Arsenal and Liverpool linked stars help Valencia create history

Mestalla Valencia

Valencia duo Paco Alcacer and Dani Parejo - linked with moves to the Premier League with Arsenal and Liverpool - both starred as the Spanish giants progressed to the Europa League semi-finals.

La Liga side Valencia created history last night by overturning a 3-0 deficit to reach the Europa League semi-finals.

Swiss champions Basel led their Spanish opponents 3-0 from the first-leg, and they were huge favourites to reach the semi-finals. They found Valencia in unstoppable form, however, and a delighted Mestalla stadium crowd were treated to a memorable night, as the hosts ran out 5-0 winners.

One of La Liga’s brightest stars is Paco Alcacer, and the 20-year-old’s phenomenal hattrick is exactly why Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is said to be keen on taking him to the Emirates.

Arsenal are in the market for a new striker to give some competition to Olivier Giroud for a starting spot, and a many feel that Alcacer would totally fit the bill.

The Spanish U21 international – dubbed ‘the next David Villa’ – in some quarters, showed Villa-like qualities Thursday, as he ran on the shoulder of the last defender and finished with such ease.

Another star who performed admirably was reported Liverpool target Dani Parejo.

The former QPR loanee has come on leaps and bounds for Los Che - first establishing himself as a first-team regular and then becoming the focus point of the side.

Against Basel, Parejo recorded 144 touches and made 107 passes – by far the most on the pitch.

The Reds have been linked with the 24-year-old midfielder throughout the season, and he would prove to be a fine addition for Liverpool’s Champions League campaign next season.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has a good track record plucking stars from La Liga, and he may well offer up out of favour Liverpool striker Iago Aspas to help sweeten a deal for Parejo this summer.

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