Europa League Quarter-Finals Second Leg Review: Part 1

SS Lazio vs. Fenerbahce SK

SS Lazio 1-1 Fenerbahce SKHaving gotten a decent result from the first leg of this game, Fenerbahce prepared themselves for what would be a tight game in Rome. Lazio hoped they would use the home advantage to beat their visitors, but, as they came to find out later, enough mistakes had already been made and there was no way to reverse them.

The first half saw zero goals, although both sides came close more than one time. Volkan Demirel and Federico Marchetti ensured both sides would remain level, at least for the first 45.

The second half was, by far, more exciting than the first. Giuseppe Biava made way for Miroslav Klose and this was the first substitution of the game. 4 minutes after it was made, the home side had their first goal. Senad Lulic got hold of an Antonio Candreva pass to score a goal that had long been coming for his side. Thirty minutes from time and Lazio were more alive than ever.

13 minutes later, both sides made Brazilian substitutions as they tried to get past each other; Sergio Floccari and Salih Ucan came on for Ederson and Cristian respectively. Both of them had not been on for a minute when Fenerbahce finally got one in. Caner Erkin, with the help of Webo, was able to get past Marchetti and restore his side’s lead on aggregate.

It was one step forward, two steps back for Lazio and Petkovic knew he had to work fast. Antonio Rozzi came on for Libor Kozak just three minutes later, but there was not much the Italian side could do to get back level on aggregate with the determined Turks. The last 14 minutes plus stoppage time were intense, but there was to be no more goals on the night. Fenerbahce were through to the semi-finals for the first time, having avoided a defeat in Italy for the very first time in their history.

Statistic-wise, Lazio had a total of 20 attempts against Fenerbahce’s 5. The home side had far better chances than their visitors, who were confined to their own half for most of the game. Pavel Kralovec issued a total of 6 yellow cards (3-a-side) between the two teams. No player were sent off during this game.

Vladimir Petkovic and Aykut Kocaman lined up the following squads:

Lazio Starting XI

Marchetti, Ciani, Lulic, Radu, Hernanes, Ledesma (c), Cana, Candreva, Biava, Kozak, Ederson

Subs: Bizzarri, Crecco, Gonzalez, Cataldi, Klose, Rozzi, and Floccari

Fenerbahce Starting XI

Demirel (c), Korkmaz, Yobo, Ziegler, Gonul, Meireles, Sahin, Erkin, Webo, Cristian, Kuyt

Subs: Gonuk, Kaldirim, Irtegun, Topal, Ucan, Krasic, and Topuz

Final Score: SS Lazio 1-1 Fenerbahce SK* (Agg: 1-3)

Lulic 60′ | Caner Erkin 72′

Semi-Finals

Having eliminated Lazio, Fenerbahce were drawn against SL Benfica of Portugal for the semi-finals of the competition. They will play the first leg of this game at home and the second leg away.

Basel 1893 vs. Tottenham Hotspur

Basel 1893 2-2 Tottenham HotspurThe first leg of this tie had been a very tight match at White Hart Lane, and the draw at the end just simply said it all: both sides were very determined to go through to the next round. In a game that would go to penalties after yet another 2-2 draw, the overall better side emerged victorious on the night.

The first half started well for the home side, who knew they would be ahead even with nothing but a clean sheet. The Londoners were determined to score goals, however, and managed to do just that after 23 minutes courtesy of a Clint Dempsey shot into an empty net.

Dragovic knew he had to correct his mistakes or have his fellow teammates do it for him by getting one past the other American in the Tottenham squad to keep them ahead. The 22-year-old center-back’s prayers were answered just 4 minutes later, when his side managed to do just what was needed to level the scores. Assisted by his Basel captain, Mohammed Salah managed to confuse the Spurs defense, run into the six-yard box, and shoot past a defeated Brad Friedel to make it 1-1 on the night and 3-3 on aggregate. The two sides were still very much alive at the end of the first 45 minutes.

The second half started well for both sides, with the visitors almost scoring after just two minutes into the half. Yann Sommer was there to save, however, allowing his side to break well and earn a corner from which would result a second goal just a minute later. Aleksandar Dragovic managed to erase his first-half mistake by finding the net with the assistance of a Fabian Schar attempt. 4 minutes into the second half and Basel were already in the lead again.

There were decent attempts from both sides after that, but there was to be only 1 more goal in this game, and it came 33 minutes after Dragovic’s goal. Assisted by Tom Huddlestone, Clint Dempsey managed to get the ball past Sommer yet again with a strong, brilliant, low shot, taking the game to extra time (after the remaining 7 or so minutes of normal time saw nothing for both sides).

Jan Vertonghen had been issued a straight red for a foul on Marco Streller in the first minute of stoppage-time, and Tottenham’s defense was shaken as the game went into extra time. Despite some good attempts from both sides, it would only take a penalty shoot-out to decide who would win the game as both sides had really held each other.

Fabian Schar, Marco Streller, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Fabian Frei, and Marcelo Diaz all scored their penalties. Tom Huddlestone had his saved, however, while Emmanuel Adebayor simply sent his over the bar to gift the home side a well-deserved win.

Statistic-wise, Basel had a total of 21 attempts (including 1 against the woodwork) against Tottenham’s 17. Tottenham were more accurate in front of goal, however, with the majority of their attempts having been on target. A total of 8 yellow cards was issued between the two teams; 3 going to the home side, and the rest to the visitors. Jan Vertonghen of Tottenham was issued the only red card of the game: a straight red.

Murat Yakin and Andre Villas-Boas lined up the following squads:

Basel Starting XI

Sommer, Ho, Degen, Dragovic, Schar, Stocker, Frei, Elneny, Die, Streller (c), Salah

Subs: Vailati, Suaro, Degen, Cabral, Frei, Diaz, and Steihofer

Tottenham Starting XI

Friedel, Dawson, Vertonghen, Walker, Naughton, Dempsey, Holtby, Sigurdsson, Parker (c), Dembele, Adebayor

Subs: Lloris, Caulker, Livermore, Coulthirst, Carroll, Huddlestone, and Assou-Ekotto

Final Score: Basel 1893* 2-2 Tottenham Hotspur (Agg: 4-4) (4-1 on Penalties)

Dempsey 23′, 83′ |Salah 27′, Dragovic 49

Semi-Finals

Having eliminated Tottenham Hotspur, FC Basel were drawn against Chelsea of England for the semi-finals of the competition. They will play the first leg of this game at home and the second leg away.

Written by Ange Marline