UEFA Europa League final: what it means to the finalists!

Winning Wednesday’s showdown in Dublin will cap a memorable campaign for whichever side lifts the trophy.

For Atalanta, Wednesday’s UEFA Europa League final represents the opportunity to lift European silverware for the first time, while Leverkusen have the opportunity to complete an historic treble and a whole season unbeaten.

We hear from key figures from both sides to learn what it would mean to be in the final and potentially lift this famous trophy.

Gian Piero Gasperini, Atalanta coach said, “It’s a great achievement and source of satisfaction achieved with a really good season from this whole team.”

“This tournament is right behind the Champions League, so… the teams have quality. They are the top teams in their leagues. After the group stage, it gets more attention and everybody wants to go far.”

“Leverkusen and their achievements speak for themselves. They haven’t lost this year. We’re going to be up against a very tough team who have pulled off something extraordinary in their home country. They’re the German champions, but we’re coming off the back of an excellent run too.”

Xabi Alonso, Leverkusen coach said, “It would mean a lot to me. It would be thrilling and to be able to share it with a lot of people, especially with the excitement we are living this year with the players, with the people from the club, with the fans, you see what it meant when we won the Bundesliga. To be able to win a European title after so many years since we won it in ‘88 would be historic, and we want to have a historic season.”

“To reach the final, you always have to be beating great opponents, and they have all been very difficult, from Qarabağ to Roma. I think it’s a unique opportunity for us, and we’re expecting a fantastic game, a very intense match, against a very demanding opponent.”

Gianluca Scamacca, Atalanta forward said, “It was a beautiful journey because we had some incredible games, like the first and second leg against Sporting, Liverpool, Marseille; however, they are all difficult matches on pitches and in stadiums with very strong atmospheres. It was a great test for us because we rose to the occasion. Now we just need to put the icing on the cake.”

Florian Wirtz, Leverkusen midfielder said, “I was part of the team last year when we went out unluckily of course and I think that has intensified the hunger to win this competition even more because we weren’t far off last year.”

“We are simply hungry to bring this cup back to Leverkusen. We will do all we can to win in Dublin.”

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