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Free-scoring Hannover look to unlock Levante

Hannover 96 are aiming to extend their unbeaten European run to six matches when they host Levante UD in Group L, though the Spanish side are yet to concede in Europe.

Konstantin Rausch celebrates scoring in Hannover's opening draw with Twente
Konstantin Rausch celebrates scoring in Hannover's opening draw with Twente ©Getty Images

Hannover 96 will look to maintain their unbeaten run in the UEFA Europa League as they come up against Levante UD in Group L, with the Spanish side yet to concede in Europe.

Previous meetings
• The teams are meeting for the first time in what is Levante's maiden game against a German club.

• Hannover have played four matches against Spanish sides – all of them in last season's UEFA Europa League, where they overcame Sevilla FC in the play-offs before losing 2-1 home and away to eventual winners Club Atlético de Madrid in the quarter-finals. Their overall record is W1 D1 L2 (W1 D0 L1 at home W0 D1 L1 in Spain).

Match background
• Hannover are unbeaten in five European games this term, with a 2-2 draw at FC Twente on matchday one ending a run of four straight wins. With 17 goals already, they are averaging well over three strikes a match in the 2012/13 UEFA Europa League.

• Hannover returned to UEFA competition after a 19-year absence last season and made it through to the knockout phase in their first UEFA Europa League campaign, losing to Atlético in the last eight.

• Levante are making their debut in UEFA club competition this season, having earned a play-off place in the UEFA Europa League with a sixth-placed finish in the 2011/12 Liga campaign.

• Having beaten Motherwell FC 2-0 away and 1-0 at home in the play-offs, Levante overcame Helsingborgs IF 1-0 on matchday one and thus have a 100% record in UEFA tournaments. They are the only side involved in this season's UEFA club competitions who have never conceded a goal on the continental stage.

Team facts
• Levante's Theofanis Gekas played alongside Hannover's Karim Haggui at Bayer 04 Levekusen (2007-09). The Greece striker also played for VfL Bochum 1848, Hertha BSC Berlin and Eintracht Frankfurt during his time in Germany.

• Levante's German right-back Christian Lell and Hannover forward Jan Schlaudraff played together at FC Bayern München in 2007/08. Lell also played for 1. FC Köln and Hertha in Germany, moving to Spain in August 2012.

• Levante striker Obafemi Martins has also played in the Bundesliga, spending the 2009/10 season at VfL Wolfsburg.

• Hannover coach Mirko Slomka played for the club and coached their youth sides before taking charge of the first team in January 2010. He previously enjoyed success in the 2005/06 UEFA Cup group stage, leading Schalke from the round of 32 to the semi-finals after succeeding Ralf Rangnick following the group phase.

• This is Levante coach Juan Ignacio Martínez's first campaign in UEFA club competition. As a right-back, he never rose higher than the fourth tier in Spanish football and coached in youth and women's football, working his way up the senior men's leagues to take charge of Levante in June 2011. He is often known by his initials, JIM, in Spain.

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