Bologna fans are celebrating in the city streets after securing their first ever UEFA Champions League qualification and Riccardo Orsolini gave a DAZN reporter a lift.

The Rossoblu had done their bit with a 2-0 victory away to Napoli on Saturday, but were pushed over the line this evening by Atalantaโ€™s 2-1 victory over Roma.

That mathematically guaranteed Bologna will finish in the top five and therefore have a place in the new, expanded Champions League for 2024-25.

Although the club had been in the preliminary round of the old European Cup in 1964, they were eliminated immediately.

They had not entered any UEFA tournament since reaching the Intertoto Cup Final in 2002, losing 5-3 on aggregate to Fulham over two legs.

DAZN had reporter Alessio Di Giuseppe outside the training ground, who was waving to the players and coach Thiago Motta as they drove out, having watched the game together.

What he was not expecting was Orsolini to stop, open the door and give the reporter a lift to the celebrations in the city centre.

They continued transmitting with his phone from inside the car as Orsolini drove them along and gave an impromptu interview.

โ€œWe had the day off today, but we all came together to watch the Atalanta-Roma game with a beer, some good foodโ€ฆ Afterwards we told the coach he had to give us tomorrow off too.โ€

Adding another level of strangeness was Orsolini receiving a FaceTime call from Bologna teammate Lorenzo De Silvestri.

Orsolini has thought for Mihajlovic

He confirmed that although Thiago Motta is the coach this season, there is certainly something of Sinisa Mihajlovicโ€™s influence in this Champions League qualification.

โ€œOf course there is. He laid the foundations of this team, he passed on that determination we learned from him. Our thoughts certainly go to him.

โ€œIโ€™ll be honest, as soon as Atalanta-Roma finished, my mind went to Sinisa.โ€

Mihajlovic was the Bologna coach from January 2018 to September 2022, battling against leukaemia twice during his tenure, succumbing to the illness in December 2022.

Orsolini also tried to play the Champions League anthem on his car klaxon.



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