May 26th, its been 8 months and 13 days since the start of the Champions League group stage and it all boils down to two teams Liverpool and Real Madrid. Predictions have come in, both sets of fans are Parading the Ukranian Capital and the stage is set for the biggest game of the Season.
Jurgen Klopp’s attacking brand of football has been effective at Liverpool and though some questions with regard to their defense remain unanswered, their brute force attack has more than made up for any errors in defense.
Form Guide: DWDLLW
Predicted XI: Karius, Van Dijk, Lovren, Robertson, Alexander-Arnold, Milner, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Firmino, Mane, Salah
Strengths: Undoubtedly Liverpool’s front three of Firmino, Mane, and Salah is their biggest strength. The attacking trio has scored an unbelievable 127 goals in all competitions and the whole of Merseyside would be hoping their beloved forwards could give one last push in the biggest game of the Season.
Weaknesses: Liverpool’s defense has come under a lot of criticism over the last year, the onus will be on record signing Virgil Van Dijk to make sure there are no defensive slip-ups.
Zinedine Zidane’s Real Madrid are clear Favourites, Madrid is seasoned campaigners and will be appearing in their third consecutive final. The Spanish media and the staff at Real Madrid are claiming this Finale as their ‘easiest’, will these statements translate into a third consecutive Champions League title or would it be a case of overconfidence, we’ll have to wait and watch.
Form Guide: WDDLWD
Predicted XI: Navas, Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Marcelo; Casemiro, Modric, Kroos; Isco, Ronaldo, Asensio
Strengths: More than anything, Real Madrid’s experience is their biggest strength with 46 Champions League medals in their squad, The Los Blancos will know exactly what to do and how to do it.
Weakness: Real Madrid doesn’t have visible weaknesses but will have to careful on the wings as Salah and Mane will be lightning quick down the wing, right-back Dani Carvajal hasn’t been in the best form either.
With reports in England confirming that Liverpool’s wingers Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane will be fasting and will break the fast during the holy ‘iftar’ hour ( sunset ) which is just half an hour before Kick-off, although it is wonderful to see the Liverpool duo practising their Religion and staying true to it, the fasting could backfire. The Liverpool attack is solely dependent on pace and just half an hour of food and drink may not be enough to replenish them, or logic could be defied and the almighty may be with Liverpool today!
Watch it live on SonyLIV