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Europa League: Bayer Leverkusen beat Roma 2-0 in Italy

May 2, 2024

Bayer Leverkusen took a major step towards the Europa League final with a 2-0 win in Rome in the opening game of their semi-final. The new Bundesliga champs are vying for a season unbeaten in all competitions.

Leverkusen's Robert Andrich celebrates after scoring their side's second goal of the game during the UEFA Europa League
Andrich's strike in the 73rd minute put the match firmly in Leverkusen's favorImage: Fabrizio Corradetti/LaPresse/AP/picture alliance

Bayer Leverkusen's pursuit of a treble was boosted by winning their UEFA Europa League semi-final first leg 2-0 away from home at Roma on Thursday.

The Bundesliga champions extended their remarkable unbeaten run to 47 matches in the process.

Florian Wirtz and Robert Andritch scored either side of half-time for Bayer Leverkusen, securing a win after a drier spell of three consecutive draws. 

Roma's goalkeeper Mile Svilar, bottom, fails to save the ball as Leverkusen's Florian Wirtz, top, scores his side's opening goal
Leverkusen's Florian Wirtz scored his sides first goalImage: Andrew Medichini/AP/picture alliance

Leverkusen will bring the 2-0 advantage home for the second leg of the semi-final next week in western Germany. 

Coach Xabi Alonso's team has already secured the Bundesliga title, the first in the club's history, and the Werkself will also compete in the German Cup final on May 25,  as heavy favorites against second-division Kaiserslautern. 

With Thursday's win in Rome, the club took another step towards a final in continental competition as well. 

In Thursday's other semi-final, Marseille and Atalanta drew 1-1. 

Gianluca Scamacca gave Atalanta the lead in 11 minutes but Chancel Mbemba equalised for Marseille nine minutes later.

Both sides missed chances to score further goals in the second half.

The second legs will be held next Thursday, with the final in Dublin on May 22.

msh/lo (AP, AFP, dpa, Reuters)