Atalanta outclasses Leverkusen in final –

Atalanta outclasses Leverkusen in final –
Atalanta outclasses Leverkusen in final –

Bayer Leverkusen has fallen! After 51 matches without defeat, Granit Xhaka and his teammates were beaten by Atalanta 3-0 in the Europa League final. For the Bergamo club, this is only its second trophy – after an Italian Cup in 1963 – in 117 years of existence.

Constantly hampered by Atalanta’s high pressure in the first period, Bayer Leverkusen failed to impose its usual system of play. Rarely dangerous, Xabi Alonso’s players only shot three times towards the opposing goal.

On the contrary, the Italians were sharp in attack and it did not take long before they took the advantage. Ademola Lookman scoring after 12 minutes from a clever back pass into the box from Davide Zappacosta.

Lookman’s superb second goal

Still bothered by Gian Piero Gasperini’s system of play, Leverkusen did not have a real chance and Lookman made the break with a magnificent shot from 22 meters which he placed out of reach of goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky. As much conclusion as the action was magnificent, the Nigerian playing Xhaka with a small bridge before striking.

The Germans’ first real chance to score fell in the 35th minute, but Juan Musso blocked Alex Grimaldo. Two minutes later, it was Florian Wirtz who narrowly missed the ball, finally caught by the Bergamo goalkeeper. And in added time of the first half, it was Xhaka who attempted a shot from 20 meters but too crossed.

Lookman sees triple

In the second half, Leverkusen put their foot on the ball, but without, once again, being truly dangerous. The only real German opportunity fell in the 92nd on a heavy strike from Adam Hlozek which went just wide of the target.

Atalanta, who played the last 45 minutes lower, went on the counter and it was once again Lookman who stood out by scoring the safety goal in the 75th minute with a powerful strike which ended his run into Hradecky’s left corner.




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