Dynamo Kyiv and Malmö both reached the knockout rounds in 2018/19 and now meet on Group B's first night.
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Two participants in last season's knockout phase come face to face on matchday one in Group B as Dynamo Kyiv, who reached the round of 16 in 2018/19, host Malmö, who were eliminated in the round of 32. Both clubs were knocked out by eventual winners Chelsea.
• It is 41 years since the clubs' only previous UEFA engagement – a 1978/79 European Champion Clubs' Cup second round tie that Malmö won 2-0 on aggregate (0-0 a, 2-0 h) en route to reaching the final, which they lost 1-0 to Nottingham Forest in Munich.
• While those remain Dynamo's only matches against Swedish opposition, Malmö have faced Ukrainian sides four times since in group stage encounters, winning one and losing three, including both away fixtures – 1-3 at Metalist Kharkiv in the 2011/12 UEFA Europa League and 0-4 in Lviv against Shakhtar Donetsk in the 2015/16 UEFA Champions League.
• Ukrainian league runners-up to Shakhtar Donetsk last term, for the third year in a row, Dynamo entered the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round, but were defeated by Club Brugge (0-1 a, 3-3 h), which sent them directly into the UEFA Europa League group stage.
• This is Dynamo's seventh UEFA Europa League group stage campaign, five of the previous six having been successful, including last season when three wins and two draws secured their place in the knockout phase with a game to spare. They then eliminated Olympiacos to reach the last 16, where they were overwhelmed 8-0 on aggregate by Chelsea.
• The 0-5 home defeat by Chelsea was the heaviest Dynamo have suffered at home in Europe. Their last nine European games on home soil have produced three wins, three draws and three defeats.
• Swedish champions for a record 20th time in 2017, Malmö finished third in their 2018 title defence, behind AIK and Norrköping, to secure European football for a third successive season. They notched up a club-record 16 European matches last season, from their starting point in the UEFA Champions League first qualifying round to the UEFA Europa League round of 32, home and away group wins against Beşiktaş having brought them springtime continental football for the first time in 32 years.
• Malmö ensured a second successive appearance in the UEFA Europa League group stage – and third in total – by winning four qualifying ties this term, overcoming Ballymena, Domžale, Zrinjski and, in the play-offs, Bnei Yehuda, racking up 23 goals in the process and conceding just five.
• Malmö have lost only three of their last 12 European away fixtures, winning six. In the UEFA Europa League group stage, however, the 1-0 win at Beşiktaş on matchday six last term stands alone, with four of their other five away games having ended in defeat.
Links and trivia
• Dynamo's Mikkel Duelund and Malmö's Lasse Nielsen played together for a Denmark League XI in a 1-0 friendly defeat to Sweden in January 2018.
• Markus Rosenberg scored Malmö's winner in a 1-0 home victory against Dynamo's domestic arch-rivals Shakhtar in the 2015/16 UEFA Champions League group stage.
• Dynamo Kyiv hold the record for the most draws registered in the UEFA Europa League, group stage to final (19).
• This is the second successive season in which Malmö are the only Swedish club involved in European football during the autumn. They are also the only team from Sweden to have participated in the UEFA Europa League group stage more than once.
• Malmö are one of only two clubs to have reached this season's UEFA Europa League group stage having started their campaign in the first qualifying round, the other being Rangers.
• Following a lengthy stint as Dynamo Kyiv's sporting director, club great Olexiy Mykhaylychenko was appointed as head coach for a second time in August 2019 following the dismissal of Aleksandr Khatskevich. A star of EURO '88 and the same year's Olympic Games in Seoul, where he won a gold medal, the blond left-footer claimed league titles for Dynamo (four) as well his subsequent clubs Sampdoria and Rangers (five). A two-time Ukrainian champion as a coach in his first stint at Dynamo, from 2002–04, he led the Ukraine national side from January 2008 to December 2009.
• Born in the former East Germany, Uwe Rösler left his homeland in 1994 to play up front for Manchester City, which he did for four years, forming a bond with English football that brought him back to the country to manage four lower-league clubs – Brentford, Wigan, Leeds and Fleetwood. His coaching career had begun in Norway with Lillestrøm, his final club as a player, and in June 2018 he returned to Scandinavia to become the new boss of reigning Swedish champions Malmö, masterminding progress into the 2018/19 UEFA Europa League round of 32.