EUROPA LEAGUE LIVE: Basle v Chelsea – follow the semi-final as it happens from St Jakob-Park
03:00 GMT, 25 April 2013
17:17 GMT, 25 April 2013
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Basle v Chelsea
Fenerbahce v Benfica
Follow Sportsmail's coverage of the Europa League as Chelsea visit Basle in the first leg of their semi-final at St Jakob-Park.
The Blues remain on course to win a European trophy in successive years following last season's Champions League triumph, but face a tough test when they travel to the Swiss league leaders.
Basle have already proven their pedigree against Premier League opposition having eliminated Tottenham in a penalty shootout in the quarter-finals.
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18.16: From Sportsmail's Neil Ashton:
Interesting Chelsea team in training last night. Luiz defensive midfield, Ramires right, Moses left, Hazard in behind Nando, but no Mata.
18.13: If that's not good enough for you though, if the Europa League ends up at Stamford Bridge this season, Chelsea will become only the fourth side to win all three of UEFA's major club competitions.
They would join Juventus, Ajax and Bayern Munich (good company) in having won the Europa League, the Champions League and the European Cup-Winners' Cup.
Chelsea won the latter in 1970/71 and 1997/98 and it's still a competition I miss after being scrapped in 1999 (bring it back UEFA!)
The Italian job: Chelsea's Gianfranco Zola and Gianluca Vialli lift the 1998 European Cup-Winners' Cup
18.10: For a club often accused of lacking history compared to its current stature, you sure can't fault Chelsea's recent record at trying to make up for lost time.
After becoming the first London club to be crowned European champions last year, the Blues are now attempting to become the first team to win the Europa League a year after becoming champions of Europe.
It's not quite the desired order to achieve the double – but it's uncharted territory nonetheless.
18.05: Kick-off is not for another two hours but we have plenty to keep us going between now and then, including the team news which should be with us in around an hour's time – possibly quicker.
At many times this season, the Chelsea ship has taken a number of
hammer blows and has looked anything but stable, but for all the
turbulence we have seen at Stamford Bridge, the Blues are
just one step away from yet another European final.
Rafael Benitez may not be a manager
remembered fondly by the majority of the west London club's fans, but the Spaniard is on the brink of leading Chelsea into the record books
Good evening folks, welcome to Sportsmail's live coverage of the Europa League semi-finals.
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On the charge: Chelsea remain on course to lift the Europa League trophy