As Roma drew 0-0 at Bayer Leverkusen on Thursday in the second leg of their Europa League semifinal, they advanced to the final with a 1-0 aggregate victory.
After winning the Europa Conference League last season, the Rome team has now advanced to back-to-back European championships under Jose Mourinho.
The Germans, who advanced courtesy to last week’s 1-0 victory in Italy, applied strong pressure to the visitors the whole game and kept them on the back foot. The Germans squandered numerous opportunities and even struck the post.
On May 31 in Budapest, they will face the victor of the second semifinal between Sevilla and Juventus.
Leverkusen had a good start to their quest to make their first European final in 21 years.
The hosts had the upper hand in the first half with twelve attempts on goal compared to one for their opponents, with the exception of Lorenzo Pellegrini of Roma’s opportunity in the second minute.
Rui Patricio stopped Kerem Demirbay’s low attempt in the 21st minute after Moussa Diaby had struck the crossbar with a strong shot in the 12th.
To stop Leverkusen’s earlier assaults, the visitors attempted to push up a little higher in the second half, but the home team kept finding ways to generate opportunities.
Sardar Azmoun appeared to have beaten Patricio after Demirbay forced another strong stop from him in the 67th minute, but the Iranian’s attempt narrowly missed the target.
Leverkusen, whose last major championship was in 1993, had 23 shots on target, but Mourinho’s Roma won despite having just one shot on goal the entire game.
All that was lacking, according to Demirbay of Leverkusen, was a goal. “We were not as lucky as they were. Not receiving compensation for such performances was painful. However, I am pleased with how we played.
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