Europa League: Spurs and Newcastle knocked out, Chelsea reaches semi-final

12/04/2013 no comments »
Europa League: Spurs and Newcastle knocked out, Chelsea reaches semi-final

A tough day for English football as Tottenham and Newcastle were knocked out of the Europa League last night. Tottenham lost surprisingly against FC Basel and Newcastle drew Benfica at home. Chelsea FC is the only English team left in the semi-final of the Europa League.

FC Basel 2:2 Tottenham – (4:1 on penalties)

Tottenham gave it their all despite major injury problems and struggled against a confident FC Basel team at the St.-Jakobs-Park. However, Dempsey scored the lead in the 23rd minute after Dragovic mistake. Even though FC Basel was behind, the team of manager Murat Yakin dominated the match. Dembelé lost the ball in the 27th minute, Streller passed to Salah who equalized with a great shot in the short corner. The first chances for Tottenham came in the 37th and 45th minute through Dembelé and Naughton. FC Basel took the lead right after the half when Friedel saved a Schar shot and Dragovic tapped in from close range. Tottenham was better in the following minutes and Adebayor hit the outside of the net. Dempsey with the equalizer in the 82nd minute after he took down a Huddlestone cross with his chest and finished superbly. Vertonghen was sent off in the 90th minute after a foul on Streller. FC Basel took advantage of the extra man and pressed Tottenham into their own half. Friedel had to make several great saves against Haaresbreite (105th) and Frei (113th). Penalties had to decide after 120 minutes without a winner. Huddlestone missed the first one and Adebayor hit the ball way over the bar.

Newcastle 1:1 Benfica

Newcastle was chasing a small miracle after the dominant performance of Benfica in the first leg, but was determined to beat the Portuguese at St. James Park. However, Benfica started well into the game and came to their first chance in the 3rd minute after Lima missed with a back heel against Krul. Benfica also came close in the 28th and 36th minute when Saviola missed a header. Cisse scored in the 44th minute, but referee Bebek decided offside. Ameobi came on after the half and came to hiss first small chance in the 51st minute. However, Benfica kept dominating the game and came to good chances through John and Lima. A second Cisse goal was disallowed in the 66th minute, but he finally scored the Newcastle lead in the 71st minute. However, a late Benfica goal by Saviola ended Newcastles hopes of the Europa League semi-final.

The Europa League draw will take place on Friday, April 12th at 11am.

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