Europa League 2020 Summary
Stopped in Their Tracks
From the start, it was difficult to determine who the winners were going to be. Inter Milan was one of the top teams that managed to reach the final. However, the clear favorite, Manchester United, was not so fortunate. They handled LASK with relative ease. However, had it not been for Bruno Fernandes’s goal in overtime against FC Copenhagen, they would not have made it to the semifinals. That is where the story ended for them, as they faced Sevilla. Still, the Red Devils should be proud of how far they’ve come in the competition. They were taken out by the champions that specialized in Europa League.
Wolves suffered the same fate. After getting a rematch against Olympiacos in the second leg of the final 16 and winning with a single goal, they could not match Sevilla’s skills. Interestingly enough, they did bring their best to the game. Sevilla had the ball for more than three-quarters of game time. It wasn’t until minute 88 that Lucas Ocampos finally scored. Had Bounou not been such an impenetrable wall, we may have had a different final outcome. Perhaps Man United would have faced Inter.
Speaking of Inter Milan, they have had quite a season. They defeated Getafe with Romelu Lukaku and Christian Eriksen, followed by a clean-cut win over Leverkusen. Lukaku has been a bit of a wild card throughout the season. He helped Inter climb to the final. He was also responsible for their downfall. In many respects, Inter’s leading striker was a chaotic force of nature. He was the one who scored the final goal of the season – against his own team.
Sevilla is the winner of the Europa League this season. It has not been an easy feat as it was not clear whether the tournament rules would work in their favor. Nemanja Gudelj, the central mid-fielder, had to step down from the game against Roma, due to coronavirus. However, he recovered and played in the final.
The game against Roma went as well as it could have been expected. Prior to the round of 16, Roma was consistently on the losing side for most of their encounters with the Sevillistas Rojiblancos. Sevilla had a tough time against Wolves in the quarterfinals and even against United, where Fernandes, again, tried to save the day in the 9th minute, though it was not enough. Finally, they had to face Inter and the match was something else.
There is a bit of similarity between Diego Carlos and Romelu Lukaku in that they were both good enough for their respective teams to be among the best in the lineup. Both of them also had a fair share of blunders. Lukaku is an amazing scorer who missed relatively easy shots. Carlos, it seemed, could not pass a game without a yellow card and/or a penalty for the opposing team. In the end, Carlos’s overhead kick bouncing off of Lukaku ended the clash between Sevilla and Inter.