Continuing to survive on a "grow-to-sell" basis, Ajax remains one of the best run clubs in Holland, Europe and quite possibly the world.
This season, the Amsterdam outfit showed that their vast amount of youth doesn't equal weakness as Frank de Boer's side earned a win and a draw against Manchester City in what was this season's incarnation of the Group of Death.
The Dutch side are currently top of the Eredivisie and continue to pride themselves on an attractive, modern version of total football.
Unfortunate not to make more of this season's Champions League run, Valencia were ultimately swept aside by PSG in the round of 16, mostly down to an apparent lack in depth that the Spaniards just couldn't compete with when compared with their French opposition.
Just two points off fourth place, Champions League qualification is once again within Valencia's reach however, and some improved 2013 form might be the key to salvaging an immediate future in Europe.
Zenit St. Petersburg
Having recently joined the ranks of the uber-spenders, some recent transfer sprees have given Zenit St. Petersburg a star-studded aura that was perhaps not as previously evident at the Petrovsky Stadium.
Players such as Hulk and Axel Witsel have pushed the Petersburg club into contention for Russian Premier League honours, and the club were unfortunate to miss out on progression in this season's Champions League group phase, just being edged out of Group C by AC Milan.
A frequent staple on the European stage, CSKA Moscow are once again on track to grace the Champions League with their presence after failing to qualify for the 2012-13 edition of the tournament.
The Russian Premier League leaders have established a seven-point gap between themselves and their nearest rivals, Anzhi Makhachkala, and are also set for their Russian Cup quarter-final clash with Yenisey Krasnoyarsk.
This season was the first time in six years that CSKA have failed to compete in the group stage of a European competition, but Leonid Slutsky’s men have responded in confident fashion, dominating domestic matters in a major way.
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