Hamburger SV guaranteed themselves a tie against one of the third-placed sides from the other UEFA Cup groups in the Round of 32 draw as they took an inexperienced Aston Villa FC side apart, with Ivica Olić on target twice.
With AFC Ajax surprisingly drawing at home against eliminated SK Slavia Praha in the evening's other Group F fixture, Martin Jol's side showed their visitors little mercy, with Olić striking twice after fellow Croatian Mladen Petrić had first breached the English side's defence. Defeat saw Villa drop to third place in the section, and they will meet another group winner in the next phase.
Only three of the players who started Villa's 4-2 win against Bolton Wanderers FC on Saturday - Luke Young, Carlos Cuéllar and Steven Sidwell - kicked off in Germany, but while Martin O'Neill's stand-ins defended steadily in numbers, they were undone on the break after 18 minutes. Bastian Reinhardt's long diagonal ball found Petrić, and the Croatian brought the ball down before sending a sweet swerving drive across Bradley Guzan and into the net.
Off the bar
Hamburg were 2-0 up 12 minutes later, Olić squirming past his marker to head in off the post following a fine Dennis Aogo cross, and Piotr Trochowski tested Guzan with another shot four minutes later before Craig Gardner fired just over with Villa's first meaningful effort of the game. However, the English team were relieved to go in just 2-0 down at the break as Marcell Jansen cracked an effort against the bar.
Undeterred, Hamburg made it 3-0 on 57 minutes, with Joris Mathijsen's ball from inside his own area turning Olić loose to scamper beyond the covering defenders and drive brilliantly past Guzan. Villa looked finished, but got a goal in bizarre style late on, with Moustapha Salifou's wildly miscued shot redirected in by Nathan Delfouneso. However, their joy was short-lived, with Sidwell dismissed for a second bookable offence soon after.