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Sevilla v Rijeka background

UEFA Europa League winners last season, Sevilla FC's chances of reaching this season's round of 32 hinge on avoiding defeat against HNK Rijeka in Group G.

Rijeka's Ivan Tomečak is wrong-footed by Sevilla's José Antonio Reyes
Rijeka's Ivan Tomečak is wrong-footed by Sevilla's José Antonio Reyes ©AFP/Getty Images

Last season's UEFA Europa League winners Sevilla FC have a battle on their hands if they are to make it to the round of 32, with HNK Rijeka set to go for broke on matchday six.

• A draw or a win will guarantee Sevilla a top-two finish in Group G.

Rijeka must win in Seville if they are to make it to the spring phase of a UEFA competition for the first time since 1979/80, when they bowed out to Juventus in the European Cup Winners' Cup quarter-finals.

Form guide
• Stéphane Mbia's added-time volley earned Sevilla a 2-2 draw when the sides met in Croatia on matchday two.

Rijeka have yet to score in four games in Spain, but earned goalless draws in their two most recent visits – including a 0-0 result at Sevilla's neighbours Real Betis Balompié on matchday six in last season's UEFA Europa League group stage.

• Having also drawn at home against Betis last season, Rijeka have drawn all three of their games against Seville clubs to date.

Sevilla have won their last four European home games; Rijeka have lost both of their Group G away fixtures thus far.

Trivia and links
Rijeka are one of only four teams left in the competition who entered this season's UEFA Europa League in the second qualifying round, along with FC Krasnodar, FC Dinamo Minsk and Asteras Tripolis FC.

The coaches
Sevilla coach since January 2013, one-time midfielder Unai Emery switched from playing to coaching at Lorca Deportiva CF. Having led UD Almería to the top tier, he coached Valencia CF from 2008 to 2012, with his side regular European contenders during that spell. More recently, he had a brief stint at FC Spartak Moskva.

• Hired in February 2013, Rijeka coach Matjaž Kek led his native Slovenia to the 2010 FIFA World Cup finals. Kek started and ended his playing career as a defender at NK Maribor – where his father and son also played – either side of a long spell in Austria, and returned there to begin his coaching career.