A few facts on...FC Basel
Thursday night's Europa League quarter-final, first leg represents our first meeting with FC Basel.
Here are a few facts on the Swiss champions.
- FC Basel kicked-off their 2012-13 European campaign back in July, when they took on FC Flora Tallin in the second qualifying round of the Champions League.
- They progressed to the play-offs for the Champions League where they lost 3-1 on aggregate to CFR 1907 Cluj.
- They finished runners-up in Group G of the Europa League behind Genk, beating Sporting 3-0 at home as the Portuguese giants finished bottom.
- Murat Yakin took over from Heiko Vogel as coach during the group stage in October. He was capped 49 times by Switzerland and played for Grasshopper, Stuttgart, Fenerbache, Kaiserslautern and Basel, who he captained to three Swiss titles and two Swiss Cups.
- Basel beat Dnipro 3-1 on aggregate in the Round of 32 and then Zenit 2-1 in the Round of 16, where they held onto a 2-0 first leg lead in Russia despite having Marcelo Diaz sent off just before half-time.
- Domestically, they are well positioned to defend their Swiss Super League title, sitting top by three points from Grasshopper Club.
- FC Basel are on a run of two defeats in 22 matches in all competitions and one loss in the last 15. They have won six of their last seven matches in all competitions.
- They beat FC Luzern 4-0 on Monday with goals from Serey Die, Diaz, Salah and Philip Degen.
- This is the fourth time we've met a Swiss team in Europe following Grasshopper in the UEFA Cup in 1973 (a 9-2 aggregate win), FC Luzern in the InterToto Cup in 1995 and Young Boys in the Champions League play-off in 2010 (6-3 on aggregate).
- FC Basel eliminated Manchester United in the group stages of the 2011-12 Champions League with a 3-3 draw at Old Trafford and 2-1 win at St Jakob Park.
- Christian Gross has coached both teams, while Thimothee Atouba played for both.
- FC Basel are the only domestic champions remaining in the Europa League. Meanwhile, we're the only previous winners still in the competition.
- Goalkeeper Yann Sommer is the only FC Basel player to play in every minute of Basel's campaign since the start of the group stage. Kyle Walker and Jan Vertonghen have played every minute for us.
- Basel have scored 10 of their 12 goals since the start of the group stage after the 60th minute, including six between the 76th minute and full-time.