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Page last updated at 21:46 GMT, Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Uefa Cup as it happened

Portsmouth 3-0 Heerenveen
Hamburg 3-1 Aston Villa


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By Caroline Cheese

2144: There we are then. I'm outta here. Good win for Portsmouth - and a clean sheet to boot. Not great for Villa, but that's what you get when you field a second string against a quality side like Hamburg. See you tomorrow then? Good.

2139: St Etienne finish top of Group G and are possible last 32 opponents for Aston Villa, along with Wolfsburg who pip AC Milan to first place in Group E. CSKA Moscow are top of the pops in Group H ahead of Deportivo and Lech Poznan.

2138: "Interesting: there will be a lot of good teams in second place: Milan, Valencia, Deportivo, Ajax, possible Sevilla and Spurs after tomorrow."
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2135: FULL-TIME Hamburg 3-1 Aston Villa

2134: Brad Guzan makes a good save but the ball comes out to Marcell Jansen, who lofts a shot onto the top of the bar - the second time he's found the woodwork tonight.

2134: FULL-TIME Portsmouth 3-0 Heerenveen

2132: GOAL Portsmouth 3-0 Heerenveen
Hermann Hreidarsson heads in at the back post from Glen Little's cross to wrap up a fine win for Pompey.

2131: Marlon Harewood does well on the right and from his driven cross, the ball is pinging about the Hamburg penalty area. Nigel Reo-Coker blazes the final effort wide.

2129: Wolfsburg equalise at AC Milan which means they will finish top of Group E, and the Italian side would go on to face one of the Champions League drop-outs.

2125: RED CARD (Steve Sidwell, Aston Villa)
Sidwell gets his second yellow of the night for pulling back David Jarolim. The midfielder is already walking off when the referee finally gets his red out.

2124: GOAL Hamburg 3-1 Aston Villa
Nigel Reo-Coker finds Carlos Cuellar on the left of the box. The Spaniard chests the ball down and lays it off for Moustapha Salifou whose mis-hit shot is directed in by Nathan Delfouneso. That's the young striker's second goal in this Uefa Cup campaign.

2124: "It's a case of 'Bah Hamburg' for Villa tonight."
Talbz, Birmingham, eating chocolate buttons, via text on 81111
I like that pun so much I'm putting it in again in case you missed it first time

2121: Mladen Petric gets a standing ovation as he comes off for Hamburg. Over at Fratton Park, Peter Crouch has a header blocked as he looks for his hat-trick. Meanwhile, Deportivo take the lead against Nancy, who are going out as it stands having started the day in second. Quel horreur.

2119: Close to a third for Portsmouth as Glen Little's cross is almost converted by a Heerenveen defender.

2115: Portsmouth appear content to sit on their 2-0 lead at Fratton Park. Meanwhile, Peter Crouch-alike Nikola Zigic equalises for Valencia against St Etienne. Another goal for the Spanish side would put them top of Group G.

2113: The Hamburg fans begin the oles as their side enjoys a tidy spell of passing. The end product isn't up to much for once as skipper David Jarolim shoots well wide.

2111: Good stuff from Nigel Reo-Coker, finding space on the right and firing a shot - or was it a cross? - right across the face of goal. No one to apply the finishing touch.

2110: Happy days for Aston Villa as Martin Jol brings off two-goal striker Ivica Olic, and replaces him with Paolo Guerrero.

2109: "Cuellar is the Spanish Boumsong!"
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2106: Elsewhere, Copenhagen take the lead against Club Brugge, putting them in a qualifying position in Group G. Wolfsburg were level with AC Milan for less than a minute before Pato put the Italians ahead again.

2104: Substitute Tarik Elyounoussi has a decent chance for Heerenveen at Portsmouth but misses the target. Armand Traore is off injured for Pompey and is replaced by Glen Little.

2102: Piotr Trochowski stings Brad Guzan's hands with a drive. Martin O'Neill has been warned by the referee as he rages on the touchline about the incident leading to Hamburg's goal. The keeper got to the ball first just about but careered into Gardner as well. Gardner is left with a nasty wound on his knee and is replaced by Barry Bannan.

2058: GOAL Hamburg 3-0 Aston Villa
Chaos. Luke Young delivers a dangerous cross from the right and the keeper clatters Craig Gardner as he attempts to clear with his foot. As Gardner lies stricken in the penalty area, Joris Mathijsen picks up the loose ball and floats a lovely ball over the top to Ivica Olic, who shrugs off a woeful challenge from Carlos Cuellar and finishes into the far corner.

2054: Steve Sidwell times his run from midfield but volleys well over. Rare chance for Villa.

2052: Zat Knight is booked for complaining too vociferously after being penalised for having his foot high in the tackle. Not been a great night for Knight so far...

2049: Here's the lovely Macca with some news: "It's a bag of the mixed variety on Player Rater, with Hamburg keeper Frank Rost your half-time hero with a whopping 8.67. Plenty of time for you to get involved. Go on, you know you wanna."
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2047: They're off again in Hamburg and indeed at Fratton Park.

2043: "Come on Cheese... you haven't even mentioned St Etienne tonight who are 2-1 up against a very good Valencia side... make my day and give 'em a mention!!!"
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2034: Slavia Prague have rather surprisingly taken the lead at Ajax, which means that as it stands in Group F, Hamburg are top ahead of Ajax, with Villa third. Martin O'Neill's side would face a group winner in the last 32, with the second leg away from home.

2032: HALF-TIME Portsmouth 2-0 Heerenveen

2032: HALF-TIME Hamburg 2-0 Aston Villa

2031: Marcel Jansen almost breaks the crossbar with a rocket of a shot from 30 yards. Villa keeper Brad Guzan was nowhere near it.

2028: GOAL Portsmouth 2-0 Heerenveen
Kanu goes on a mazy run and though his shot is saved by Brian Vandenbussche, Peter Crouch knocks in the rebound.

2025: GOAL Portsmouth 1-0 Heerenveen
Arnold Mvuemba starts the move, finding Marc Wilson on the right and the youngster's peach of a cross is headed home by Peter Crouch.

2024: Lovely little touch from the Hamburg scoreboard tonight - Santa hats over the '2' and '0' of the scoreline. Meanwhile, Brian Vandenbussche continues to keep Portsmouth at bay with a save from Arnold Mvuemba. It's like Heerenveen have parked the VandenBUSsche in front of the goal.

2023: Do Portsmouth want to score tonight or what? Peter Crouch heads wide when well-placed.

2022: "No Jol-tide joy for Villa then..." remarks a bored colleague. I'm only putting that in so he can have a good look and think about what he's just said.

2021: Piotr Trochowski should make it three for Hamburg but shoots too close to Brad Guzan from Marcell Jansen's cross.

2020: "Cuellar didn't even seem to go for the ball on that cross!"
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2016: GOAL Hamburg 2-0 Aston Villa
Dennis Aogo swings over a dangerous cross from the left and Ivica Olic gets ahead of Carlos Cuellar to direct the ball into the corner. Men against boys a little bit at the moment.

2014: It's all go at Fratton Park where Kanu sees an effort well saved by Brian Vandenbussche.

2013: Massimo Ambrosini has given AC Milan the lead against Wolfsburg, which means the Italian giants would finish top of that group and could be a last 32 opponent for Villa. So there you go.

2011: "C'mon Pompey! Should be 1-0 up by now."
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2006: Arnold Mvuemba crosses for Portsmouth and there are appeals for handball - but the ball still falls for Peter Crouch, who is denied by a fine save from Brian Vandenbussche.

2004: GOAL Hamburg 1-0 Aston Villa
Just as Aston Villa are getting a foothold in the game, Bastian Reinhardt launches a brilliant ball from defence to Mladen Petric, who takes a touch and volleys left-footed into the corner. Good goal that. As it stands: 1 Hamburg, 2 Ajax, 3 Aston Villa.

2002: Slavia Prague have equalised against Ajax. We reckon that means Hamburg top Group F as it stands, with Ajax second ahead of Villa.

1958: Luke Young's long throw causes a bit of chaos in the Hamburg penalty area and Nigel Reo-Coker hustles his way through for a shot which goes just wide.

1957: "Re 1942: future England team? I hope we don't get to 2014 with Marlon Harewood up front!"
Anon via text on 81111

1956: Peter Crouch hits the woodwork for Portsmouth, shortly after Heerenveen do likewise.

1953: Terrific atmosphere at the Arena Hamburg, considering it's a largely meaningless game. I'm writing about the atmosphere because there's not a lot going on on the pitch. Here's hoping...

1949: Ajax aren't hanging about. They're ahead against Slavia Prague thanks to Jan Vertonghen's fourth-minute strike - and that means they go ahead of Hamburg and Villa as it stands in Group F.

1946: Away we go then...

1942: "Re 1915: Villa reserves? You are watching the England team for the 2014 World Cup."
Anon via text on 81111

1938: Portsmouth make six changes from the team that lost 3-0 at home to Newcastle on Sunday, with Tony Adams handing a first start to young defender Marc Wilson. Keeper Jamie Ashdown, defender Hermann Hreidarsson, midfielders Papa Bouba Diop and Armand Traore and striker Kanu also come into the side. Heerenveen have former Sheffield Wednesday striker Gerald Sibon up top.

1935: Great to hear Martin Jol's voice again. You know what? I've missed the big man - and the good news is he in no way ruled himself out of an imminent return to England, giving it the old "you never know in football" and then breaking into a big smile. Sunderland calling?

1931: TEAMS Portsmouth v Heerenveen
Portsmouth: Ashdown, Wilson, Pamarot, Hreidarsson, Belhadj, Mvuemba, Diop, Hughes, Armand Traore, Crouch, Kanu. Subs: James, Defoe, Distin, Kranjcar, Little, Davis.
Heerenveen: Vandenbussche, Popov, Breuer, Dingsdag, Bak Nielsen, Vayrynen, Grindheim, Svec, Beerens, Sibon, Henrique. Subs: Zeinstra, Kopic, Elyounossi, Jong-a-Pin, Janmaat, Deekman, Smarason.

1928: Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill makes wholesale changes from the 4-2 win over Bolton on Saturday, with only three players keeping their place - defenders Luke Young and Carlos Cuellar and midfielder Steve Sidwell. There are four reserve-team players on the bench as well. Hamburg have in-form strikers Mladen Petric and Ivica Olic leading the line for Martin Jol's side.

1926: TEAMS Hamburg v Aston Villa
Hamburg: Rost, Boateng, Reinhardt, Mathijsen, Aogo, Trochowski, Jarolim, Benjamin, Jansen, Petric, Olic. Subs: Hesl, Guerrero, Demel, Pitroipa, Thiago Neves, Ben-Hatira, Torun.
Aston Villa: Guzan, Luke Young, Cuellar, Knight, Shorey, Gardner, Sidwell, Reo-Coker, Salifou, Harewood, Delfouneso. Subs: Friedel, Davies, Petrov, Clark, Herd, Bannan, Lowry.

1925: "Re 1915: Cheese, you're sounding like Scrooge. Bah, Hamburg!"
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1923: If you're not up to speed, Aston Villa are level on six points with tonight's opponents Hamburg, and Ajax, who host Slavia Prague. Portsmouth are out already, as are their opponents Heerenveen, but victory would be their first in the group stage, so something to play for...

1920: "I'm bothered!! Villa are in Europe, chance to see some of the young guns play and I have 10 on it!!"
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1919: "Re 1915: ...a little enthusiasm?"
Anon via text on 81111

1915: An evening watching Aston Villa and Portsmouth reserves... what more could you ask for on the Wednesday before Christmas?

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