Search This Blog

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Fenerbahce Need to Refocus ! Fenerbahce vs Benfica
Fenerbahce has to refocus quickly ahead of their UEFA Europa League semi-final match against Benfica.
 Aykut Kocaman's Fenerbahce lost for the first time in 11 matches in all competitions on Sunday when they went down 2-0 away to Genclerbirligi in the Turkish Super League!

That put a huge dent to their title hopes in the Turkish Super League!

Thursday's match will be Fenerbahce's first appearance in the final four of a European continental competition and Kocaman will be stressing the importance of winning their home leg.

In the 12 UEFA Europa League semi-final matches since the competition's name was changed from the UEFA Cup, 10 have been won by the home side, suggesting that if Fenerbahce fail to defeat Benfica at the Sukru Saracoglu Stadium, they will probably miss out on a spot in the final.

Fenerbahce have been led by Brazilian midfielder Cristian Baroni and Dutch forward Dirk Kuyt in their run to the last four.

Baroni, in his fourth season with Fenerbahce, has three goals and three assists in the UEFA Europa League, while Kuyt (three goals, one assist) has also been important for Fenerbahce.

Former Liverpool and Chelsea midfielder Raul Meireles  is also expected to start in midfield, while  Joseph Yobo from Nigeria will be on defense.

Benfica will head to Turkey after a 2-0 victory over Sporting Lisbon in the Derby de Lisboa on Sunday.

Benfica are undefeated in the UEFA Europa League this season and last lost a match at the end of February when they were knocked out of the Portuguese League Cup on penalties by Sporting Braga.

 Aykut Kocaman will need to warn his defense about Argentine midfielder Eduardo Salvio, who has scored three goals in Benfica's past four matches, including the opener against Sporting.

Meanwhile, Benfica head coach Jorge Jesus will hope his players are inspired by the only previous encounter between the Portuguese club and Fenerbahce.

In the 1975/76 European Cup, Benfica thumped Fenerbahce 7-0 in Lisbon and then held on for a 7-1 aggregate victory after a narrow defeat in the second leg in Turkey.

The match will be broadcast live  in the United  States  by

Recent form

Fenerbahce: WDWDL

Benfica: WWWDW

Possible lineups

Fenerbahce: Demirel; Korkmaz, Yobo, Ziegler, Gonul; Meireles, Baroni, Ucan, Erkin; Kuyt, Webo

Benfica: Artur; Almeida, Garay, Luisao, Melgarejo; Gaitan, Matic, Perez, Salvio; Lima, John

No comments:

Post a Comment