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Steaua and Utrecht bid to make their move

Occupying the bottom two places in Group K, FC Steaua Bucureşti and FC Utrecht will be going all out to gain the three points that will hoist them up a tight UEFA Europa League section.

Utrecht have been involved in three tight affairs so far, of which the game against Steaua was typical
Utrecht have been involved in three tight affairs so far, of which the game against Steaua was typical ©Getty Images

Trapped at the wrong end of the tight UEFA Europa League Group K, FC Steaua Bucureşti and FC Utrecht will be determined to follow up their 1-1 draw on 21 October with victory in the rematch in Bulgaria.

Previous meetings
• The sides met for the first time on Matchday 3.

• Steaua's record in nine meetings with Dutch clubs reads W2 D3 L4 (W1 D1 L2 at home). They drew 0-0 away and 1-1 at home against FC Twente in last season's UEFA Europa League group stage.

• Steaua coach Marius Lăcătuş scored the winner as Steaua beat PSV Eindhoven 1-0 in the first leg of their 1989/90 European Champion Clubs' Cup second round meeting. He also struck to put his side ahead in the return fixture, though they went on to lose 5-1 in the Netherlands.

• Utrecht's only previous tie against a Romanian team came in the 1980/81 UEFA Cup first round, where they drew 0-0 at FC Argeş Piteşti – now FC 2005 SA Argeş – and won 2-0 at home.

• Utrecht coach Ton du Chatinier played for the club in both of those games.

• The first leg of that tie was Utrecht's first fixture in UEFA club competition, though they played a number of games in the non-UEFA affiliated Inter-Cities Fairs Cup.

Match background
• Steaua have not won in normal time in their last four European games since a 1-0 home victory against Grasshopper-Club in this season's UEFA Europa League play-offs. They are unbeaten in three home matches, but two of those ended in draws.

• Utrecht are unbeaten in four UEFA club competition games – though the last three ended in draws. However, they have not scored in their last two continental away fixtures.

• With Alje Schut's own goal having given Steaua their equaliser at Utrecht on Matchday 3, no opposition player has scored against Du Chatinier's side in 416 minutes of European football since Georgios Samaras hit Celtic FC's second in a 2-0 UEFA Europa League play-off first leg defeat.

Team facts
• Steaua have been the most efficient side in front of goal in the first three matchdays with their eight strikes on target producing five goals.

• Lăcătuş is in his third stint as Steaua coach, having replaced Ilie Dumitrescu on 26 September. The 46-year-old former Romania forward is the club's most successful player of all time, having won ten league titles, seven Romanian Cups, the European Champion Clubs' Cup and the UEFA Super Cup during two spells with the capital side.

• Du Chatinier represented Utrecht as a defender for the whole of his ten-year professional career, and has not strayed too far from the club since, serving as a youth coach, caretaker manager and assistant boss before being given sole command at the end of 2008.