Soccerlens writer Adrian Del Monte shares his views on which two teams would make for the most entertaining Champions League final. Read on and share your thoughts below.
1. What would be the most entertaining Champions League Final this year?
With the draw for this year’s Champions League quarter finals now complete, there are a number of exciting ties that are eagerly awaiting us. English giants Chelsea and Manchester United are set to lock horns in the quarters, with the victor looking likely to meet reigning champions Inter in the semi’s, should the Italians get past Schalke.
In the other half of the draw, favourites Barcelona are looking the goods to ease past Shakhtar Donetsk, and face fierce rivals Real Madrid in the other semi, who should see off Tottenham Hotspur.
Undoubtedly the people will want to see an Inter-Real Madrid final this year, with all of the attention squarely focused on Real’s mastermind tactician Jose Mourinho, who led Inter to glory last season. It would be an intriguing way to end the European football season.
2. Who would be in your Champions League Final dream team?
Should the people get their wish, picking a strongest XI from both Inter and Real Madrid would be an incredibly difficult task. However in a 4-1-3-2 formation, you would have to go with the following:
Iker Casillas would edge out Inter’s error prone Julio Cesar in goal. In defence, Maicon would get the nod on the right, Marcelo on the left, with Pepe and Lucio playing as the two centre halves. In defensive midfield, the influential Xabi Alonso would narrowly edge out the evergreen Esteban Cambiasso, with the slightly more advanced trio of Mezut Ozil, Wesley Sneijder and Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of him. Karim Benzema and the form player of the competition, Samuel Eto’o, would lead the attack.
Maicon Lucio Pepe Marcelo
Ozil Sneijder Ronaldo
3. Who’s your European Club manager of the year?
The European Club manager of the year is a prestigious title, which is certainly still too early to call at this point of the season. Sir Alex Ferguson has the opportunity to lead Manchester United to another treble, whilst Pep Guardiola is favoured by many to do likewise at Barcelona. Jose Mourinho is still hopeful of achieving a similar feat to his Spanish rivals, however winning a third Champions League title, at three different clubs, certainly would go down as something special.
However the outside favourite has to be Inter’s new Brazilian boss Leonardo, a man who, after replacing the tumultuous Rafa Benitez, has managed to reignite the reigning European, Italian and World champions. Inter have narrowed the gap to Serie A leaders Milan to just two points, after trailing by 15 earlier in the campaign, they are in the semi-finals of the Coppa Italia, whilst they have also been drawn in the ‘easier’ half of the Champions League, after an emphatic 3-2 victory over Bayern Munich in Germany.
Should he emerge with a league title and at least a final appearance in the Champions League, he could very well prove to be the most influential manager of the 2010/11 season.