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Rapid and Hapoel fight for scraps

A third-placed finish in Group C will be the consolation prize for FC Rapid Bucureşti if they defeat visitors Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC with both sides' hopes of UEFA Europa League progress already extinguished.

Ovidiu Burcă in action for Rapid
Ovidiu Burcă in action for Rapid ©Getty Images

The UEFA Europa League trail has already gone cold for both FC Rapid Bucureşti and Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC, but the Romanian side can guarantee a third-placed finish with a second Group C win against their visitors.

Previous meetings
• Ovidiu Herea's header (55) was enough to earn Rapid a 1-0 win at Bloomfield Stadium when the sides met on matchday one, with both teams ending the game with ten men; Hapoel's Avihay Yadin and Rapid's Romeo Surdu were both shown straight red cards following a late clash.

• Răzvan Lucescu's Rapid twice pegged back Itzhak Shum's Hapoel when the teams drew 2-2 in a 2006/07 UEFA Cup group stage game at Bloomfield Stadium.

• The teams for that match on 2 November 2006 were:
Hapoel: Elimelech, Dego (Chen 46), Abukasis (Abutbul 72), Badeer, Barda, Bondarv, Toama, De Bruno, Antebi, Ogbonna (Vermouth 76), Páez.
Rapid: Coman, Rada, Zicu (Mazilu 57), Bădoi, Artavazd Karamyan (Griffiths 68), Lazăr, Măldărăşanu (Grigore 85), Săpunaru, Maftei, Buga, Moldovan.

• It was the clubs' first game against a side from their opponents' home country.

Match background
• Rapid are now without a win in seven European home games, with two Group C defeats following a run of five draws. Their last victory on home soil in UEFA competition came on 14 September 2006 when they beat CD Nacional 1-0 in the first round of the 2006/07 UEFA Cup.

• FC Steaua Bucureşti became the first side to win a European home game at the new National Arena when they beat Maccabi Haifa FC 4-2 on matchday four; prior to that, Rapid and FC Oţelul Galaţi had lost two games each at the new venue, while the national team had been held to two draws.

Team facts
• Rapid need four more goals to reach 100 in the UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League; this will be their 67th game in the two competitions.

• At 66, Hapoel coach Dror Kashtan is one of the most respected figures in Israeli football. The former defensive midfielder coached Israel from 2006 to 2010 and took Beitar Jerusalem FC and Bnei Yehuda Tel-Aviv into Europe, as well as Hapoel, whom he has led in three previous spells (1996-97, 1999-2004 & 2005-06).

• Rapid coach Razvăn Lucescu's father Mircea - now coach of FC Shakhtar Donetsk - led Romania in two friendly draws (0-0 at home and 1-1 away) against Israel in 1984.

• Razvăn played in goal for a number of Romanian clubs, including Rapid, and briefly played in Italy for Crema Calcio in 1992/93, while his father was coaching Serie A side Brescia Calcio. In a previous spell as Rapid coach, he won two Romanian Cups and led them to the quarter-finals of the 2005/06 UEFA Cup and into the group stage once more the following season. He then coached Romania from 2009 to 2011.