Familiar faces aplenty as Rubin travel to Tottenham

FC Rubin Kazan travel to London to take on Tottenham Hotspur FC with both clubs hoping that their forwards may have a useful inside line on their Group A opponents at White Hart Lane.

Tottenham's Roman Pavlyuchenko played eight league games against Rubin for Spartak Moskva
Tottenham's Roman Pavlyuchenko played eight league games against Rubin for Spartak Moskva ©Getty Images

The leading lights in UEFA Europa League Group A meet on matchday three hoping that their strikers may have a useful inside line on their opponents at White Hart Lane.

Previous meetings
• The sides are meeting for the first time in UEFA competition, and this is also FC Rubin Kazan's first game against an English side.

• Tottenham Hotspur FC took on FC Spartak Moskva in the 2008/09 UEFA Cup group stage, Luka Modrić and Tom Huddlestone striking as they came back from 2-0 down at White Hart Lane to draw their only previous match against a Russian side 2-2.

Match background
• Prior to the 3-1 win against Shamrock Rovers FC on matchday two, Spurs had not scored in three European home games, recording two 0-0 draws and a 1-0 loss against Real Madrid CF in last season's UEFA Champions League quarter-finals.

• Rubin's 3-0 win at Shamrock Rovers on matchday one was their biggest away victory in the UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League and matched their previous European best on their travels, a 3-0 victory at Zalaegerszegi TE in the 2007 UEFA Intertoto Cup.

Team facts
• Rubin striker Obafemi Martins knows all about English football from his time as a Newcastle United FC player, where he spent three seasons between 2006 and 2009. He returned to England last year for a loan spell at Birmingham City FC.

• Martins scored in his first four games against Spurs with Newcastle – all four of them wins. However, he failed to register and was on the losing side in his final two meetings with the north London club during the 2008/09 season.

• Martins and Spurs defender Sébastien Bassong were team-mates at Newcastle in 2008/09.

• Three of Rubin's five group stage goals this season have come in the opening 15 minutes of the second half. Two against Shamrock Rovers, and one in the PAOK game.

• Spurs boast Russian talent in the form of striker Roman Pavlyuchenko, who played in the Russian Premier League with SC Rotor Volgograd (2000-02) and Spartak Moskva (2003-08) before moving to London in September 2008.

• Pavlyuchenko played eight league games against Rubin with Spartak, winning three and losing five. He scored from the penalty spot in two of those three victories.

• Ukrainian striker Serhiy Rebrov was a Spurs player between 2000 and 2004 and ended his career with a spell at Rubin.

• All three of Spurs' group stage goals this season have come after the break. Following a 0-0 draw in Greece against PAOK, they scored three second half goals in their matchday two tie with Shamrock Rovers.

• Spurs boss Harry Redknapp spent the bulk of his playing career with West Ham United FC and AFC Bournemouth, and managed both clubs prior to spells with Portsmouth FC and Southampton FC. He has been in charge at Tottenham since 2008.

• Kurban Berdyev has been at the Rubin helm since 2001, with the Turkmenistan-born coach leading them to Russian titles in 2008 and 2009. Rubin captain Roman Sharonov once said of his serious-minded boss: "He has football in his mind 24 hours a day. If I thought about football that much I would probably lose my mind."