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Barça v Panathinaikos: Did you know?

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14.09.2010 10:30

Barça v Panathinaikos: Did you know?

Roger Bogunyà

The Champions League is back at the Camp Nou and here are just a few facts and figures about Tuesday night’s match that perhaps you didn’t know.

► FC Barcelona have qualified from the group stage in eight of the last nine seasons. In 2003-04 the Club didn’t take part in the competition.

► In the last three seasons, Barça have finished top of their group.

► Panathinaikos are back in the Champions League after missing out on the tournament last season.

► The Greek club’s best Champions League campaign was in the 2001-02 season when they reached the quarterfinals only to be knocked out by…Barça!

► Barça have a great record against Greek teams in the Camp Nou. They’ve played five and won them all.

► In contrast, Panathinaikos have a terrible record against teams from the Spanish league. In eleven meetings they’ve only managed one draw – the rest were all defeats.

► Last season, FC Barcelona won five of their six matches in the Camp Nou. Only Rubin Kazan bucked the trend, winning 1-2.

► It’ll be a special day for former Barça player Luis Garcia, now with Panathinaikos. In 2004 he left Barça to sign for Liverpool.

► Apart from Luis Garcia, the match will provide the opportunity for former club mates Govou and Abidal (Olympique Lyon, 2004 to 2007) and Leto and Mascherano (Liverpool, 2007/08) to meet up again.

► Panathinaikos signed six new players in the summer: Boumsong and Govou (Olympique Lyon), Luis Garcia (Racing), Ioannidis (Iraklis), Plessis (Liverpool) and Fernandes (Bochum).

► After the opening two games in the Greek league, Panathinaikos are fifth with four points. They drew 1-1 at home to Xanthi (1-1) and beat Aris Salonica (0-1) away.
Barça v Panathinaikos: Did you know?
The referee
The match will be officiated by the Italian referee Nicola Rizzoli, assistant referees Luca Maggiano and Elenita di Liberatore, fourth official Andrea Romeo and, for the first time in the Camp Nou, additional assistant referees Andrea de Marco and Daniele Orsato.

Mr Rizzola has officiated in 32 European matches, eight of them in the Champions League, including last season’s 1-1 draw between Real Madrid and Olympique Lyon and this summer’s 3-4 defeat for Sevilla against Braga. Both Real Madrid and Sevilla were eliminated. He also refereed last season’s Europa League final between Atletico Madrid and Fulham (2-1).

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