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A few facts on...Panathinaikos

Posted on 3 October 2012  - 13:08

Thursday night's Europa League, Group J clash in Greece marks the first time we've played Panathinaikos.

A few facts on...Panathinaikos

Here are a few facts on our opponents from Athens.

- Panathinaikos were formed in 1908 and have 20 national titles to their name.

- They play in the impressive OACA (Olympic) Stadium in Athens, which was re-designed for the 2004 Olympic Games. The capacity of the stadium is 69,618.

- The stadium hosted the Champions League Final between Liverpool and AC Milan in 2007. Milan won 2-1.

- They have a wealth of European experience including 26 appearances in the European Cup/Champions League, where they've played 153 matches.

- Under the guidance of the legendary Hungarian player Ferenc Puskas, Panathinaikos reached the 1971 European Cup Final at Wembley but lost to Ajax.

- Panathinaikos have won just one of 16 European matches against English opposition - against Arsenal in the Champions League in September, 2001.

- Panathinaikos coach is Jesualdo Ferreira. Once trainer of Portugal's Under-21 side and assistant boss of the senior national team, he coached SL Benfica and SC Braga before winning an unprecedented three successive Liga titles at Porto from 2006 to 2010. He took command at Panathinaikos in November, 2010.

- Panathinaikos finished runners-up in the Greek Super League last season and qualified for the Champions League. They beat Motherwell in Champions League qualifying third round, but lost to Malaga of Spain in the play-offs.

- They haven't made the best of starts in this season's league campaign, winning just one of five matches and already trailing leaders Olympicos by 11 points.

- This is Panathinaikos' fourth UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League group stage campaign, and they have successfully reached the knockout phase of the competition in all of their previous efforts.

- However, this season's campaign in Group J didn't start too well with a 3-0 loss against Maribor.

- One player to play for both clubs is Portugese striker Helder Postiga.

- Panathinaikos players Jean-Alain Boumsong (Newcastle) and Sebastian Leto (Liverpool) have played in the Premier League.

- Panathinaikos defender Jose Manuel Velazquez and our young midfielder Yago Falque spent a season together in the Villarreal CF B team in 2010-11.