Atalanta wins to close in on Champions League places

Sassuolo's Merih Demiral celebrates with his teammates after scoring his team's first goal during the Italian Serie A soccer match between Sassuolo and Chievo Verona at Mapei Stadium in Reggio Emilia, Italy, Thursday, April 4, 2019. (Elisabetta Baracchi/ANSA via AP)
Sassuolo's Merih Demiral jubilates with his teammate Mehdi Bourabia, right, after scoring his second goal during the Italian Serie A soccer match between Sassuolo and Chievo Verona at Mapei Stadium in Reggio Emilia, Italy, Thursday, April 4, 2019. (Elisabetta Baracchi/ANSA via AP)

ROME — Atalanta produced four goals in the opening 15 minutes of a 4-1 win over visiting Bologna in Serie A on Thursday to move within one point of the Champions League places.

Josip Ilicic scored twice and also set up Atalanta's third from Hans Hateboer.

Duvan Zapata also scored, giving the Colombia striker 20 goals in 30 matches to move within one goal of the league lead held by Fabio Quagliarella of Sampdoria.

Riccardo Orsolini pulled one back for Bologna, which remained one point from safety.

Atalanta is fifth, one point behind AC Milan.

Also, Sassuolo took a big step toward staying up with a dominant 4-0 win over last-place Chievo Verona, which is nearing relegation.

Turkey defender Merih Demiral scored a brace with two headers in the first half and Manuel Locatelli and Domenico Berardi added goals after the break.

Chievo forward Emanuele Giaccherini had one goal disallowed by the VAR then had a penalty saved by Andrea Consigli near the end.

Sassuolo is 11th, eight points above the drop zone, while Chievo is buried at the bottom with only one win.

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More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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