Kepa Arrizabalaga saved two spot-kicks as Chelsea squeezed into the Europa League final with a 4-3 penalty shoot-out triumph over Eintracht Frankfurt after second leg of their semi-final tie finished 1-1.

The villain of the dramatic EFL Cup final defeat to Manchester City turned hero on Thursday, denying Martin Hinteregger and Goncalo Paciencia after Cesar Azpilicueta's saved attempt left the hosts with work to do.

David Luiz and Jorginho also made amends for their misses at Wembley and it was left to Eden Hazard, featuring in perhaps his final Stamford Bridge appearance, to stroke in the winner and send Maurizio Sarri's men into a date with Arsenal in Baku on May 29.

Luka Jovic earlier cancelled out Ruben Loftus-Cheek's first-half opener to force a 2-2 aggregate draw and additional 30 minutes, but the Bundesliga club fell short as Chelsea ensured a second all-English final in Europe's top competitions.

Sarri felt Chelsea should have had a penalty as early as the 11th minute following Danny da Costa's nudge on Loftus-Cheek.

The appeals went unheard and Da Costa almost rubbed salt into the wound with a rasping volley that Kepa tipped over the crossbar.

Loftus-Cheek had the last laugh, the midfielder gliding unnoticed onto Hazard's intelligent pass and finishing coolly across Kevin Trapp in the 28th minute.

Frankfurt had shouts for handball against Mateo Kovacic waved away after the restart but Jovic soon gave them reason to celebrate.

The striker chested the ball down to Mijat Gacinovic, raced in behind David Luiz to receive the return pass and clinically finished past Kepa.

Adi Hutter's men got on top after the equaliser and received another boost when Andreas Christensen limped to the bench, with Sarri preferring Davide Zappacosta to Gary Cahill as his replacement.

Extra time beckoned but first substitute Sebastien Haller saw two chances cleared off the line, first by David Luiz and then Zappacosta.

Azpilicueta wheeled away in celebration five minutes from the end but referee Ovidiu Hategan deemed the defender to have illegally knocked the ball out of goalkeeper Trapp's hands.

The captain's mood nosedived when the German then denied him with the fourth effort of the subsequent shoot-out, but Kepa came to his Spanish compatriot's rescue and Hazard fittingly booked the Blues' place in their second Europa League final in seven seasons.

Kepa Arrizabalaga saved two spot-kicks as Chelsea squeezed into the Europa League final with a 4-3 penalty shoot-out triumph over Eintracht Frankfurt after second leg of their semi-final tie finished 1-1.

The villain of the dramatic EFL Cup final defeat to Manchester City turned hero on Thursday, denying Martin Hinteregger and Goncalo Paciencia after Cesar Azpilicueta's saved attempt left the hosts with work to do.

David Luiz and Jorginho also made amends for their misses at Wembley and it was left to Eden Hazard, featuring in perhaps his final Stamford Bridge appearance, to stroke in the winner and send Maurizio Sarri's men into a date with Arsenal in Baku on May 29.

Luka Jovic earlier cancelled out Ruben Loftus-Cheek's first-half opener to force a 2-2 aggregate draw and additional 30 minutes, but the Bundesliga club fell short as Chelsea ensured a second all-English final in Europe's top competitions.

Eden Hazard starts for Chelsea in the second leg of the Europa League semi-final against Eintracht Frankfurt having been on the bench last week.

Hazard has been used sparingly in the competition this season, with Maurizio Sarri only naming him in his side twice before Thursday's tie at Stamford Bridge.

But, with Chelsea having already secured Champions League qualification by guaranteeing a top-four Premier League finish, Hazard comes into the Blues XI.

He will provide support to Olivier Giroud, the top goalscorer in the competition with 10, and Willian is also in attack with Gonzalo Higuain benched. Ruben Loftus-Cheek starts in midfield with N'Golo Kante injured.

It could be Hazard's last appearance at Stamford Bridge as there are reports in Spain he is close to sealing a long-rumoured move to Real Madrid.

Eintracht welcome back Ante Rebic to their team after he missed the first leg, a 1-1 draw in Frankfurt, due to suspension.

He forms a dangerous duo in attack alongside the in-demand striker Luka Jovic, who has been linked with Barcelona and Real Madrid, with Sebastian Haller on the bench after missing the first leg because of injury.

Jovic was rested for Eintracht's Bundesliga game at the weekend but was introduced from the bench by Adi Hutter before half-time with his side 6-1 down to top-four rivals Bayer Leverkusen.

The Serbia striker has hit nine goals in the Europa League this term, including netting against old club Benfica in the quarter-finals, with only Giroud more prolific in the tournament.

Mariano Diaz is determined to stay at Real Madrid amid reports Eintracht Frankfurt want him included in any potential deal for Luka Jovic.

Eintracht sensation Jovic has been linked with a €60million move to Madrid following 26 goals in 44 appearances across all competitions this season.

With the 21-year-old forward set to leave the Bundesliga, Eintracht are reportedly eyeing Diaz as they look to plan for life without Jovic.

Diaz – who has only made 13 LaLiga appearances this season – scored twice in Madrid's 3-2 victory at home to Villarreal on Sunday.

Asked about his future, the 25-year-old Dominican Republic international said: "I don't have a crystal ball but I want to stay [at Madrid].

"I am very happy and let's see what happens going forward."

"I am very happy for having won at home and on top of that, scoring," Diaz, who returned to Madrid from Lyon at the start of the season, added.

"We enjoyed it and the fans too, which is the important thing, even though the final score wasn't great.

"They netted but we were good too and we had the ball. We're very happy for the win and the fans received it well."

Europa League semi-finalists Eintracht Frankfurt were thrashed 6-1 at top-four rivals Bayer Leverkusen after resting Luka Jovic on Sunday.

Eintracht, who travel to Chelsea on Thursday with the tie level at 1-1, left star striker Jovic on the bench at BayArena.

But Leverkusen recorded a ruthless victory to move level on points with fourth-placed Eintracht as the race for Champions League qualification continues.

Peter Bosz's hosts were 2-0 up after just 13 minutes, with Kai Havertz's opener followed up by Julian Brandt.

Filip Kostic swiftly reduced the deficit but the Leverkusen onslaught continued and it was 6-1 by the 36th minute.

Lucas Alario struck twice with Charles Aranguiz also on target before Martin Hinteregger's own goal completed the scoring.

Leverkusen are the first Bundesliga team to score six goals in the first half of a game since Borussia Monchengladbach, who hammered Borussia Dortmund 12-0 in April 1978.

Eintracht head coach Adi Hutter appeared to rue his team selection, sending on Jovic and Mijat Gacinovic before half-time.

But Hutter's side will have to justify his decisions when they head to Stamford Bridge to take on Chelsea for a place in the Europa League final.

Eintracht Frankfurt sporting director Fredi Bobic is adamant that the club have had no contact with Real Madrid over a potential transfer for Luka Jovic.

Reports in Spain had claimed that the two clubs had agreed a €60million deal for the 21-year-old, who has scored 26 goals in 44 appearances across all competitions this season.

Bobic, who said last month that a deal with Madrid is a "real possibility", has denied the claims, though, insisting there have been no discussions.

"There has been no contact with Real Madrid," Bobic told ESPN FC. "For once, I don't have to use a white lie, they really haven't been in touch yet. I know them very well."

The Serbia striker, whose two-year loan from Benfica became permanent in April, has also been linked with a move to Spanish champions Barcelona.

He has become a key player for the Bundesliga side this season and scored in Thursday's 1-1 Europa League semi-final first leg against Chelsea.

Pedro netted a potentially crucial away goal as Chelsea quelled Eintracht Frankfurt in a 1-1 Europa League semi-final draw at Commerzbank-Arena.

Luka Jovic enhanced his growing reputation by scoring his 26th goal of the season, a fabulous header that put Eintracht ahead after 23 minutes of the first leg.

But Maurizio Sarri's men turned the tide and Pedro struck amid a flurry of late first-half pressure.

David Luiz hit the crossbar with a free-kick and the rested Eden Hazard was sent on after the hour mark to try to force an elusive winner, although the Premier League side remain well positioned to seal their place in the final in Baku.

Eden Hazard and Gonzalo Higuain are both on the bench for Chelsea in their Europa League semi-final first leg against Eintracht Frankfurt.

Hazard has only started twice in the competition this season and is among the substitutes again at Commerzbank-Arena on Thursday.

Willian and Pedro have instead been selected as the wide forwards either side of Olivier Giroud, whose 10 goals is the most in this term's Europa League.

Antonio Rudiger's knee injury sustained in Sunday's Premier League draw at Manchester United means Andreas Christensen comes into the Chelsea defence, while Ruben Loftus-Cheek starts in midfield.

Eintracht, who have won eight of their 10 Europa League games at Commerzbank-Arena, start with in-demand forward Luka Jovic in attack.

The Serbia striker, who has been linked with Real Madrid and Barcelona after shining in a breakthrough campaign, has scored eight Europa League goals this season.

Sebastien Haller is injured and Ante Rebic misses the first leg as he is suspended.

Luka Jovic leaving Eintracht Frankfurt for Real Madrid is a "real possibility, according to sporting director Fredi Bobic.

Jovic has been linked with LaLiga champions Barcelona, however, Spanish giants Madrid have reportedly emerged as favourites to sign the in-demand Eintracht star.

The 21-year-old Serbia striker has scored 25 goals in all competitions this season and his two-year loan from Benfica became permanent last week.

Amid the growing speculation over Jovic's future, Eintracht director Bobic told ZDF: "There's a real possibility that Jovic signs for Real Madrid.

"I hope and want him to stay here at Eintracht, but I'm also realistic and know that if a big club like Real Madrid want him then we haven't got a chance of keeping him."

Of Jovic's 25 goals, 17 of those have come in the Bundesliga as Eintracht sit fourth in the standings – the final Champions League qualifying spot.

Jovic's eight Europa League goals have also helped Eintracht reach the semi-finals, with Premier League side Chelsea awaiting in the last four.

Barcelona and Real Madrid target Luka Jovic is a "natural-born killer" who will undoubtedly become one of the best strikers in the world, according to Savo Milosevic.

Jovic has been linked with LaLiga giants Barca and Madrid after taking Europe by storm this season, scoring 25 goals in all competitions for Eintracht Frankfurt.

Only Bayern Munich star Robert Lewandowski (21) has scored more 2018-19 Bundesliga goals than Jovic (17), whose two-year loan from Portuguese giants Benfica became permanent last week.

Eintracht are reportedly set to cash in on Jovic amid interest from Barca and Madrid, and 102-time Serbia international Milosevic, who hails from the same city – Bijeljina – as his countryman, insisted the 21-year-old striker is destined for greatness.

"Luka is very, very, very special. His capacity for scoring goals is incredible," Milosevic – now head coach of Serbian side Partizan Belgrade – told Omnisport.

"From any position and with any part of the body, he simply senses the goal. He is a natural-born killer.

"You cannot train some of those things. You have them or not. He will be one of the best strikers in the world in a few years, I have no doubt about it.

"He is still a kid. He is showing some incredible things."

Milosevic, who spent time with Real Zaragoza, Espanyol, Celta Vigo and Osasuna during his successful playing career as a striker, added: "Both of the big clubs would be great for him and he would be great for Barca or Madrid.

"It would be a good solution for any of those two clubs."

 Luka Jović this season = 

#UEL | @eintracht_eng

— UEFA Europa League (@EuropaLeague) April 18, 2019

Jovic's goals have helped Eintracht up to fourth in the Bundesliga – the final Champions League qualifying spot – as the German side prepare for a blockbuster Europa League semi-final against Chelsea.

Eintracht Frankfurt benefitted from the absence of VAR in the Europa League as they eliminated Benfica via the away goals rule following a 2-0 home win on Thursday.

Filip Kostic's goal from an offside position was allowed to stand in the 36th minute and Sebastian Rode levelled the tie at 4-4 just over 20 minutes from the end to send the Bundesliga side through to the semi-finals.

Benfica had established a strong position with a 4-2 victory a week ago but were unable to muster a response after the linesman's mistake in the first half left their lead looking tenuous.

Substitute Eduardo Salvio hit the upright with a late chance to put the Portuguese outfit back into the box seat, but Frankfurt held firm to book a final-four meeting with Chelsea.

Benfica defended stoutly for much of the first half and only an officiating error eroded their two-goal advantage.

Replays showed wing-back Kostic to have been comfortably offside when he turned in the rebound from a Mijat Gacinovic shot that struck the base of the left post.

Bruno Lage's protestations resulted only in the Benfica head coach being sent to the stands before the break.

His team briefly displayed a greater sense of urgency after the interval as Haris Seferovic worked Kevin Trapp with a close-range header.

The hosts, though, always appeared a threat going forward and the crucial strike eventually came from an unlikely source, midfielder Rode side-footing into the bottom-right corner from the edge of the area.

The entire complexion of the contest almost swung back into Benfica's favour towards the death, but winger Salvio could only find the outside of the post from Alejandro Grimaldo's cross as Benfica fell narrowly short of advancing.

Eintracht Frankfurt have triggered their purchase option on Luka Jovic following a brilliant spell on loan from Benfica.

Jovic is enjoying a stunning season in the Bundesliga, having scored 17 goals in 27 matches so far, and Frankfurt have secured his future, tying him down to a four-year contract after meeting a reported €6million buy option.

Frankfurt sporting director Fredi Bobic explained the club could not afford to miss this opportunity.

"The development of Luka with us is very pleasing," he told the club's website. "For us there was no question that we wanted to tie him firmly to the club. 

"He is a player with extraordinary skills. It is important to us that we have bound him to us."

The 21-year-old Serbia international had been highly sought after coming through the ranks at Red Star Belgrade, joining Benfica in 2016.

But in one-and-a-half seasons, Jovic made just two Primeira Liga appearances and struggled to make an impact for Benfica's reserve team, leading to some suggesting evaluations of his potential had been misplaced.

He joined Frankfurt on an initial two-year loan with an option to buy and made good strides in his first campaign, scoring eight top-flight goals in 22 appearances – only nine of which were from the start – and helped the club to DFB-Pokal glory.

This season Jovic has become a key player, playing 40 times across all competitions and hitting the net 25 times, with his most recent goal coming against his former parent club Benfica in the Europa League as the Portuguese side won 4-2 in their quarter-final first leg.

The two sides' next meeting on Thursday will see Jovic line up as a Frankfurt-owned player.

However, it has been widely speculated that Frankfurt could offload him once again at the end of the season, with the striker – now said to be worth in the region of €50m – reportedly interesting Barcelona.

Joao Felix's show-stopping hat-trick led Benfica to a valuable 4-2 first-leg victory against a 10-man Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League quarter-finals on Thursday.

The Portugal youth international is considered one of European football's brightest talents and he delivered on that reputation with a stunning display that overshadowed Luka Jovic's return to Estadio da Luz.

Serbia striker Jovic, who is in the second term of a two-season loan at Frankfurt from Benfica, got on the scoresheet against his parent club by cancelling out Felix's spot-kick opener, which came after Evan N'Dicka's dismissal for bundling over Gedson Fernandes in the box.

But the shimmering homegrown talent netted twice more either side of a Ruben Dias header to become the youngest player to hit a Europa League treble, although Goncalo Paciencia did later give the visitors a handy second away goal to take back to Frankfurt.

Felix first illustrated his sought-after ability in the 20th minute.

The rumoured Manchester United target sent Fernandes scampering into the box with a cute reverse pass and then, following N'Dicka's panicked push from behind, coolly converted the resultant penalty.

Jovic - tipped to sign for Adi Hutter's men on a permanent basis at season's end - responded 20 minutes later, Ante Rebic breaking into the box and selflessly squaring for him, but parity lasted less than three minutes.

Felix this time took it entirely upon himself to brilliantly fire into the bottom-left corner from 25 yards.

Frankfurt looked to have equalised again when Filip Kostic's tame shot squirmed through Odisseas Vlachodimos, only for the offside flag to go up against two players deemed to have occupied an active position.

Instead, they shipped two more in four second-half minutes.

Dias nodded in Benfica's third after Felix helped on a corner, before the teenager completed his treble by side-footing through Kevin Trapp's legs from Alex Grimaldo's cut-back.

That burst appeared to have dashed the Bundesliga's side hopes of advancing, but Paciencia headed in fellow substitute Jonathan de Guzman's corner 18 minutes from the end to inspire hope of a second-leg fightback in seven days' time.

Luka Jovic is not interested in joining Barcelona, says the in-demand striker's father.

Jovic has hit 24 goals in all competitions for Eintracht Frankfurt this season, the 21-year-old announcing himself as one of Europe's hottest prospects.

On loan in the Bundesliga from Benfica, Eintracht reportedly have the option to sign Jovic for €7million at the end of the season, a clause they are expected to trigger.

But Barcelona are said to be preparing a €50m bid for Jovic as they seek a long-term successor to Luis Suarez, offering Eintracht the chance to make a significant profit.

The father of the Serbia international, though, says a switch to LaLiga's leaders is not appealing at this stage due to fears over a lack of playing time.

"Luka has a lot of offers, one of them from Barcelona," Milan Jovic told Bild.

"But he's not interested at this time. He's not sure if he would get minutes there.

"He wants to continue in the Bundesliga and qualify for the Champions League with Eintracht.

"He was here a few days ago and said, 'Dad, I'm not worried about money. I want to play soccer.'"

Eintracht are fourth in the Bundesliga with a four-point cushion to Borussia Monchengladbach in the race for Champions League football.

Jovic has publicly said he wants to stay at Eintracht if they qualify but the player's father accepts the club may be tempted to cash in if they fall short.

"Luka does not want to be against harmony," Jovic senior added. "If the club says, 'We have to make money with you', then he does not want to be against the interests of the club."

Jovic's seven goals have fired Eintracht to the quarter-finals of the Europa League, where they face his parent club Benfica.

In the humble surrounds of Novi Sad almost five years ago, a 16-year-old Luka Jovic made his first strides as a professional footballer amid much hype.

The talk of Belgrade, it was not until May 28, 2014 that Red Star fans finally got a glimpse of Jovic in action as the teenage prodigy scored the equalising goal in a 3-3 draw away to Vojvodina at Karadjordje Stadium.

Brought on as a substitute in the 73rd minute, Jovic's impact was immediate, with the long-haired teenager running onto a lofted pass within three minutes of his introduction before rolling his shot beyond Srdjan Zakula.

Milos Ninkovic – a 28-time former Serbia international – played that ball to Jovic, who chested it down and broke Dejan Stankovic's record as Red Star's youngest goalscorer in a competitive match.

"He is such a nice guy. [At] 16 years old, to play for such a big club in Serbia is unbelievable," Ninkovic, who now plays for A-League side Sydney FC, told Omnisport as he reflected on Jovic's memorable bow.

"Back then when I watched him and talked to him, I said 'look, you're an unbelievable talent. You just need to work hard. If you do this, you'll probably have a big career'.

"As soon as he came into the first team and I saw him, I knew he was a special talent. If he worked hard and focused on just the pitch – nothing on the outside – he would have a big, big career."

Jovic made another 47 appearances – scoring 13 goals – before he was snapped up by Portuguese giants Benfica for a fee in the region of €7million in 2016.

But Jovic only played four senior games for Benfica, including a two-minute cameo against Bayern Munich in the 2015-16 Champions League quarter-finals, as he was then shipped to Eintracht Frankfurt on a two-year loan deal in 2017.

"I was surprised he didn't play there because Portugal normally like these type of players," Ninkovic said. "He is good on the ball, very good finisher and very quick. He looks very strong and maybe looks heavy, but he is very quick if you look at his goal against Inter [in the Europa League round of 16]. He is strong and quick. I was surprised that he didn't play there."

Jovic has not looked back since swapping Lisbon for Frankfurt, where the 21-year-old scored nine goals in his first season at the German club, winning the DFB-Pokal in the process.

This term, Jovic has netted 15 Bundesliga goals – a tally only bettered by Robert Lewandowski – and 22 in all competitions for Eintracht, making him one of the most coveted strikers in world football, as the likes of Barcelona, Chelsea, Real Madrid, Manchester City and Bayern Munich queue up.

"I always remember during the 2010 World Cup. I spoke to Nemanja Vidic – probably the best defender of the past 20 years," Ninkovic added. "He told me one thing, you have to be lucky. You have to pick the right team, players and staff around you. He said to me, 'look, I came to Manchester United from Spartak Moscow [in 2006]. I was lucky that I had Rio Ferdinand around me and Alex Ferguson. That's why I became one of the best defenders in Europe'.

"He said, 'maybe if I went to Stoke City or some other club in Spain, probably he wouldn't have been such a good player as he was'. It's very true. You have to be lucky. Germany is a much stronger league than Portugal. He didn't play much there and now look at him. He was lucky – he found the right coach, club and players around him."

LaLiga champions Barcelona are reportedly the frontrunners to prise the Serbia sharpshooter – who opened his international account against Germany last week – to Camp Nou, where he has been touted as the next Luis Suarez by national team boss Mladen Krstajic.

"I think it's very important, he needs to find the right club, who play the type of football he wants. When you're at such a high level and you try to choose between Barca, Real Madrid and Man City – there's not much difference," ex-Dynamo Kiev midfielder Ninkovic, 34, continued.

"Every time I compare a Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho team. Mourinho's team at Manchester United – [Henrikh] Mkhitaryan, [Romelu] Lukaku and [Paul] Pogba, they didn't improve. They even played worse than they did at Borussia Dortmund or Everton.

"If you look at Guardiola, all players improve. [David and Bernardo] Silva, [Raheem] Sterling, Fernandinho, [Leroy] Sane, [Sergio] Aguero. I think Jovic needs to look at the coaching and who is good for him to improve. As I said, there's not much difference between [Zinedine] Zidane, Guardiola or [Ernesto] Valverde. I'm just so happy for him and hope he makes the right decision."

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