Jose Mourinho moved to tears as perfect Roma record kicks off Sevilla Europa League final – The Mirror

Jose Mourinho faced Xabi Alonso, whom he had coached at Real Madrid

Roma showed extreme resilience in getting past Bayer Leverkusen and reaching consecutive European finals under Jose Mourinho – setting up a Europa League final against Sevilla.

Mourinho concocted the Italian club’s first European trophy in more than 60 years when they won the Conference League in his first season in Rome last season. The Giallorossi – 1-0 from the first leg – frustrated the Bundesliga side throughout the game.

Leverkusen were the only side to threaten a goal during the draw and enjoyed the lion’s share of possession, but failed to break through against a typically well-practiced Mourinho side, who will play in the final next month.

Jose Mourinho faced Xabi Alonso, whom he had coached at Real Madrid
(Massimo Insabato/Archivio Massimo Insabato/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)

The first half statistics reflected both the home side’s possession – 73 per cent possession – and chances in front of goal – with 12 tries compared to just one for Roma. It was Moussa Diaby who came closest to the host, the lively striker knocking his effort off target after Rui Patricio was knocked down.

Xabi Alonso’s side continued to see chance after chance go by in the second half, with Roma happy to drop off, defend their penalty area and allow the home side to fire off chances that weren’t obvious.

The other semi-final draw was similarly well balanced, staying balanced throughout. Federico Gatti’s last header in the first leg in Turin had saved a draw for Juventus after Youssef En-Nesyri put Sevilla ahead.

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Dusan Vlahovic put Juventus ahead at Sevilla

Dusan Vlahovic put Juventus ahead at Sevilla
(Denis Doyle – UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images)

The second leg was goalless for an hour, but it was an open, pulsating encounter with great chances at both ends. Sevilla thought they had rejected two strong penalties, while Juventus missed several glorious chances through Angel di Maria and Adrien Rabiot.

It was striker Dusan Vlahovic, introduced by Juve as a second-half substitute in place of Moise Kean, who put the visitors ahead with a calm finish to Sevilla goalkeeper Bono after a spirited counter-attack.

The Italian giants had probably had the better chances up to that point, but Sevilla roared back six minutes later as Suso’s long-range strike flew into the top corner to level the score. They dominated for the rest of the game, but goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny produced a series of fine saves to take the game into extra time.

Sevilla would not be denied as Erik Lamela picked up an injury time winner and despite a late red card for Marcos Acuna they held on to reach the final. The winners of the record competition have won all six previous finals and now face Mourinho.

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Written by Ft7Ball

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