October 7, 2008

UEFA Cup: 2008-2009 Group Stage.

Filed under: UEFA Cup / Europa League — admin @ 6:31 am


Here are the groups {Click here}.   Here is the UEFA site’s description of the draw {Click here}. 

There are 7 clubs who played in the 07/08 UEFA Cup Group Stage,  and are returning this season… From England:  Tottenham.   From Germany:  Hamburg.   From Portugal:  Sporting Braga.   From Russia:  Spartak Moscow.   From Turkey:  Galatasaray.   From Croatia:  Dinamo Zagreb.   From Denmark:  Copenhagen.

After playing in the Champions League in 07/08,  Sevilla return to the UEFA Cup.  The Andalusian club won the UEFA Cup in consecutive years (in 2006 and 2007).

This is the 38th edition of the UEFA Cup,  and the 12th since the single-match final was established.  Here is a list of the last 11 finals {Click here}.   It is interesting to note that 10 of the 11 winners are either in this season’s Champions League,  or UEFA Cup;  the exception is 1999 UEFA Cup winners Parma.  Four of the clubs on the list are currently in the Champions League this fall (Internazionale,  Liverpool,  Porto,  and last season’s UEFA Cup champion,  Zenit St. Petersburg).  On the other hand,  six of the UEFA Cup runners-up from the last 11 seasons are not playing in Europe at all this season,  clubs that range from German giants Borussia Dortmund to the small Basque Country club Alaves;  and including the last three finals losers:  Middlesbrough (2006),  Espanyol (2007),  and Rangers (2008).  Talk about a setback.   This is the big risk of playing  in the UEFA Cup,  especially for smaller clubs without the resources to field a large squad.

Thanks to the EFS site for attendance figures.  I set the link to last season’s attendance figures from the 07/08 UEFA Cup {Click here}.

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