Spanish side, Sevilla, has won the 2015 Europa League competition with a very entertaining 3-2 victory over Dnipro in Warsaw, the capital city of Poland and thus became the first side to win European football’s second-tier on four occasions.
The Rojiblancos won the trophy twice under its former guise as the UEFA Cup in 2006 and 2007 and they have now made it back-to-back crowns for a second time after winning it last year in a penalty shootout following a nervy 0-0 draw with Benfica, but they didn’t have to wade that path again this time. Dnipro had taken the lead thuogh Nikola Kalinic but the Andalusian club replied through Grzegorz Krychowiak and Bacca, and although Ruslan Rotan leveled, Bacca wrapped up the victory for Sevilla.
The Ukrainian side, competing in their first European final, took an early lead through Nikola Kalinicin the 7th minute. He superbly had a one-two touch with Matheus, as he made his way into the box and met the latter’s perfect cross with a powerful header from just eight yards.
Sevilla recovered well, and Poland midfielder Gregorz Krychowiak delighted the home fans in the 28th minute, when he controlled and drove a low shot in from a well timed Bacca’s pass, past Dnipro goalkeeper, Denys Boyko into the right-hand corner. They also took the lead for the first time in the game by adding a second, three minutes later. Reyes this time produced a superb defense-splitting pass and Bacca sprung the offside trap before rounding Boyko to slot home.
And just as it seemed Sevilla would reach half-time with the lead, Dnipro captain Ruslan Rotan stepped up and curled an excellent free-kick beyond Rico into the top corner from 25 yards and at halftime, it was two apiece.
The second half started and there was free-flowing action, with each team testing each others might in all department. But the red half of the stadium suddenly went agog with excitement when in the 73rd minute, Bacca put Sevilla back in front with a low left-foot drive after being sent clear in the penalty area by Vitolo’s clever flicked pass and that sealed the game in favor of Sevilla, as they made history – the only club to have won the competition on four occasions, surpassing Liverpool, Juventus and Inter Milan who have all won three times in the competition’s former format – the UEFA Cup.
Sevilla will now qualify for the 2015-16 Champions League despite finishing fifth in the Spainish La Liga, thanks to the change in the rules for this campaign to give more incentive to the eventual winner of the Europa league.
“This is a very special moment, we must enjoy it fully. I thank the fans and city. We’ve enjoyed every single moment of this. Football can be beautiful. My heartfelt congratulations to Dnipro, who had a great tournament,” A happy Sevilla coach, Unai Emery told reporters.
On his part, the Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk coach, Myron Markevych said:
“They were more experienced, and I think that showed. But we tried to play our best game. Unfortunately today we allowed Bacca the chance to be aggressive. We made a lot of mistakes in defense. We gave them the third goal. We should have cleared the ball but didn’t,” he said.