A fantastic 4-3 win over Real Madrid was not enough for Sevilla to claim the fourth UEFA Champions League spot on a dramatic night of action in La Liga, as Osasuna matched their result against Valencia to finish fourth and ensure Los Merengues came second.
An intriguing final day for the four teams involved on Tuesday started with all able to transform their European destinies, but in the end there was no change in the final placings as Osasuna capped a fantastic season and also dictated that Valencia will have to qualify for Europe's premier club competition.
Sevilla dominated the early exchanges against Real, with Luis Fabiano hitting the post and another goal being disallowed, but remarkably Real somehow found themselves 2-0 up within 26 minutes thanks to England captain David Beckham.
The former Manchester United man first flighted in a deep free-kick for Julio Baptista, but as the Brazilian leaped high he appeared to make little contact and Andres Palop was unable to keep the ball out.
Ten minutes later his finish was far more deliberate, as a long ball from Roberto Carlos was controlled exquisitely before Beckham slipped the ball under Palop for an unlikely two-goal lead.
The scoreline was unfair on the Uefa Cup winners, and a remarkable turnaround witnessed three goals in six minutes, with the first coming from precocious young winger Jesus Navas as he picked up the ball outside the box, picked his spot and arrowed a glorious shot into the top corner.
On-loan Barcelona star Javier Saviola then got in on the act after half an hour, capitalising on a spill from Iker Casillas to draw the home side level - before then finding the back of the net by finishing neatly with a near post volley.
Incredibly there was still time for a sixth goal in the first half as Fabiano grabbed the strike his efforts deserved as he collected a through-ball and finished calmly past Casillas.
Staring third place in the face, good news then began to filter through for Real that Osasuna had scored twice, but Los Merengues still pushed for a result and fittingly it was Zinedine Zidane, on his last appearance for the nine-time European champions, who cut the deficit by picking up a loose ball from a corner and smashing home past Palop.
At Estadio El Sadar, both sides were also desperate for a win, but a fantastic 2-1 victory for Osasuna ensured their fans went home happy.
The home side took the lead on 46 minutes when former Aston Villa striker Savo Milosevic hammered a header home.
Four minutes later they were two in front when David Lopez, lurking at the back post, latched onto a loose ball and fired his shot back across goal to beat Santiago Canizares.
Even though prolific striker David Villa scored late on with a free-kick, to move joint with Samuel Eto'o in the Liga top scorers list, it was not enough for Valencia as Real finished in second behind Barcelona, and Osasuna celebrated winning a place in the greatest club competition in world football for the first time in their history.