Former European champions Aston Villa FC and FK Crvena Zvezda were among the 64 sides to discover their rivals in the UEFA Cup second qualifying round.
Former European champions Aston Villa FC and FK Crvena Zvezda were among the sides who discovered their UEFA Cup second qualifying round opponents during today's draw in Nyon.
The 37 first qualifying round winners were joined by 27 clubs entering the competition at this stage, including – for the last time – the eleven advancing from the UEFA Intertoto Cup. Villa were among those teams and the English club's reward was a tie against Icelandic side FH Hafnarfjördur, while Crvena Zvezda drew APOEL FC. The pick of the other contests, to be played on 14 and 28 August, include SSC Napoli – the only previous UEFA Cup winners involved today – against Albanian outfit KS Vllaznia, and Manchester City FC, who lifted the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in 1970, versus FC Midtjylland of Denmark. Elsewhere, Stuttgart play Hungarian side Győri ETO FC and Turkish giants Beşiktaş JK take on NK Široki Brijeg. A familiar presence in the UEFA Champions League in recent seasons, Rosenborg BK will not have to travel far to tackle Swedish side Djurgårdens IF FF, and neither will AEK Athens FC as they meet Cypriot side AC Omonia.
Once this stage is completed the first round draw will be held on 29 August in Nyon, with the ties to be held over two legs on 18 September and 2 October. Lying in wait for the 32 victors from the final qualifying round will be 48 other clubs including seven-time European champions AC Milan – who have never won the UEFA Cup – and the 16 sides eliminated in the third qualifying round of the UEFA Champions League. The 40 first-round winners will participate in the UEFA Cup group stage, with the eventual goal a place in the final at Istanbul's Şükrü Saracoğlu on Wednesday 20 May 2009.