Debutants FC Astana hope there were enough positives from their opening-day defeat to help them to a historic first victory at the expense of visitors Galatasaray AŞ.
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Debutants FC Astana made a good impression despite a 2-0 defeat at SL Benfica on matchday one and will be looking for their first three points against Galatasaray AŞ.
• The clubs are more than sporting rivals: on 29 April 2014 in Astana, they signed a memorandum of cooperation, with the Kazakhstani team hoping to learn from Galatasaray's international experience.
• Astana secured the first participation by a Kazakh club in the UEFA Champions League group stage with a 2-1 aggregate victory over APOEL FC in August's play-off round.
• Nemanja Maksimović’s dramatic equaliser six minutes from time in Cyprus proved decisive after Baurzhan Dzholchiyev had sealed a 1-0 first-leg success.
• In the third qualifying round Stanimir Stoilov's side prevailed 4-3 at home to HJK Helsinki after a goalless away leg. In the previous round they defeated NK Maribor, winning 3-1 at home to overturn a 1-0 away reverse.
• The Turkish double winners, competing in their 14th group stage campaign and their fourth in a row, lost 2-0 at home to Club Atlético de Madrid on matchday one.
• It stretched the Turkish team's winless European run to nine matches.
• In last season's group stage Galatasaray suffered successive 4-1 defeats on their travels against Arsenal FC and then Borussia Dortmund before a third reversal, 2-0 at RSC Anderlecht, to finish bottom of Group D.
• Cimbom's best performance came in 1988/89 when they reached the European Cup semi-finals.
• Galatasaray's sole previous fixture against Kazakhstani opponents was a 2009/10 UEFA Europa League second qualifying round tie. Frank Rijkaard's men, including current squad members Sabri Sarıoğlu and Hakan Balta, beat FC Tobol Kostanay 2-0 at home after a 1-1 draw away.
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• Burak Yılmaz scored twice for Turkey – who featured Selçuk İnan, Semih Kaya and Umut Bulut – in a 3-1 victory over a Kazakhstan side containing Aleksei Schetkin, Abzal Beysebekov, Dmitri Shomko and Dzholchiyev, in a UEFA EURO 2016 qualifier at the Ali Sami Yen stadium on 16 November 2014.
• Burak also got the opening goal in Turkey’s 2-1 win over Kazakhstan in a UEFA EURO 2012 qualifier in Istanbul on 2 September 2011. Selçuk was sent off in the last minute.
• Stoilov captained PFC Levski Sofia in a 2001/02 UEFA Champions League third qualifying round tie against Galatasaray, who triumphed 2-1 in Turkey before a 1-1 draw away.
• Stoilov also played for Fenerbahçe SK in 1992/93 and faced their Istanbul rivals on two occasions, scoring against them on his debut in a pre-season tournament as the Yellow Canaries lost 3-2.
• Lukas Podolski registered Germany's final goal in their 3-0 away success over Kazakhstan in a UEFA EURO 2012 qualifier at the Astana Arena on 12 October 2010.
• Patrick Twumasi serves the second of a four-game ban imposed for his red card in the third qualifying round second leg against HJK.
• Astana succumbed 1-0 to title rivals Kairat Almaty on 20 September, their first home setback since a 3-0 defeat by Villarreal CF in the 2014/15 UEFA Europa League play-offs.
• Two of Astana's five league losses in 2015 have come against Kairat. They went down 2-1 against FC Irtysh Pavlodar on Saturday and have not won in four games in all competitions (D1 L3).
• Astana drew 1-1 at home with FK Aktobe on 23 September in the second leg of their Kazakh Cup semi-final, prevailing 3-1 on aggregate. Stoilov's men play Kairat on 22 November in the club's third final.
• Yeldos Akhmetov was carried off on a stretcher three minutes into the second half of that match although he is back in training.
• Galatasaray are unbeaten in three away games this term, winning two of them.
• Burak sustained a hamstring injury in the 1-0 victory at Trabzonspor AŞ on 19 September and was subsequently ruled out for a month.