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Juventus faces Benfica roadblock in UEFA Europa League semifinals

Former Juventus star Ciro Ferrara helped out with the UEFA Europa League Semifinal draw. (Harold Cunningham/Getty Images for UEFA)
Former Juventus star Ciro Ferrara helped out with the UEFA Europa League Semifinal draw. (Harold Cunningham/Getty Images for UEFA)

April 11 (Reuters) - Juventus face a tough task to reach a Europa League final in their own stadium after the Italian champions were handed a tough semi-final draw against Portuguese league leaders Benfica at UEFA headquarters in Nyon on Friday. 

Both sides remain undefeated in their six matches since joining the competition at the knockout stage and whoever advances will meet the winners of the other semi-final between Spanish sides Sevilla and Valencia. 

It is the first time the Spanish rivals have met in European competition while Juventus have faced Benfica twice before, with the Portuguese winning a European Cup semi-final in 1968 but losing to the Italians in a UEFA Cup quarter-final 21 years ago. 

Benfica and Sevilla will host the first legs on April 24, with the reverse fixtures on May 1. 

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  • The final is being held in Turin on May 24 but Juventus will be forced to use the away dressing room should they advance, with the winners of the all-Spanish semi-final designated as the home team for the title match. (Reporting By Sam Holden; Editing by John O'Brien)

    Reuters
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