Champions League (UCL ) Final Preview – Liverpool v Real Madrid

Liverpool are enjoying a remarkable football season although they missed out on an unprecedented quadruple on Sunday against Cityzens on the Premier League table.

Real Madrid, on the other hand, may have already been crowned La Liga champions, but their European campaign has been nothing short of incredible following a series of stellar performances and comebacks.

Their journey to the UCL final could fill a novel – however, the world awaits the final chapter which is yet to be written. The Reds and Los Blancos meet in the 2022 UEFA Champions League final on Saturday 28 May.

The UCL Champions League final at a glance:

When: Saturday 28 May (8PM WAT)
Where: Stade de France, Saint-Denis, France
Who: Six-time winners Liverpool face 13-time winners Real Madrid
What: 66th European Cup final

Liverpool Route to final:

Group B winners, 2-1 agg vs Inter (R16), 6-4 agg vs Benfica (QF), 5-2 agg vs Villarreal (SF)
Form Guide (all competitions, most recent first): WWDWDW
Where they finished: 2nd in Premier League, FA Cup winners, League Cup winners

Real Madrid Route to final: Group D winners, 3-2 agg vs Paris (R16), 5-4 agg vs Chelsea (QF), 6-5 agg vs Man. City (SF)
Form Guide (all competitions, most recent first): DDWLWW
Where they finished: Spanish champions

UCL Final Facts (Liverpool)
The Reds have won six of their nine previous European Cup finals:
1976/77: Liverpool 3-1 Borussia Mönchengladbach
1977/78: Liverpool 1-0 Club Brugge
1980/81: Liverpool 1-0 Real Madrid
1983/84: Liverpool 1-1 Roma (aet; 4-2 on penalties)
1984/85: Juventus 1-0 Liverpool
2004/05: Liverpool 3-3 AC Milan (aet; 3-2 on penalties)
2006/07: AC Milan 2-1 Liverpool
2017/18: Real Madrid 3-1 Liverpool
2018/19: Liverpool 2-0 Tottenham

• This is Liverpool’s 23rd UEFA final. In addition to their nine European Cup appearances, they are three-time winners of the UEFA Cup/UEFA Europa League (1973, 1976, 2001), losing the 2016 final, and won the UEFA Super Cup in 1977, 2001, 2005 and 2019, losing in 1978 and 1984. They also lost in the 1965/66 European Cup Winners’ Cup final, and the 1981 and 1984 European/South American Cup. Their overall record in UEFA finals is therefore W13 L9.

• Liverpool’s 2019 scorers Salah and Origi could join the list of seven players who have found the net in two UEFA Champions League finals, as could Mané after his goal against Madrid in 2018. Gareth Bale, Samuel Eto’o, Lionel Messi, Sergio Ramos, Raúl González, Mario Mandžukić and Cristiano Ronaldo, who is the only player to find the net in three, have all struck in multiple finals.

Real Madrid UCL Final Facts 

• Real Madrid have won a record 13 European Cups, and have triumphed in their last seven finals, all in the UEFA Champions League. Overall their final record is W13 L3:
1955/56: Real Madrid 4-3 Reims
1956/57: Real Madrid 2-0 Fiorentina
1957/58: Real Madrid 3-2 AC Milan (aet)
1958/59: Real Madrid 2-0 Reims
1959/60: Real Madrid 7-3 Eintracht Frankfurt
1961/62: Benfica 5-3 Real Madrid
1963/64: Inter 3-1 Real Madrid
1965/66: Real Madrid 2-1 Partizan
1980/81: Liverpool 1-0 Real Madrid
1997/98: Real Madrid 1-0 Juventus
1999/00: Real Madrid 3-0 Valencia
2001/02: Real Madrid 2-1 Bayer Leverkusen
2013/14: Real Madrid 4-1 Atlético de Madrid (aet)
2015/16: Real Madrid 1-1 Atlético de Madrid (aet; 5-3 on penalties)
2016/17: Real Madrid 4-1 Juventus
2017/18: Real Madrid 3-1 Liverpool

• In 2017 Madrid became the first side to make a successful UEFA Champions League title defence. They were the first team to retain the European Cup since Milan (1989, 1990). Their 2018 victory made them the first team to win the trophy three years in a row twice.

• Bale, who found the net against Atlético in 2014 and Liverpool four years later, could join Cristiano Ronaldo in scoring in three finals. Marcelo (2014), Marco Asensio and Casemiro (both 2017) and Karim Benzema (2018) are looking to join the list of players to have scored in two finals.

• Luka Modrić, Benzema, Dani Carvajal, Marcelo, Bale and Isco could all appear in their fifth UEFA Champions League final victory for Madrid.

• In addition to those six, Toni Kroos and Casemiro both featured in 2016, 2017 and 2018 while Asensio came on as a substitute in 2017 and 2018, as did Lucas Vázquez in 2016 and Nacho in 2018.

• Madrid’s triumph in Kyiv was the 11th UEFA Champions League win for a Spanish side – five more than the next highest-ranked nation, England, and six more than Italy. Germany (four) is the only other country to have recorded multiple victories.

• This is Madrid’s 33rd UEFA final. In addition to their 16 European Cup appearances, they were UEFA Cup winners in 1985 and 1986 and European Cup Winners’ Cup runners-up in 1971 and 1983. They lifted the UEFA Super Cup in 2002, 2014, 2016 and 2017 alongside defeats in 1998, 2000 and 2018, and won the European/South American Cup in 1960, 1998 and 2002, losing in 1966 and 2000.

Our prediction: 

Correct score prediction: Liverpool 2 – 1 Real Madrid
Denied the title by Manchester City, Liverpool narrowly missed out on the Premier League title last weekend but have still won two trophies already this season with victories in the League Cup and FA Cup as consolatio. Now they are out for revenge on Madrid after losing the 2018 Champions League final.

Here’s our prediction, what is yours?

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