For a second time in three years the Champions League final will see Real Madrid looking to silence their noisy neighbours when they meet Atletico at the San Siro in Milan on May 28th. Ahead of the all-Spanish final, online betting firm Sports Interaction has provided the ultimate guide to the Champions League finals since the competition first began.
Sports Interaction’s Champions League odds currently have Atletico listed as about a 2-1 underdog to the favoured Madrid side.
The teams previously met two years ago in Lisbon for the first final fixture involving clubs from the same city. Atletico had the title agonisingly wrenched from their grasp in the 93rd minute of the game when Sergio Ramos headed in an equaliser to take the tie to extra time. Real then went on to win the game 4-1 securing their tenth European Cup – ‘La Décima’.
Los Blancos will hope to contest the final this year in their famous all-white kit as seven previous winners have picked up the trophy wearing white – including Real on three occasions. In contrast, Atletico will be the first team to capture the crown in red, white and blue if they are victorious.
Finals can sometimes be something of an anti-climax but in 23 previous Champions League deciders we’ve seen an average of 2.7 goals scored per game. In the five previous games contested by teams from the same country, goals have been a plenty. Real have hit the back of the net seven times in their two previous all-Spanish finals so fans should expect a goal fest.
Could the winner this year be decided on penalties? The history books suggest we could be headed that way. In the three previous finals held in Italy, two of the games have been decided on spot kicks.
According to the figures, you’d be a fool to miss the second half, as this is when most clubs have netted in previous finals. We could be in for a nail biter as stats show 23% of teams in the past have managed to get on the score sheet in the final 15 minutes of the game. It’s also worth noting that the only time the title has been decided in extra time was the last meeting of Real and Atletico in the 2014 final.
Many believe discipline will be a key role in who will go home with the cup this year. On average, 4.3 yellow cards are handed out in Champions League finals with only two reds being produced in the competition’s 23-year history. The previous meeting of these two teams at this stage resulted in 12 yellows, so expect fireworks when they lock horns again.
This will be the fourth time two foreign managers have competed for the crown and in Diego Simeone and Zinedine Zidane we have two legends of the game going head-to-head. Zidane has previously won the title as a player with Real back in 2002, whereas Simeone has yet to taste success in the competition.
According to the research, there have been nine players named Diego involved in Champions League finals over the years with seven of those being on the losing side. Will Atletico suffer the same fate this year?
Key Players: Ronaldo vs Griezmann
Ahead of the blockbuster Champions League final on May 28th between city rivals Real and Atletico Madrid, betting firm Sports Interaction has taken an alternative look at two of the star players from each team – Cristiano Ronaldo and Antoine Griezmann.
Both have been on fire in this year’s competition with Ronaldo having netted 16 times in 11 appearances for Real. Griezmann has racked up a respectable seven goals in 12 games for Atletico, most notably grabbing a crucial away goal in the Red & Blue’s semi-final game vs. Bayern Munich.
On the field, the pair are synonymous with godly football skills, but off it both are prone to gaffes from time-to-time. Ronaldo was recently pictured whilst on the bench injured watching a video of himself on his phone. Television cameras also recently caught Griezmann when his shorts slipped down during a game to reveal Spongebob Sqaurepants underwear.
Modern footballers achieve wealth most can only dream of and with that comes a fleet of luxury vehicles. When it comes to personal car collections Ronaldo trumps Griezmann tenfold. CR7 owns 19 cars including the world’s most expensive car the Bugatti Veyron. The Atletico forward is known to cruise the streets of Madrid in his Maserati Gran Turismo S.
It’s true what they say, money can’t buy you style. Ronaldo and Griezmann have proven that time and time again, with both regularly posting photos of their less-than-suave attire to their social media pages.
Star footballers are regularly seen with beautiful women on their arms and Ronaldo comes up trumps against Griezmann yet again in this field. The Galatico has dated a string of famous beauties over the years including Paris Hilton, Kim Kardashian and Russian model Irina Shayk. Griezmann is more low-key when it comes to his relationship history. His current girlfriend is a French fashion blogger Erika.
Both will have to be on their A-game come May 28th in Milan when the ultimate prize is up for grabs.