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Atalanta 3-0 Leverkusen: Lookman treble brings UEFA Europa League glory to Bergamo

Ademola Lookman hit an exceptional hat-trick as Atalanta put an end to Bayer Leverkusen's 51-game unbeaten run to win the UEFA Europa League final in Dublin.

Highlights: Atalanta 3-0 Leverkusen

Ademola Lookman scored all three goals as Atalanta stopped the clock on Bayer Leverkusen's extraordinary 51-game unbeaten run, and brought 66-year-old coach Gian Piero Gasperini the first major trophy of his long career.

Key moments

12' Lookman fires in from Zappacosta's angled ball
Atalanta No11 doubles up with a fine solo effort
Musso comfortably saves from the well-placed Grimaldo
43' Kovář makes a near-post save from De Ketelaere
59' Frimpong fires loose ball off target
75' Scamacca feeds Lookman to complete his hat-trick

Match in brief: Lookman rewards brave Atalanta

Ademola Lookman (No11) scores Atalanta's first
Ademola Lookman (No11) scores Atalanta's firstAFP via Getty Images

Playing with fire, Atalanta pressed high from the off and with Leverkusen's danger men making a cold start in unseasonably chilly conditions, the Italian side were ahead after 12 minutes.

Played in brilliantly by Teun Koopmeiners, Davide Zappacosta delivered an angled ball back across the box that eluded two of his team-mates, but not the lurking Ademola Lookman, who crashed in a shot at the far post. The No11 needed no assistance for his second on 26 minutes, weaving his way to the edge of the box and smashing a low effort past the exposed Matĕj Kovář.

Lookman's second flies into the net
Lookman's second flies into the netAFP via Getty Images

Alejandro Grimaldo failed to test Juan Musso with Leverkusen's best chance of the first half after 35 minutes, and while the lively Jeremie Frimpong probed diligently for weak spots, Xabi Alonso's side did not look like a team who were unbeaten in 51 games. The only consolation at the break was that it could have been worse, Kovář saving well from Charles De Ketelaere on 43 minutes.

Victor Boniface was introduced at the break, and with Atalanta sitting a little deeper, Leverkusen smouldered to life, Frimpong blazing a loose ball over just before the hour mark. However, Atalanta maintained their threat, and Gianluca Scamacca played in Lookman on 75 minutes, the Nigerian steadying himself before blasting past Kovář.

Leverkusen's reputation for late goals ensured that Atalanta could never be entirely comfortable, even at 3-0 up, but even this remarkable side could not find an escape route this time.

Watch Atalanta lift Europa League trophy
As it happened: Europa League final

Hankook Player of the Match: Ademola Lookman (Atalanta)

"For obvious reasons and his all-round enthusiasm and energy. Really sharp and his execution was spot on."
UEFA Technical Observer Panel

Player of The Match: Ademola Lookman highlights

Reporter verdict: Paolo Menicucci, Atalanta

They did it in style. Atalanta won their first ever European trophy after an absolutely brilliant performance against German champions Leverkusen. Sorry to say, but if you were surprised by this performance, you have not been paying enough attention this term. Just ask Liverpool or Marseille, who both learned the hard way how good Gasperini's side have been this term. As for Lookman's performance: no words required.

Atalanta: Every goal on their road to Europa League glory

Reporter verdict: Matthias Rötters, Leverkusen

Leverkusen's incredible run ended in their biggest game of the season. From the first minute, Atalanta used strength and guile to take Leverkusen's key men out of the game, and Xabi Alonso's side were never able to build up the kind of momentum that has defined their season. The 1988 UEFA Cup victory remains the only European trophy for the club from the Rhineland, who have the consolation of a return to the Champions League next year.


Gian Piero Gasperini, Atalanta coach: "That was perhaps our peak in recent years. We've won it against top teams. We beat Sporting who are the Portuguese champions. We played Liverpool when they were top of the Premier League. We played Marseille who are a very good side, and tonight we beat the German champions. To have beaten such great sides adds gloss to our achievement."

Ademola Lookman, Atalanta forward: "These past two years I've been able to take my game to a whole new level. Maybe it could have come earlier, but it has come now. But this is just the beginning. I hope for more nights like this and to just keep getting better and better."

Xabi Alonso, Leverkusen coach: "They were the better team. It's a consequence of the great thing that Gasperini has done. Atalanta are very brave. They don't mind being in one-on-one situations. When we had a slight chance to make a run, they defended very well. They have been doing it for many years. They're a special team. Normally we get in better positions with our game, but today we couldn't."

Scamacca: 'Lookman was on fire'

Key stats

  • Lookman is the first player to score a hat-trick in a Europa League final.
  • Atalanta's only previous major honour – the 1963 Coppa Italia – also had a hat-trick hero, with Angelo Domenghini claiming the match ball following a 3-1 win against Torino.
  • Atalanta are the first Italian team to win the Europa League since the competition replaced the old UEFA Cup. The last Italian team to win UEFA Cup was Parma in 1998/99.
  • Aged 66 years 117 days, Gian Piero Gasperini is the oldest coach to win the UEFA Europa League, beating the previous record held by José Luis Mendilibar, who was 62 years 78 days when he led Sevilla to victory last season.
  • Gasperini is also the first Italian coach to win the Europa League since Maurizio Sarri with Chelsea in 2019. Nine different Italian coaches have now won the UEFA Cup/Europa League.
  • This was Atalanta's first UEFA competition final; they were the ninth Italian club to play in the UEFA Cup/Europa League final, after Fiorentina, Inter Milan, Juventus, Lazio, Napoli, Parma, Roma and Torino. They were also the 62nd different club to feature in a UEFA Cup/Europa League final.
  • Leverkusen were unbeaten in 13 Europa League matches (W9 D4) and had not lost in 51 games in all competitions in the course of winning their first Bundesliga title, and reaching Saturday's German Cup final.
  • Atalanta's Davide Zappacosta won the competition for the second time, having been on the winning side with Chelsea in 2019. Sead Kolašinac and Leverkusen's Granit Xhakafeatured for runners-up Arsenal in that game.
  • Leverkusen's total of nine wins in European competition in 2023/24 is their joint-highest tally in a single season, matching their total from that Champions League campaign.
  • Leverkusen finished as top scorers in the Europa League this season with 31 goals. Their highest total in a single season in UEFA competition is 32 (2001/02).
Xhaka: 'It's difficult to put into words'


Atalanta: Musso; Djimsiti, Hien, Kolašinac (Scalvini 46); Zappacosta (Hateboer 84), Éderson, Koopmeiners, Ruggeri (Tolói 90+1); De Ketelaere (Pašalić 57), Scamacca (Touré 84), Lookman

Leverkusen: Kovář; Stanišić (Boniface 46), Tah, Tapsoba; Frimpong (Tella 81), Xhaka, Palacios (Andrich 68), Hincapie; Wirtz (Schick 81), Grimaldo (Hložek 69); Adli

Leverkusen and Atalanta line up ahead of kick-off
Leverkusen and Atalanta line up ahead of kick-offGetty Images

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