Champions League Final Storylines

The UEFA Champions League final will take place at Wembley on 1 June. With the semifinals already set we take a look at the potential finals that would have a special meaning.

The first semifinal is a European Classic between Bayern Munich and Real Madrid. The first game will be played at Munich and the tie will be settled at the Santiago Bernabéu. The last three times these teams met on the UCL knockout stages the winner of the tie went on to win the tournament, with Real Madrid coming out on top in all of them 2013/14, 2016/17 and 2017/18. Bayernès last win came in the 2011/12 semi-finals over José Mourinho’s team at the moment and ended up losing the final against Chelsea.

On the opposite side of the draw, Paris Saint-Germain will face Borussia Dortmund in a repeat from this season’s group stage. The BVB topped the group but struggled against Les Parisiens losing 2-0 at Parc des Princes and only managing a 1-1 draw at home, a set of results that would see PSG go through in this instance.

Bayern Munich vs Borussia Dortmund

The last UCL final played at Wembley was in the 2012/13 season, between Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund. The Bavarians won the trophy on that occasion with Arjen Robben scoring the winning goal in the dying moments of the game over a Borussia Dortmund side managed by Jürgen Klopp, with stars like İlkay Gündoğan, Mario Götze and Robert Lewandowski among them.

More than a decade later, both teams still have some players from that historic final between the two German sides. Manuel Neuer and Thomas Müller continue to have important roles in this Bayern team, and will look to lift their third Champions League trophy.

Mats Hummels is back at BVB after his time in red where he also could not win the UCL. As for Marco Reus, one of the few loyal to Dortmund, he will look to close his career with a big trophy that has always seemed to elude him.

PSG vs Bayern Munich

A repeat of the 2019/20 final where Bayern Munich lifted the trophy for the last time over PSG that has never come close to reoccurring since. The infamous final came in the Final 8 in Portugal, an atypical format that had single-game quarter-finals and semi-finals played on neutral ground.

Bayern won the sextuple that season under Hansi Flick in a season to remember for them, while PSG faced a favourable draw on the road to the final, but simply was not strong enough for the Germans.

However, the game ended just 1-0 with some clear missed chances from PSG leaving Les Parisiens the feeling of a hugely wasted opportunity. If the final repeats itself, Thomas Tuchel will be on Bayern’s side this time, looking to be on the bright side of the story.

Real Madrid vs Borussia Dortmund

Los Blancos against The Die Schwarzgelben, two teams that have faced each other many times but with two encounters that stand out from the rest. The first in the 1997/98 edition semifinals, Real Madrid beat the German side by 2-0 in aggregate and went on to lift their first Champions League more than 30 years since their last European Cup in 1966.

The latter one came in the 2012/13 semifinals, the BVB beat Los Blancos 4-1 in Germany and managed to survive in Madrid to progress despite the 2-0 loss. Dortmund had a different fate in the final losing to all-time rivals Bayern Munich in a game that still pains the fans to this day.

Real Madrid vs PSG

The most decorated team in Champions League history against a side desperate to win its first. In this particular case, the story has a main protagonist: Kylian Mbappé. The story that has been circling European football over the last five years but never seems to finalize itself is Mbappé to Real Madrid.

This time seems to be the one, Mbappé has confirmed that he will not continue at PSG next season and all the fingers point towards Madrid. This game would create the biggest story with the French superstar having the chance to finally bring the UCL trophy to Paris in his last year, but at the expense of his future home for the next couple of years.

Regardless of the results in the semifinals, we are set for an exciting UEFA Champions League final that will be the end of a fantastic 2023/24 European season.

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