A short journey across the Øresund Bridge takes Copenhagen into a first ever UEFA encounter with Swedish neighbours Malmö.
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A short journey across the Øresund Bridge takes Copenhagen, matchday one victors against Lugano, into a first ever UEFA encounter with Swedish neighbours Malmö, who will be hoping to put their first points on the board in UEFA Europa League Group B.
• As the Danish champions overcame their Swiss visitors 1-0 with a 50th-minute Michael Santos goal, Malmö were defeated by the same score at Dynamo Kyiv, conceding the only goal of the game six minutes from time.
• Malmö's only previous encounters with Danish opposition came last season when they overcame then Danish title holders Midtjylland in the UEFA Europa League play-offs, drawing 2-2 at home before winning 2-0 away.
• Copenhagen have yet to beat Swedish opposition in UEFA competition, drawing two games at home and losing one away – 1-3 at Djurgården in the first round of the 2002/03 UEFA Cup, also the aggregate score over the two legs.
• 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. They overcame Ballymena, Domžale, Zrinjski and, in the play-offs, Bnei Yehuda, racking up 23 goals in the process and conceding just five.
• Malmö won all four of their home games in this season's qualifying phase, 16 of those 23 goals being scored in front of their own fans. They have lost just one of their last 13 European home games (W6 D6) – 1-2 against Chelsea in last season's round of 32.
• Copenhagen regained the Superliga crown last term, relegating title holders Midtjylland into second place to become Danish champions for the third time in four seasons – and 13th in all. They lost on penalties to Crvena zvezda of Serbia in this season's UEFA Champions League third qualifying round but were 3-2 aggregate winners over Latvian champions Riga (3-1 h, 0-1 a) in the UEFA Europa League play-offs.
• The Danish club are taking part in a seventh UEFA Europa League group stage and have made further progress just twice before, most recently in 2017/18, when they lost in the round of 32 to eventual winners Atlético Madrid (1-4 home, 0-1 away). They finished bottom of their group last season with five points.
• Copenhagen have failed to score in their last three UEFA Europa League away games, play-offs included. Their all-time away record in the group stage is W2 D7 L6, the second of those two wins having come at Bordeaux (2-1) on matchday two last season.
Links and trivia
• There are four Danish players, all internationals and all with Superliga experience against Copenhagen, in Malmö's squad – defenders Jonas Knudsen and Lasse Nielsen and midfielders Søren Rieks and Anders Christiansen. The latter was born in the Danish capital.
• There are three Swedes, also all internationals, in the Copenhagen squad – goalkeeper Karl-Johan Johnsson and defenders Pierre Bengtsson and Sotirios Papagiannopoulos.
• Papagiannopoulos made his Sweden debut in January 2018 against Estonia as a second-half substitute for Franz Brorsson of Malmö. Papagiannopoulos also played alongside Malmö's Fouad Bachirou at Östersund, helping the Swedish club reach the 2017/18 UEFA Europa League round of 32 in their debut European campaign.
• This is the second successive season in which Malmö and Copenhagen are the only representatives from their respective countries involved in European football during the autumn.
• 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.
• 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.
• Ståle Solbakken's second coaching tenure at Copenhagen began in 2013. He has won eight Danish titles in charge of the club – five of those in his first spell from 2006 to 2011 – plus four domestic cups. The former Norway midfielder won 58 caps and scored nine goals for his country, appearing at both the 1998 FIFA World Cup and UEFA EURO 2000, before being forced to retire following a heart attack. He also had short spells coaching in Germany (Köln) and England (Wolves) between two lengthy stints in the Danish capital.