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Nürnberg threaten Benfica advantage

A 1-0 win in Lisbon will be of little comfort for SL Benfica as they meet 1. FC Nürnberg in Germany to conclude their fight for a UEFA Cup Round of 16 slot.

Action from the first leg in Lisbon
Action from the first leg in Lisbon ©Getty Images

A 1-0 win in Lisbon will be of little comfort for SL Benfica as they meet 1. FC Nürnberg in Germany to conclude their fight for a UEFA Cup Round of 16 slot.

• Ariza Makukula scored the only goal at the Estádio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica, but Nürnberg – playing in their first game under new coach Thomas von Heesen – dominated the match and have reason to feel confident ahead of the second leg on home soil.

• Nürnberg sacked coach Hans Meyer and his assistant Jürgen Raab two days before the first leg. Hired on 9 November 2005, Meyer led Nürnberg to German Cup success last season for the first time in 45 years, beating VfB Stuttgart 3-2 in the final. He was dismissed with his side lying 16th in the 18-team Bundesliga.

• Von Heesen was swiftly named as Meyer's replacement, signing a contract until 2009. The 46-year-old won the European Champion Clubs' Cup as a Hamburger SV player in 1983 and has since coached DSC Arminia Bielefeld and 1. FC Saarbrucken. The 42-year-old Michael Oenning was named as his assistant.

• The Nürnberg coach played two games against Benfica's Liga rivals FC Porto during his time at Hamburg. He scored the only goal as his side beat Porto 1-0 at home in a 1989/90 UEFA Cup third-round tie and was also in the side that lost 2-1 in Portugal but progressed on away goals.

• Benfica qualified for the Round of 32 after finishing third in UEFA Champions League Group D. Nürnberg finished second in UEFA Cup Group A behind Everton FC.

• The two sides met in the quarter-finals of the 1961/62 European Champion Clubs' Cup, with Benfica winning 7-3 on aggregate en route to beating Real Madrid CF 5-3 in the final in Amsterdam to win the competition for the second season in succession.

• Cavém put Benfica ahead in the first leg in Germany, but two goals from Gustav Flachenecker either side of a Heinz Strehl strike saw Nürnberg win 3-1. Béla Guttman's Benfica thrashed Nürnberg 6-0 in the second leg, with José Águas and Eusébio both scoring within the first four minutes. Eusébio then scored another and Coluna also found the target, with José Augusto scoring twice in the second half.

• Benfica have now played 28 games against German sides, winning seven, drawing nine and losing 12. They have never won in 14 games in Germany, drawing three times and losing eleven.

• Their three games against Benfica represent Nürnberg's only meetings with Portuguese opposition.

• A 2-1 win against AZ Alkmaar in the group stage ended a four-match run without a home win in Europe for Nürnberg – a run which stretched back to 1963.

• Benfica coach José Antonio Camacho played 22 games (seven wins, six draws and nine defeats) against German opposition for Spain and Real Madrid CF.

• The aggregate winners will meet the victors of the tie between AEK Athens FC and Getafe CF in the Round of 16 on 6 and 12/13 March, playing the second leg at home.

• With Augustin Binya still serving a four-match ban, Benfica also have Óscar Cardozo and Petit within a booking of a suspension. Nürnberg's Andreas Wolf is in a similar position, but Michael Beauchamp is available again after serving a ban.

• Winter UEFA Cup registrations
Benfica: In – László Sepsi, Makukula Aziza, Pedro Manuel.
Out – Organista, Bruno Costa, Gonzalo Bergessio, Fábio Coentrão.
Nürnberg: In – Jan Koller, Jacques Abardonado, Michael Kammermeyer.
Out – Joshua Kennedy, Chhunly Pagenburg, Dario Vidosic.