Bologna beat Roma to close in on Champions League

football22 April 2024 19:00| © AFP
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Bologna took a huge step towards the Champions League on Monday with an impressive 3-1 win at rivals Roma, as Inter Milan attempt to win the Serie A title in a hotly-anticipated Milan derby.

Oussama El Azzouzi's stunning overhead kick and futher strikes from Joshua Zirkzee and Alexis Saelemaekers consolidated fourth place for Bologna, who are nearly assured of a spot in Europe's top club competition.

Bologna played in one round of the old European Cup in 1964 but have never competed in the modern Champions League.

However that looks set to change as they sit eight points ahead of sixth-placed Atalanta, with a top-five finish enough to qualify for next season's revamped competition.

Bologna were deserved winners in the Italian capital, outplaying Roma who looked tired after eliminating AC Milan from the Europa League midweek.

Missing Romelu Lukaku and with Tammy Abraham starting up front for the first time in nearly a year, Roma struggled to get going and are now looking over their shoulders at Atalanta who they lead by a single points.

Daniele De Rossi's side now travel to Udinese on Thursday to finish their interrupted match and then go back across the country to face arch-rivals Napoli in Naples.

The first leg of their Europa League semifinal with Bayer Leverkusen then follows in Rome on May 2.

Pouring rain and freezing temperatures in Milan haven't damped the enthusiasm of Inter fans who have gathered at the San Siro for one of the biggest ever derbies in the northern Italian city.

Inter must win on Thursday night to claim their 20th league crown with five matches remaining in the season.