Bucharest awaits for Iberian duo
Fernando Llorente struck in the dying moments on Thursday night to seal Athletic Bilbao’s progress to the final of the Europa League.
Los Leones’ second leg clash with Sporting was heading for extra time before the Basque forward popped up two minutes from the end to hit his 29th goal of the campaign.
Despite going into the fixture at the San Mames 2-1 behind, Athletic were odds on to secure qualification, and it was looking good for them when Markel Susaeta netted 17 minutes in, landing first scorer odds of 11/1 with BetVictor and Coral.
The sides traded blows shortly before the break, with Ricky van Wolfswinkel striking for the visitors and Ibai Gomez replying moments later. At that stage an added period was looming large but Llorente appeared at just the right moment to send Bilbao into a frenzy and set up an all-Spanish final.
That’s because Atletico Madrid completed the job at Valencia in the other semi-final.
Leading 4-2 ahead of Thursday’s game at the Mestalla, Los Rojiblancos were comfortable favourites to make the final, but they obliged punters backing them on the night at 3/1 with a 1-0 success thanks to Adrian Lopez’ effort on the hour mark.
Tiago was later dismissed for Diego Simeone’s men but that couldn’t halt their progress to next month’s Bucharest showpiece.
The finalists sit level on points in La Liga and there’s little to split them in the betting for the crown.
Totesport offer a standout 10/11 on Atletico lifting the trophy while Coral go even money on an Athletic triumph. Our man Mike Holden tipped the Basques to prosper at 20/1 in his outright preview back in February.
Results: Athletic Bilbao 3-1 Sporting (Athletic win 4-3 on aggregate), Valencia 0-1 Atletico Madrid (Atletico win 5-2 on aggregate)
- Is there such a thing as a Blackpool v Millwall live feed in this day and age? Or is the internet just a complete waste of fucking time? — 6 hours 51 min ago
- @MikeNumber5 @MacNab63 @murdochD Typical Spain. Unique definition of 'sold out'. Fingers crossed my card will be worth summat tomorrow! — 12 hours 23 min ago
- @GAVCITY @MikeNumber5 @MacNab63 @murdochD How much & where from? Getting loads of requests. — 12 hours 46 min ago
- Chris Powell gone. Harsh maybe, don't know the ins and outs. But that was no way to approach an FA Cup QF against lower division opposition. — 14 hours 5 min ago
- @Jackthehat74 With Tomo now, staying at mine tonight. Train gets in at 10.30 tomorrow morning. — 14 hours 18 min ago