The only time they visited Azerbaijan in one of the UEFA factories (not including an intertoto game in the late 90s) Maccabi Haifa achieved the highest victory of an Israeli team in Europe – 0: 8 over Hazar Lankran in July 2013. Next week the Greens will play in Azerbaijan again Ann, this time in Baku against champions Naftachi, in a battle for a ticket to the home stage of the Conference League.
Unlike Maccabi Haifa, Naftachi went through the first qualifying round of the Champions League when they defeated Dynamo Tbilisi and sent it to a meeting with the Israeli champion in the Conference League. The Azeris then lost twice to Olympiacos and were relegated to the Europa League qualifiers, and now following the loss in Finland find themselves in the playoffs of the third factory. Helsinki won 0: 3 at home after 2: 2 in Azerbaijan, with Rico Riski coming in as a substitute and immediately scoring (46) and his older brother Rupa Riski, who scored and cooked in the previous game, adding a double (60 on penalties and 89).
Naftachi has already met Israeli rivals in the past and was eliminated twice: in 2012/13 they lost to Kiryat Shmona 6: 2 in the third round of the Champions League qualifiers, and two years ago they were eliminated by Bnei Yehuda in the third round of the Europa League qualifiers with 3: 2 in total.
The team that won nine championships and seven trophies and was in the European home stage only once (2012/13 in the Europa League), coach Samir Abasov, 43, the former brake of the Azerbaijan national team. Captain Amin Mahmoudov is one of the remnants of the meeting with Bnei Yehuda and has scored three goals in the European campaign so far, with the king of goals from last season Namig Alasgarov currently missing due to a broken nose. In the summer, seven players were added, among them the brakemen Roman Basque of France and Hugo Basto of Portugal.