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Everton reach European goal

Published: Monday 9 May 2005, 23.58CET
Everton FC sealed a UEFA Champions League qualifying berth but elsewhere the race for places goes to the wire. features

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Published: Monday 9 May 2005, 23.58CET

Everton reach European goal

Everton FC sealed a UEFA Champions League qualifying berth but elsewhere the race for places goes to the wire.
By Michael Harrold

Everton FC secured entry to the third qualifying round of the UEFA Champions League for the first time on Sunday - but elsewhere the race for a place in Europe's premier competition looks set to go down to the wire.

'Tremendous achievement'
Everton defeated Newcastle United FC 2-0 on Saturday to consolidate their hold on fourth spot in the English Premiership, and their first European Champion Clubs' Cup appearance since 1970/71 was confirmed the following day when fifth-placed Liverpool FC lost to Arsenal FC. "It's been a long haul but it feels terrific getting there," Everton manager David Moyes said. "It's a dream come true and a massive achievement for Everton Football Club."

Lyon celebrate
Olympique Lyonnais will return as champions again after beating AC Ajaccio on Sunday to claim their fourth consecutive French title. With three games to play, the battle for the second direct qualifying place is between LOSC Lille Métropole and AS Monaco FC, with the losers set to settle for a place in the third qualifying round.

European showdown
In Serie A, next week's showdown at the Stadio Friuli between Udinese Calcio and UC Sampdoria will likely decide Italy's fourth qualifier. Both sides are locked on 59 points after weekend wins. Udinese are aiming to enter the Champions League for the first time, while Sampdoria are hoping to make just their second European Cup appearance after reaching the final in 1992.

Sevilla slip
In Spain, Sevilla FC lost at Real Betis Balompié to throw the race for third position wide open. Sevilla are level on 58 points in third with Villarreal CF who defeated Málaga CF, and with three matches remaining, RCD Espanyol, Betis and Valencia CF are also in the hunt. Like Udinese, Villarreal have never featured in Europe's top club tournament. Sevilla were quarter-finalists in their only European Cup campaign in 1957/58.

Schalke second
In Germany, the competition for European places is providing a thrilling climax to the season long after FC Bayern München's title celebrations ended. FC Schalke 04 currently hold second spot, but VfB Stuttgart, three-times German representatives in the European Cup, are pushing them hard for the second direct qualifying berth. Hertha BSC Berlin, Werder Bremen and Bayer 04 Leverkusen are also in contention.

Ajax qualify
Elsewhere, AFC Ajax, FC Dynamo Kyiv, Maccabi Haifa FC, NK Gorica, Anorthosis Famagusta FC, NK Zrinjski, FK Rabotnicki, Sliema Wanderers FC and KF Tirana all claimed places in next season's competition this week.

The following list is subject to ratification by the individual national associations

Provisional 2005/06 UEFA Champions League - at 9 May
Teams in bold already assured of involvement
IOC Stage Club Domestic position
ESP Grp FC Barcelona 1
ESP Grp Real Madrid CF 2
ESP Q3 Sevilla FC 3
ESP Q3 Villarreal CF 4
ENG Grp Chelsea FC 1
ENG Grp Arsenal FC 2
ENG Q3 Manchester United FC 3
ENG Q3 Everton FC 4
ITA Grp Juventus FC 1
ITA Grp AC Milan 2
ITA Q3 FC Internazionale Milano 3
ITA Q3 UC Sampdoria/Udinese Calcio 4
GER Grp FC Bayern München 1
GER Grp FC Schalke 04 2
GER Q3 VfB Stuttgart 3
FRA Grp Olympique Lyonnais 1
FRA Grp LOSC Lille Métropole 2
FRA Q3 AS Monaco FC 3
POR Grp SL Benfica 1
POR Grp Sporting Clube de Portugal 2
POR Q3 FC Porto 3
GRE Grp Panathinaikos FC 1
GRE Q3 Olympiacos CFP 2
NED Grp PSV Eindhoven 1
NED Q3 AFC Ajax 2
CZE Grp AC Sparta Praha 1
CZE Q3 FK Teplice 2
TUR Q3 Fenerbahçe SK 1
TUR Q2 Galatasaray SK 2
SCO Q3 Celtic FC 1
SCO Q2 Rangers FC 2
BEL Q3 Club Brugge KV 1
BEL Q2 RSC Anderlecht 2
SUI Q3 FC Basel 1893 1
SUI Q2 FC Thun 2
UKR Q3 FC Shakhtar Donetsk 1
UKR Q2 FC Dynamo Kyiv 2
NOR Q3 Rosenborg BK 1
NOR Q2 Vålerenga IF 2
POL Q2 Wisla Kraków 1
ISR Q2 Maccabi Haifa FC 1
AUT Q2 SK Rapid Wien 1
YUG Q2 FK Partizan 1
RUS Q2 FC Lokomotiv Moskva 1
DEN Q2 Brøndby IF 1
CRO Q2 HNK Hajduk Split 1
SWE Q2 Malmö FF 1
HUN Q2 Debreceni VSC 1
ROM Q1 FC Steaua Bucuresti 1
SVK Q1 FC Artmedia Bratislava 1
SLO Q1 NK Gorica 1
CYP Q1 Anorthosis Famagusta FC 1
MOL Q1 FC Sheriff 1
LAT Q1 FC Skonto 1
FIN Q1 FC Haka 1
BHZ Q1 NK Zrinjski 1
GEO Q1 FC Dinamo Tbilisi 1
MKD Q1 FK Rabotnicki 1
LIT Q1 FBK Kaunas 1
BLS Q1 FC Dinamo Minsk 1
ISL Q1 FH Hafnarfjördur 1
MLT Q1 Sliema Wanderers FC 1
IRL Q1 Shelbourne FC 1
ARM Q1 FC Pyunik 1
WAL Q1 Total Network Solutions FC 1
ALB Q1 KF Tirana 1
NIR Q1 Glentoran FC 1
EST Q1 FC Levadia Tallinn 1
LUX Q1 F91 Dudelange 1
AZE Q1 FK Khazar Lenkoran 1
FAR Q1 HB Tórshavn 1
KAZ Q1 FC Kairat Almaty 1

Last updated: 16/05/05 12.16CET

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