UEFA Cup: Top teams advance to next round
LONDON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Holders Sevilla breezed into the last 32 of the UEFA Cup on Wednesday with a crushing 4-0 win at Switzerland's Grasshoppers.
Brazilian Daniel Alves scored twice to seal Sevilla's passage from Group C. They were joined in the knockout stage by AZ Alkmaar, Dinamo Bucharest and Maccabi Haifa.
The British quartet of Tottenham Hotspur, Blackburn Rovers, Newcastle United and Rangers, along with Italy's Parma, had already qualified.
Alves drilled Sevilla into a 12th-minute lead and added a second eight minutes after halftime with a scorching shot from distance. Uruguayan Ernesto Chevanton made it 3-0 and Blanco Kepa completed the rout.
Second-half substitute Julian Jenner scored a last-minute equaliser to earn the point AZ Alkmaar needed to go through alongside Sevilla.
Jenner chipped Slovan Liberec goalkeeper Marek Cech to seal a 2-2 draw, just four minutes after Petr Papousek had appeared to have sent the Czech side into the last 32.
In an entertaining game Tomas Zapotocny headed Liberec into a 26th-minute lead from a corner. The Dutch side lost keeper Khalid Sinouh to injury eight minutes before halftime but Icelandic defender Gretar Steinsson headed AZ level.
Jenner's goal stretched Alkmaar's unbeaten home streak in European competition to 27 matches since their debut in 1977.
Romanian league leaders Dinamo sealed their progress from Group B, striker Claudiu Niculescu scoring twice to cancel out Sergej Barbarez's opener to secure a 2-1 win at home to Bayer Leverkusen.
In the group's other tie Besiktas overcame Club Bruges 2-1 to move on to three points and the Turkish side will qualify if they avoid defeat at Leverkusen in their final game.
A 1-1 draw at Livorno was enough for Maccabi Haifa to qualify from Group A. Roberto Colautti snatched a stoppage-time equaliser for the Israelis, who had trailed to Cristiano Lucarelli's first-half goal.
Auxerre's 4-1 rout of Partizan Belgrade, with goals from Benoit Cheyrou, Daniel Niculae, Gauthier Akale and Luigi Pieroni after they had fallen behind, put the French side in pole position to take the final qualifying spot in the group. Auxerre need just a point at home to Livorno next month to progress.
Parma, already through from Group D, scored twice in the last 13 minutes to win 2-1 at Racing Lens, one of three teams now on four points.
Daniel Cousin burst into penalty area to fire Lens ahead after 19 minutes but Parma stunned the hosts when Zlatko Dedic beat keeper Charles Itandje at his near post and then in stoppage time Daniele Paponi ended a jinking run with a fine finish.
Osasuna's 3-1 victory at home to Denmark's Odense, with Patxi Punal netting twice for the Spaniards and once for the visitors, leaves the last two places in Group D still up for grabs.
The top three in each of the eight groups of five teams progress to the last 32 where they are joined by the eight third-placed sides from the Champions League group stage.