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@Scime_Live: Does Germany deserve four CL places?
CG: Germany were granted four Champions League places at the end of the 2010-11 season, which led to Italy losing one spot. This came into effect at the start of the 2012-13 campaign.
When Italy lost their place, their Champions League record was so far superior to Germany whether you looked at the last two,three,five,10,20 or 30 years. Serie A boasted two of the previous four winners of the competition, whereas the Bundesliga hadn't won a European trophy of any sort since 2001 ...
@jagger_jagz: Who do you tip to win #UCL final?
CG: Bayern are clearly the favourites on paper. Individually and collectively they have the advantage, plus they have won two and drawn two out of their four meetings this season, so psychologically have the edge.
But, anything can happen in finals. The first goal will be crucial. If Bayern break the deadlock, it is hard to see them losing as they are so good at strangling the game and picking teams off. If Dortmund are to spring a surprise, I think they have to score first. If they manage that, then it will be interesting to see how Bayern react. They have developed a reputation as a team who bottle it on the big stage and fall at the final hurdle. Mentally, they seem a different proposition this year but falling behind could bring back all their bad memories and prove fatal.
@messixaviesta: Do you think the team that wins this final will provide the 2013 Ballon d'Or winner or it will once again go to Messi?
CG: As we are in an odd-number year, with no World Cup or European Championship, it is certain that the victor of the Ballon D'Or will be an individual who stars solely for their club team. As a result, a Champions League winner has as good a chance as anyone to pick up the prestigious prize.
The gong usually goes to a midfielder or attacker, so my money would be on Franck Ribery if Bayern win the Champions League as he is the kind of player voters usually go for. Having said that, as Bayern and Dortmund are such outstanding 'teams', their inividuals aren't always in the spotlight like a Messi or Ronaldo, so that could count against them.
@Austeenite 2m: Who is the best defender in this season's UCL?
CG: We are living in an era where you can count on one hand the number of top quality defenders. In truth, very few stoppers impress me anymore. Thiago Silva is the best defender in the world, and was absolutely brilliant in the quarter final against Barcelona. But if there is one defender who has emerged this term it is probably Dante from Bayern. He has been a monster, and the ease with which he nullified the attacks of Juventus and Barcelona - even if the former is nothing to sing and dance about - was a head-turner. I'm looking forward to his battle with Lewandowski tonight.
@CazorlaAFC007: Are we looking at the best two teams in Europe?
CG: Certainly these have been the two best teams in Europe this season. They have proven that by progressing all the way to the final, and what is more they have defeated top quality opponents along the way. Bayern have smashed an outstanding Juventus side and the fabled Barcelona, while Dortmund qualified from a group containing the champions of Spain, England and Netherlands before seeing off a superb Shakhtar team and then Mourinho's Real Madrid again.
It takes more than one season to prove you are the best two teams in Europe though, and Dortmund will surely decline a touch when they lose Gotze and Lewandowski, but this season at least they have been the top two.
@SaryHishi: Can the Gotze injury determine the outcome in this match ? As in can the injury affect BVB that much ? #UCL
CG: Dortmund are significantly weakened by the injury to Gotze. The youngster is not only crucial offensively, but he also plays a key role in cutting the supply line from deep, as he did so brilliantly against Xabi Alonso when Dortmund played Madrid. Dortmund still have plenty of other weapons, but there is no doubt that they are a stronger side with Gotze in the team.
"Just off Wembley Way I've found a Bayern 'area', if you can call it that. A mass of red-shirted fans are lapping up the last of the sunshine and having a sing-song. On the opposite side of Wembley, Dortmund have an official brass band smashing out A-Ha's 1985 classic 'Take On Me', while a group of insanely talented ball jugglers entertain the passers by. It's ramping up now, more folk are filling the walkways and it truly feels like the Champions League final. Not long now ... "
Couldn't agree more with Jay: the excitement really is building; and 'Take On Me' was indeed a classic. Indeed, if the 1980s gave us nothing else (and other than Arrigo Sacchi's wonderful Milan side, they didn't!), they did at least provide us with a pop song as brilliant as its video - a rare occurrence in the music world.
Bayern Munich: Neuer; Lahm, Dante, Boateng, Alaba; Martinez, Schweinsteiger; Robben, Muller, Ribery; Mandzukic.
Dortmund XI v Bayern: Weidenfeller; Piszczek, Subotic, Hummels, Schmelzer; Gundogan, Bender; Blaszczykowski, Reus, Grosskreutz; Lewandowski.
"Is it true that players can't wear underwear in the final?"
Surely you have to log on now for no other reason than to find out the answer to that cracking enquiry?!
"The whole world will watch the game," the World Cup winner told Sky Sport Germany. "It electrifies the masses. Never before there was so much talk about a Champions League final than this time.
"Both groups of fans know the whole world is watching. We have to present ourselves similar to the way we did at WC 2006 because it brings a lot of sympathy. Today we have another chance to present Germany in a positive way."
Unfortunately, there were reports of some clashes between rival sets of fans earlier in the day, but, happily, the atmosphere at the ground is wonderfully good-natured.
However, our tipster Hugh Wilson reckons that the value is a punt on both sides scoring in the first half ...
However, former Bayern boss Ottmar Hitzfeld says it doesn't matter when Dortmund arrive, they're still not going to lift the Champions League tonight: "Bayern has to win the title; it's just their time. They won't let a third final in four years slip away from them."
"I've just had a chat with a man called Helmut. As you will see from the photo, Helmut arrived here by bicycle ... He said: 'It took me 10 days. I didn't see the sun once: it was raining, powerful winds, horrible, but I made it. I rode 554 miles to get here but ... I don't have a ticket.'
"Ouch! I feel for Helmut, he looks absolutely drained and I reckon he was relying on the gift of charity as his way in, but alas it is yet to find him."
In this year's competition, five Barcelona players have completed more passes than anyone else - name them!
"Jurgen Klopp said in his pre-match press conference that were he to never make another Champions League final, he could die happy knowing that he took a team to the home of football - Wembley.
"And I can tell you as I look at the sea of yellow, black and red that fans of both sides feel similar - there are hordes of Dortmund and Bayern supporters already congregating around the national stadium, eagerly lapping up some late afternoon sun."
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