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Köln v BATE Borisov background

Köln have lost all three of their Group H games ahead of the visit of a BATE Borisov side who ignited their campaign with victory against the Bundesliga outfit on matchday three.

Köln's Simon Zoller vies with Aleksei Rios of BATE on matchday three
Köln's Simon Zoller vies with Aleksei Rios of BATE on matchday three ©AFP/Getty Images

Yet to pick up a UEFA Europa League Group H point after three matches, and also struggling in the Bundesliga, Köln are in urgent need of a victory as they entertain a BATE side that beat the German club 1-0 on matchday three.

Previous meetings
• A single goal from BATE's Belarusian international midfielder Aleksei Rios was sufficient to give his team their first victory in Group H as they saw off Köln in Borisov. The clean sheet was BATE's first in 12 European matches.

• BATE's record in seven games against German clubs is W4 D1 L2. Their three matches in Germany have brought two defeats – both by 4-1 margins in the UEFA Champions League group stage – and one victory, a 1-0 success at 1860 München in the 2002 UEFA Intertoto Cup.

Form guide
• Köln have lost their last four UEFA matches – three in Group H and one in the 1997 UEFA Intertoto Cup.

• BATE have won twice on the road in Europe this season, beating Armenian champions Alashkert 3-1 in the UEFA Champions League second qualifying round and Ukrainian side Olexandriya 2-1 in the UEFA Europa League play-offs. Both wins came in the second leg after they had drawn the first game 1-1 at home.

Watch highlights: BATE 1-0 Köln

• Runners-up in the two-legged 1986 UEFA Cup final, Köln are back in Europe for the first time in 20 years; their only previous group campaigns were in the UEFA Intertoto Cup. These are their first autumnal European fixtures for 25 years.

• Belarusian champions BATE qualified for the group stage by overcoming Olexandriya in the UEFA Europa League play-offs – having lost to Slavia Praha on away goals in the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round.

Trivia and links
• The journey from Borisov to Cologne is around 1,500km.

• BATE's Jurica Buljat (Energie Cottbus 2013–14) and Vitali Rodionov (Freiburg 2009) have both played in Germany.

• BATE are currently locked in a three-way tussle with Shakhtyor Soligorsk and Dinamo Minsk for the 2017 Belarusian title. Should they prevail, it will be their 12th successive championship crown.

• Suspended for next match if booked: Stanislav Dragun (BATE).

The coaches
• Peter Stöger has guided Köln back into Europe for the first time in 20 years. A four-time league champion – and 65-times capped international – as a player in his native Austria, he moved to Köln after steering Austria Wien to the 2012/13 title.

• Aleksandr Yermakovich has been on the staff at BATE since joining as a midfielder in 1998. He won Belarusian titles as both player and assistant coach to Viktor Goncharenko – since supplemented by four championships after he took sole command in 2013.