Another tight encounter seems likely as Sweden and Austria come together again in UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying Group G.
• Leading the group by seven points from the second-placed Swedes, Austria require a victory or a draw at the Friends Arena in Solna to achieve their first-ever UEFA European Championship finals qualification; even a defeat could suffice if third-placed Russia failed to win away to Liechtenstein.
• The following players are a yellow card away from a ban: Albin Ekdal, Zlatan Ibrahimović, Pontus Wernbloom (Sweden), Julian Baumgartlinger, Aleksandar Dragovic, Florian Klein and Sebastian Prödl (Austria).
• Erkan Zengin responded to David Alaba's early penalty for Austria as Sweden earned a 1-1 draw in the sides' first Group G meeting.
• Austria have had marginally the better of their 34 previous encounters with Sweden, with the record W16 D6 L12 (W5 D1 L9 as the away team, W10 D5 L1 at home). The sides have met three times on neutral territory: a friendly at London's White Hart Lane on 2 August 1948 which Sweden won 3-0; a Gelsenkirchen (Germany) play-off for the 1974 FIFA World Cup which Sweden edged 2-1; and in Buenos Aires in the 1978 World Cup group stage, when Hans Krankl's 42nd-minute penalty earned Austria a 1-0 victory.
• The countries' 13 competitive tussles have been similarly tight: Austria's record is W6 D2 L5 (W4 D2 L0 at home – W1 D0 L4 in Sweden) – as well as a win and a draw on neutral territory. Only once, in Austria's 2-0 World Cup qualifying victory over Sweden on 10 June 1972, has there been a winning margin of more than a single goal.
• The teams' 2014 World Cup qualifying encounters were typical. Austria prevailed 2-1 at home on 7 June 2013 (Alaba 26p, Marc Janko 32; Johan Elmander 82), then lost by the same margin in Solna on 11 October (Martin Olsson 56, Ibrahimović 86; Martin Harnik 29).
• Marcel Koller's Austrian pacesetters are on a six-game winning streak in the section following that curtain-raising 1-1 stalemate with the Swedes in Vienna. However, Erik Hamrén's charges surrendered their unbeaten record by succumbing 1-0 in Russia on Saturday.
• Nonetheless, Sweden are undefeated in 14 UEFA European Championsip home qualifiers (W11 D3) since a 1-0 loss to Latvia in October 2003.
• Austria have won their past four competitive away assignments since that reverse to Sweden in 2014 World Cup qualifying and have won all three of their away matches in Group G.
Trivia and links
• At club level Austrian sides have had the better of the nations' meetings, with the record W12 D3 L8, though Malmö were the most recent victors in fixtures between teams from the two countries, coming from behind to win their UEFA Champions League third qualifying round tie against Salzburg 3-2 on aggregate last month after losing the away leg 2-0.
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