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Anderlecht seeking redemption in Spain

RSC Anderlecht will look to save their European season when they visit Group C winners Málaga CF, but also need a favour from AC Milan to help secure third place.

Lucas Biglia (right) scored on Anderlecht's last visit to Spain in 2010
Lucas Biglia (right) scored on Anderlecht's last visit to Spain in 2010 ©AFP/Getty Images

RSC Anderlecht visit Málaga CF seeking a combination of results that will stop the curtain falling on their participation in Europe this season.

• The Belgian title holders are already out of the UEFA Champions League and enter the final matchday trailing third-placed FC Zenit St Petersburg in the chase for a UEFA Europa League place. With the teams level on points, Anderlecht must either achieve a better result than Zenit manage at AC Milan, or match the Russian side's result and score enough goals to turn around the deficit in goal difference.

• Sitting top of Group C, Málaga are guaranteed first place thanks to their superior head-to-head record against Milan, and have already beaten Anderlecht 3-0 in Belgium.

Match background
• Goalless in their two away games so far, Anderlecht are seeking their first victory on their travels in the UEFA Champions League since a 1-0 success at another Spanish side, Real Betis Balompié, in their last match of the 2005/06 group stage. Vincent Kompany scored for an Anderlecht team including Olivier Deschacht, Roland Juhász and unused substitute Silvio Proto against a Betis side featuring Joaquín. The result avenged the Brussels club's home loss to Betis but Anderlecht still finished bottom of their group.

• Málaga are looking for their third straight home win in Group C, having already surpassed the ten points that Manuel Pellegrini's Villarreal CF side earned in their first UEFA Champions League campaign in 2005/06. If they avoid defeat against Anderlecht, they will match Villarreal's feat of staying unbeaten on their group stage debut.

• Málaga's first opponents in their debut European campaign in 2002/03 were KAA Gent in the UEFA Intertoto Cup third round. They won 3-0 at home before earning a 1-1 draw in Belgium thanks to Julio Dely Valdés's added-time equaliser.

• On their most recent visit to Spain, Anderlecht earned a 1-1 draw with Athletic Club in the 2009/10 UEFA Cup round of 32. Lucas Biglia scored that night while Juhász struck in a 4-0 home win in the return.

Team ties
• John van den Brom's only previous experience of Spanish opposition came as a player in the Vitesse side beaten 1-0 home and away by Real Madrid CF in the 1992/93 UEFA Cup third round.

• Joaquín helped Spain beat Proto and Deschacht's Belgium 2-0 in a 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifier in Brussels.

• Roque Santa Cruz scored 11 minutes after coming off the bench in FC Bayern München's 1-1 draw at Anderlecht on matchday two of the 2003/04 group stage. The game was Martín Demichelis's debut in UEFA competition with Bayern. Deschacht also played and both he and Santa Cruz featured in Bayern's 1-0 return victory.

• Oguchi Onyewu played in Belgium from 2003 to 2009, spending one season on loan with RAA Louviéroise before moving on to R. Standard de Liège. With Standard he played alongside Milan Jovanović and Dieudonné Mbokani, winning the Belgian title together in 2008 and 2009.

• Onyewu won six and lost just two of 12 meetings with Anderlecht, including Standard's Belgian First League championship play-off victory in 2009.

• Onyewu is a United States national team colleague of Sacha Kljestan.

• Jérémy Toulalan helped Lyon eliminate Anderlecht in the 2009/10 UEFA Champions League play-offs, featuring in both legs of an 8-2 aggregate triumph.

• Behrang Safari was in the FC Basel 1893 team beaten 5-0 at home by FC Barcelona in the 2008/09 group stage but which subsequently earned a 1-1 draw at the Camp Nou.

• Javier Saviola scored on his only previous appearance against a Belgian side before this season, finding the net in Barcelona's 3-2 victory against Club Brugge KV in the 2002/03 first group stage.

• Massimo Bruno struck a late goal in Belgium's 2-1 loss to Juanmi's Spain in the UEFA European Under-19 Championship elite round qualifier in Italy in May. Jordan Lukaku and Dennis Praet were also in the Belgium team.

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