FCSB will want a repeat of their last meeting with Viktoria Plzeň after the sides were paired for a second time this season in UEFA Europa League Group G.
• The teams first met in this season’s UEFA Champions League third qualifying round, FCSB making up for a 2-2 home draw with a 4-1 success in Plzen.
• Michael Krmenčík scored in both legs for Plzeň, but was sent off late in the return match.
• The line-ups for the first game in Bucharest on 25 July 2017 were:
FCSB: Niţă, Bălaşa, Pintilii, Larie, Alibec (Gnohéré 57), Tănase (William Amorim 46), Budescu (Achim 66), Júnior Morais, Momčilović, Enache, Filipe Teixeira.
Plzeň: Bolek, Limberský, Kopic, Petržela (Zeman 69), Řezník, Krmenčík (Bakoš 67), Hrošovský, Hájek, Havel, Kolář (Řezníček 84), Živulić.
• FCSB’s record in ten matches with Czech sides is W3 D5 L2 (W1 D4 at home).
• Plzeň are yet to win in six games against Romanian opponents: D3 L3.
• Second in Romania’s 2016/17 table, FCSB have not won in two European home fixtures this season (D1 L1).
• Plzeň have gone ten matches without a European away victory (D5 L5), but drew five of their last seven continental fixtures on the road.
• Beaten 5-1 on aggregate by Sporting CP in the UEFA Champions League play-offs, FCSB are competing in the UEFA Europa League group stage for a seventh time since the tournament assumed its current format in 2009/10.
• Runners-up in last term’s Czech First League, Viktoria Plzeň are contesting the UEFA Europa League group stage for a third straight season. They reached the last 16 in 2012/13 and 2013/14.
Links and trivia
• The journey from Bucharest to Plzen is a little over 1,100km.
• Plzeň have won four of the last seven Czech titles, starting with their breakthrough triumph in 2010/11; FCSB are Romania’s most successful club with 26 league championships.
• Nicolae Dică returned to FCSB as coach in May 2017, having served the club as a player in two previous spells, landing two titles – and a further one with CFR Cluj. The attacking midfielder also played in Italy, Greece and Turkey.
• After stints as Czech Republic and Anji coach, Pavel Vrba rejoined Plzeň this year, having earlier steered Viktoria to two championships between 2008 and 2013. Once a Baník Ostrava player and coach, he lifted the 2006/07 Slovak title as Žilina boss.