Two-time winner Sevilla crashes out of UEFA Cup

Sevilla's bid for a third UEFA Cup title in four years was ended on Thursday by Sampdoria.

updated: December 19, 2008 18:02 IST
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Sevilla's bid for a third UEFA Cup title in four years was ended on Thursday by Sampdoria, which progressed to the knockout stage alongside Stuttgart, Tottenham, NEC Nijmegen, Paris Saint-Germain and Olympiakos.

Jonathan Bottinelli's 75th-minute goal gave Sampdoria a 1-0 win over Sevilla, which was also overtaken in Group C by Stuttgart after the German club's 3-0 victory over group winner Standard Liege.

Racing Santander was knocked out on goal difference in Group A when Manchester City, which had already qualified, scored an injury-time consolation goal in a 3-1 loss. PSG qualified in third place by one goal after crushing FC Twente 4-0.

Tottenham rallied from a two-goal deficit to draw 2-2 with Spartak Moscow to advance at the expense of the Russian club along with NEC Nijmegen, which scored two late goals to beat Group D winner Udinese 2-0.

Olympiakos trounced Hertha Berlin 4-0 to reach the last 32, but it was Metalist Kharkiv which topped Group B ahead of Galatasaray by edging Benfica 1-0.

AC Milan, Valencia and Hamburg were among the clubs to advance from the four groups completed Wednesday. The 24 teams will be joined in Friday's draw by the eight third-place finishers in the Champions League group stage.

Sevilla entered the final group matches in second place in Group C, but its campaign ended when an unmarked Bottinelli bundled Reto Ziegler's curling free kick in. Not since the 2003-04 season has a Spanish team failed to advance from the group stage.

Stuggart went ahead in the fifth minute against Standard Liege when Sami Khedira blasted past goalkeeper Rorys Aragon Espinoza.

Having set up the first goal, Roberto Hilbert scored four minutes after the break and Ciprian Marica added a third in the 72nd by sending a left-footed shot inside the far corner for Stuggart.

Manchester City's second-string team had only securing top group spot on its mind, but substitute Felipe Caicedo scored a late goal to also inflict heartache on Santander and complete a miserable night for Spanish football.

Santander had led 2-0 after half an hour following goals from Jonathan Pereira and Oscar Serrano, with Juan Valera adding a third in the 54th.

PSG's rout of Twente proved vital as Paul Le Guen's side squeezed through ahead of Santander because it had scored one more goal than the Spaniards over the four group matches each.

Peguy Luyindula and Stephane Sessegnon gave PSG a two-goal lead by halftime, and Luyindula scored the crucial fourth goal after Mateja Kezman had also found the net in the closing minutes.

"We didn't know whether to keep going forward or not by the end," Le Guen said. "I had some false information that Racing had gone 4-0 up at the end of their match. I thought we were being eliminated, so I was telling my players to go forward."

Spartak went through similar tribulations at White Hart Lane, with Artem Dzjuba's two goals in the space of 11 minutes before halftime putting the Russians in sight of qualification.

But Luka Modric, who moved to Spurs in the offseason, chose the perfect moment to score his first goal for the club in the 67th. Aaron Lennon weaved through the defense on the right flank before squaring to the unmarked Croatia playmaker, who turned it past goalkeeper Stipe Pletikosa with his first touch.

Tom Huddlestone equalized seven minutes later when he rose inside the box to head in Bale's cross.

NEC Nijmegen join Spurs in the draw in Nyon, Switzerland, after second-half substitute Collins John scored in the 75th and Jhonny van Beukering added another three minutes later to give the Dutch side a 2-0 win over Udinese.

Olexandr Rykun came off the bench to clinch Metalist Kharkiv's victory over Benfica in the 84th, ensuring the Ukrainians avoid the third-place Champions League teams by topping Group B.

Greek champion Olympiakos claimed the third qualifying spot with four second-half goals against Hertha Berlin.