Sevilla down AS Roma on penalties to claim 7th Europa League crown

Sevilla down AS Roma on penalties to claim 7th Europa League crown

Sevilla added another riveting chapter to their rich European history on Wednesday night in Budapest as they beat AS Roma on penalties to claim a record-extending seventh Europa League title. The Spanish side continued their stunning dominance in the competition, outlasting Jose Mourinho’s Roma in a drama-filled 147-minute thriller, the longest match in this competition’s history, at the Puskas Arena in Hungary.

Paulo Dybala opened the scoring for the Italian side after the hour-mark before an own goal from Gianluca Mancini levelled the scores in the second period. The game eventually went to extra time and penalties, where Gonzalo Montiel scored the decisive spot-kick to extend Sevilla’s European supremacy and hand Jose Mourinho his first defeat in a European final.

AS Roma began the game on the front foot, with Leonardo Spinazzola going close in the early stages before Paulo Dybala scored the opener in the 35th minute. The Argentinian forward drifted into space behind the Sevilla backline and found the bottom corner past Yassine Bouno.

Sevilla showed glimpses of their attacking potential in the first period, with Ivan Rakitic rattling the woodwork from long-distance, and eventually brought the game back on level terms on 55 minutes as Jesus Navas’ cross was inadvertently turned into his own net by Gianluca Mancini.

Roma enjoyed the better chances of the two sides to find a winner in regulation time, with Tammy Abraham and Ibanez unable to capitalise on a goal-mouth scramble and Yassine Bouno making an outstanding finger-tip save to deny Andrea Belotti. Penalty drama also dominated the proceedings in the second period as Sevilla were given a spot-kick which was later overturned after a VAR check, while the Italian side had a huge penalty shout for handball turned down by referee Anthony Taylor, much to their dismay.

Neither side could find the elusive goal as the game drifted into extra time, with Chris Smalling going closest from a header that lashed the crossbar, sending the final to penalties for the third year in a row.

Ocampos, Lamela, and Ivan Rakitic cooly converted from the spot for Sevilla in the shootout, while the Italians fluffed their lines as centre-backs Ibanez and Mancini had their efforts saved by Bouno.

The decisive penalty came down to the man who scored the winning spot-kick for Argentina in the 2022 FIFA World Cup final, Gonzalo Montiel. The right-back couldn’t replicate his Qatar heroics, with Rui Patricio’s outstretched arm handing Roma a lifeline, but was given a second opportunity after the VAR noticed some encroachment by the Portuguese shot-stopper. Montiel found the back of the net on his second attempt, slotting his penalty into the back of the net to crush Roman hearts and give Sevilla their seventh title in this competition since 2006.