Magpies handed tough task

03 October 2006 11:47
Newcastle United have been handed a tough UEFA Cup group after being drawn alongside Celta Vigo, Palermo, Fenerbahce and Eintracht Frankfurt in Group H. Celta Vigo have won only one of their first five La Liga matches but beat Standard Liege 4-0 in the first round of this season's competition. Palermo are one of the favourites to win the competition after impressing in their first round win against West Ham United, while Turkish side Fenerbahce thrashed Randers 5-1 on aggregate to reach this stage and are currently second in their domestic league. Eintracht Frankfurt are unbeaten in their first six Bundesliga matches this season and beat Brondby in the first round of the UEFA Cup. Tottenham will be confident of progressing to the last 32 after being drawn in Group B with Bayer Leverkusen, Club Brugge, Besiktas and Dinamo Bucuresti. Dimitar Berbatov moved to White Hart Lane from Bayer, who have made a mediocre start to their domestic campaign, in the summer Belgian side Club Brugge are currently third in the Jupiler League while Besiktas are fourth in the Turkish League. Romanian outfit Dinamo have already had to beat Hibernians, Beitar and Xanthi to reach this stage of the competition. Blackburn Rovers are in Group E alongside Feyenoord, who have made an indifferent start to their domestic campaign and struggled to beat Lokomotiv Sofia in the first round. They will also play Basel, who are managed by Christian Gross and pushed Middlesbrough all the way in last season's competition, Polish side Wisla Krakow and French outfit Nancy. Rangers have been drawn in Group A against Auxerre who are currently eighth in Ligue 1. They beat Dinamo Zagreb 5-2 on aggregate in the first round. Paul Le Guen's side will also play Partizan Belgrade, who have had to beat Maribor and Groningen to reach this stage, Livorno, who have lost only one of their opening five Serie A matches, and Israeli team Maccabi Haifa.

Source: ESA