BATE will face Bayer 04 Leverkusen on September 16 in the first round of the Champions League group stage. The Belarusians’ other Champions League group rivals are Barcelona and Roma. Another Belarusian club to feature in European cups this year is Dinamo Minsk. They play in the Europa League group against Villarreal, Rapid Wien and Viktoria Plzen.
The colors of Bayer are black and red, and the emblem is the cross emblazoned on the players' shirts and showing their belonging to the pharmaceutical company Bayer. It is Leverkusen that has the largest factory for the production of medicines. By the way, it was there where aspirin was invented. Thus Bayer has an Aspirin-related nickname.
Belarusian clubs met with Barcelona several times. In 2011 BATE were drawn in the same group with the Catalans. In a home match, Lionel Messi refused to exchange shirts with a BATE player. Messi scored a number of goals in those games: BATE lost in two legs with an overall score of 0:9.
The legendary Francesco Totti has been playing for Roma since 1992. He is a living symbol of the club. At the time of the first game against BATE Totti will have already turned 39. Not long ago Francesco surprised the entire world by making a selfie after the goal. This trick became so popular that it was included in a goal celebration system in one of the popular football simulators.
Rapid Wien is the most titled club of Austria. But it is known by a unique achievement. This is the only non-German club that won the championship of Germany. The thing is that during the Second World War, the White-Green took part in the United tournament and became champions in 1941.
Villarreal has the nickname Yellow Submarine. In 2006, the fans of the club asked the Spanish Navy to set up the Spanish submarine S-63 (58 meters long) in the center of the city on a special platform as a great symbol of the local football culture. In polite written refusal, the fleet of Spain called the idea "absurd".
BATE played Viktoria Plzeň in 2011. Viktoria won the championship in 2015 and dedicated it to their player, 35-year-old Marian Čišovský, who in January 2015 was diagnosed with almost incurable Lou Gehrig's disease.
In order to combat this disease Ice Bucket Challenge was invented. "I am a strong man, but he could not hold back tears because Marian. Viktoria Plzen manager Miroslav Koubek said he would give up the Czech league title he waited 32 years for - if he could change the health of defender Marian Cisovsky.