UEFA.com works better on other browsers
For the best possible experience, we recommend using Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge.

Sporting and Levski out to assert authority

The top two sides in Group C meet on Matchday 2, with PFC Levski Sofia taking a good recent away record to a Sporting Clube de Portugal side who will look to make home advantage count.

Sporting won away on Matchday 1
Sporting won away on Matchday 1 ©Getty Images

Sporting Clube de Portugal will look to build on a positive start in UEFA Europa League Group C with PFC Levski Sofia eager to impress in a city that club legend Georgi Asparuhov might once have called home.

Previous meetings
• The sides are meeting for the first time in UEFA club competition.

• Sporting's only experience of Bulgarian opposition came in the second round of the 1982/83 European Champion Clubs' Cup, when they prevailed on away goals against Levski's arch-rivals PFC CSKA Sofia, drawing 2-2 in Sofia and 0-0 in Lisbon.

• Levski's four games against Portuguese sides to date have ended W1 D1 L2 (W0 D0 L2 away). Their only previous match in the Portuguese capital ended in a 3-2 defeat by SL Benfica in the 1965/66 European Cup; Eusébio scored for the hosts while club legend Asparuhov was responsible for both of the visitors' strikes.

• According to Bulgarian footballing lore, Benfica were eager to sign Asparuhov after that fixture – he also scored in the first leg – but he ended up staying in his homeland. He died in a car crash in 1971, with Levski's home stadium now bearing his name.

Match background 
• A 2-0 loss to Brøndby IF in this season's play-offs ended an eight-game unbeaten run at home for Sporting.

• Levski are unbeaten in their last four UEFA club competition games on their travels. Prior to winning 1-0 at S.S. Lazio in their final fixture last season, Levski had lost all four of their UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League group stage away fixtures.

Team facts
• Former forward Paulo Sérgio never represented any of the top clubs in Portugal in his playing career, but slowly worked his way up as a coach, with spells at FC Paços de Ferreira and Vitória SC crucial to him replacing Carlos Carvalhal as the man in charge at Sporting.

• Levski coach Yasen Petrov spent one season as an attacking midfielder with the club in 1991/92, representing their local rivals FC Lokomotiv Sofia and FC Slavia Sofia as well as clubs in China, Cyprus and Germany. Twice a Bulgarian Cup winner as a player, he won three international caps, he coached four other top-tier clubs before being hired as Levski coach in May 2010.