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UEFA Cup ties set for exciting conclusion

Published: Thursday 26 February 2009, 19.00CET
Last year's winners FC Zenit St. Petersburg are among ten teams holding leads going into the return legs of the UEFA Cup Round of 32 ties this Thursday in what is sure to be an exciting night across the continent.
by Keith Wallace
UEFA Cup ties set for exciting conclusion
Danny in action during Zenit's 2-1 win against Stuttgart ©Getty Images
 
 
Published: Thursday 26 February 2009, 19.00CET

UEFA Cup ties set for exciting conclusion

Last year's winners FC Zenit St. Petersburg are among ten teams holding leads going into the return legs of the UEFA Cup Round of 32 ties this Thursday in what is sure to be an exciting night across the continent.

Last year's winners FC Zenit St. Petersburg are among ten teams holding leads going into the return legs of the UEFA Cup Round of 32 ties this Thursday evening in what is sure to be an exciting night across the continent.

Finely balanced
Six games ended in draws last week, but Manchester City FC and Udinese Calcio will be firm favourites to qualify as they both scored twice away to FC København and KKS Lech Poznań respectively. Werder Bremen, FC Dynamo Kyiv and Aston Villa FC, meanwhile, travel to difficult destinations knowing that they must score if they are to have any chance of making it to the next stage. FC Girondins de Bordeaux will also be keen to find the net against Galatasaray AŞ in Istanbul as a win or score draw will suffice for the French side after the first leg ended goalless.

Slim margins
Of the ten teams taking leads into this week's deciding encounters, four of them hold only one-goal advantages. Despite slim victories, though, FC Twente, AFC Ajax and FC Metalist Kharkiv will all be confident of making it to the next round as they recorded invaluable 1-0 wins away to Olympique de Marseille, ACF Fiorentina and UC Sampdoria respectively. Holders Zenit will also take a narrow 2-1 lead to VfB Stuttgart. However, with Stuttgart only needing a 1-0 victory at Gottlieb-Daimler-Stadion, the tie remains very much in the balance.

Clear favourites
FC Shakhtar Donetsk and Paris Saint-Germain FC have slightly more room to breathe as they secured 2-0 home wins over Tottenham Hotspur FC, twice winners of this tournament, and VfL Wolfsburg respectively. Even stronger favourites to progress are Hamburger SV, Aalborg BK and SC Braga, who all recorded comfortable 3-0 victories in their first legs. Despite lying in the relegation zone in Ligue 1, AS Saint-Etienne also look set to qualify following an impressive 3-1 win at Olympiacos CFP as they continued their eye-catching European campaign. The winners of the ties will know their Round of 16 opposition immediately as the draw for the ties on 12 and 18/19 March has already been made.

2008/09 UEFA Cup Round of 32
Second leg: 26 February
(first named team at home, current score indicated)
1. VfL Wolfsburg (GER) 0-2 Paris Saint-Germain FC (FRA)
2. Manchester City FC (ENG) 2-2 FC København (DEN)
3. Hamburger SV (GER) 3-0 NEC Nijmegen (NED)
4. FC Metalist Kharkiv (UKR) 1-0 UC Sampdoria (ITA)
5. R. Standard de Liège (BEL) 0-3 SC Braga (POR)
6. PFC CSKA Moskva (RUS) 1-1 Aston Villa FC (ENG)
7. Udinese Calcio (ITA) 2-2 KKS Lech Poznań (POL)
8. AS Saint-Etienne (FRA) 3-1 Olympiacos CFP (GRE)
9. AFC Ajax (NED) 1-0 ACF Fiorentina (ITA)
10. RC Deportivo La Coruña (ESP) 0-3 Aalborg BK (DEN)
11. AC Milan (ITA) 1-1 Werder Bremen (GER)
12. Galatasaray AŞ (TUR) 0-0 FC Girondins de Bordeaux (FRA)
13. Valencia CF (ESP) 1-1 FC Dynamo Kyiv (UKR)
14. VfB Stuttgart (GER) 1-2 FC Zenit St. Petersburg (RUS, holders)
15. FC Twente (NED) 1-0 Olympique de Marseille (FRA)
16. Tottenham Hotspur FC (ENG) 0-2 FC Shakhtar Donetsk (UKR)
2008/09 UEFA Cup Round of 16
First legmatches: 12 March
Second leg: 18/19 March
Winners of Match 11 v Winners of Match 8
Winners of Match 6 v Winners of Match 16
Winners of Match 7 v Winners of Match 14
Winners of Match 1 v Winners of Match 5
Winners of Match 13 v Winners of Match 4
Winners of Match 2 v Winners of Match 10
Winners of Match 15 v Winners of Match 9
Winners of Match 3 v Winners of Match 12
Last updated: 26/02/09 21.04CET

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