David Luiz scored with the very last kick of the game to earnChelseaa dramatic 2-1 win at FC Basel in the first leg of their Europa League semi-final on Thursday.
Basel, who were appearing in their first European semi-final, looked set to earn a draw after a contentious 87th-minute penalty from Fabian Schar cancelled out Victor Moses' early opener. However, deep into injury time, Luiz drove a 25-yard free-kick beneath theBaselwall and into the bottom-right corner to put Rafael Benitez's side in control ahead of next week's return leg atStamfordBridge.
In the end, the only sour note for the visitors was a yellow card for Ashley Cole that rules him out of the second leg, althoughBaselwill also be without centre-back Aleksandar Dragovic for the same reason.Chelseahad welcomed Cole back after a three-week absence due to a hamstring injury, but their wariness was demonstrated by interim coach Benitez's decision to deploy centre-back Luiz in a midfield holding role.Baseleliminated Tottenham Hotspur on penalties in the quarter-finals, having knocked Manchester United out of last season's Champions League, and they served early notice of their threat when Mohammed Elneny curled a cross onto the roof of theChelseanet. It was Chelsea, however, who took the lead in the 12th minute, to the disappointment of watchingBaselnative Roger Federer.
Frank Lampard drew a smart save from Yann Sommer with a near-post volley and from the resulting corner, theEnglandmidfielder's cross struck Moses and ricocheted into the roof of the net.Baselresponded immediately, briefly forcing the visitors onto the back foot.
Chelseagoalkeeper Petr Cech tipped a stinging Schar free-kick over the bar, while Valentin Stocker hit the outside of the post with a drilled cross from the right. The away side finished the half strongly, though, with Sommer producing a sharp reflex save to repel Ramires' half-volley from close range.
In the other semi-final Fenerbahce hit the woodwork three times but finally thanked a 72nd-minute goal from Egemen Korkmaz for a 1-0 home leg advantage over Benfica.