The stage is set for the 68th European Cup final, with Manchester City set to face off against three-time winners Inter on Saturday, June 10th. The game will take place at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium in Istanbul, which was the stage for arguably the most memorable final of them all. This will be the first time the two teams have met, and the biggest club prize in world football is once again up for grabs.
The teams are meeting for the first time, and the venue is the Atatürk Olympic Stadium, stage for arguably the most memorable final of them all. City have been banging on the door for some time now, but this is just their second final and they are yet to break their duck. Coach Pep Guardiola, meanwhile, is looking to join the elite group of three-time winners, having previously lifted the trophy in 2009 and 2011, and also become only the sixth man to win it with two clubs. Sandwiched between those two Barcelona triumphs was the most recent of Inter’s three wins – then it was José Mourinho; is now the turn of Simone Inzaghi?
Given the manner in which Guardiola’s team dispatched Bayern and holders Real Madrid, it is no surprise they are regarded by many as favourites. There is something mesmerising about watching City overwhelm even the strongest of opponents with a potent combination of pinpoint passing accuracy, ferocious pressing and electric pace. Games of this magnitude are often settled by fine margins, but City have the bit between their teeth and if they play as well as they have been, a maiden Champions League title could well be theirs.
Back in the final after 13 years, but in a very different position – it feels like Inter have little to lose against this City side. Tactically, the Nerazzurri are solid at the back and fluid going forward, moving well as a team, with a physically demanding style of play that requires everyone to be at the top of their game. Inter defend as a block and attack as a unit. Inzaghi’s side have shown themselves to be adept at adapting to their opponent, so we can expect them defend low and play on the break. Will it be enough?
Manchester City’s possible starting line-up is Ederson, Walker, Rúben Dias, Aké; Stones, Rodri; Bernardo Silva, De Bruyne, Gündoğan, Grealish; Haaland.
Inter’s possible starting line-up is Onana, Darmian, Acerbi, Bastoni; Dumfries, Barella, Hakan Çalhanoğlu, Mkhitaryan, Dimarco; Lautaro Martínez, Džeko.
Fans can find their local UEFA Champions League broadcast partner(s) here. The build-up and live coverage can be found here.
The road to the final has been an extraordinary one for both teams. Will Manchester City finally break their Champions League duck, or will Inter add to their impressive European Cup record?