Football: No Uefa Cup place for Juventus

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The Independent Online

A DAY after Internazionale lost their Uefa Cup play-off, Juventus followed suit last night, drawing at home with Udinese to lose on away goals.

Juve, who reached the European Cup final in 1996, 1997 and 1998, must decide whether to disrupt their summer preparations by entering the Intertoto Cup in the hope of qualifying for the Uefa Cup from there or accept that they have missed out on European competition for the first time since 1991. Inter have decided to cut their losses and concentrate on trying to avoid another poor domestic season next year.

Paolo Poggi scored the decisive goal for Udinese with 19 minutes left, just after his side's coach, Francesco Guidolin, had been sent from the bench for continuing to complain about the penalty with which Filippo Inzaghi had put Juve ahead.

As Guidolin left the side of the pitch, Regis Genaux, the Belgian defender who had a brief unhappy spell at Coventry City that ended in January, crossed and Poggi streaked in to drive home the equalizer.


ATLETICO MADRID face an agonising two-week wait before hosting Real in a derby that could determine their First Division future. After Atletico's 2-1 loss at Extremadura on Sunday, the implications of the derby are far-reaching.

Atletico have suffered a staggering slump in the league - their last home win was on 24 January - despite reaching the Uefa Cup semi-finals. Atletico, who have not been in the Spanish Second Division since 1934, are now 15th, just three points above the relegation zone.


SIX MONTHS after leaving Chelsea saying he was homesick for Denmark, Brian Laudrup has announced he is leaving his club, Copenhagen, saying: "I didn't enjoy playing any more."

The 30-year-old international striker told Danish national television: "The joy didn't come back with Chelsea, nor with FC Copenhagen. It has not been hard to see that I have not been able to give more than 70 percent of myself. I just had no more to give." He gave no indication of his plans for the future.


CHRISTIAN GROSS, who mystified most during his spell as manager of Tottenham, has found himself a new job, in charge of Basle. The Swiss coach had made his name by leading Grasshopper Zurich out of a decline and restoring them as Swiss champions.