A first meeting in Europe between FC BATE Borisov and FC Shakhtar Donetsk finds both sides looking to draw closer to Group H's early leaders, FC Porto.
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FC BATE Borisov and FC Shakhtar Donetsk meet for the first time, with both teams hoping to draw closer to FC Porto at the head of Group H.
• BATE's sole previous competitive experience of Ukrainian opposition came in the 2010/11 UEFA Europa League group stage. In Minsk, Pavel Nekhaychik grabbed BATE's late consolation with FC Dynamo Kyiv already 4-0 ahead.
• Nekhaychik had earlier scored a second-half equaliser to earn a 2-2 draw in Kyiv, Vitali Rodionov having put the visitors ahead. That was a maiden encounter for the Belarus club against a side from their opponents' nation.
• Belarusian champions for an eighth successive season in 2013, BATE are in the group stage for the fourth time overall and the third time in four seasons.
• In Aleksandr Yermakovich's European bow as coach, they beat KS Skënderbeu in this season's second qualifying round thanks to Anri Khagush's goal in a 1-1 away draw after a goalless home leg.
• BATE lost 1-0 away – and went behind at home – before winning 3-1 against Debreceni VSC for a 3-2 aggregate victory in the third qualifying round.
• Another 1-1 away draw paved the way for a 3-0 home win against ŠK Slovan Bratislava in the play-offs.
• Their only experience of opponents from Belarus came in the 1996 UEFA Intertoto Cup, when they lost 2-1 at home to an FC Ataka-Aura Minsk side that included BATE head coach Yermakovich.
• The Ukrainian champions, taking part in the group stage for the tenth time, won 2-0 at Real Sociedad de Fútbol on matchday one last season. They went on to lose away at Bayer 04 Leverkusen (0-4) and Manchester United FC (0-1), finishing third in the group on eight points.
• Transferring to the UEFA Europa League, they were eliminated in the round of 32, losing 2-1 at home to FC Viktoria Plzeň after a 1-1 away draw.
• Shakhtar have won only one of their last six European away games.
• Their best performance in the UEFA Champions League came in 2010/11 when they reached the quarter-finals.
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• Ukraine's Andriy Pyatov, Olexandr Kucher, Vyacheslav Shevchuk and Taras Stepanenko were 2-0 winners against Belarus trio Egor Filipenko, Denis Polyakov and Mikhail Gordeychuk in a UEFA EURO 2016 qualifier on 9 October at the Borisov Arena.
• Shakhtar's Pyatov and Shevchuk started in Ukraine's 1-0 win over Egor Filipenko's Belarus in a 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifier in Lviv on 6 September 2008. Aleksandr Pavlov came on after 81 minutes for the visitors.
• BATE have won four games and drawn two since losing 6-0 to FC Porto on matchday one.
• The Borisov side are 26 league fixtures unbeaten (17 wins, nine draws), one shy of the domestic record.
• A hat-trick from Aleksandr Karnitski helped BATE to a 4-1 victory at FC Shakhtyor Soligorsk – who Yermakovich's men lost to on the opening day of the season in late March – on 16 October.
• Karnitski has scored six goals in his last five outings for BATE.
• A goal down with four minutes remaining, BATE recovered to beat FC Slutsk 2-1 after extra time in the Belarusian Cup round of 16 on 11 October, defender Nemanja Tubić equalising with his first goal for the club.
• BATE have not lost at home in any competition since a 1-0 reverse against FC Torpedo Zhodino on 29 September 2013.
• Egor Filipenko travelled to Serbia for a medical examination after suffering a thigh tear in Belarus's 3-1 home loss to Slovakia on 12 October.
• Olexandr Kucher and Darijo Srna are both a booking away from a suspension after picking up yellow cards on matchdays one and two.
• Luiz Adriano scored twice in Friday's 6-2 win at home to FC Volyn Lutsk to take his tally to 112 goals for Shakhtar, overtaking Vitali Starukhin in second on the club's all-time list. He is only two short of Andriy Vorobey's record.
• Shaktar were beaten 1-0 by FC Dynamo Kyiv on 5 October, their second successive league defeat. The Pitmen last lost back-to-back top-flight fixtures in April 2004.
• The Ukrainian champions have won just two of their last six games in all competitions. Prior to matchday one, Shakhtar had won eight out of eight this season.
• Mircea Lucescu's team, minus their internationals, succumbed 1-0 to Parma FC in an away friendly on 9 October.
• Serhiy Kryvtsov was ruled out for up to six weeks after injuring his right ankle against FC Zorya Luhansk on 21 September.