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Fenerbahce must work for final spot, warns Kocaman

SoccerNews in UEFA Europa League 1 May 2013

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Fenerbahce boss Aykut Kocaman believes the second leg of his side’s UEFA Europa League semi-final with Benfica is finely poised.

The Turkish outfit will travel to the Estadio de Luz with a 1-0 lead from the first leg but Kocaman feels the tie is far from over, suggesting home advantage will be a major factor in the return clash.

He said: “It is one of the most vital games in our history. Even 1-0 up, I believe chances are equal for both teams.

“We are not through. They are stronger here and have the fans with them. In our last training session, we practised penalties.”

Goalkeeper Volkan Demirel, on the other hand, was much more confident about securing a place in the final.
It will be the first time that Fenerbahce have reached a major European cup final and Demirel said he wants to achieve this for the club’s fans.

“We have great respect for Benfica. They are a good side, who play well as a team and we are talking about one of the best European teams,” he said.

“We are on top now and I am almost certain that we’ll be in the final. I am very proud and I hope now to give a present to all Fenerbahce fans.”

If the Turkish side are able to reach the final, they will face the winners of Basel and Chelsea with the English side taking a 2-1 win lead into their return tie on Thursday.

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