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Maccabi Tel-Aviv seek Eintracht weak spot

Maccabi Tel-Aviv FC will look to keep in the hunt for top spot in UEFA Europa League Group F as Eintracht Frankfurt head south boasting a 100% record, and yet to concede in this section.

Eintracht's Marco Russ challenges with Maccabi Tel-Aviv's Eran Zahavi
Eintracht's Marco Russ challenges with Maccabi Tel-Aviv's Eran Zahavi ©AFP/Getty Images

Maccabi Tel-Aviv FC are bidding to burst Eintracht Frankfurt's bubble at the top end of UEFA Europa League Group F and keep on target for a place in the round of 32.

Previous meetings
• Maccabi Tel-Aviv failed to become the first Israeli club to win a game on German soil on matchday three, going down 2-0 at Eintracht, who were playing their first game against a side from Israel.

• Maccabi Tel-Aviv's record in five games against German clubs is W0 D1 L4 (W0 D1 L1 at home – W0 D0 L3 in Germany). They have lost their last four meetings with Bundesliga opponents but made a breakthrough of sorts in the second most recent of those fixtures, with Baruch Dego's penalty in a 5-1 defeat against FC Bayern München in the 2004/05 UEFA Champions League group stage their first goal against a German side.

• Nine games have been played between teams representing these two nations in Israel, with the only home win to date Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC's 1-0 success against Hamburger SV in the 2009/10 UEFA Europa League group stage. The other eight games produced two 0-0 draws and six German wins. The aggregate score over the nine matches is 15-2 to the Bundesliga sides.

Match background
• Maccabi Tel-Aviv's 2-1 win at FC Girondins de Bordeaux on matchday two was their first UEFA Europa League group stage win in eight attempts. With four points from their first three fixtures they have already doubled the total they racked up in their group stage debut in 2011/12.

• Maccabi Tel-Aviv were handed a bye in the UEFA Europa League play-offs after their opponents, PAOK FC, took the place of excluded FC Metalist Kharkiv in the UEFA Champions League play-offs.

• Back in Europe for the first time since failing to make it through the 2006/07 UEFA Cup group stage, Eintracht are unbeaten in eight continental fixtures – three draws followed by five wins, with all of those victories coming this season.

• Eintracht are unbeaten in five European away games – three draws followed by two wins this season – since a 3-0 loss at Bordeaux in the 1995 UEFA Intertoto Cup.

Team facts
• Five clubs go into matchday four with 100% records: Eintracht, ACF Fiorentina, PFC Ludogorets Razgrad, FC Salzburg, and Tottenham Hotspur FC. Eintracht, Ludogorets and Tottenham are also yet to concede. No club has ever gone through a UEFA Europa League group with six clean sheets. The record mark of just one goal conceded was set by R. Standard de Liège in 2011/12.

• Eintracht's Václav Kadlec scored the first goal of the 2013/14 UEFA Europa League group stage, a calm finish from inside the area four minutes into his side's 3-0 matchday one win against Bordeaux.

• Maccabi Tel-Aviv are the most southerly side in this season's competition, with Tromsø IL pushing the competition's northern frontier inside the Arctic Circle – 4,299km separate the two clubs.

• Maccabi Tel-Aviv and Group F rivals APOEL are among nine domestic champions in this season's group stage along with NK Maribor (Slovenia), FC Sheriff (Moldova), Ludogorets (Bulgaria), Legia Warszawa (Poland), FC Shakhter Karagandy (Kazakhstan), GNK Dinamo Zagreb (Croatia) and IF Elfsborg (Sweden).

• Maccabi Tel-Aviv midfielder Gal Alberman has some Bundesliga experience, having represented VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach from 2008 to 2010.

• Maccabi Tel-Aviv's Swedish forward Rade Prica has also played in Germany, scoring 20 goals in 113 league games for FC Hansa Rostock between 2002 and 2006.

Coach information
• Maccabi Tel-Aviv's Portuguese coach Paulo Sousa famously won back-to-back UEFA Champions League titles with different clubs – Juventus (1995/96) and Borussia Dortmund (1996/97). The defensive midfielder also reached the semi-finals of UEFA EURO 2000 with Portugal. He coached a series of English league clubs before leading Videoton FC in the 2011/12 UEFA Europa League, and was hired as Maccabi coach in June 2013.

• Hired in May 2011, Armin Veh led Eintracht to promotion in his first season in charge and into Europe as sixth-place finishers in his second. As a midfielder, he was in the VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach squad that lost to Eintracht in the 1980 UEFA Cup final, before a broken leg ended his career. As a coach, he won the 2006/07 German title at VfB Stuttgart prior to less successful spells with VfL Wolfsburg and Hamburger SV.


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