Real Madrid has had an extraordinary run to the Champions League final, and it may well be written in the stars that they could win this one too.
The Los Blancos were outplayed for extended periods by PSG, Chelsea, and most recently, Manchester City, yet still managed to sail through in all three games.
They’ll be underdogs in the final, and eliminating French giants would see them receive a backlash from the loyal Parisiens, with the finals set to be held in Paris. You may look at it in another way too. Karim Benzema is French, and the country could unite to cheer for their son.
Liverpool breezed through the group stages, winning all six games, but there have been some setbacks since then.
The Reds were defeated by Inter Milan at home and only drew with Benfica at Anfield, but they had done enough in the away legs to advance.
Jurgen Klopp’s team qualified for the final after a 2-0 win against Villarreal on Merseyside, but they had to withstand a rare scare in Spain.
Boulaye Dia and Francis Coquelin drew the game level before halftime, but Liverpool responded with Fabinho, Luis Diaz, and Sadio Mane goals in the second half.
Mohamed Salah has already stated his desire to avenge a 3-1 defeat in the 2018 Champions League final, but Carlo Ancelotti’s men will not take that lightly.
Counter-attacks may expose them at the back, as that is an area the Spaniards seem to have perfected.
Real Madrid’s journey
Real have faced several challenges during their season, not least an early setback at the Bernabeu to Moldovan minnows Sheriff.
They did, however, win five other group games, including two clean-sheet wins over Inter.
The Whites lost 1-0 away to PSG in the round of 16 and fell on home soil until a Karim Benzema hat-trick turned things around.
Benzema scored another treble in a 3-1 quarter-final victory over Chelsea, although the Blues had a 3-0 lead in Spain.
On 80 minutes, Rodrygo leveled the aggregate score, and Benzema sealed the matter in extra time.
Manchester City, who won 4-3 at Etihad Stadium and led 1-0 in the 90th minute in Madrid, added to the drama.
Rodrygo’s remarkable double forced extra time, and who better than Benzema to score a penalty to finish off another spectacular comeback?
Benzema already has 15 goals in the tournament, seven more than Salah of Liverpool, and the veteran striker is expected to score the game’s last goal at Stade de France.
Vinicius Junior, whose speed would definitely bother Trent Alexander-Arnold, might potentially cause chaos, as he did when Real upset Liverpool 3-1 in the quarter-finals last season.
Liverpool are hunting on all fronts, and you can read all Vwin’s predictions on the domestic cup final with Chelsea this coming weekend, and a tasking run-in as they chase Manchester City for the Premier League title to the wire. On the other hand, Madrid are focusing all their energy on winning their 13th European title. They have already secured the La Liga title, and coach Ancelotti will have the luxury of resting key players in the remaining matches, a luxury his counterpart cannot enjoy at Liverpool.
It remains a close call, and there is everything to play for in the finals. Liverpool are out to avenge the 2018 disappointment, but Real Madrid wear the European Royalty tag for a reason.