Connect with us

UCL

PREVIEW: UEFA Champions League Final

It is truly the Kings Table of club football! And so, it is truly right and just that we see these two mammoth clubs contest Europe’s crown. Jurgen Klopp, the supreme advisor who has seen his charge return to their former glory! Carlo Ancelotti, the subtle Godfather ensuring respect and tradition are maintained in the Spanish Capital. It’s the UEFA Champions League final.

09966652

It is truly the Kings Table of club football! And so, it is truly right and just that we see these two mammoth clubs contest Europe’s crown. Jurgen Klopp, the supreme advisor who has seen his charge return to their former glory! Carlo Ancelotti, the subtle Godfather ensuring respect and tradition are maintained in the Spanish Capital. It’s the UEFA Champions League final.

Two women looking excitedly at cellphone

The stage is set in the city of Love, but I doubt love, in any of its forms, will make an appearance come Saturday evening!

To Win (90 mins)

Liverpool 11/10
Draw 26/10
Real Madrid 23/10

To Lift the Cup

Liverpool 9/20
Real Madrid 15/10

Liverpool

At the time of writing, Liverpool head into this Champions League final slipping on the precipice of a season quad… oh sorry… treble! … (Ok that was probably unnecessarily drenched with ‘tongue in cheek’ dressing, but here we are!)

Look, the Reds have been brilliant this season! The fact that they have become a side who can compete on almost every front in the season is a testament and powerful nod toward the work Jurgen Klopp and his team have done.

I’m not going to jump on the bandwagon and give Liverpool plaudits for the ‘grueling’ route that have had to take to get to the final, but they have swatted some serious European clubs en route to the city of Love. That should stand them in good stead considering they now face the most decorated football club in all of Europe.

I’m not going to speak about the goals and the victories that Liverpool have enjoyed so far this season – it has been extensively documented already. Instead, I want to comment on the mentality which has become palpable to the point that you must admit to feeling every time you see Liverpool play. They don’t ever look as though they know when they have been beaten.

Jurgen Klopp’s side have only tasted defeat once this calendar year (against Inter Milan in March) and – at least on paper – look to be the better side. They are as close to a banker (again) as one can get in the European final. My only concern is, should they not get out of the blocks quickly, Real Madrid can put the game beyond them.

The Reds might be without Thiago, but with a well-rested Mo Salah, Sadio Mane and Luis Diaz you can be rest assured they will score. But how well do they contain the weapons held by Los Blancos? 

Liverpool route to the final:

Round of 16: (On aggregate) 2-1 vs. Inter Milan

Quarter-Finals: (On aggregate) 6-4 vs. Benfica

Semi-Finals: (On aggregate) 5-2 vs. Villarreal

Real Madrid

Real Madrid have had a season which is itself almost a microcosm of their club – and probably something of their opponents’ recent persona. You just can never count them out, especially on the biggest stage…under the brightest lights…for all of the marbles.

Lest we forget that Real Madrid were 2-0 down to PSG in the 61st minute of their round of 16 clash; beat Chelsea 3-1 in the first leg of the semi-final before welcoming three unanswered goals in the second leg; and then 5-3 down to City on the cusp of stoppage time before performing the great escape through their unrelenting passion and French talisman upfront.

I don’t think it would be considered an office ‘wildcard’ statement if I said that Karim Benzema was playing like the best player in the world right now and at times even pulling his side through dark places! Then again, it might help to have the likes of Rodrygo and Vinicius Junior supporting him.

Unlike their English counterparts, Real Madrid managed to get over the line and win the La Liga title for their fans and a pleased Carlo Ancelotti. There is no love lost between these two sides and given their general history, let alone their history in this tournament, this fixture has all the makings of an absolute humdinger.

Real Madrid route to the final:

Round of 16: (On aggregate) 3-2 vs. PSG

Quarter-Finals: (On aggregate) 5-4 vs. Chelsea

Semi-Finals: (On aggregate) 6-5 vs. Manchester City

Predicted Line-ups:

Liverpool (4-3-3)

Allison; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Keita; Salah, Mane, Diaz.

Real Madrid (4-3-3)

Courtois; Carvajal, Militao, Alaba, Mendy; Kroos, Casemiro, Modric; Valverde, Benzema, Vinicius Junior.

Prediction: Draw/Real Madrid + BTTS (15/10)

If this football game was being played on paper, Liverpool walks it (at a canter). However, football isn’t played on paper and heck at times it doesn’t even make sense! Real Madrid has quality players throughout their spine and shouldn’t be underestimated. This is a side who have found a way to win against the very best teams in the world this season.

Liverpool will not be playing toward a ‘Kop’ and their 12th man will have to remain in Merseyside – and yes, I say that tentatively, knowing what their passionate fans are capable of. I think this is going to be a spectacle with goals galore…but within 90 minutes, back the Spanish giants to get a result and both teams to score at 15/10. Liverpool haven’t always shown a killer instinct within the 90-minute window – and so I’m not ruling out extra-time and late twists – but for me the Madrid Win/Draw Double Chance is nugget among the excitement. This is Spanish pedigree after all.

Register Now with Hollywoodbets Mobile

More in UCL

Official Partners

HOLLYWOOD SPORTSBOOK IS A LICENSED BETTING OPERATOR. HOLLYWOODBETS SUPPORTS RESPONSIBLE GAMBLING. NO PERSONS UNDER THE AGE OF 18 YEARS ARE PERMITTED TO GAMBLE. WINNERS KNOW WHEN TO STOP.SOUTH AFRICAN RESPONSIBLE GAMBLING FOUNDATION TOLL FREE COUNSELLING LINE 0800 006 008 OR WHATSAPP HELP TO 076 675 0710.