Group G leaders FC Salzburg are on the verge of qualifying as they prepare to host S.S. Lazio but their previous record at home against Italian sides does not augur well for their winning run.
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Group G leaders FC Salzburg are on the verge of qualifying as they prepare to host S.S. Lazio but their previous record at home against Italian sides does not augur well for their UEFA Europa League winning run.
• Should Salzburg win, Lazio would need Villarreal CF to drop points at PFC Levski Sofia in order to have a chance of qualifying for the knockout phase, with the Spanish side possessing a superior head-to-head record in their exchanges with the Rome club.
• Salzburg earned a shock 2-1 win in the Italian capital when the sides met for the first time on Matchday 1, but their home record against Italian teams leaves plenty to be desired: they have lost all four games played on Austrian soil against Serie A opponents without scoring. Lazio, meanwhile, won both of their previous matches in Austria by two clear goals.
• Salzburg have triumphed in all four of their Group G games and have not conceded in the UEFA Europa League since their opener against Lazio. However, prior to the group stage, they had not won in five European home fixtures.
• Lazio have won only one of their last six European away fixtures, beating Levski 4-0 on Matchday 2.
• Salzburg are coached by former Netherlands defender Huub Stevens (18 caps), who won the UEFA Cup as FC Schalke 04 coach in 1996/97. Salzburg are his third new club in as many seasons, Stevens having spent the last two campaigns in charge of Hamburger SV and then PSV Eindhoven.
• Formerly a player at AC Cesena, Davide Ballardini took over as Lazio coach during the summer following the departure of Delio Rossi. He had previously been in charge at Cagliari Calcio before earning a number of fine results as boss of US Città di Palermo last season.
• Salzburg defender Rabiou Afolabi spent the 2000/01 campaign on loan with Lazio's Serie A rivals SSC Napoli but never made a first-team appearance.
• Salzburg's Saša Ilić earned a 2-2 draw at Lazio during his time as an FK Partizan player in the 2004/05 UEFA Cup group stage. Partizan would go on to qualify, whereas Lazio missed out.
• Salzburg's Franz Schiemer committed more fouls than any other player during the opening four matchdays, being penalised 17 times.
• Lazio have conceded 148 goals in their 131 UEFA club competition encounters, leaving them two shy of shipping their 150th.
• Lazio host Levski on Matchday 6, with Salzburg visiting Villarreal on the same night, 17 December.