Ademola Lookman scored hat-trick to hand Atalanta 3-0 Europa final victory

Bayer Leverkusen and Atalanta locked horns in the Europa League final at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin on Wednesday evening.

Three Super Eagles star were on parade on the night, as Lookman started for La Dea, while Victor Boniface and Nathan Tella started from the bench for Bayer Leverkusen.

Going into the fixture, Die Werkself were the slight favourites because of their celestial form this season, which saw them go 51 games unbeaten across all competitions- the highest in European club football.

Atalanta, on the other hand, were still licking their wounds after losing the Copa Italia to Juventus in their last game.

The fixture started slowly, with both teams canceling out each other in midfield. From the start, it was evident that Atalanta wanted to choke them from the back and restrict their free-flowing football.

Lookman sent in a corner from the left of Atalanta’s attack, but the ball went to the other side of the pitch. But Davide Zappacosta picked it up and sent a low cross into the box. Lookman, who was just arriving into the box showed quickly pounced on the ball, opened his body and sent in a strike into the empty net.

After going a goal down, Bayer Leverkusen still did not improve, and Lookman struck again. He received the ball in midfield, pushed forward and cut in. He had Granit Xhaka to beat, but he nutmegged him with ease and struck a powerful shot past Matej Kovar to make it two for La Dea.

As the match progressed, it was evident that Boniface  needed to be introduced to add some bite to Bayer Leverkusen’s attack. However, even after his introduction in the second half, Die Werkself still lacked the cutting edge, as Atalanta stifled their play.

Lookman was unarguably the deadliest player on the night, and he got his hattrick after a quick counter by Atalanta. In characteristic fashion, he ran at Tapsoba in the box and rifled a shot into the roof of the net to make it 3-0.

Bayer Leverkusen tried to push for a goal, but they were just not in their elements, and Atalanta ran out 3-0 winners. The trophy is Gian Pero Gasperini’s first major title since he took over the Atalanta job in June 2016.

Credit: Soccernet

Ekene Njoku

I am a passionate blogger, graphics designer, web designer and information researcher. Also, a media marketer

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