July 22, 2020 / 11:00 PM / 23 days ago

Zaniolo's extraordinary solo goal caps Roma rout

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Europa League - Group J - Istanbul Basaksehir F.K. v AS Roma - Basaksehir Fatih Terim Stadium, Istanbul, Turkey - November 28, 2019 AS Roma's Nicolo Zaniolo reacts REUTERS/Murad Sezer

(Reuters) - Nicolo Zaniolo ran 60 metres of the field, leaving a trail of opponents in his wake, as he scored an extraordinary solo goal to cap AS Roma’s 6-1 win away to relegated SPAL in Serie A on Wednesday.

The 21-year-old, who has only recently returned from a injury layoff of nearly six months, collected the ball inside his own half.

He turned past one opponent, held off another as he crossed the halfway line, skipped past a third and charged towards goal before cutting inside another defender and firing the ball into the top corner.

Roma’s win took them back into fifth place with 61 points, which would earn them a place in the Europa League group stage, although they still have a mathematical chance of catching fourth-placed Lazio (69 points) and qualifying for the Champions League.

Nikola Kalinic gave Roma a 10th-minute lead before Alberto Cerri replied for SPAL with an acrobatic header.

Carlos Perez put Roma back in front in the 38th minute and they ran riot after halftime with a goal from Aleksandar Kolarov and a brace from Bruno Peres before Zaniolo produced his masterpiece.

Reporting by Brian Homewood, editing by Ed Osmond

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