14 Marzo 2018
Rome, March 14 - AS Roma are through to the quarter-finals of the Champions League after beating Shakhtar Donetsk 1-0 at the Olimpico for a 2-2 aggregate score that put the Romans through on the away goal rule. Roma's goal came from Edin Dzeko. The Giallorossi join Juventus in the quarter-finals - the first time in 11 years that Italy has had two teams reaching this stage of the competition. Vincenzo Montella's Sevilla are also through after beating Manchester United, and Chelsea's Antonio Conte could join him if the Londoners win at Barcelona Wednesday night. Dzeko ha proved precious to the Romans after turning down a move to Chelsea in the January transfer window. "I didn't want to leave because I want to play in this kind of game," said the Bosnia centre-forward, who latched onto a long ball and slipped it through the Shakhtar goalkeeper's legs to seal the deal for Roma with seven minutes gone in the second half. "We managed to do something we'd been missing for over 10 years," he said. "Going forward and playing with great teams is a source of pride for all of us". Roma coach Eusebio Di Francesco took Dzeko off just before the end so he could get a standing ovation from the Roma faithful. "It wasn't for me but for all the lads," said Dzeko It was Dzeko's first goal in a knockout phase of the Champions League. Looking forward to Friday's draw, Dzeko said "all the teams are strong, we'll play our best, to our utmost force, with any of them". Flanker Alessandro Florenzi said "Dzeko is our strength, our spearhead, and we're going to keep close hold on him". From Boston, owner James Paolotta commented: "It was a great victory. Di Francesco, for his part, said "Rome deserved 10 out of 10 for application, I saw a mature team, that played a careful game. "We were good at not conceding anything to our opponents". Juve, meanwhile, are going into Friday's draw with the prospect of being four points clear of Napoli at the top of Serie A if they beat Atalanta Wednesday night. Boss Max Allegri said "the title race won't be over even if we win". As for Friday's draw, he echoed the Roma players in saying "they're all strong, bring it on". Juve got through to the quarters after beating Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 at Wembley and 4-3 on aggregate.
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