Anderlecht v Qäbälä background

Anderlecht are receiving visitors from Azerbaijan for the second UEFA Europa League group stage in succession, Gabala following in Qarabağ's footsteps in Group C.

Anderlecht's Łukasz Teodorczyk celebrates a goal in qualifying
Anderlecht's Łukasz Teodorczyk celebrates a goal in qualifying ©AFP/Getty Images

Anderlecht encounter Azerbaijani opposition in the UEFA Europa League for the second successive season as they host Gabala in Group C.

Previous meetings
• This is the clubs' first meeting in UEFA competition and Gabala's maiden match against Belgian opponents.

• Anderlecht recovered from a goal down to defeat Gabala's domestic rivals Qarabağ 2-1 at home on matchday six last term, a victory that sealed their place in the round of 32. Qarabağ had won the reverse fixture 1-0.

• In the 2005/06 UEFA Champions League second qualifying round, Anderlecht overcame Neftçi 5-0 at the Constant Vanden Stock Stadium before losing the return leg 1-0 in Baku.

Form guide
• Anderlecht stormed through the UEFA Europa League play-offs with 3-0 victories home and away to Slavia Praha, having fallen to Krasnodar in the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round.

• Anderlecht have made it through all five of their previous UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League group stage campaigns.

• Maccabi Tel-Aviv and Gabala are the only sides who have advanced from the first qualifying round to the group stage in this season's UEFA Europa League.

• Gabala picked up two points and scored just the two goals when they made their UEFA Europa League group debut last term.

Links and trivia
• The journey from Gabala to Brussels is just shy of 3,500km.

The coaches
• Capped once by Switzerland, René Weiler is in his first season as Anderlecht coach having spent his first two years abroad with Nürnberg in Germany from 2014–16. The one-time defender established his coaching reputation in his home country with Schaffhausen and Aarau.

• Gabala finished third in Azerbaijan last term in their first campaign under Ukrainian coach Roman Hrygorchuk. He made his name in management in Latvia and previously got through the UEFA Europa League group stage as boss of Chornomorets Odesa in 2013/14.