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Braga and Partizan seek first point

Without a point to their respective names in Group H, SC Braga and FK Partizan face off in Portugal on Tuesday keen, in the words of home coach Domingos Paciência, "to get back on track".

Braga and Partizan seek first point
Braga and Partizan seek first point ©UEFA.com

At least one of SC Braga and FK Partizan will get off the mark in UEFA Champions League Group H on Tuesday and both coaches are seeking not just a first point, but victory.

Domingos Paciência, Braga coach
We will approach this match in the same way we did the previous two. We weren't happy about how first two matches in the UEFA Champions League went, but this game allows us to get back on track, and it's decisive because we still want to go through. At the moment we have to keep things in our own hands, so the other result doesn't matter if we win, and we will look only to win. We will try to change the course of things against Partizan.

We had two great qualifying rounds and gone on to have bad group results. It's a totally different competition, and we are competing against world-class teams. Still, we know we can beat Partizan. If we analyse the other teams in the group, we know Arsenal are the best team. We have to know how to handle the pressure. Partizan like to play attractive football, 4-4-2, with two good wingers and two good strikers.

Aleksandar Stanojević, Partizan coach
I look at these two matches against Braga [on Tuesday and on 3 November] as decisive. I am thinking about both of the games, am preparing the team for the forthcoming 180 minutes and expect that after those games we will emerge as winners. From my point of view that will be enough to ensure third place and keep our European campaign going into the spring.

Both teams are on zero points but maybe both deserve more. Braga play very well, have quality players and have pace. We can compete at that high level and show we are better than them. Looking at our last few games, I can see problems in defence. We have conceded so many goals and we are usually very good at the back. Our attack [in contrast] has been very, very good. We aim to get at least a draw but every club always expects to win. Tomić may play, we are not sure if his injury will keep him out.

Team news
Mossoró made a goalscoring return to league action against A. Naval 1º Maio on 24 September, having fractured his right leg against Benfica in March. Quim ruptured his right Achilles tendon in pre-season training and is expected to be out until the new year.

Defender Marko Jovanović is suspended after a red card against Arsenal on Matchday 2 and Stefan Savić will start. Striker Cléo (knee) and captain Mladen Krstajić (rested) both missed Friday's game against FK Smederevo but are available, while Aleksandar Miljković started, making his first appearance since picking up an ankle injury in training ahead of Matchday 2. Nemanja Tomić is suffering from an undisclosed injury but could play.

Weekend results
Braga were not in action at the weekend having brought their Portuguese Cup tie at fourth division side SU 1º Dezembro forward to 10 October. A 2-1 win took Domingos Paciência's side through to the fourth round, with Elton scoring his first goal since arriving on loan from CR Vasco da Gama.

15/10/10 Partizan 5-3 FK Smederevo
(Iliev 15, Šćepović 17 58, Boya 56, Petrović 79; Ranković 13 72, Ćeran 46)
Midfielders Tomić and Milan Smiljanić were both suspended so Almami Moreira made his first appearance for Partizan since August. Partizan's 39-match unbeaten run in the Super League ended with a 2-0 defeat at FK Vojvodina on 3 October.

Did you know?
Braga have played three fixtures against Serbian sides before, all against FK Crvena Zvezda. In the 2007/08 UEFA Cup group stage they won 2-0 at home while their 2005/06 UEFA Cup first round tie ended in two draws – 0-0 in Serbia and 1-1 in Portugal – as Braga were eliminated on away goals

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