PFC Levski Sofia booked their place in the third round of the UEFA Cup after a 0-0 draw at home to SK Slavia Praha sent the Bulgarian side through on away goals after the tie had finished 2-2 aggregate.
The home side had enough opportunities at the Georgi Asparuhov stadium to seal their progress in more comfortable style, but striker Georgi Ivanov was unable to convert a number of chances that came his way, forcing Levski to hang on nervously at the end.
Levski began the match in positive fashion, and pressed forward from the outset. From the first whistle they were on the offensive, and they had a succession of chances to seal their place in the next round of the tournament.
They began by trying to exploit the pace of Freitas de Souza Lucio Wagner down the right, and twice he produced nervy moments for the visitors. But the first real chance fell to midfield player Asen Bukarev after 13 minutes, only for him to slice a shot wide of Radek Cerny's goal.
Two minutes later Levski had another clear-cut opening as Georgi Ivanov raced through but, having got himself in a shooting position he fired wide of Cerny's left-hand post, much to the dismay of the home crowd.
Dangerous on the break
It was not all one-way traffic, however, and the visitors looked dangerous on the break with the speed of Uruguayan striker Adauto Da Silva and the guile of veteran Czech Republic forward Pavel Kuka.
But Levski continued to plough forward and Georgi Chilikov sent a dipping shot over the bar, before David Kalivoda threatened for the visitors, only for goalkeeper Dimitar Ivankov to produce a stunning save from point-blank range.
Slavia came out after the break a revitalised side, and Da Silva threatened twice with his pace, with only perfectly-timed interventions from Biser Ivanov keeping the visitors at bay on each occasion.
Levski slowly hauled themselves back into the game and Georgi Ivanov had three more half-chances that he could not convert as the match remained goalless.
Fizzed over the bar
With 21 minutes left the Bulgarian striker went agonisingly close again to getting his name on the scoresheet. Picking the ball up on the edge of the box after a mistake from Radek Bejbl, Ivanov turned and shot all in one motion, only to see his strike fizz over the crossbar with Cerny beaten.
Settled for the draw
As Slavia tired, Levski surged forward in the hope of finding the goal that would confirm their place in the next round. Wagner fired a free-kick straight at Cerny and then Ivanov once again headed over the bar, but it mattered little in the end as Levski settled for the draw that confirmed their third-round place.
Levski coach Georgi Vassilev was delighted to see his team progress. "I am proud of our display," he said. "We worked very hard and after everything we have got the right result. The fans were also fantastic and they helped us a lot in the final nervous moments."
'Could not score'
Vassilev's opposite number, Slavia coach Miroslav Beranek, admitted his side were simply not good enough to progress. "We tried everything to win the game, but Levski were very solid at the back," he said. "We came here to win and played well, but we just could not score a goal."