VIDEO: All goals (3-1) Chelsea Vs Basel, Leg 2 semifinal, Europa League 2013
Friday 3 May 2013 1:12 p.m.
By Mattias Karen
Fernando Torres scored one goal and set up another to send Chelsea into the Europa League final with a 3-1 win over Basel and give his team a chance of finishing the season with another European trophy.
Chelsea held a 2-1 lead from the first leg but Basel threatened a comeback when Mohamed Salah put the Swiss side ahead in first-half injury time.
But Torres engineered the comeback after the break, equalising in the 50th and helping create the second for Victor Moses just two minutes later.
David Luiz finished off the victory in spectacular fashion, curling in an unstoppable strike from outside the area in the 59th.
Chelsea reached its second European final in two years after having won the Champions League in 2012, and will play Benfica in Amsterdam.
The Portuguese club beat Fenerbahce 3-1 at home in the other semifinal to turn around a 1-0 deficit from the first leg and advance.
The final will be Rafa Benitez's only chance to finish his tenure as Chelsea interim manager with a trophy, which would also salvage some pride for the London club after it became the first reigning Champions League holder to get knocked out in the group stage.
Benitez is widely expected to leave in the offseason and the crowd made it clear they won't miss him, with chants of "Jose Mourinho" ringing out regularly around Stamford Bridge.
Mourinho hinted strongly at a return to the London club on Wednesday after Real Madrid was eliminated in the Champions League semifinals.
But Benitez once again found a way to turn a game around in the second half, after Basel had taken advantage of poor defending to go ahead just before the break.
Valentin Stocker fed Salah with a pass through two defenders that beat the offside trap and set him free against Cech, and the winger calmly slotted his finish into the left side of the net.
The lead didn't last long though, and Chelsea took full control after the break.
Frank Lampard's low shot from outside the area was saved by Yann Sommer, and Torres slid in to fire the rebound into the roof of the net for the
The second came almost immediately and in similar fashion. This time it was Torres who fired a shot from outside the area that was deflected into the path of Moses, who slotted in from nearly the same spot.
If those goals were more gritty than pretty, David Luiz added a bit of flair seven minutes later.
Lampard collected a cross outside the area and thought about shooting before laying the ball off to the Brazilian defender, whose left-footed shot curled perfectly into the far corner past a helpless Sommer.
Lampard was looking to equal Bobby Tambling's club record of 202 career goals and nearly converted Chelsea's first chance in the eighth minute.
Torres played Lampard clear with a delicate lob into the area, but the midfielder's first-time effort bounced against the far post.
With the game out of reach in the closing minutes, Basel's fans saluted their team's run to the semifinals by lighting flares and unfurling flags in the away section, jumping up and down and applauding.