Chelsea return to the Champions League after a year away and they get their campaign under way with the visit of Qarabag FK at Stamford Bridge.
The Azerbaijani’s are one of the minnows of the competition and many Chelsea fans think that the game should come and go with very little fuss as the Blues look to get off to a positive start.
But what do we know about the new boys to the competition? Could they really cause a threat to the Blues and upset the odds in the first game of Group C?
When were they formed?
Formed in 1951, they were one of the founding teams of the Azerbaijan Premier League in 1992 and are one of only two teams to have played in the top flight in every season to date.
They have won five Azerbaijani Premier League titles, including the last four, while also winning the last three Azerbaijan Cups. They were the first team to win the Premier League in the 92/93 season.
Where do they play?
Qarabag play their games in Baku at the Tofik Bakhramov Stadium, which also serves as the Azerbaijan national stadium.
It holds 31,200 people and was built in 1951 before a $ 10m reinvestment into the stadium for repair and reconstruction, with it being reopened in 2012.
The stadium is named after the football referee Tofik Bakhramov, who was the linesman for Geoff Hurst’s controversial second goal in the 1966 World Cup final.
Who is the man in charge?
Qarabag’s manager probably has one of the better names in football, Gurban Gurbanov.
The 45-year-old is a former Azerbaijani international and made 63 appearances for his country playing as a forward. He was quite the journeyman throughout his career, before hanging up his boots to take over as manager of Neftchi Baku.
He then made the switch to manage Qarabag in the 2008/09 season, taking over from Rasim Kara, and has been the man in charge ever since.
Who is the danger man?
Dino Ndlovu was the Horsemen’s top scorer in the Premier League last season with ten goals and will be looking to impress at the English champions.
Having spent most of his career playing in his native South Africa, the 27-year-old had a three-year stint at Maccabi Haifa and has featured four times for his country.
Ndlovu signed a two year deal with Qarabag last summer and will most likely spearhead the attack at the Bridge.
What’s their European pedigree?
Qarabag became the first Azerbaijani team to qualify for the Champions League group stages when they got past Copenhagen.
After a 1-0 win in the first game, they lost the second 2-1 but went through on away goals.
Qarabag did qualify for the Europa League in the 2014/15 season, coming third in their group.