Writer: J P Fear
Date:Friday October 3 2008
The remaining 40 clubs in the draw which takes place on Tuesday at 12noon for the group stages of the UEFA Cup
There will be 8 groups of 5 teams with the top 3 in each group going to the next stage which will then include the 3rd place 'losers' from the Champions League - which lets face it is disgraceful thing for UEFA to have agreed to! You fail in one cup you go into another cup?!? So you get 24 clubs go through from the UEFA group stages and 8 who fall from the Champions League.
This then becomes a knock out two-leg competition leading to the final.
Clubs remaining in the competition:
Hertha BSC Berlin
Aston Villa FC
FC Metalist Kharkiv
R. Standard de Liège
The 40 survivors enter a group phase, with the clubs being drawn into eight groups of five.
Unlike the Champions League group phase, the UEFA Cup group phase is played in a single round-robin format, with each club playing two home and two away games.
The top three teams in each of the eight groups advance, 24 in total, where they are joined by the eight third-place teams in the Champions League group phase.
After the group stage, there is a winter break. After that, knockout play resumes, with two-leg ties leading to the one-off final.
The 2009 UEFA Cup showpiece will be played at the Sukru Saracoglu Stadium, home ground of Fenerbahce, in Istanbul, Turkey, on May 20, 2009.
Zenit St. Petersburg are the current holders, having beaten Rangers in the 2008 final.
Date:Friday October 3 2008
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