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Chelsea face Spurs-conquerors in Europa League last four

| 12.04.2013

After an early elimination from the Champions League, Chelsea have the chance to become the first-ever side to claim a clean sweep of all UEFA’s European competitions in their current formats.

And they are 13/10 to achieve the accolade by lifting this season’s Europa League trophy, which would also see them become the first club to effectively hold this title, in addition to the Champions League at the same time.

Standing in their way of an appearance in the tournament’s Amsterdam Arena final are FC Basel though, who are sure to represent a stern test for the Blues.

In fact, in the aftermath of their success over Chelsea’s London rivals Tottenham at the quarter-final stage, some punters will be tempted by the Swiss champions’ 11/2 price to win the tournament.

Indeed, Basel were particularly impressive at White Hart Lane, but eventually needed penalties to overcome Andre Villas-Boas’ men, who were without Gareth Bale in the second leg, in Switzerland.

And given that the two-legged affair opposing Chelsea will represent Basel’s first ever appearance in a European semi-final, the Blues’ superior big-game experience could very well tell.

Also considering Rafa Benitez’ desperation to bring some silverware to Stamford Bridge, he is certain to choose as strong a side as possible in order to ensure progression to the final.

Elsewhere meanwhile, another compelling semi-final is set to ensue between Benfica, who survived a St. James’s Park scare to progress to the final four at Newcastle’s expense, and Turkish outfit Fenerbahce.

15/8 chances for the competition, Benfica represent a side in similar circumstances to Chelsea, in that they both suffered an early elimination from this year’s renewal of Europe’s elite tournament.

On an astonishing 36-game unbeaten run though, 28 matches of which have occurred after the Eagles’ exit from the Champions League, the Portuguese outfit are likely to see support at that price.

With Glorioso registering a massive 24 strikes across their past seven outings in all competitions too, their ruthless nature in front of goal is likely to deter punters from giving any real credence to Fenerbahce’s 11/2 tournament hopes.

But that said, the Super Lig challengers are on an eight-match unbeaten run themselves, and have lost only once in Europe all season.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.



John Klee