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Rupert Wyman 17th Aug 2011 - 10:33

Europa League Playoff Round - First Leg

Statistics and facts to help your football betting are available every week at William Hill courtesy of Opta Sportsdata, Europe's leading provider of sports performance statistics.

FC Thun v Stoke City

  • The Potters have only ever played six European ties, winning three, drawing two and losing just one of them.
  • Five of Stoke's six European goals have come in the second half of games.
  • Stoke have won both previous Europa League games this season by a score of 1-0.
  • FC Thun have faced English opposition twice before, losing both games to Arsenal in the group stages of the 2005/06 Champions League.
  • The Swiss side have qualified for this stage in the competition despite drawing three of their four games so far.
  • Stoke have played three games in all competitions this season, and have yet to concede a single goal.

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Fulham v Dnipro

  • Fulham have faced Ukrainian opposition once before in European competition, beating Shakhtar Donetsk 3-2 on aggregate in the Round of 32 in 2009/10.
  • Bobby Zamora netted a goal in Fulham's only previous home meeting with a Ukrainian side in this competition, in his side's 2-1 win over Shakhtar in February 2010.
  • The Cottagers are unbeaten in 19 previous European games at Craven Cottage and have won each of their last eight (including qualifiers).
  • Dnipro have only played one European game in England, losing 0-3 to Middlesbrough in the 2005/06 competition.
  • The Ukrainians lost at this stage of the competition last season after a 0-1 aggregate defeat to Polish side Lech Poznan.
  • Fulham have already netted 12 goals in the competition this season and have conceded just one.

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Hearts v Tottenham

  • Tottenham are unbeaten in four clashes with Scottish opposition in Europe (inc. qualifiers), winning three of them.
  • In four meetings with Scottish opposition, Spurs have scored 13 goals and conceded six.
  • Tottenham conceded two or more goals in five of their six away European games (inc. qualifiers) last term, but scored two or more in four of them.
  • This will be Hearts' first ever meeting with English opposition in Europe.
  • The Jambos have lost five of their last nine European games (inc. qualifiers) at Tynecastle.
  • Hearts have netted seven goals in their last two home games in all competitions.

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NK Maribor v Rangers

  • These sides have met once before in European competition. In 2001/02, Rangers beat Maribor 3-0 away and 3-1 at home in a Champions League qualifier.
  • Since reaching the final of this competition in 2008, the Gers have won just one of 20 European fixtures.
  • Despite struggling against Rangers in 01/02, Maribor had better luck in their other meeting with Scottish opposition. Last season, the Violets beat Hibernian 6-2 on aggregate in a Europa League qualifier.
  • Maribor have lost at this stage of the competition in both of the last two seasons.
  • Maribor's last eight European games have seen a total of 27 goals netted; an average of over three per game.
  • Nikica Jelavic has scored in each of his last three competitive games for the Gers.

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Nacional v Birmingham

  • Birmingham City will be making their first appearance in Europe since 1961/62.
  • The Blues' last away European game ended in a 2-5 defeat at Spanish side Espanyol in 1961/62.
  • Nacional will be making their first ever appearance against English opposition.
  • The Portuguese side have only lost one of their last six European games at the Estadio de Madeira, winning both home games this season without conceding.
  • Luis Alberto has scored in both Europa League home games for Nacional this season.
  • The Blues are winless in eight away games in all competitions, and have lost all of their last three 1-2.

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Celtic v FC Sion

  • Celtic have won their last 12 home games in all competitions, keeping nine clean sheets in the process.
  • Celtic have played 16 games against Swiss opposition in Europe, winning nine of them.
  • The Glasgow side have never been defeated by Swiss opposition at Parkhead, winning seven and drawing one of eight clashes so far.
  • The Swiss side have faced Scottish opposition four times in Europe, losing three and winning one - all v Aberdeen.
  • On their two previous trips to Scotland to face Aberdeen, FC Sion lost 1-2 and 0-7.
  • Hungarian defender Vilmos Vanczak has scored three goals in his last two away games for Sion.

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