The Champions League Final
Ray Hudsen (RH): This is it, this is what the entire footballing world has been waiting for all season long; the UEFA Champions League final! Two massive teams contest the trophy today as Giuseppe Bergomi, who rejected his opponents earlier this season, experiences his first final with Inter
and Jose Mourinho leads Manchester City
in their first ever final. Inter have a greater history, with 3 competition wins to their name, but with the ‘Special One’ at the helm of City, nothing is guaranteed until the final whistle is blown.
Phil Schoen (PS): Take a look at the starting lineups here, and today marks an emotional night for Wesley Sneijder, who takes on the team he left two years ago in a 25m euro transfer. He will start out on the left today, but he will be a danger man for City. Ademilson looks to be the key for Inter today, and will start as the lone striker.
9’ PS: It’s an early chance here for Manchester City from the corner, and Sneijder heads across to take it.
RH: He’s got a number of targets to aim for, quite a few big men for City. It’s a good ball in…YAYA TOURE!
PS: YAYA TOURE WITH A POWERFUL HEADER! Manchester City score early in this final, 1-0!
RH: Well that was abysmal marking from Inter! Where was Ranocchia, who was marking him at the start but was lost far too easily.
14’ PS: The captain Zanetti surging forward now, trying to spur on his side. Oh, that’s a terrible tackle from Tevez!
RH: The ref has blown his whistle and…Carlos Tevez sees red! He’s been sent off! City are down to 10 men 14 minutes in, only moments after they’d taken the lead!
PS: The referee didn’t have much of a choice, did he, Tevez went right over the ball and lashed into Zanetti’s leg. Thankfully the skipper’s alright and will continue playing.
38’ RH: Here comes the explosive young winger, Raheem Sterling, bombing down the flank. Excellent to beat Lescott, puts in a cross.
PS: Cleared poorly by Hummels here, it’s bounced off of him and stayed in the box, Ademilson is first to react, ADEMILSON SCORES! Inter are back on level terms, 1-1!
RH: What a wonderful goal, created purely from the pace and dribbling of Raheem Sterling! You can’t forget the scorer, Ademilson, who reacted with jackrabbit speed to poke the ball into the net!
HT’ RH: What a first half of football we’ve experienced, but it’ll be marred by great controversy with the sending off of Carloz Tevez so early in the game.
PS: Well, Tevez didn’t leave him with much choice with a tackle like that and he’s left Mourinho with a lot of trouble for the remainder of the match. We’ll be back after this.
49’ PS: Here comes Yuto Nagatomo, bursting down the left hand side. Ademilson makes a diagonal run, and he’s found well. Adryan waiting for service in the center, can he get a cross in?
RH: He’s whipped it in, poorly struck…IT’S IN! JOE HART WITH A HORRIBLE ERROR! It slipped right through his hands, and Ademilson’s poor cross has turned into his second goal of the evening and gives Inter the lead!
PS: Bergomi is going mad on the sideline with his staff, elation from the manager! Still a ways to go, even against 10 men.
78’ PS: Sloppy from M’Vila there, and Kompany’s won the ball. Space here for a rare City attack, Inter’s been caught out.
RH: Wonderful ball into Sneijder, he’s through on goal…WONDERFUL FINISH! WESLEY SNEIJDER EQUALIZES AGAINST HIS FORMER CLUB!
PS: Just when you thought the 10 men were down and out, Jose Mourinho’s men find a way! Back on level terms, and the classy Sneijder doesn’t celebrate despite the occasion. Wow, what a shocking final this is turning out to be.
RH: Nobody expected that goal, as City have been parking the bus since they lost Tevez.
90+3’ RH: Inter throwing wave after wave forward to win this one in regular time, here comes Muriel.
PS: Excellent play around the box, he finds Ademilson, one touch to Adryan, he’s through on goal…shocking miss! Could you believe it!?
RH: Clear chance to win the Champions League for Adryan, and he’s screwed it wide. The referee’s blown his whistle, we are heading into extra time!
110’ PS: Nagatomo’s gotten into an ugly challenge there with Aguero, and he’s pulled up quite abruptly. Looks like his game is over, and now both sides are reduced to 10 men! M’Vila will drop back to center back, Juan will shift out wide, and Sissoko will play in M’Vila’s role.
FT’ RH: That’s it! It’s over, and we head into penalties to decide the winner of the Champions League for the 2nd time in 3 years! In each of those two years, one time has been decidedly more dominant, and yet the team sitting back more has won each time; Chelsea and Lille. Could Manchester City join them?
PS: Aguero will be the first taker, and he steps up calmly. Quick run up…saved by Handanovic! Brilliant dive to his left to keep it out with his fingertips!
RH: Ademilson will be the first Inter player to shoot. He looks focused but nervous, a good run up…saved by Joe Hart! Two brilliant saves from two brilliant keepers, and we are 0-0 after 1 each.
PS: Wes Sneijder will take the next one for City, up against his old team in the final of the competition he won with that team. He hits it…right down the middle! Handanovic saw it the whole way! Another save!
RH: Adryan will take for Inter now, having missed his last chance deep in injury time of regular time. Can he atone? He steps up…Just like Sneijder! Same penalty, same save, this time from Joe Hart! 0-0 after 2 each, keepers on top!
PS: Wow, you can feel the tension. Mats Hummels steps up, the ex-Dortmund defender, to take the kick. Long run up…slammed into the bottom left corner! Perfect penalty, and we have our first goal! 1-0 to City!
RH: Luis Fernando Muriel will look to equalize here for Inter, can he do it? Short run up…oh what a save! Joe Hart cutting through time and space to palm that one away, and now City in a commanding 1-0 lead after 3!
PS: David Silva to take this one, a goal would put all the pressure on Inter’s next taker to stay alive. Calmly steps up, looking confident…slotted home, side-footed! Sent Handanovic the wrong way!
RH: All the pressure is on young Juan Jesus now, he has to score to keep Inter alive in the shootout. You can see the worry in his face. Good run up…SAVED BY JOE HART! BRILLIANT SHOWING FROM THE ENGLAND KEEPER WHO HAS SAVED ALL FOUR PENALTIES! MANCHESTER CITY ARE THE CHAMPIONS OF EUROPE!
PS: Wow, look at the Manchester City players’ elation! They are going insane, and Jose Mourinho is celebrating right with them! Wonderful, they’ve won their first ever final! Mourinho truly is the ‘Special One’, and it was the ex-Inter player who was most important, Sneijder with an assist and goal to see off Inter!
RH: What a fantastic final, brilliant to the last gasp. Look at the desolate Inter players, on the ground, crying. What an emotional loss for them and their team, a player up for long periods of the match. Juan looks inconsolable, but Bergomi is right with him. The disappointment is in all of their faces.
PS: Here comes Vincent Kompany, and he’s hoisted the trophy! The fans are shouting their lungs out! Manchester City are your UEFA Champions League winners and the kings of Europe!
Manchester City players celebrating.