The four previous winners of the UEFA Cup involved in this year's competition have plenty still to do if they are to maintain their interest beyond the first round.
Liverpool FC, Parma AC, FC Schalke 04 and Feyenoord have all won the famous trophy in the past but did not have things all their own way in this week's first-leg action. The return ties take place on 15/16 October with the 48 winners going through to contest the second round in November. (Click here for the full first-leg results.)
Liverpool, bidding for a record fourth triumph, had Michael Owen to thank as they came from behind for a 1-1 draw at NK Olimpija Ljubljana while Parma achieved the same result at FC Metalurh Donetsk. Both will be grateful for the away goals collected in Slovenia and Ukraine respectively unlike Schalke, who could only muster a 0-0 scoreline in Croatia against NK Kamen Ingrad.
The only winners of the four were Feyenoord, but they are probably in the most precarious position. They were 2-1 winners at home against FC Kärnten but Marijo Maric's away goal means a 1-0 victory for the Austrians next time would be enough to take them through.
There were no such problems for Newcastle United FC, with the English club being the biggest winners of the week after a 5-0 home success against Dutch side NAC Breda that featured a Craig Bellamy double. AS Roma also moved to within touching distance of the second round after seeing off FK Vardar of F.Y.R. Macedonia 4-0. Daniele De Rossi was the inspiration for the Italian club and looks one to watch for the rest of the campaign.
Shocks in store
Many of the ties are finely balanced and could still go either way. One of the shocks could come in the fixture between FC Dinamo Bucuresti and FC Shakhtar Donetsk with the Romanian underdogs taking a 2-0 lead to Ukraine for the return. Turkey's Gençlerbirligi SK could eliminate Blackburn Rovers FC after an impressive 3-1 home win over the English team.
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