Bayer Leverkusen secures crucial away win over Roma at Europa Semi-Final

Bayer Leverkusen have claimed a 2-0 first-leg victory at Roma to take command of their Europa League semi-final.

Goals from Florian Wirtz and Robert Andrich gave the Bundesliga champions only their second win in Italy.

Roma had just two shots on target on Thursday night – with striker Romelu Lukaku cutting an isolated figure before being replaced after 80 minutes.

Substitute Tammy Abraham spurned a golden chance to reduce the deficit in stoppage time.

After an opening half hour which had been short on quality, Leverkusen broke the deadlock when full-back Alex Grimaldo raced on to a misplaced back-pass before setting up midfielder Wirtz for his 18th goal of the season.

Hosts Roma hit back with a flurry of chances but were unable to find a leveller before the interval.

Midfielder Andrich then doubled Leverkusen’s lead midway through the second half, firing into the top-left corner from long range.

The victory stretched Xabi Alonso’s side’s unbeaten run to 47 matches in all competitions.