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Rafael Benitez's side take on Murat Yakin's men in the Europa League semi-final first leg in Switzerland on Thursday night and Willie Duncan is backing both sides to find the net

Basel knocked Premier League opposition out of the Europa League at the quarter-final stage when the Swiss side beat Tottenham on penalties earlier this month and Murat Yakin’s side will look to repeat that feat when they take on Chelsea at St Jakob-Park on Thursday night.

The two clubs meet in this semi-final first leg tie and the home side are chalked up as a 19/10 (2.90) chance with Coral to win the match and take a lead into next week’s return leg at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea, though, will have other ideas and Rafael Benitez’s side are rated as Coral’s 11/8 (2.38) favourites to secure a first-leg advantage, while the same firm go 23/10 (3.30) that the tie ends in stalemate.

Basel scored four goals over two legs against Spurs in the last round and showed that they have sufficient firepower to cause the Blues problems in Switzerland so an open tie seems likely here.

It is worth noting that Chelsea have kept just one clean sheet in their last six matches in all competitions and the Blues shipped three goals in the away leg against Rubin Kazan in the previous round, so Yakin’s men will fancy their chances to get amongst the goals in this encounter.

However, the Swiss league leaders should be wary of the threat posed by the men from Stamford Bridge. Chelsea have scored 13 goals in their last six matches, including seven in their last three away fixtures, and Rafael Benitez’s side will be confident that they can match their opponents’ attacking prowess.

With that in mind, Coral’s 4/5 (1.80) quote for both teams to score is an appealing one and should be snapped up accordingly by eager punters here.

With Demba Ba cup-tied for this clash, Fernando Torres seems certain to lead the line for Chelsea in Basel and the Spanish internationali is decent value to bag the opening goal of what promises to be a lively contest.

Torres has scored four goals in his last three matches in the competition and the 29-year-old striker should be backed at a juicy 7/1 (8.0) with Coral to keep up his fine Europa League form by breaking the deadlock on Thursday night.

BET
OF THE
DAY
BEST BET
VALUE BET
Both teams to score at 4/5 (1.80) with Coral Fernando Torres to score first at 7/1 (8.0) with Coral

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Willie Duncan is a freelance sports journalist. Willie, from Edinburgh, has covered Scottish football for over 10 years and he specialises in football betting markets from across Europe. You can also follow Willie on Twitter

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