Champions League wrap: Penalty heartbreak for Udinese
A poorly taken penalty from Maicosuel cost Udinese a spot in the Champions League group stage after a 5-4 shootout loss to Sporting Braga.
After the two clubs played out the second 1-1 draw of their two-legged Champions League playoff, extra time and, eventually, penalties were required to separate them.
With the shootout locked at 2-2, Maicosuel stepped up and tried to trick Braga's goalkeeper Beto and chip the ball down the middle, but the 30-year-old gloveman kept his feet and made an easy save.
Braga's Eder, Paulo Cesar and Ruben Micael scored their subsequent penalties to send the Portuguese club into the group stage of this season's Champions League, ensuring Italy will only have two representatives at that stage for the first time since the 1998/99 tournament.
Tuesday's second leg began with the aggregate score at 1-1 after last week's opening leg in Portugal and Udinese took the lead in the 25th minute thanks to a strong header from Pablo Armero.
But with just 18 minutes to go in regulation time substitute Micael nodded home an equaliser and ensured his role as Braga's hero when he scored the winning penalty.
In Belgium, Anderlecht scored twice in the last 10 minutes to beat AEL Limassol 3-2 on aggregate.
Congolese striker Dieumerci Mbokani gave Anderlecht the second-leg lead when he brilliantly controlled Massimo Bruno's right-wing cross before thumping his shot through the hands of AEL goalkeeper Matias Degra to put the Belgian club ahead in the tie thanks to away goals.
But any hope AEL had of pulling off a late upset were ruined when Oleksandr Yakovenko burst into the box to score and give Anderlecht a 2-0 second-leg victory.
Dinamo Zagreb defeated Maribor 1-0 to complete a 3-1 aggregate win, while BATE Borisov drew 1-1 away to Ironi Kiryat Shmona to advance to the Champions League group stage with a 3-1 aggregate victory.
In the other playoff match, Malaga triumphed 2-0 on aggregate after a 0-0 draw in their second leg against Panathinaikos.