Are you as excited as I am?
This years UEFA Champions League finals feature four teams that promise to deliver exciting, high octane football with goals aplenty. At the end of it all, two teams will emerge to advance to the showpiece Champions League Final at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium in Madrid.
Who will prevail to win it all?
Tuesday 30th April
Tottenham vs Ajax
This tie features the two teams who have progressed through the competition against all odds to earn unexpectedly in the semifinals.
This Ajax team is the Cinderella story of this year’s Champions League tournament. A young underdog team with an average age of 22.5 years, Ajax pushed on from their run to the Europa League final last season to earn a place in the semifinals, on merit and not luck.
They performed exceedingly well in the Group Stage, narrowly finishing 2nd to Bayern Munich. They then embarked on a devastating run through the Knockout Phase, leaving powerhouses like Real Madrid in their wake. Their victories were even more amazing for needing dominating 2nd leg away wins.
Tottenham on the other hand overturned their horrible start in a tough UCL Group featuring Barcelona, Inter Milan and PSV to reach the Knockout Phase against the odds. They then dispatched Borussia Dortmund with unexpected ease, before overcoming tournament favorites Manchester City in an amazing tie. Their 2nd leg 7-goal thriller was one for the history books.
For this tie, Ajax are well rested, having had their domestic league fixture rescheduled to allow them to prepare. Only wing-back Nouri Mazraoui is a doubt with an ankle injury; otherwise they’ll be at full strength.
Spurs on the other hand have personnel issues with Harry Kane injured and Heung Min Son suspended. Nevertheless, they’ve shown throughout this season that they have what it takes to pull together and overcome adversity.
Wednesday 1st May
This tie features the two remaining tournament powerhouses, on paper looking worthy of a final. Barcelona, a virtual fixture at this round of the competition, come up against last year’s beaten finalists Liverpool — Must see TV!
Barcelona comfortably advanced from their UCL Group, then easily dispatched Lyon and Manchester United with typically imperious performances. They haven’t been significantly troubled in the tournament yet, but that’s about to change.
Liverpool emerged from a difficult group featuring Paris St. Germain, Napoli and Crvena Zvedza. A Round of 16 pairing against Bayern Munich looked to be a huge obstacle, yet Jurgen Klopp’s men made light work of the German champions. They then sailed comfortably through two legs against Porto.
For this tie, Barcelona arrive at full strength, missing only Rafinha with a long term knee injury. They wrapped up the La Liga title at the weekend with a comfortable win over Levante and will be in good spirits for this tie.
Liverpool will also be fit and raring to go, having comfortably beaten Huddersfield in their league fixture, rescheduled a day early last Friday to give them extra recovery time. Only Roberto Firmino is a slight injury doubt, but he should have recovered in time for this one.
Are you geared up to watch this week’s matches? Whom do you think will get to the Final? Have you revamped your team? Who’s your captain? Please join us in the comments as all of the exciting action unfolds!