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CSKA out to break Portuguese duck

PFC CSKA Sofia have not beaten a Portuguese side in six attempts as they welcome FC Porto to Bulgaria on Matchday 2 looking for that elusive win and also their first points in Group L.

CSKA Sofia lost out to Beşiktaş on 16 September
CSKA Sofia lost out to Beşiktaş on 16 September ©Getty Images

PFC CSKA Sofia will hope it is seventh time lucky as they look to break their duck against Portuguese opposition when FC Porto come to call in UEFA Europa League Group L.

Previous meetings
• The sides are meeting for the first time in UEFA club competition, and this is also Porto's maiden game against Bulgarian opposition.

• CSKA have yet to beat a Portuguese side in six games, with their record reading W0 D3 L3 (W0 D2 L1 at home).

Match background 
• CSKA won both of their European home games this season 3-0, but did not win in their previous four fixtures in Sofia, including all three of their outings in last season's UEFA Europa League group stage. They scored just one goal during that four-game barren period.

• CSKA finished bottom of their section in both of their previous group stage campaigns. Their five group stage home games to date have netted them a win, a draw and three defeats. They have scored only three times in those fixtures, conceding seven times.

• UEFA Europa League group stage debutants Porto have lost three of their last ten European away games, all of them in England – twice against Arsenal FC and once against Chelsea FC.

Team facts
• Gjore Jovanovski was hired as CSKA coach in August, replacing Pavel Dochev. A midfielder, he spent most of his career in his native Skopje with FK Vardar, moving into coaching as boss of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia national team. He later coached Samsunspor and a clutch of FYROM clubs before heading for Sofia.

• Porto coach André Villas-Boas started his career as a teenager in the club's scouting department, and was on José Mourinho's staff as one of his assistants by the time the Dragons won the 2003/04 UEFA Champions League. He followed the 'Special One' to Chelsea and then FC Internazionale Milano, before going it alone as coach of A. Académica de Coimbra last season. Porto hired him in June.

• Former CSKA forward and now sporting director Emil Kostadinov won two Liga titles and a Portuguese Cup at Porto between 1990 and 1994, with another future CSKA player, Petar Mihtarski, among his team-mates in Portugal.