It’s the day we have all been waiting for. Months and months later and it has finally arrived. Blackpool v. West Ham United! Two European giants come together for a shot to compete in the best league in the world. It is not to be missed!
Nah, but unless you have been living under a rock, SUPPLIES!!!!, The Champions League final is this Saturday. Months and months of hard work will come to an end after 90 (or 120, depending) minutes at the Allianz Arena. The amount of emotion I have poured in to this kind of makes me want to hide under the covers forever or at least jump off a cliff. Anyways.
Tons of Erfolgsfans have come out of the woodwork to support Bayern this week, which is ~*totez kewl*~ in our book. Fans of Tottenham Hotspur have designed and created their own Lederhosen to show support, along with a new crest. Ordinary German fans who otherwise loathe Bayern have announced their support. Sebastian Vettel opened his
big ugly mouth, Felix Magath has spoken the gospel, Claudio Pizzaman even showed up (perhaps he’s just there to sign a contract, RUMOR MILL). It’s all coo’ though. We’ll take all the support we can get.
Now I must inspire confidence (or fear) in you before we continue any further.
- Against English teams, Bayern has won 13, drawn 12, and lost 10.
- Bayern has only ever lost to 1 English team at home (Norwich City).
- Against German teams, Chelsea has won 7, drawn 2, and lost 4.
- All of Chelsea’s losses have been in Germany.
- Bayern eliminated 3 champions (Madrid, Man City, Basel) and 1 cup winner (Marseille) on their path to the final.
- Chelsea eliminated 1 cup winner (Benfica).
- Bayern is unbeaten at home in the Champions League this season.
- 11 of Mario’s 12 CL goals have been scored at Allianz.
As for the squad, it’s all up in the air thanks to UEFA’s tricky little pain in the butt of a yellow card rule. Player-of-the-Year Badstuber, Nugget-of-the-Year Alaba, and Player-of-my-Fantasies Gustavo are all suspended for the final. Holger and Alaba have handled their suspension well, taking to the streets of Munich on a highly publicized first date. Ah, young love. Perhaps Pepperoni Nipples will even make it up to bat, if you know what I mean. When the team wasn’t striking poses with a Jamaican gold medalist, they were back to the ol’ grindstone. There were some absences in training following the embarrassment of last weekend, but everyone did return eventually with their tail tucked between their legs. Daniel van Buyten completed full training even! Thanks to these suspensions, I have no idea who will be starting.
Here are our options:
Lahm (Rafinha) – Tymo (DVB) – Boateng – Contento (Lahm)
Schweinsteiger – Kroos (Tymo)
Robben – Müller (Kroos) – Ribery
For Chelsea, martyr John Terry along with Ramires, Ivanovic, and Meireles are all suspended. Not to worry, though. Less than 24 hours after the completion of the semi-finals, it was confirmed that John Terry will be able to lift the trophy at the end! Isn’t that sweet? Saving Philipp Lahm the muscle strain. Will he also be able to offer his services at the end of the Euro tournament this summer? Anyways, Cahill and Luiz were doubtful coming in to this week, but were able to complete full training. Malouda, however, completed an individual work out. I’m not as familiar with Chelsea’s squad, especially following these suspensions, but it was rumored that both Torres and Drogba will lead their lines. You can expect Mata, Lampard, Cole and company to fall in behind them.
Reaching this final has been quite the ride. A little over a year ago, our coach, though quite the songstress, was fired. Our players were stinking up the field worse than a Kölner smoke bomb. We finished third, and there was no guarantee we would even have a chance to compete for the a spot in the final at our own stadium the following year. We had no hope for the future. We played Zürich and survived. Then we were placed in the Group of Death. Manchester City, now Champions of the Premier League, Napoli, and Villarreal. We lost one of our best players, our spirit animal, our engine in midfield, our pig climber – Bastian Schweinsteiger – through a nasty shoulder injury that shook the guys on the pitch to the core. Against all odds, we won the group. Then came the knockout stages. We fell to the Swiss, throwing Shifty Eyes’ job in to jeopardy. Then we came back stronger than ever. Finished the job in Munich. Took care of Marseille. Then came up against one of the best teams in the world. A 2-1 win in Munich, down two goals at the Santiago Bernabeu, only to come back and win it in a nail-biting, emotional penalty shootout. And here we sit.
You all know the story. You all lived it, breathed it, and shed tears over it. And, yes, here we sit. This team is less than 48 hours from fulfilling their dreams and ours. This team is less than 48 hours from writing history. After all we have been through, you can’t help but feel that this was written. That this was meant to happen. Our stadium. Our team. Our red shirts. Our fans. Our trophy. Our glory. As Ribery said, we must not think about defeat. We can only win together. So, Bayern fans everywhere. You will wake up this Saturday, put on your jerseys, say a prayer (if you’re in to that), and support your team like you never have before. Be proud of how far we’ve come, and hope that we will be rewarded in the end. Overcoming all the odds has made this team a worthy winner. Losing is not an option, especially at home. Your team needs you this weekend. Show your support and let the dream come alive.
Denkt rot-weiß. Lebt rot-weiß. Fühlt rot-weiß.
Check dem local listings, y’all. I’m sure you’ll be able to watch it, against all odds, somewhere and somehow.