Arsenal to face Atletico Madrid in Europa League semi-final
PUBLISHED: 11:12 13 April 2018 | UPDATED: 11:19 13 April 2018
The draw for the semi-final of the Europa League has taken place.
Arsenal will play Atletico Madrid in the semi-finals of the Europa League.
The Gunners won through to the last four after a 2-2 draw against CSKA Moscow on Thursday evening.
The other tie will be Marseille v Salzburg.
The ties will take place on Thursday, April 26 and Thursday, May 3.
The four teams left to battle it out for the chance of silverware and the opportunity to compete in next season’s Champions League are of course, Arsenal, along with the favourites, Atletico Madrid, Marseille and Salzburg.
Atletico’s quest to lift the trophy for a third time continued after they took a 2-0 lead into their quarter final in Portugal against Sporting Lisbon.
Diego Simeone’s side – boasting former Chelsea forward Diego Costa and French striker Antoine Griezman – lost 1-0 on the night to a Fredy Montero goal but progressed 2-1 on aggregate.
RB Salzburg had to overturn a 4-2 deficit to Lazio to progress. It looked impossible after Ciro Immobile’s eighth goal in the last nine Europa League matches put the Italians 1-0 up on the night and 5-2 on aggregate.
However the Austrians completed another European comeback after triumphing 4-1 in one of the greatest nights in their history.
Goals from Moanes Dabbur (56 minutes), Amadou Haidara (72 minutes), Hwang Hee-Chan (74 minutes) and Stefan Lainer (76 minutes) saw them become their country’s first European semi-finalist since Rapid Vienna in the European Cup Winners Cup in 1996.
In the other tie – in what must one of the most consistently dramatic weeks in European football history – RB Leipzig took a 1-0 lead to the south of France but Marseilles eventually won the match 5-2 to win the tie 5-3 on aggregate.
Tué Na Bangna had put the visitors 1-0 up on the night to make it 2-2 on aggregate after only two minutes but OM shot back through goals from Stefan Ilsanker four minutes later along with an own goal from Bouno Sarr 180 seconds after that. Former Newcastle United man Florian Thauvin then made it 3-1 with seven minutes to go until half-time.
However, Jean-Kevin Augustin made it 3-2 – meaning Leipzig were through on away goals with the aggregate score being 3-3.
But the French giants proved two strong for the Germans with two further goals, as former West Ham man – and man of the match – Dimitri Payet made it 4-2 with a sublime strike from the outside of his right foot, before Hiroki Sakai sealed the match by making it 5-2 on a break after the Germans pushed forward late on.