Ferguson – in a UEFA EURO 2008™ qualifying match in Paris in September.
• Weir, McCulloch and Ferguson were also in the side that beat Thuram and Henry's France 1-0 in Glasgow in October 2006.
• Rangers' Spanish forward Nacho Novo began his career with SD Huesca before leaving his home country to join Raith Rovers FC in 2001.