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Forlan strikes give Atletico Europa League crown

Atletico players lift the trophy after their extra time victory over Fulham.
Atletico players lift the trophy after their extra time victory over Fulham.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Diego Forlan scores both goals as Atletico Madrid beat Fulham 2-1 in Europa League final
  • Simon Davies leveled Forlan's first half strike but he struck again in extra time
  • Atletico were winning European club trophy for the first time in their history
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(CNN) -- Diego Forlan scored a dramatic extra time winner as Atletico Madrid beat Fulham 2-1 in Hamburg to win the Europa League final on Wednesday night.

It was the second of the match for Forlan, who had put Atletico ahead after 32 minutes with Simon Davies equalizing for the English Premier League side six minutes later.

Atletico created the better chances in normal and added time with Sergio Aguero a constant threat and it was the Argentine star who set up the winner for his strike partner with four minutes remaining in the second period of extra time.

He found space on the left of the Fulham defense and his low cross was diverted past Mark Schwarzer by Forlan's clever touch which took a slight deflection off Brede Hangeland.

Fulham, who had upset the odds more than once to reach the final, could not force a second equalizer and it was Atletico, so often in the shadow of their city neighbors Real, who were left to celebrate their second major European club trophy after a gap of 48 years.

Fulham manager Roy Hodgson took a chance on the fitness of star striker Bobby Zamora, who is struggling with an Achilles injury that has ended his England World Cup hopes.

But it was Atletico who had the best of the early skirmishes and Forlan saw an effort thud against a post.

But he was on target just after the half hour mark as an Agueuro scuffed effort fell into his path and he beat Schwarzer to open the scoring.

Zamora was clearly less than fully fit, but his burst caused chaos in the Spanish defense and when Zoltan Gera crossed from the right a slight deflection saw the ball fall perfectly into the path of Davies, who volleyed home.

Uruguay star Forlan pulled a fine save out of Australian international Schwarzer before halftime but the other side of the break saw Davies nearly add to his tally.

Zamora went off to give way to Clint Dempsey and both sides had promising attacking moments as players tired.

In extra time, Atletico again looked the more threatening and when Raul Garcia cut the ball into the path of Aguero he looked certain to score but put his effort into the side netting.

Penalties loomed until Aguero did superbly to keep control of the ball down the left and his cross found Forlan the more alert to end Fulham's dream.