Scandinavian duo facing nervy night
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Molde FK and FC København know even victory may not be enough for them to retain an interest in this season's competition when the pair meet in Norway in UEFA Europa League Group E.
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Having recently retained their Norwegian title, Molde FK will look to claw back a perilous situation in UEFA Europa League Group E at home against FC København.
• A win is the only result that would guarantee either side something to play for on matchday six. Both sides would be eliminated if a draw coincides with a victory for VfB Stuttgart at FC Steaua Bucureşti.
• FCK won 2-1 when the sides met for the first time on matchday one. Andreas Cornelius scored the winner after on-loan striker Pape Paté Diouf had equalised against his parent club on the stroke of half-time, Brazilian midfielder Claudemir having given the hosts an early advantage. It was Molde's first experience of Danish opposition.
• København have played eight games against Norwegian sides in Europe, with the record W5 D2 L1 (W4 D1 L0 at home – W1 D1 L1 in Norway). Most recently, they eliminated Rosenborg BK in the play-offs to reach the 2010/11 UEFA Champions League group stage.
• There have now been 20 games between Danish and Norwegian sides in UEFA competition, with the Danes' record reading W10 D4 L6 (W7 D1 L3 at home – W3 D3 L3 in Norway).
• Molde confirmed a second successive Norwegian title success the weekend after matchday four. Their domestic season is now over.
• A 2-1 loss to Steaua on matchday four ended a run of two 2-0 home wins for Molde.
• København have not scored in three European games since beating Molde on matchday one. They have also not scored in their last three European away games.
• Molde are within two goals of conceding their 50th in the UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League; this will be their 33rd game in the competition.
• FCK are within three goals of scoring their 100th in the UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League; this will be their 73rd game in the competition.
• Molde coach Solskjær played against FCK twice in the 2006/07 UEFA Champions League group stage, coming on for 30 minutes as his Manchester United FC side prevailed 3-0 at Old Trafford. He then featured for the full 90 minutes in a 1-0 loss in Copenhagen.
• Solskjær left his home-town club Clausenengen FK for Molde in 1994, and played for them in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup before embarking on a glittering career as a forward at Manchester United, where he won six English titles, two FA Cups and scored the winner in the 1998/99 UEFA Champions League final. Having taken charge of the Old Trafford club's reserves after hanging up his boots, he returned to Molde to become coach, leading them to a first Norwegian title in his debut season, 2011.
• Solskjær never appeared in the UEFA Cup or UEFA Europa League as a player.
• FCK's coach is Ariël Jacobs, who led RSC Anderlecht from 2007-12, winning two titles and a Belgian Cup to add to the one he picked up at RAA Louviéroise in 2002/03. Once a striker with K. Diegem Sport, the 59-year-old coached national youth teams and assisted Guy Thys as senior Belgium boss before returning to club football.
• Jacobs took charge of Anderlecht midway through the 2007/08 UEFA Europa League group stage, steering them through to the round of 32. He repeated that feat in 2009/10, 2010/11 and 2011/12 and thus has never failed to lead a side through a European group stage.