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CFR look to steam into Inter

CFR 1907 Cluj trail 2-0 following the away leg of their tie against FC Internazionale Milano, leaving them with a major task if they are to reach the UEFA Europa League round of 16.

CFR's Ionuţ Rada slides in on Inter's Esteban Cambiasso
CFR's Ionuţ Rada slides in on Inter's Esteban Cambiasso ©AFP/Getty Images

CFR 1907 Cluj will look to end FC Internazionale Milano's bid for a fourth success in this competition and overturn a 2-0 deficit in this UEFA Europa League round of 32 decider.

• Goals in either half from Rodrigo Palacio (20 87) gave Inter a win at San Siro, though a serious knee injury suffered by striker Diego Milito in the opening minutes overshadowed the contest.

Previous meetings
• The sides met for the first time in UEFA club competition last week.

• Prior to last week, CFR's experience of Italian opposition amounted to four games against AS Roma in the course of two UEFA Champions League group stage campaigns, which ended W1 D1 L2 (W0 D1 L1 at home – W1 D0 L1 in Rome).

• Inter's 17 contests with Romanian sides have ended W11 D3 L3 (W7 D2 L0 at home – W4 D1 L3 in Romania). They are unbeaten in their last eight games against Romanian sides (W7 D1) since a 1-0 loss at FC Sportul Studentesc Bucureşti in September 1984.

Match background
• Inter have won their last three games in Romania without conceding.

• Inter won their first four continental away games this season, scoring 11 goals and conceding only two, but that run came to an abrupt end last time out when they went down 3-0 at FC Rubin Kazan.

• CFR's record in five European home games this season is W3 D0 L2.

• Prior to this season, Inter had not played in this competition since 2003/04, when they reached the quarter-finals, losing out to Olympique de Marseille. Inter are one of three sides – along with Juventus and Liverpool FC – who have won the UEFA Cup a record three times.

• CFR are appearing in the spring leg of a major UEFA competition for the first time, having finished third in their UEFA Champions League group with an impressive ten points.

Team facts
• Inter defender Cristian Chivu could line up against Romanian opponents for the first time since he left FC Universitatea Craiova for AFC Ajax in 1999. The 32-year-old, capped 75 times by Romania, missed both of his side's games against FC Vaslui in this season's UEFA Europa League play-offs.

• Inter's Uruguayan left-back Álvaro Pereira spent the 2008/09 season with CFR – his first club in Europe – prior to joining FC Porto. He won the Romanian Cup and featured in CFR's maiden UEFA Champions League group stage campaign.

• Pereira (2009–12) and Fredy Guarín (2008–12) were playing for Porto at the same time as CFR's Ivo Pinto (2008–12) and Diogo Valente (2006–09), though the latter pair made just one first-team appearance between them and spent most of their time out on loan.

• Edinson Cavani remains the UEFA Europa League's top scorer with seven goals, but there are now three players level in second place on five goals: S.S. Lazio's Libor Kozák, Inter's Rodrigo Palacio and Raúl Bobadilla, who has moved to FC Basel 1893 since hitting five in the group stage for BSC Young Boys.

• CFR coach Paulo Sérgio played for a number of smaller clubs as a forward, then worked his way up the Portuguese leagues as a coach. He briefly coached Sporting Clube de Portugal, then won the 2011/12 Scottish Cup at Heart Of Midlothian FC, replacing Ioan Andone as CFR boss in October.

• Paulo Sérgio's Sporting lost out to Rangers FC on away goals in the 2010/11 UEFA Europa League round of 32, 1-1 and 2-2 draws contributing to his departure from his old club.

• Inter's coach is Andrea Stramaccioni, who stepped in on a caretaker basis to replace Claudio Ranieri last March and was then handed a contract for the 2012/13 campaign. A defender whose career was cut short by a serious injury at Bologna FC, he specialised in coaching youth teams, taking charge of the Roma and then Inter junior selections before getting the senior job.

Round of 16: Tottenham Hotspur FC/Olympique Lyonnais v Inter/CFR Cluj
• The first legs will be played on 7 March, with the returns the following Thursday.

• Inter have played both their potential round of 16 opponents.

• Inter and Lyon first met in the 1958/59 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup – the non-UEFA affiliated precursor to the UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League – with Inter winning 7-0 in Milan then drawing 1-1 in France. Four more recent meetings in UEFA competition have been a little closer. Inter eliminated Lyon from the second round of the 1997/98 UEFA Cup, 4-3 on aggregate, but Lyon had the better of their 2002/03 UEFA Champions League first group stage contests, drawing 3-3 at home 18 days after a 2-1 win in Milan.

• Inter and Tottenham met in the 2010/11 UEFA Champions League group stage: Inter won 4-3 at San Siro but lost 3-1 at White Hart Lane.

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