While this years Champions League final may not have the names of Cristiano Ronaldo, Messi, or Rooney, it has a massive significance for both of the teams fighting for the trophy. This final is probably the most balanced final we’ve ever had, and while both teams are fighting for the treble, there are even deeper story-lines that intertwine between Bayern Munich and Inter Milan.
Both of these teams that are competing for the final haven’t had the best of times recently in the Champions League, especially Inter Milan. And now that Inter has begun to make their stamp on the competition (mostly thanks to Jose Mourinho), it seems possible that Inter can continue with a strong legacy in the top european competition.
Bayern Munich on the other hand have been a bit more prolific in the Champions League, winning the trophy in 2001, and consistently reaching the quarter-finals this past decade. Bayern are beginning to build with young talent and skilled players with Louis van Gaal at the helm, so it seems like they have a solid future in the Champions League as well.
But what is the most interesting factor is that they are both chasing their respective trebles, and they’re both missing one trophy, the Champions League. Winning the treble is a historical event, only five teams have done it so far, and if Bayern or Inter win it, they would be the first team of their country to win the treble. And while Barcelona won it last year with style and flair, this year is different, because both teams in the final want the last and most important trophy in their treble.
For Bayern Munich it would help keep Ribery and bring in more players of high quality, for Inter Milan it would be a historical achievement, ending their 45 year drought from winning the Champions League/European Cup. Not only this, but the Champions League final is also extremely important for Germany and Italy, and their future in football.
Italian football has suffered quite a bit recently, and with the UEFA co-efficient giving the Serie A just a hair of advantage over the Bundesliga, the Champions League final could either secure Serie A’s fourth Champions League spot or give it to the rising Bundesliga.
German football on the other hand has risen in quality these recent years, with extremely high attendances, low ticket prices, and a very positive economic situation, Germany are truly on the rise. The Bundesliga has almost caught up to the Serie A thanks to Italian teams doing badly in Europe, and German teams taking advantage of that and giving a more solid performance in the Champions League and Europa League. And it’s very possible that the Bundesliga overtakes Serie A and begins to build a legacy of strong German football thanks to Bayern winning the treble.
This year’s Champions League final is the one with the highest stakes yet, both on club and country level. This Champions League final will determine the future of not only the club which wins it, but the entire country which will benefit, whether it be Serie A keeping the fourth spot, or Germany gaining it.