The eight remaining places for the qualifying round were played out in a group stage. In eight groups of four teams each, the 20 teams from Serie B , the relegated teams from the previous Serie B and the promoted teams from Serie C1 (now Lega Pro Prima Divisione ) and the finalists from the previous Coppa Italia series C played . Since AS Livorno, as promoted to Serie B, was able to win the Coppa Italia in Serie C at the same time and Fiorentina was forced to relegate to Serie C2 (today Lega Pro Seconda Divisione ) due to financial hardship , six places remained in the group stage, which with the best non-promoters of Serie C1 of the 2001/02 season were filled. Accordingly, these were three clubs in the Girone A and Girone B .
Only the respective group leaders then advanced to the qualifying round.
In the group stage, everyone played a game against each other, and from the qualifying round for the round of 16, a return match was played.
In the event of a tie in the group stage, the goal difference and the goals scored were first used as a comparison. If there was still no decision, a direct comparison counted before the lot finally decided. However, if the respective teams faced each other in the last group game, a decision was made with two extra times of 15 minutes including golden goals and a possible penalty shoot-out, provided that the above criteria were met with the score after 90 minutes.
0: 1 Francesco Totti (56.) 0: 2 Francesco Totti (64.)
Francesco Totti, Antonio Cassano
Top scorer Fabrizio Miccoli
In the first leg, AS Roma had to accept four goals in the second half despite a 1-0 break lead in the domestic Olympic Stadium and seemed to be the sure loser even before the game in Milan. However, Milan showed nerves in the second leg and let the Romans gain a 2-0 lead, which meant that they only needed two goals to win. This situation did not change even with the immediate connection goal, but subsequently the nerves of the Roma were blank and both Cassano and Totti were thrown off the pitch. The 2-2 draw shortly before the end was the final decision in favor of AC Milan. In the overall result, Milan won 6-3 .
For Carlo Ancelotti it was the first Coppa Italia title of his coaching career. Before that, he was able to win the trophy four times as a player, interestingly each time with his opponent, AS Roma.
The tournament's surprise team, AC Perugia , provided the top scorer for this Coppa. Fabrizio Miccoli was able to score five goals for his team before he failed with her in the semifinals at the later title holder.