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Bayer Leverkusen remain unbeaten and reach Europa League final

Bayer Leverkusen had double reason to celebrate in stoppage time on Thursday.

Not only did they reach the Europa League final and retain their treble bid, but substitute Josip Stanisic’s last-gasp goal kept their superb unbeaten run alive as Leverkusen salvaged a 2-2 draw against Roma.

Both appeared to be in danger during the semi-final second leg after two Leandro Paredes penalties made it 2-0 on the evening and 2-2 on aggregate. But an own goal from Roma defender Gianluca Mancini eight minutes from time and Stanisic’s equalizer allowed Leverkusen to extend their unbeaten run to 49 matches.

Leverkusen advanced 4-2 on aggregate and will face another Italian side in Dublin on May 22 after Atalanta beat Marseille 3-0 to win 4-1 on aggregate.

“It gives me goosebumps!” Granit Xhaka spoke about this to German television RTL. “You dream of such an atmosphere. You dream about games like this. When you were a kid you wanted to play in games like this, and when you tie the score at the very end and get to the final, it’s incredible.”

The fact that their unbeaten record was preserved with around 30 seconds remaining was another incredible end to an impressive season for Xabi Alonso’s side, who had already won the Bundesliga title and also reached the German Cup final.

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