Europa League: Tottenham with costly draw against FC Basel, Chelsea beats Rubin Kazan and Newcastle struggles

05/04/2013 no comments »
Europa League: Tottenham with costly draw against FC Basel, Chelsea beats Rubin Kazan and Newcastle struggles

Chelsea with an important 3:1 victory against Rubin Kazan, Tottenham with a costly draw against Basel and Newcastle lose against a strong Benfica team.

Chelsea 3:1 Rubin Kazan

Chelsea secured an important 3:1 victory against Rubin Kazan at Stamford Bridge after goals from Torres and Moses. It was Chelsea’s 3rd game in a week. Benitez made 5 changes compared to the FA Cup victory against Manchester United and his team looked fresh and determined. Torres opened the night with a close range finish in the 16th minute after a beautiful Luiz pass. Moses extended the lead with a great 16 yard shot in the 32nd minute. His second European goal for the Blues since joining Chelsea in August. Everything seemed to go to plan for Chelsea until referee Rocchi pointed at the penalty spot after Terry apparently handled a Ansaldi shot. Natkho finished the penalty and shortened the Chelsea lead to 2:1.

Mata had a great chance in the 48th minute to increase the Chelsea lead, but failed against Rubin keeper Ryzhikov. However, Torres did it better in the 70th minute after a Mata cross. The 3:1 gives Chelsea some breathing space for the second leg. Chelsea will face a tough second leg in Moscow next week.

Tottenham 2:2 FC Basel

Basel started well at the White Hart Lane, Fabian Schar and Marco Streller were first to test Spurs keeper Friedel. Streller also set-up the first goal for Basel. Salah passed to Streller, who hit the post and Stocker finished the rebound – 0:1 Basel. Tottenham disappointed in the first half and Basel extended the lead. Frei with the 0:2 only 5 minutes later in the 35th minute with a header past Friedel. Emmanuel Adebayor brought Tottenham back with a volley just before half-time.

Tottenham was much better now and Parker had the first chances in the second half. Finally, it was Sigurdsson who equalized with a fantastic 22 yard shot in the top left corner. However, the Spurs will have a massive injury problems next week in the second leg at FC Basel since Bale had to get stretched off the field after a challenge with David Degen.

Benfica 3:1 Newcastle

It was Newcastle’s first Europa League quarter-final in 8 years. However, Benfica started well at home and Cardozo failed against Newcastle keeper Krul. Newcastle, however, did it better and Cisse scored the important away goal in the 12th minute after a low Sissoko cross. Newcastle played great football during that period. Cisse volleyed another Gutierrez cross against the post. Benfica started to play better and Gomes and Cardozo had the first good chances to equalize. A Cardosso shot was deflected by keeper Krul and Moreno equalized the reflection in the 25th minute. Benfica was clearly better now and created numerous other chances.

Cisse had a great chance for the lead rigth after half-time, when he moved into space and chipped Benfica keeper Artur, but hit the post again for the second time. However, Alan Pardew side with a big mistake on the other side. Defender Santon tried to play back to keeper Krul, Lima intercepted and finished to the 2:1 lead. Newcastle conceded a avoidable penalty after Sissoko ducked away from a header and the ball struck Taylor on the arm. Cardozo finished the penalty and extended the lead to 3:1.

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