Tirana, May 26 (BNA): Nicolo Zaniolo’s goal earned Roma their first major European title in more than 60 years with a 1-0 victory over Feyenoord in the European Conference League Final in Albania on Wednesday, marking a unique European victory. Jose Mourinho.
Roma coach Mourinho, who has previously won the Champions League, European League and European Cup with other clubs, can now add a third-tier European title – the Italian team’s first title in 14 years – to his medal tally, Reuters reports. .
The 22-year-old netted Roma a win with a professional finish in the 32nd minute, becoming the first Italian to score in a European final since Filippo Inzaghi against Liverpool in the 2007 Champions League.
Roma, whose only continental title had previously been the old Fairs Cup in 1961, halted an impassioned comeback from their Dutch rival, who was twice denied due to woodwork in the second half.
This ensured that Mourinho became the first coach to win a European Cup with four different clubs, following previous successes at Porto, Inter Milan and Manchester United.
Roma captain Lorenzo Pellegrini told Sky Sport Italia: “We are a real team, we have proven it. Now we have to celebrate and then start over, which is always difficult after a big win, but the real team wins, celebrates and starts again.” .
“I said yesterday that at the age of 25 I would never have imagined that I would achieve this with the Roma shirt and the captain’s armband. It’s an amazing moment.”
With Roma and Feyenoord both entering the competition having already secured Europa League football for next season with their domestic league position, it was all about glory at Tirana.
Early on it looked like there would be only one winner, as Roma dominated the opening exchanges, undisturbed by Feyenoord goalkeeper Justin Bello, who played his first game since March 10.
One chance was all they needed to keep their lead in the first half, as Zaniolo brilliantly dropped the ball to his chest before firing in his first goal in all competitions since a hat-trick in the quarter-final against Bodou/Glimt.
Zaniolo also became the youngest Italian to score in a major European final since Alessandro Del Piero against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League in May 1997.
Feyenoord, who is looking to be the first Dutch club to win a European championship in 20 years, since winning the 2002 UEFA Cup, failed to test Rui Patricio against Roma in the opening period.
But they started the second half in style, with Roma’s Gianluca Mancini turning an early corner kick from Feyenoord into his position.
The Dutch side kept coming and hitting the woodwork again as Patricio sent Terrell Malacia’s superb shot from 25 meters to the post.
More opportunities came and went, but some final balls and wasted touches ensured Roma’s long wait for the European Championship would come to an end in Mourinho’s first season in the Italian capital.
“We really wanted to take that trophy with us, to thank the fans and to put Feyenoord back on the map, unfortunately it didn’t work out like that,” Bello said.
“We put pressure on them and then I saw that they had trouble dealing with us. But unfortunately, it wasn’t good enough. It’s especially terrible that we can’t take the trophy to Rotterdam.”