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Atalanta vs Bayer Leverkusen Matchday Stats Preview

Atalanta vs Bayer Leverkusen Matchday Stats Preview 

Bayer Leverkusen have faced Atalanta twice in European competition, with the Italian side winning both legs of a 2021-22 UEFA Europa League last 16 tie. Bayer have only faced Internazionale more often while losing every game in major European competition (three defeats in three games).

This is the eighth major European final between a German side and Italian side and first since the 2010 UEFA Champions League final, won 2-0 by Inter against Bayern Munich. In the UEFA Cup/Europa League, it’s the first since 1997 when FC Schalke 04 were crowned champions over two legs against Inter via a penalty shootout.

Bayer Leverkusen have reached their third UEFA European final, also featuring in the two-legged 1988 UEFA Cup final against Espanyol (lost 0-3 first leg, won 3-0 second leg, won on pens) and 2002 UEFA Champions League final against Real Madrid (lost 2-1).

This will be Atalanta’s first ever European final, becoming the 11th different Italian team to reach a final and first to do so for a first time since Lazio in the 1998 UEFA Cup (lost 3-0 to Inter). This will be 60 years and 261 days since their first European game in September 1963, the longest wait for a side to play in their first a European final from their first game, a record which will be eclipsed in one week by Olympiakos (64 years, 259 days – 1959-2024).

Bayer Leverkusen are unbeaten in all 12 UEFA Europa League games this season (W9 D3) and are looking to become the fourth side to win the trophy unbeaten, along with Chelsea in 2018-19, Villarreal in 2020-21 and Eintracht Frankfurt in 2021-22, the latter two of which did so in a penalty shootout in the final.

Atalanta are looking to become the first Italian side to win the UEFA Europa League, with the trophy only ever being won by sides from Spain, Portugal, England or Germany previously. The last Italian team to win the UEFA Cup was Parma in a 3-0 win over Marseille in 1999.

Bayer Leverkusen have completed 6,622 passes in this season’s UEFA Europa League, the most by a side in one campaign since Sevilla in 2019-20 (6,971). Their passing accuracy of 89.5% is the second best on record (behind Nice in 2017-18, 90%) while their ratio of 94.3% short passes is the highest by a team in a Europa League season.

Atalanta have only faced 2.8 shots on target per game in the UEFA Europa League this season, the lowest ratio of any side in the competition this season; their final opponents Bayer Leverkusen have been averaging 7.2 shots on target per game in 2023-24.

Bayer Leverkusen have had 232 shots in the UEFA Europa League this season, the most by a team in one season since Chelsea in 2018-19 (247). They’ve had 30+ shots in three different matches this season, something that had only been achieved more than once in a season by one team previously (Marseille in 2015-16, twice).

Six of Bayer Leverkusen’s 31 UEFA Europa League goals this season have been scored in the 90th minute of matches – it’s the most 90th minute goals a side has scored in a single major European season.

Dublin’s Aviva Stadium will become the first venue to host more than one UEFA Europa League final, having played host to the 2011 final which was won 1-0 by FC Porto against Sporting Braga thanks to a goal from Radamel Falcao.

Bayer Leverkusen manager Xabi Alonso played in both the 2005 and 2007 UEFA Champions League finals for Liverpool. He is the fourth person to both play in and manage a major European final this century, along with Zinedine Zidane (played in 2002 CL final, managed in 2016, 2017, 2018 CL finals), Antonio Conte (played in 2003 CL final, managed in 2020 EL final) and Giovanni van Bronckhorst (played in 2006 CL final, managed in 2022 EL final).

Bayer Leverkusen’s Florian Wirtz has been involved in eight goals in the UEFA Europa League this season (4 goals, 4 assists), the most of any Bayer player. He has created 28 chances in open play, a tally only five players can better in a Europa League campaign, most recently Amin Younes for Ajax in 2016-17 (30).

Atalanta's Gianluca Scamacca has scored six UEFA Europa League goals this season. Only two Italian players have scored more in a single campaign: Giuseppe Rossi in 2010-11 for Villarreal (10) and Ciro Immobile in 2017-18 for Lazio (8).

At the age of 66 years and 117 days on the day of this game, Atalanta manager Gian Piero Gasperini will be the oldest manager to take charge of his first ever major European final and oldest overall since Jupp Heynckes in the 2013 UEFA Champions League final (68 years, 16 days). His counterpart Xabi Alonso, at 42 years and 179 days, will be the youngest to manage in a European final since Roberto Di Matteo in the 2012 UEFA Champions League final (41 years, 356 days), which was against Heynckes.



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My Hack Stuff: Atalanta vs Bayer Leverkusen Matchday Stats Preview
Atalanta vs Bayer Leverkusen Matchday Stats Preview
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