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Leicester's Champions League adventure begins at Club Brugge

After their fairy-tale triumph in last season's Premier League, Leicester City turn their sights to the UEFA Champions League as they open their Group G campaign at Club Brugge.

Claudio Ranieri has got the better of Michel Preud'homme once before
Claudio Ranieri has got the better of Michel Preud'homme once before ©Getty Images

After their fairy-tale triumph in last season's Premier League, Leicester City FC turn their sights to the UEFA Champions League as they kick off their Group G campaign away at Club Brugge KV.

Match background

Club Brugge
• The Belgian titleholders are competing in the UEFA Champions League group stage for the first time since 2005/06.

• They will hope to fare better at home in Group G than they managed in last term's UEFA Europa League group stage. En route to finishing third in their group, they suffered home losses to FC Midtjylland (1-3) and SSC Napoli (0-1), either side of a 1-0 win against Legia Warszawa.

• Brugge's most recent encounter with English opposition came in last season's UEFA Champions League play-offs against Manchester United FC, when they lost 3-1 at Old Trafford and 4-0 at the Jan Breydelstadion.

• Their overall home record against English sides is W6 D2 L2. However, they have not beaten an English team in Bruges since a 1-0 first-leg success against Chelsea FC in the 1994/95 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup quarter-finals (agg 1-2).

• This is a first taste of Europe's elite club competition for the Foxes – and only their fourth season in European competition in their 132-year history. Their last continental adventure came in the 2000/01 UEFA Cup and was short-lived as they went down 4-2 on aggregate against FK Crvena zvezda.

• Leicester have played eight matches in European football prior to this season and their record reads W2 D2 L4. Those two victories came in the 1961/62 European Cup Winners' Cup when they beat Northern Irish side Glenavon FC home (3-1) and away (4-1) in the first round.

• This will be the sixth UEFA Champions League campaign for coach Claudio Ranieri, who led Chelsea FC to the semi-finals in 2004, with a sixth different club (Chelsea, Valencia, Juventus, Roma, Inter and now Leicester). He has steered his team into the knockout phase four times in five attempts; the only group stage exit was with Valencia in 2004/05.

Coach and player links
• Rival coaches Michel Preud'homme and Ranieri met in the European Cup Winners' Cup quarter-finals in 1996/97. Preud'homme was in goal for an SL Benfica side beaten 2-0 at home by a Ranieri-coached ACF Fiorentina, who advanced as 2-1 aggregate winners after a narrow second-leg defeat in Florence.

• Preud'homme was in the Belgium side beaten 1-0 by England in the round of 16 at the 1990 FIFA World Cup in Italy. He was also in the R. Standard de Liège side beaten 4-2 on aggregate by Manchester City FC in the second round of the 1978/79 UEFA Cup.

• As Valencia coach Ranieri oversaw home (2-0) and away (2-1) wins over RSC Anderlecht in the 2004/05 UEFA Champions League group stage – the first of those matches taking place on 14 September 2004.

• Andy King appeared as a substitute in Wales's 3-1 quarter-final win over Belgium at UEFA EURO 2016.

• Daniel Amartey got FC København's goal in a 1-1 draw at Club Brugge in the 2014/15 UEFA Europa League group stage.

• Shinji Okazaki scored the third goal in Japan's 4-0 friendly victory over a Belgium side including Timmy Simons and substitute Jelle Vossen in May 2009. Okazaki's VfB Stuttgart won 2-0 at KRC Genk in the 2012/13 UEFA Europa League round of 32 to secure a 3-1 aggregate success.

• Marcin Wasilweski played for RSC Anderlecht from 2007 to 2013, winning four Belgian First League titles and one Belgian Cup.

• Vossen had spells with Middlesbrough FC and Burnley FC in England between 2014 and 2015.

Match facts

José Izquierdo
José Izquierdo©Getty Images

Club Brugge
• Club Brugge won the Belgian Super Cup on 23 July, José Izquierdo and Ruud Vormer scoring as they came from behind to beat R. Standard de Liège 2-1 at the Jan Breydel Stadion. Hans Vanaken was sent off before half-time.

• Dion Cools scored his first league goal for the club (and first in 12 months in all competitions) in the opening day victory over KV Mechelen on 29 July.

• Björn Engels recently headed in two added-time goals in five days, first earning a 2-2 league draw with Standard on 28 August, then snatching a 3-2 EURO U21 qualifying win for Belgium against Malta.

• Club Brugge beat Willem II 2-1 in a friendly on 1 September, with Vanaken and Anthony Limbombe on target.

• Lior Refaelov underwent surgery on his pubis on 22 August and is expected to be out until November.

• Felipe Gedoz (28 August, ankle) is sidelined but Izquierdo returned from injury in Friday's 1-0 loss at Waasland-Beveren.

• On 4 September, Abdoulay Diaby scored as Mali beat Benin 5-2 to book an Africa Cup of Nations spot.

Leicester City
• The Premier League champions lost their first two fixtures of the season 2-1 – against Manchester United FC in the Community Shield at Wembley and at Hull City AFC in the English top flight.

• Leicester had not previously lost successive games since February 2015.

Riyad Mahrez scores from the spot against Hull
Riyad Mahrez scores from the spot against Hull©Getty Images

• Riyad Mahrez, Premier League player of the season for 2015/16, opened his account for this term against Hull. He also struck twice for Algeria – including a sensational free-kick – in a 6-0 win against Lesotho on 4 September.

• Also involved in that game was Islam Slimani, who joined Leicester from Sporting CP for a club record fee on transfer deadline day.

• Jamie Vardy, second in the 2015/16 Premier League scoring charts, found the net against United, in the 2-1 victory against Swansea City AFC on 27 August and again in the 4-1 loss at Liverpool FC on Saturday.

• Leicester have lost just one of their last 18 home games in all competitions, winning 11 and drawing six.

• Vardy, Mahrez, captain Wes Morgan, goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel and midfielder Danny Drinkwater have all signed new contracts since the Foxes' title triumph.