champions Chelsea's compensation for missing out on the Champions League
knockout stages is a last-32 tie against Sparta Prague, former club of
their goalkeeper Petr Cech, in the Europa League.
draw threw up a number of intriguing ties with Inter Milan, European
champions in 2010, drawn against CFR Cluj of Romania and Ajax,
four-times European Cup winners, taking on Steaua Bucharest who lifted
the trophy in 1986.
European champions Liverpool face Zenit St Petersburg while Atletico
Madrid, who won the Europa League last season, play Rubin Kazan of
Chelsea dropped down
into the Europa League after becoming the first reigning European
champions to fail to get through the group stage of the Champions
League. Juventus and Shakhtar Donetsk qualified from the Londoners'
The winners of that
tie will play either Ajax or Steaua. Ajax also failed to survive
the Champions League group stages, losing out to Borussia Dortmund and
Real Madrid, and they will have a tough task against Steaua who lead the
Romanian championship by 10 points and topped their Europa League
Inter, second in Serie
A, should have little problem against Cluj, fifth in the Romanian
league, but Liverpool will not fancy the trip to Russia to face Zenit in
Bayer Leverkusen v
Benfica appears an evenly matched tie between sides with fine European
pedigree as does Borussia Moenchengladbach against Lazio.
winners of the Inter v Cluj tie will play either Tottenham Hotspur or
Olympique Lyon in the last 16. Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, who
joined from Lyon this season, will look forward to the last-32 tie
against his old team mates.
was destiny, it will be certainly very emotional for him," said Lyon
manager Remi Garde, who used to play for Tottenham's London rivals
"It will not be
easy. Tottenham seem to be improving by steps and I think Hugo has
played a part in that because he has brought a lot of stability."
Draw for the Europa League round of 32 made in Nyon, Switzerland on Thursday:
BATE Borisov v Fenerbahce
Inter Milan v CFR Cluj
Levante v Olympiakos Piraeus
Zenit St Petersburg v Liverpool
Dynamo Kiev v Girondins Bordeaux
Bayer Leverkusen v Benfica
Newcastle United v Metalist Kharkiv
VfB Stuttgart v Racing Genk
Atletico Madrid v Rubin Kazan
Ajax Amsterdam v Steaua Bucharest
Basel v Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk
Anzhi Makhachkala v Hannover 96
Sparta Prague v Chelsea
Borussia Moenchengladbach v Lazio
Tottenham Hotspur v Olympique Lyon
Napoli v Viktoria Plzen
Teams listed first will play first legs at home.
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