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Bayer Leverkusen’s Unbeaten Season Ends with Europa League Final Loss to Atalanta

Atalanta’s Ademola Lookman Shatters Bayer Leverkusen’s Unbeaten Streak with Hat Trick in Europa League Final

Bayer Leverkusen’s dream of completing an unbeaten treble this season came to an abrupt end as Atalanta secured a 3-0 victory in the Europa League final on Wednesday. Ademola Lookman was the standout performer, scoring all three goals for Atalanta and ending Leverkusen’s record 51-game unbeaten run.

A Dominant Display by Lookman

Lookman, the London-born Nigeria international, was instrumental in Atalanta’s triumph, punishing Leverkusen’s defensive errors with clinical precision. He opened the scoring in the 26th minute, capitalizing on a defensive lapse by Exequiel Palacios, who was unaware of Lookman’s position at the far post. Lookman added a second goal shortly after, intercepting an aimless header by Amine Adli and curling a shot into the net. He completed his hat trick in the 75th minute with a powerful strike, securing Atalanta’s first European trophy in 61 years.

Leverkusen’s Struggles

Leverkusen, the new German champions, were favored to win but never found their rhythm. Coach Xabi Alonso’s decision to start Palacios over Robert Andrich in midfield backfired as Palacios’ defensive mishap led to the first goal. Throughout the match, Leverkusen struggled to maintain their usual elegant playing style, frequently losing possession under Atalanta’s relentless pressure.

Alonso Reflects on the Loss

As the match concluded, Alonso watched solemnly from the sidelines, reflecting on the team’s first defeat of the season. “It wasn’t lost in terms of attitude, it was a football thing,” Alonso commented. “It happens, it’s football, today wasn’t meant to be. They were better.”

Atalanta’s Cinderella Story

Under the guidance of veteran coach Gian Piero Gasperini, Atalanta’s victory was a feel-good story for neutral fans. The club from Bergamo, known for its attractive soccer and modest budget, outperformed expectations to claim their first top-level trophy since 1963. Gasperini, a sprightly 66-year-old, celebrated joyfully with his players and staff as the final whistle approached.

Looking Ahead

Leverkusen’s season is not over yet, as they prepare for the German Cup final against second-tier Kaiserslautern on Saturday. Despite the setback, Alonso remains focused on lifting his team for the upcoming match. “We had a big chance, we put everything on today, but it didn’t go as planned, we weren’t on our best level and we will learn from today,” Alonso said. “How we deal with the pain will be a challenge for us.”

Fan Support and Atmosphere

The match in Dublin saw strong support from both sets of fans, with Atalanta’s supporters outnumbering Leverkusen’s. The Bergamo fans created a vibrant atmosphere, singing passionately throughout the game and inspiring their team to victory. The players responded with physical commitment and tight marking, disrupting Leverkusen’s play and seizing control of the match from the opening minutes.


Atalanta’s stunning victory over Bayer Leverkusen in the Europa League final not only ended Leverkusen’s unbeaten season but also highlighted the resilience and tactical prowess of Gian Piero Gasperini’s side. As Leverkusen turns its attention to the German Cup final, the team will need to regroup and learn from this defeat to achieve further success this season.


The information in this article is based on the latest available details at the time of publication. Game outcomes and player performances are subject to change based on real-time events and circumstances. For the most current updates, refer to official sources and announcements.

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