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Europa League

Sevilla soar past Porto to join Juventus, Benfica and Valencia in Europa League semifinals

Ex-Schalke man Ivan Rakitic has helped Sevilla overturn their one-goal deficit in a 4-1 win that sends the Spanish side to the Europa League semifinals. Juventus, Benfica and Valencia also notched victories and advanced.

Sevilla headed into Thursday night's tie with Porto a goal down after their loss last week in the away leg. But their 4-1 victory at the Estadio Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan comfortably saw them reach the semifinals.

Rakitic's penalty put the Spanish side ahead just five minutes into the match.

Vitolo doubled the hosts' lead in the 26th minute after capitalizing on a Porto turnover, picking up the ball in the box and sending a low finish across goal past keeper Fabiano. Sevilla added a third through Carlos Bacca just three minutes later to assure the tie was out of reach for Porto by the half-hour mark.

A red card to Sevilla defender Coke in the 54th minute looked like it might give Porto the advantage they needed to get back into the match, but the visitors remained unable to break the deadlock.

French striker Kevin Gameiro made it 4-0 for the hosts the 79th minute, meaning Ricardo Quaresma's stoppage-time goal for Porto was little consolation. The win sends Sevilla to their first European semifinal since their UEFA Cup triumph in 2007.

Juventus advance

Juventus were the overwhelming favorites to finish off Lyon Thursday evening in Turin, after their 1-0 victory in the first leg in France. But the visitors proved tough opposition for Antonio Conte's men.

Fußball Europa League Viertelfinale Juventus Turin Olympique Lyon

Pirlo's free kick was the highlight of the match

Andrea Pirlo's spectacular free kick put Juventus ahead not five minutes into the match. But their lead wasn't long-lasted.

Fifteen minutes later, Jimmy Briand equalized for Lyon when he headed in Arnold Mvuemba's high ball into the box.

Claudio Marchisio made it 2-1 in the 68th minute when his shot from distance was deflected in. It was a tough blow for Lyon, who had taken the match into their hands during the second half and were unlucky not to score another goal.

AZ Alkmaar eliminated

Benfica knocked out Dutch outfit AZ Alkmaar as expected in their 2-0 victory at the Estadio da Luz in Lisbon. Coming off their 1-0 away win in the first leg, the Portuguese side looked even more dominant in their own ground.

By the 39th minute, Benfica were ahead. Eduardo Salvio ran down the right flank and sent a ball towards the far post, where Rodrigo was there to meet it and give Benfica the lead. The two teamed up again for a near-identical goal in the 72nd minute to see off the tie and send Benfica into the semifinals.

Valencia through after extra time

FC Basel had a comfortable three-goal cushion going into their second-leg match against Valencia. But the Swiss side had never won a European match in Spain, and Thursday evening was no different.

Paco Alcacer put Valencia ahead in the 38th minute. The forward received the ball on the left side of the area and fired past goalkeeper Yann Sommer to make it 1-0. Just four minutes later, Eduardo Vargas nabbed another for the for the hosts when he headed in Fede's corner.

In the 70th minute, Vargas sprinted onto a long pass towards the box and flicked it back over his head. The ball fell to Alcacer at the top of the area, and he hammered a shot into the top corner of the net to pull the tie level at 3-3 on aggregate.

Basel managed to hang on for 90 minutes and force extra time, but the visitors began to unravel not long after. Marcelo Diaz's sending off in the 101st minute was the beginning of the end for Basel. Gaston Suaro picked up his second yellow four minutes later, and suddenly it was 11 against nine.

Alcacer completed his hat trick when he scored Valencia's inevitable fourth goal in the 113th minute. Juan Bernat made it 5-0 five minutes later to cap off the match, ending Basel's hopes of reaching the Europa League semifinals for a second consecutive season.

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