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Udinese gets Bremen in UEFA Cup quarters

UDINESE'S reward for knocking defending champion Zenit St. Petersburg out of the UEFA Cup was a quarterfinal against Werder Bremen when the UEFA Cup draw was made yesterday.

The Italian club, which has never won a major European competition, could then meet another German side in the semifinals with the winner facing either Hamburg or Manchester City, which is owned by a wealthy business consortium from Abu Dhabi and has Brazilian striker Robinho on its lineup.

"This is going to be a great game, not least because Manchester have two former Hamburg players (Vincent Kompany and Nigel de Jong)," said Hamburg general manager Bern Wehmeyer. "And our coach, (former Tottenham manager) Martin Jol, knows English football well, he's always happy to go back to the motherland of football. ... Manchester City is the up and coming club, with lots of money to back it up. They've had some spectacular transfers recently. I think we can look forward to a football fest. Our fans will love it."

The two remaining French clubs could also meet in the semifinals and so could the two teams from Ukraine.

Paris Saint-Germain faces Dynamo Kiev in the quarterfinals and the winner will face either Marseille or Shakhtar Donetsk.

Udinese, the only Italian club left in either the UEFA Cup or Champions League, beat Zenit 2-1 on aggregate despite losing 1-0 on Thursday.

The first legs of the quarterfinals are April 9 and the returns are on April 16.


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