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Wenger, Stevens reunite as Arsenal meet Schalke

Arsenal FC are seeking to maintain their perfect start in the UEFA Champions League but they face a tough test at home to FC Schalke 04 who have four points from two games.

Lukas Podolski celebrates scoring for Arsenal on matchday two
Lukas Podolski celebrates scoring for Arsenal on matchday two ©Getty Images

Arsenal FC have made a perfect start in Group B but now face an unbeaten FC Schalke 04 side. While Arsenal opened with a 2-1 win at Montpellier Hérault SC and a 3-1 home defeat of Olympiacos FC, Schalke were 2-1 victors against the Greek side in Piraeus on matchday one but then conceded a late equaliser to draw 2-2 at home to ten-man Montpellier.

Previous meetings
• The teams met in the 2001/02 UEFA Champions League group stage, when the coaches were as they are today – Arsène Wenger and Huub Stevens. Arsenal won 3-2 at home but lost 3-1 in Gelsenkirchen.

• The teams for the game at Highbury on 19 September 2001 were:
Arsenal: Seaman, Vieira, Keown, Ljungberg, Lauren, Parlour, Van Bronckhorst, Grimandi, Pirès (Inamoto 76), Wiltord (Bergkamp 72), Henry (Upson 90).
Schalke: Reck, Van Kerckhoven, Hajto, Möller (Djordjević 72), Böhme (Mulder 82), Van Hoogdalem, Wałdoch, Vermant (Asamoah 54), Oude-Kamphuis, Mpenza, Agali.

• Arsenal faced Borussia Dortmund in last season's group stage, when a 2-1 victory extended their run of successive home wins against Bundesliga visitors to six. They have recorded nine home victories overall, with one draw and one defeat – going down 3-2 to VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach in the 1996/97 UEFA Cup first round.

• Schalke last visited England for the 2010/11 semi-final second leg against Manchester United FC in 2010/11, a 4-1 defeat compounding a 2-0 home reverse. Their record in England is W0 D1 L4. The only time Schalke have avoided defeat was their first visit, a 2-2 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers FC in a 1958/59 European Champion Clubs' Cup first round tie they won 4-3 on aggregate.

Match background
• Arsenal are taking part in the group stage for the 15th campaign in a row. In 2011/12 Wenger's side departed in the round of 16 for the second season running, having won four of their five home matches, play-offs included. It was the 12th successive time they had made it through the group and only the second campaign since 2006/07 that they had failed to reach the quarter-finals or better.

• Arsenal are unbeaten in 16 UEFA Champions League home matches, play-offs included, since a 3-1 reverse by Manchester United in the 2008/09 semi-finals. That is their only defeat in their last 44 home games in the competition, with the remaining matches yielding 33 victories and ten draws. Arsenal have not lost at home to non-English opposition in the competition in 45 games, since a 3-0 defeat by FC Internazionale Milano at Highbury in September 2003.

• Schalke are making their fifth UEFA Champions League appearance and when they were last involved, in 2010/11, they recovered from a 1-0 defeat at Olympique Lyonnais on matchday one to win seven of their next nine fixtures, with the other two drawn, before those two losses to Manchester United.

Team ties
• Per Mertesacker played for Hannover 96 (2003-2006) and SV Werder Bremen (2006-2011). He made 12 appearances against Schalke, putting through his own net in the 2-2 draw with Hannover on 20 March 2004. Lukas Podolski faced Schalke ten times with 1. FC Köln and FC Bayern München, scoring four goals.

• Tomáš Rosický was at Dortmund from 2001 to 2006 and played 149 Bundesliga games, scoring 20 goals.

• Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Thomas Vermaelen were team-mates at AFC Ajax from January 2006 to January 2009.

• Podolski and Mertesacker are Germany team-mates of Benedikt Höwedes, Lewis Holtby and Julian Draxler. Mertesacker and Christoph Metzelder were Germany's centre-backs in the 1-0 final defeat by Spain at UEFA EURO 2008, Podolski and Spain's Santi Cazorla also featuring.

• Tranquillo Barnetta and Johan Djourou play together for Switzerland. Carl Jenkinson and Teemu Pukki have played together in Finland's Under-21 team.

• Oliver Giroud scored for France in a 2-1 friendly victory against Germany in Bremen on 29 February 2012. Höwedes came on for the home side at the interval.

FARE Action Week
• Matchday three of the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League will contribute to the fight against all forms of discrimination in football stadiums as UEFA gives its full support to Europe's biggest anti-discrimination campaign – the FARE Action Week. Forty matches across the competitions on 23, 24 and 25 October will restate UEFA's commitment to ensuring that European football is free of racism, intolerance and xenophobia.

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