Mönchengladbach seek home comfort against AEL
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach ended a long wait for a home win last time out, but have the chance to secure back-to-back successes at Borussia-Park with AEL Limassol FC in Germany.
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VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach will look to press on towards the UEFA Europa League round of 32 as Group C back markers AEL Limassol FC come to Germany.
• Mönchengladbach will qualify with a win provided Fenerbahçe SK beat Olympique de Marseille in the section's other game. Defeat or a draw would mean elimination for AEL.
• Mönchengladbach's Oscar Wendt missed a penalty eight minutes into added time as the sides' first meeting ended in a 0-0 draw on matchday one. It was AEL's first encounter with German opponents.
• Mönchengladbach's only previous encounter with Cypriot opponents saw them come up against Enosis Pezoporikou Amol FC – who would later merge with Pezoporikos Larnaca FC to form AEK Larnaca FC – in the 1970/71 European Champion Clubs' Cup first round.
• EPA played the home leg in the German city of Augsburg, and lost 6-0, before visiting Mönchengladbach for the second leg. The German side won 10-0 – it remains their biggest win in UEFA competition.
• Mönchengladbach have scored two goals in each of their last three European games with varying effects – they lost one game 4-2, won the next 2-0 and drew the most recent one 2-2.
• That 2-0 matchday three win against Marseille ended a six-game wait for a home clean sheet – stretching back to September 1995 – during which 16 goals were conceded.
• AEL have scored only three goals away from home in ten European games, a sequence that started with a 6-0 European Champion Clubs' Cup defeat at Real Madrid CF in September 1968.
• AEL posted their first European away win at the seventh attempt in this season's UEFA Champions League third qualifying round, prevailing 1-0 at FK Partizan. They have lost their subsequent three games on the road.
• AEL, Neftçi PFK, FK Partizan, CS Marítimo and SK Rapid Wien are the group stage's lowest scoring sides, with just one goal each.
• Mönchengladbach's Mike Hanke and AEL's Michalis Constantinou met in a 1-1 UEFA EURO 2008 qualifying draw between Germany and Cyprus in Nicosia, and AEL captain Marios Nicolaou and defender Christis Theophilou were also in the lineup when Germany won the return fixture 4-0 in Hannover.
• As a midfielder, Mönchengladbach coach Lucien Favre won the 1984/85 Swiss title with Servette FC and 24 caps for Switzerland. He won further Swiss Cups as a coach with Servette and FC Zürich, as well as two titles with the latter. He has specialised in creating competitive sides in Germany on modest budgets, finishing fourth in the Bundesliga with Hertha in 2008/09 and Mönchengladbach in 2011/12.
• AEL named Jorge Costa as their new coach on the eve of matchday three, following the dismissal of his predecessor, Charalambos Christodoulou, who led the club to title success last season. As a defender, Jorge Costa captained FC Porto to glory in the 2003 UEFA Cup and 2004 UEFA Champions League and has coached several clubs including SC Braga and, most recently, CFR 1907 Cluj since retiring.