Chelsea beat Real Madrid 2-0 in the return leg of the UEFA Champions League semi-final at Stamford Bridge in London. Goals from Timo Werner and Mason Mount were enough to oust the 13-time UCL champion Real Madrid 3-1. Thanks to the convincing win, Thomas Tuchel’s men put down an all-English Champions League final with Premier League rivals Manchester City on May 29. The Cityzens beat the 2020 PSG finalists 4-1 in the other semi-final.
While the Champions League final has been decided, concerns have been raised about the venue given the Covid-19 pandemic. Several famous personalities have expressed concerns about Turkey’s host country to the final through social media, despite UEFA confirmation. Hence, it begs the question of whether there will be a change in the venue of the Champions League final.
Would Man City’s first Champions League win, and Pep Guardiola’s first in ten years, mean more than Chelsea’s first since 2012?
Pep Guardiola’s side have reached the European Cup final, which was renamed the Champions League in the 1990s, for the first time in their history after an extensive semi-final victory over Paris Saint-Germain this week, and he is joined by Chelsea. their own impressive victory against Real Madrid, for the second all English final in three years.
The Blues have reached this stage twice before, losing to Manchester United on penalties in 2008 before beating Bayern Munich by the same method four years later, with Thomas Tuchel looking for a better place than his second medal he earned as PSG- manager in 2020..
Even if Manchester City were close to completing the Premier League title, it would still benefit more from lifting their first Champions League trophy in Turkey. hoodoo in Europe’s premier league, where he hasn’t reached the final with Barcelona, Bayern Munich or Manchester City in the last decade – until now.
Manchester city road to final
Record: W11 D1 L0 F25 A4
Top scorer: Riyad Mahrez, Ferran Torres (4)
Semi-finals: 4-1 vs Paris
Quarter-finals: 4-2 vs Dortmund
Round of 16: 4-0 vs Mönchengladbach
Group C: winners
Why they can win it
England’s elected champions have the bit in their teeth in Europe this season. Their offensive brilliance has long been established, but they have added greater defensive strength, conceding just four goals in their 12 games played to date. If overcoming their quarter-final hoodoo was a boost to their confidence, the manner of their semi-final triumph against Paris has certainly cleared all doubts about City’s ability to go all the way.
Campaign so far
The most telling point about City’s group stage campaign was that it ended with the league’s best defensive record, scoring just one after Rúben Dias’ arrival to join a revitalized John Stones in the central defense. After winning Group C, they recorded home and away wins against both Gladbach and Dortmund, before sealing their place in the final with two stunning wins over the 2020 Paris finalists.
Josep Guardiola has used a false-nine system with great success this season, with Riyad Mahrez, Phil Foden, Bernardo Silva, Kevin De Bruyne and even Ilkay Gündoğan all taking turns spearheading City’s attack. Since the Citizens have so far stifled opponents with their relentless insistence and bypass, the Citizens are unlikely to change their approach in Istanbul. As Guardiola said, “We are used to playing a certain way. We can’t do it any other way. ”
The city is ashamed of wealth, but De Bruyne remains their chief. His elegance, vision and impeccable passing range – not to mention his racing and spectacular finish – make him one of the most enjoyable players to watch in world football.
Who’s in charge?
In eleven seasons as first-team boss, Guardiola has won eight league titles, but the last of his two UEFA Champions League winner’s medals came in 2011. Now he only wants to become the sixth coach to win the European Championship. Cup with two different clubs.
Matthew Howarth, husband. City reporter
Chelsea road to final
Record: W8 D3 L1 F22 A4
Top scorer: Olivier Giroud (6)
Semi-finals: 3-1 vs Real Madrid
Quarter-finals: 2-1 vs Porto
Round of 16: 3-0 vs Atlético
Group E: winners
Why they can win it
Chelsea have only been beaten twice since Thomas Tuchel took the lead, but Chelsea are really starting to gel under their German coach. If the front players can continue their progress over the past few months, there is nothing – and no one – for Chelsea to fear. They changed managers mid-season when they won this trophy in 2012, so who says lightning won’t strike twice? Their scalp of City in the FA Cup semi-final gives them even more reason to believe.
Campaign so far
An almost flawless group stage, based on solid defense and the record-breaking Edouard Mendy in goal, set Chelsea on the road. Rarely threatened by the acclaimed Atlético in the eighth finals, they compete against Porto before defeating 13-time champions Real Madrid in the last four games.
Chelsea are approaching the final as they have done every other match under Tuchel: breaking hard in the back and waiting for opportunities on the other side. City will be the favorites, but Tuchel has already beaten them this season in a one-off match – the FA Cup semi-final – and he will treat it the same way. The manner of their victory against Madrid shows their courage, that’s for sure.
N’Golo Kanté may be 30 now, but his influence is showing no signs of waning. He wins trophies, pure and simple, and his bike is just incredible. The midfielder covers every blade of grass, disrupts the opposition – just ask Luka Modrić and Toni Kroos – and rarely wastes the ball. It’s no wonder his trophy cabinet is bulging.
Who’s in charge?
The first man to lead two different clubs to consecutive UEFA Champions League finals, Tuchel has been a revelation since his appointment in January. He won back-to-back titles in France with Paris and reached the final last season, having previously had success with Dortmund in Germany.
- Manchester City lost to Chelsea in 26 Premier League games, more often than against any other team.
- Chelsea have lost nine of their past 12 games at Etihad Stadium in all competitions – including each of their last three league games.
- Chelsea have not lost four consecutive Premier League away matches against the same opponent since it happened against Manchester City from 2009 to 2013.
None of the past 11 Premier League meetings have ended on a tie, with Manchester City winning seven against Chelsea’s four.
- City have won 20 of the 22 Premier League games. The 60 points they have earned on this run are just one less than Chelsea has achieved all season.
- They are just one point away from last season’s final toll of 80.
- Manchester City have lost two of the past three home league matches and could suffer consecutive defeats at the top at the Etihad Stadium for the first time since February 2016.
- A team led by Pep Guardiola has never lost consecutive home games. This is his 221st home game in the top flight as a manager.
- For the first time since October to December 1978, City can collect several goals at home in four consecutive top matches.
- A third Premier League trophy would level Guardiola alongside Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho as the non-British managers who would win the most English top titles.
- Sergio Agüero is short of the Premier League record for the most goals scored for a single club: 183 by Wayne Rooney for Manchester United.
- Agüero is the Premier League’s main goalscorer against Chelsea, with 10 goals.
- Kevin de Bruyne has scored in three consecutive league matches against Chelsea.
- Thomas Tuchel is the first manager to oversee 11 clean sheets in his first 15 Premier League games in charge.
- Chelsea are vying to win three league games in a row without giving in for the first time since November 2017.
- The Blues are unbeaten in their 11 away games in all competitions under Tuchel, conceding only four goals (W8, D3).
- For the first time since a run of 15 from April to November 2014, they can play 12 consecutive away games without a defeat under Jose Mourinho.
- Chelsea are winless in all four league games in 2020-21 against the three teams currently above them in the table, with just two points and one goal.
- All eight of Kai Havertz’s goals for Chelsea in all competitions have been scored in London, including seven at Stamford Bridge.
When and where will the UCL Champions League final be in 2021?
The 2021 Champions League final will be played at Estadio do Dragao in Porto, Portugal. Home to Portuguese Primeira Liga side Porto, it has a seating capacity of 50,000.
It will be the second year in a row that the decision maker will be held in Portugal, with Estadio da Luz in Lisbon hosting the 2020 final.
The Ataturk Olympic Stadium was originally intended to host the 2021 final, but UEFA moved the venue to Portugal following the UK government’s decision to put Turkey on the Covid-19 ‘red list’.
“Fans have suffered more than twelve months without being able to see their teams live and reaching a Champions League final is the pinnacle of club football,” said UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin.
“Denying those supporters the chance to see the game in person was not an option and I am delighted that this compromise has been found.”
The Ataturk Olympic Stadium was also set to host the 2020 final, so the news comes as a blow to the Turkish football authorities, who have now been missed twice due to public health concerns.