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Panathinaikos's Maribor salvage mission

Wednesday 14 November 2012 9.51 CET
Panathinaikos fans

Things are looking desperate for Panathinaikos FC as they take on NK Maribor in Group J knowing that only a win will guarantee them something to play for on matchday six.

• A win would give the Greens a chance of finishing second, provided Tottenham Hotspur FC do not beat S.S. Lazio in the day's other game. A draw would keep Maribor's hopes hanging by a thread.

Previous meetings
• Maribor won 3-0 when the sides met for the first time on matchday one, Robert Berić, Agim Ibraimi and captain Tavares scoring the goals in an impressive performance.

• Panathinaikos took on ND Gorica in the first round of the 1999/00 UEFA Cup, in their only previous games against a Slovenian side, producing a 1-0 away win and a 2-0 victory at home.

• Maribor took on Panathinaikos's local rivals Olympiacos FC in the first round of the 1995/96 UEFA Cup, losing 2-0 in Athens and then 3-1 in Slovenia.

• In 13 meetings between Greek and Slovenian clubs, the Greek sides' record is W8 D2 L3 (W5 D0 L1 in Greece – W3 D2 L2 in Slovenia).

Match background
• Panathinaikos are unbeaten in their last five European home games, but have drawn their last three.

• They have not won in six European fixtures this season since a 3-0 triumph at home against Motherwell FC in the UEFA Champions League second qualifying round. During this barren spell, they have scored just twice.

• After winning their first two away games of the season in Europe, Maribor are now on a three-game losing streak on the road in continental competition.

• Maribor have lost all five of their away games in the UEFA Europa League group stage, having also drawn a blank in their debut campaign last season.

Team facts
• Panathinaikos are within three goals of conceding their 100th in the UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League; this will be their 79th game in the competitions.

• Maribor midfielder Timotej Dodlek turns 23 the day after the game.

• Panathinaikos parted company with coach Jesualdo Ferreira after matchday four, with the Under-20 coaching team of Ioannis Vanortas and Juan Ramón Rocha taking charge for the remainder of the season. A midfielder for the club from 1979-89, Rocha was Panathinaikos coach from 1994-96, leading the Greens to the 1995/96 UEFA Champions League semi-finals, and was briefly caretaker boss again in 1999.

• Maribor coach Darko Milanič was a defender for Yugoslavia and Slovenia, spending his club career with FK Partizan and SK Sturm Graz. After captaining Slovenia at UEFA EURO 2000, he moved into coaching with NK Izola and NK Primorje, and won the 2007/08 Slovenian title with Gorica before switching to Maribor, where he has won two further national crowns.

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