BODO COMES BACK TO WIN 2-1 AGAINST ROMA AT HOME IN THE FIRST LEG OF THE EUROPA LEAGUE QUATER FINALS.
FK Bodø/Glimt preserved their unblemished record in the inaugural campaign of the UEFA Europa Conference League (UECL), after a last-gasp Hugo Vetlesen header gave the Norwegian Champions the advantage heading into an intriguing second-leg in Italy in a week’s time.
In a closely-contested beginning to the third instalment of a so-far highly-entertaining quartet of matches in the UECL, Nikita Khaykin had to be on his toes, as Roma conjured a number of goalscoring opportunities in José Mourinho’s 200th managerial engagement in Europe. After finding the back of the net on eight occasions against the visitors in two matches, Bodø began to dictate proceedings, as an ever-increasingly frustrated Bryan Cristante picked up the first booking of the contest after 18 minutes.
Hoping to continue on their recent stellar run of form, the visitors began to stabilise their foothold within the Arctic Circle, as Khaykin had to race off his line to deny Tammy Abraham. However, Bodø’s number one was helpless in preventing Roma from taking the lead moments later. Looking to steer clear of one of Mourinho’s trademark HT dressing-downs, Lorenzo Pellegrini cashed in on Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s exquisite defence splitting-past, unleashing a venomous strike into the roof of the net in the 43rd minute.
Thinking about maintaining their staggering 33-match unbeaten run, the hosts were fortuitously back to level terms in the 56th minute. Yet to open his account in front of goal for ‘Den Gule Horde’ before tonight, Brice Wembangomo could not believe his luck when his strike ended up in the back of Rui Patrício’s net, via a significant deflection off Ulrik Saltnes’ back.
With revenge on their minds after suffering the humiliation of a 6-1 defeat during the group-stages, Roma attempted to push forward in pursuit of retaining their ascendency as Abraham fired wide of the left-hand post. However, with the contest heading towards a draw heading into the second-leg at the Stadio Olimpico, Hugo Vetlesen sent the home fans into jubilant celebrations, delivering a perfectly-timed header past a frustrated Patrício in the 89th minute.
The late victory maintained FK Bodø/Glimt’s stellar European record at the Aspmyra Stadion, as Roma suffered their first defeat in ten matches across all competitions.