Gian Piero Gasperini Shows Xabi Alonso Who’s Boss in UEL Final As He Makes History With Atalanta

Gian Piero Gasperini Shows Xabi Alonso Who’s Boss in UEL Final As He Makes History With Atalanta

Joel Reyes
May 23, 2024 at 5:44 AM
In this article:
Atalanta logo
Bayer Leverkusen logo
Bayer Leverkusen
UEFA Europa League logo
UEFA Europa League
UEFA Champions League logo
Italian Serie A logo
ITA Serie A
  • Atalanta defeated Bayer Leverkusen in the UEFA Europa League final on Wednesday
  • The German club's 51-match unbeaten run ended with the 3-0 loss against Atalanta
  • Gian Piero Gasperini added the UEL win to his list of accomplishments with the club

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Gian Piero Gasperini cemented his status as an Atalanta legend on Wednesday night, May 22.

He led the Italian club to their first-ever European title after beating Bayer Leverkusen in the Europa League final.

Sports Brief looks at the list of accomplishments the 66-year-old manager has achieved with Atalanta this season.

Gian Piero Gasperini, Atalanta, Bayer Leverkusen, Europa League, Xabi Alonso, UEFA Champions League, Serie A
Gian Piero Gasperini celebrates with his team after Atalanta won the 2023/24 Europa League title on May 22, 2024. Images: Chris Brunskill/ Ian MacNicol.
Source: Getty Images

Gasperini makes history with Atalanta

Ends Atalanta's 61-year title drought

Heading into the Europa League final, all the focus and attention was on Bayer Leverkusen, who were looking to preserve their unbeaten season.

Atalanta thwarted their bid, though, as they made history of their own with their victory in the championship match. They secured their first trophy in 61 years with a 3-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen in the final, per The Guardian.

Ademola Lookman picked the perfect time to erupt, scoring a hat-trick against the Bundesliga champions. He already had a brace in the first half, finding the back of the net in the 12th and 26th minutes.

He completed the rout with a strike in the 75th minute, ending their fans' long wait for a title. The last time they won a trophy was back in 1963 when Atalanta captured the Coppa Italia.

1st Atalanta manager to win European title

Gasperini made history on Wednesday, becoming the first Atalanta manager to win a title in Europe, per

Their best finish in the Champions League came in the 2019-20 season when they reached the quarter-finals. They lost to Paris Saint-Germain 2-1 in the last 8 to end their bid for the European Cup.

Before beating Bayer Leverkusen in the final, Atalanta's best finish in the UEFA Cup/Europa League came in the 1990-91 and 2021-22 seasons when they reached the quarter-finals.

Atalanta lost to Internazionale 2-0 on aggregate in the 1990-91 edition. Their title chase in the 2021-22 season of the Europa League ended with a 3-1 aggregate loss to RB Leipzig in the last 8.

Leads Atalanta to best finish in Serie A

With a title in Europe already in the bag, Atalanta's next target is to win the Serie A for the first time in their history.

Gasperini is already laying the groundwork for a title charge in the Italian top flight. He led the club to third-place finishes in the 2018-19, 2019-20, and 2020-21 seasons.

They finished fifth this past season to secure a place in the UEFA Champions League.

Lookman sets new record in UEL final

Sports Brief recently reported on Ademola Lookman setting a new record in the Europa League final against Bayer Leverkusen.

He became the first player to bag a hat-trick in a single-leg UEFA Cup/ UEL final, accomplishing the feat at Dublin's Aviva Stadium.

Joel Reyes photo
Joel Reyes
Joel Reyes is a sports editor at with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of the Philippines. He has eight years of work experience in sports writing.