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UEFA Cup Draw


Wow, we’ve had draws galore over the past couple days what with the Carling Cup semifinal draw yesterday and the UEFA Cup Round of 32/Round of 16 and the Champions League Round of 16 draws today. Right now I want to shine the spotlight on Europe’s second-tier club competition, the UEFA Cup.Sevilla have won the UEFA Cup twice in a row now but won’t have a chance to make it a trifecta. The Spanish side qualified for the Round of 16 in the Champions League this season, where they’ll meet Fenerbahçe; but those pairings have already been covered on this site.The UEFA Cup final will be played at the City of Manchester Stadium this year, the first time it’s been in held in England since the UEFA Cup switched from a two-legged final to a one-off affair in 1997-1998.The draw for both the Round of 32 and the Round of 16 was made today in Nyon, Switzerland, the headquarters of UEFA. The eight UEFA Cup group winners were drawn against the eight third-placed teams, while the eight second-placed teams were drawn against the eight teams who finished third in the Champions League groups. Teams from the same country or the same group can’t be drawn against each other.Round of 32 draw: (Note–The team listed first plays at home first, then away)Aberdeen vs. Bayern MunichAEK Athens vs. GetafeBolton Wanderers vs. Atletico MadridZenit St. Petersburg vs. VillarrealGalatasaray vs. Bayer LeverkusenAnderlecht vs. BordeauxBrann vs. EvertonZurich vs. HamburgRangers vs. PanathinaikosPSV Eindhoven vs. HelsingborgSlavia Prague vs. Tottenham HotspurRosenborg vs. FiorentinaSporting Lisbon vs. BaselWerder Bremen vs. Sporting BragaBenfica vs. NurembergOlympique Marseille vs. Spartak MoscowThe first legs are scheduled for February 13/14, and the second legs will be played on February 21.Round of 16 draw: (Once again, the first team listed is home first, then away)Anderlecht/Bordeaux vs. Aberdeen/Bayern MunichRangers/Panathinaikos vs. Werder Bremen/Sporting BragaBolton Wanderers/Atletico Madrid vs. Sporting Lisbon/BaselGalatasaray/Bayer Leverkusen vs. Zurich/HamburgAEK Athens/Getafe vs. Benfica/NurembergRosenborg/Fiorentina vs. Brann/EvertonSlavia Prague/Tottenham Hotspur vs. PSV Eindhoven/HelsingborgOlympique Marseille/Spartak Moscow vs. Zenit St. Petersburg/VillarrealThe first legs will be played on March 6, and the second legs will be contested on March 12/13.•British teams are highlighted in bold.You have to believe that Bayern Munich are the favorites to win this competition. They are on top of the Bundesliga (tied with Werder Bremen) with 36 points from 17 games heading into the winter break. With Luca Toni, Lukas Podolski, Franck Ribéry, and Miroslav Klose, the German side are more explosive than anyone else left in the UEFA Cup and to be honest, I believe they would’ve qualified for the Round of 16 in the Champions League this year if that would’ve been possible.As far as the British clubs go, Everton and Tottenham seemingly have the best chances to progress further in this competition. Everton should take care of SK Brann, the Norwegian champions, without too much trouble (although it’ll be miserable when they go up to Norway to play) and Tottenham should handle Slavia Prague as well. Rangers should also progress to the Round of 16, but I don’t like their chances against Werder Bremen whereas I think Everton would prevail over two legs against relative lightweight Rosenborg or Fiorentina and Spurs would likely do the same against PSV Eindhoven.Here are my predictions to advance to the Round of 16:Bayern MunichGetafeAtletico MadridVillarrealBayer LeverkusenAnderlechtEvertonHamburgRangersPSV EindhovenTottenhamFiorentinaSporting LisbonWerder BremenBenficaSpartak Moscow

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  1. billeshears

    December 24, 2007 at 9:10 pm

    I expect Bayern to coming roaring out of the gate after the winter break. They aren’t conceding and there is too much talent in that squad for the goal scoring drought to go on indefinitely.

  2. Kartik

    December 22, 2007 at 9:26 am

    Bayern Munich aren’t the favorites to win anything the way they’ve played the last month. Not only will they not win the Bundesliga at this rate, but they may need to hang on to get a CL place.

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