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Roma hold off Leverkusen to reach Europa League final

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Jose Mourinho’s Roma reached the Europa League final by holding Bayer Leverkusen to a goalless draw in the second leg of their semi-final tie.

Edoardo Bove’s goal gave the Italian side a 1-0 win in the first leg, and that was enough to take them through.

Roma progress to the final in Budapest on 31 May.

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Mourinho has won all five of his previous five European finals, including last season’s Europa Conference League with Roma.

With a deficit to overturn, Leverkusen were on the front foot early on and Diaby came close to levelling the tie after being sent clear down the right, only for his fierce effort to rattle the bar and bounce clear.

Kerem Demirbay saw his low shot saved by Roma goalkeeper Rui Patricio soon after, while Leverkusen were furious when the referee waved play on when Sardar Azmoun appeared to be pulled down by Bryan Cristante just outside the box with just Patricio to beat.

The home side continued to push forward in the second half with Azmoun dragging a shot just wide, but for all their territorial dominance they struggled to create any clear-cut chances.

And so, after 31 years without a European final before last season, Roma can look forward to a second in as many years.

Written by Ibrahim Oladamola

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