Tough Europa draw for PL teams

Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham and Newcastle have been given tricky ties in the last 32 of the Europa League.

Last Updated: 20/12/12 at 17:32 Post Comment

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Three teams must go to Eastern Europe in February - Liverpool take on Zenit St Petersburg, Chelsea face Sparta Prague and Newcastle have been drawn against Metalist Kharkiv of Ukraine.

Spurs take on Lyon - keeper Hugo Lloris facing his old team-mates - and if they come through that they could face Italian giants Inter Milan in the last 16.

It would be a much-anticipated match and evoke memories of when Gareth Bale scored a hat-trick at the San Siro for Tottenham against Inter in a match that eventually saw the north London side lose 4-3 in October 2010.

Chelsea, who failed to make the knockout stages of the top-tier European competition, will start their bid to become only the fourth club after Juventus, Ajax and Bayern Munich to win all of the major European trophies as they bid to usurp defending champions Atletico Madrid.

If the Blues knock Sparta out, they will face either Ajax or Steaua Bucharest in the last 16.

Former Chelsea midfielder Jiri Jarosik will come up against his former employers after moving back to the Czech capital last year.

Newcastle will fancy their chances against Metalist, one of the smaller clubs left in the draw. If they advance they could then face the hugely wealthy Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala or Bundesliga side Hannover.

Liverpool look to have the hardest draw - Zenit have Brazilian superstar Hulk in their line-up but the Reds will have home advantage in the second leg.

Last 32 draw:

BATE Borisov v Fenerbahce

Inter Milan v Cluj

Levante v Olympiakos

Zenit St. Petersburg v Liverpool

Dynamo Kiev v Bordeaux

Bayer Leverkusen v Benfica

Newcastle v Metalist Kharkiv

Stuttgart v Genk

Atletico Madrid v Rubin Kazan

Ajax v Steaua Bucharest

Basel v Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk

Anzhi Makhachkala v Hannover

Sparta Prague v Chelsea

Borussia Moenchengladbach v Lazio

Tottenham v Lyon

Napoli v Viktoria Plzen

First-leg matches are played on February 14, and return games on February 21.

Last 16:

Napoli or Viktoria Plzen v BATE Borisov or Fenerbahce

Bayer Leverkusen or Benfica v Dynamo Kiev or Bordeaux

Anzhi Makhachkala or Hannover v Newcastle or Metalist Kharkiv

Stuttgart or Genk v Borussia Moenchengladbach or Lazio

Tottenham or Lyon v Inter Milan or Cluj

Levante or Olympiakos v Atletico Madrid or Rubin Kazan

Basel or Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk v Zenit St. Petersburg or Liverpool

Ajax or Steaua Bucharest v Sparta Prague or Chelsea

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I

think all those names linked to United exits make sense. Kagawa has never really looked like hitting the form he had at Dortmund and Fellaini is radioactive after last season (even though I think he's been unfairly singled out for criticism). Nani and Anderson have had more than their fair share of chances so they are done, and Hernandez deserves better than warming a bench.

ted, manchester
The Insecure Gossip

H

e'll be off to Spurs (or better) in January and I don't blame him. Looking forward to re-signing Grant Holt as his replacement though.

notalentjones
Benteke ignoring speculation

I

n fairness, he does look absolutely shattered in that photo.....

FairyNuff
Shaw told to shape up

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