“Hoffenheim qualified for Europe after back to back 4-0 wins in their last two games. Are they the first team to qualify for Europe with a goal difference of zero (or less)?” asked Craig last week. There are, of course, plenty of teams who got into Europe by winning a cup. Jamie Vickery nominates Wigan’s 2013 FA Cup winners, who were relegated with a -26 league goal difference. For now, we’ll stick to league qualifiers. Over to Alex Robinson: “Norwich finished the 1992-93 Premier League in third place and qualified for the Uefa Cup with a goal difference of -4. Cue iconic memories of that Jeremy Goss volley at Bayern Munich.” The Canaries didn’t let a leaky defence stop them challenging for the title, and were top with six games left (and a +1 goal difference) before winning just two more games, conceding 18 goals in the process. Gordon Smith nominates Everton, who booked a brief Champions League campaign in 2004-05 with a -1 goal difference. David Moyes’s well-drilled side only scored 45 goals all season – the same as bottom club Southampton. Chris Page, meanwhile, suggests a couple of teams who benefited from off-field decisions. “In 2011-12, St Johnstone… Read full this story
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