Sampdoria have secured qualification into the Round of 32 after beating Sevilla 1-0 on Matchday 5 of the UEFA Cup group stage.
A goal from substitute Jonathan Bottinelli with 15 minutes remaining was enough to see Samp though from Group C to the knockout stages, where they will join Serie A trio AC Milan, Udinese and UEFA Champions League drop-out Fiorentina.
Udinese finished top of Group D despite losing 2-0 at NEC Nijmegen tonight but AC Milan failed to win Group E after being held to a 2-2 draw by Wolfsburg on Wednesday.
SAMPDORIA 1-0 SEVILLA
Substitute Jonathan Bottinelli struck the only goal of the game as Sampdoria beat Sevilla in Genoa to book their spot in the last 32 of the UEFA Cup and eliminate the two-time winners. Bottinelli bundled in Reto Ziegler's free-kick with 15 minutes remaining as Sampdoria, who had started the game two points behind Sevilla, claimed one of the three qualifying places in Group C. With Stuttgart beating group winners Standard Liege, the Spanish side's hopes of claiming a third title in four years were shattered. Walter Mazzarri's men finish third in the group and will now be drawn against one of the other group winners in the knock-out stage.
AC MILAN 2-2 WOLFSBURG
AC Milan failed to beat Wolfsburg and top Group E after the German outfit twice came from behind to earn a 2-2 draw at the San Siro. The visitors started the game with three wins from as many matches yet they were soon behind when Massimo Ambrosini headed in a corner. The teams then traded goals early in the second half as former Palermo defender Cristian Zaccardo levelled, only for Alexandre Pato to restore the Rossoneri's lead 49 seconds later. Wolfsburg's efforts were rewarded, though, nine minutes from time when a shot from Jacek Krzynowek was deflected in by fellow substitute Mahir Saglık to consign Carlo Ancelotti's side to second place in the section and a Champions League opponent in the next round.
NEC NIJMEGEN 2-0 UDINESE
Udinese lost 2-0 at NEC Nijmegen but the defeat in the Netherlands did not cost Pasquale Marino's side top spot in Group D. Substitute Collins John and Jhon van Beukering were the men who found the net in the space of three second-half minutes that takes the home side into the Round of 32. Tottenham Hotspur's 2-2 draw against Spartak Moscow means Udinese win the group and will now face one of the third-placed sides from the other groups in the next round.
UEFA CUP RESULTS
Group Stage, Matchday 5
Wednesday 17 December
Milan 2-2 Wolfsburg
Portsmouth 3-0 Heerenveen
Ajax 2-2 Slavia Prague
Hamburg 3-1 Aston Villa
Club Brugge 0-1 Copenhagen
St Etienne 2-2 Valencia
Deportivo La Coruna 1-0 Nancy
Feyenoord 0-1 Lech Poznan
Thursday 18 December
Paris Saint-Germain 4-0 Twente
Racing Santander 3-1 Manchester City
Benfica 0-1 Metalist Kharkiv
Olympiakos 4-0 Hertha Berlin
Sampdoria 1-0 Sevilla
Stuttgart 3-0 Standard Liege
NEC Nijmegen 2-0 Udinese
Tottenham Hotspur 2-2 Spartak Moscow
Round of 32 Draw
The draw for the Round of 32, and Round of 16, will take place in Switzerland on Friday from 1200 UK time (+1hr for Italy/CET).
Each group winner will be drawn against one of the third-ranked teams from another group in the last 32 while, the group runners-up will be drawn against one of the eight clubs joining the competition from the UEFA Champions League.
Clubs from the same country will not be drawn against each other.
UEFA Cup Group winners: Manchester City, Metalist Kharkiv, Standard Liege, Udinese, Wolfsburg, Hamburg, St Etienne & CSKA Moscow.
UEFA Cup Group runners-up: FC Twente, Galatasaray, Stuttgart, Tottenham Hotspur, Milan, Ajax, Valencia & Deportivo La Coruna.
UEFA Cup Group third-placed: Paris Saint-Germain, Olympiakos, Sampdoria, NEC Nijmegen, Braga, Aston Villa, Copenhagen & Lech Poznan.
UEFA Champions League drop-outs: Bordeaux, Werder Bremen, Shakhtar Donetsk, Marseille, Aalborg, Fiorentina, Dynamo Kiev & Zenit St Petersburg.