Edin Dzeko sends Roma through against Shakhtar and into last eight



Roma are through to the quarter-finals of the Champions League for the first time since 2008 after beating Shakhtar Donetsk 1-0 in their second-leg tie at the Stadio Olimpico thanks to a magnificent finish by Edin Dzeko, which sent them through on the away goal they scored in a 2-1 defeat in the first leg.

Roma celebrated only their second win in six meetings with the Ukrainian side and got revenge for a 6-2 aggregate defeat by them at the same stage of the competition in 2011, although they endured a nervy finish.

Having trailed 2-1 from the first leg, Roma looked bereft of ideas for much of the contest before Dzeko broke the deadlock in the 52nd minute following a tepid first half devoid of goalmouth action.

Shakhtar came close to extending their overall advantage when the Roma defender Alessandro Florenzi headed a floated free-kick into the box inches wide of his own far post.

Roma’s solitary glimpse of goal in the opening half came in the 28th minute when the visiting goalkeeper, Andriy Pyatov, palmed away a fizzing low cross by Aleksandar Kolarov to deny Dzeko a simple tap-in from close range.

The home side came out with renewed purpose in the second half and Dzeko delighted Roma fans when he broke the deadlock with a trademark clinical finish. The Bosnian took a defence-splitting pass from Kevin Strootman into his stride and beat the offside trap before he steered the ball into the far corner with the outside of his foot, past the advancing Pyatov.

Dzeko then curled a shot from the edge of the penalty area inches wide in the 62nd minute before the Shakhtar centre-back Ivan Ordets was shown a straight red card in the 79th for hauling down the Bosnian when he was through on goal.

Despite being a man down, Shakhtar launched a late onslaught and had several dangerous raids down the left but the home team’s defence held on until the final whistle.



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