Both teams are already eliminated from the Champions League with the winner of this match clinching third place. They each could, however, still become one of the four third placed teams to move into the Europa League, but that appears to be unlikely at the moment. Basel have already amassed a 15 point gap at the top of the Swiss Super League, so with domestic dominance nearly guaranteed, beating Ludogorets and Arsenal is their hope to keep things interesting. Ludogorets also sit in first in their domestic league, but only by three points. Last time out, they went up 2-0 over Arsenal at home within 15 minutes, only to lose 3-2 to a wonder goal from Mesut Ozil.
The Bulgarian champions make it to the group stage for the second time in three years after getting past Czech side Plzen in their play-off. Their squad is a mix of Brazilians looking to move up the ranks in Europe and journeymen from leagues across Eastern Europe. The Flying Eagles will be led by the Bulgarian league’s top scorer, Claudiu Keșerü, who nabbed 15 last year. Their inclusion should make for entertaining TV viewing as Arsenal and PSG visit the 8,808 capacity Ludogorets Arena.
FC Basel have fed the Swiss national side most of their recent stars - Granit Xhaxa, Xherdan Shaqiri and Switzerland’s all-time leading scorer Alexander Frei all got their start at St. Jakob Park. After a year in the Europa league, the Swiss champions for seven consecutive years qualified for the group stage and will look to make it to the round of 16 for the third time in their history. FCB will look to Austrian Marc Janko to lead them after scoring 21 goals in all competitions last season. With PSG and Arsenal looming, FC Basel will need some heroic performances to make it out of the group this time around.
His best-ever tally was in 2014-15 when he scored 20 goals in 29 matches for Steaua București.
The 25 year old winger is one of seven Brazilians in the Ludogorets squad.