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Matteo Pessina (C) and Duvan Zapata (R) celebrate scoring in Bergamo © AFP MIGUEL MEDINA

Football

Pessina double knocks holders Napoli out of Italian Cup

MILAN, Italy, Feb 11 – Italy’s Matteo Pessina scored twice as Atalanta beat holders Napoli 3-1 on aggregate on Wednesday to book a place in the Italian Cup final.

Pessina’s efforts, both set up by Duvan Zapata, were enough to secure a second final in three seasons, after the goalless first leg, where they will face Juventus.

On Tuesday, Juve’s goalless draw with Inter Milan took them to the May 19 final in Rome after winning the first leg 2-1.

Atalanta coach Gian Piero Gasperini made four changes from Saturday’s draw with Torino.

Gennaro Gattuso brought Nigeria attacker Victor Osimhen in for Matteo Politano in five alterations from Napoli’s weekend loss at Genoa.

At the Gewiss Stadium, Colombia forward Zapata opened the scoring on 10 minutes to take his season tally up to 12 goals.

He picked up possession outside the away box and rifled a powerful shot past countryman David Ospina in the Napoli goal.

Pessina doubled the advantage six minutes later in a dominant opening quarter for Gasperini’s men.

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He claimed his second of the campaign after a delicate one-touch assist from Zapata in the box.

The lead was halved eight minutes after the break as the visitors started the second half aggressively.

Osimhen had his side-footed effort deflected in the area before winger Hirving Lozano beat Pierluigi Gollini at the second time of asking.

Atalanta’s place in the final was secured with 12 minutes to play as Pessina claimed his second.

Another tidy assist from Zapata set up the 23-year-old again as Napoli’s defence were caught flat-footed.

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