Zinedine Zidane can become the first coach in history to win three consecutive Champions League Finals. His team, Real Madrid, face Liverpool tonight.
Will Zinédine Zidane find a place in the Hall of Fame for the best coaches in history? The coach of Real Madrid is aiming for an unprecedented treble in the Champions League this Saturday at 8.45pm in the final in Kiev, against the challengers Liverpool, who dreams of a feat to reconnect with his glorious past.
“What I can tell you is that it’s a good feeling. I live it normally, because I have to live that normally.”
In a march to write one of the most beautiful pages in the history of European football, “Zizou” does not intend to lose its legendary zenitude, the matrix of all its success.
At the same time, regardless of the scenario of the meeting, the French coach has already secured a place in the rich history of the club Madrid. Since coming to the bench, as assistant coach in 2014, and then as head coach since 2016, Madrid remains on four C1 finals and three wins in five years. In the meantime Saturday …
The time has come. It’s #UCLfinal day! Excited?
— #UCLfinal (@ChampionsLeague) May 26, 2018
Onwards a record 13 wins?
But after eliminating the Paris SG, Juventus Turin and Bayern Munich, the respective champions of France, Italy, and Germany, “ZZ” can do even better by winning an unprecedented consecutive triplet and the “White House” A “Decimotercera”, the 13th C1 in its history. A record!
Better, thirty years after the mythical AC Milan of Arrigo Sacchi, winner in 1989 and 90, and less than a decade after FC Barcelona Pep Guardiola (2009 and 2011), “Zizou” now has the opportunity, under the brand “the Real de Zidane”, to definitely mark his era.
The Spanish and pro-Madrid daily Marca can already see it by putting a photo of the impressive trophy room at Le Real, where the 12 “big-eared cups” are stored, with a sufficient title: “They are waiting for you at home.
Klopp must hunt bad luck
Look out for Liverpool, another major club in the history of the “big-ear cup” with its five titles (1977, 1978, 1981, 1984, 2005), which has been waiting for more than ten years, and the final defeat in 2007 against AC Milan, to relive the thrill of the continental finals.
Saturday, the Reds intend to rely on the “massive support” of their public to repeat the feat of 2005, the last European triumph at the end of one of the best situation reversals in history. A thousand Reds fans, however, may miss the Kiev meeting after the cancellation of three flights for technical reasons.
Not enough to cool the red wave that swept through the Ukrainian capital since Friday at the stroke of “Go, Go, Go,” their new favorite song. At 11am local (9am GMT), there were already a hundred around the hotel “Reds” to encourage their champions.
Will the magic of Istanbul operate again? Jürgen Klopp, the “black cat” of the European finals after failing in the Europa League in 2016 and in C1 with Dortmund in 2013, hopes to ward off his bad luck.
“We played a fantastic game against an incredibly strong team (Munich), and after that, I wanted to come back. It took a bit of time, but these boys gave me that chance, fighting incredibly hard, “he said with optimism.
“CR7”, Salah and the Golden Ball
To achieve the feat, the German technician can rely on Mohamed Salah, the “best player on the planet now” according to legend Steven Gerrard, who could if successful increase his chances of becoming the first player to delight the Ballon d ‘Gold to’ cracks’ Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
His duel with “CR7”, double holding of the prestigious individual title and largely ahead of the ranking of the best scorers of the prestigious European competition (15 achievements against 10 for Salah), will be precisely the other stake of the final.
Will the Egyptian winger be in full possession of his means, while some media claimed he planned to observe the fast of Ramadan?
“My way of thinking is that religion is private,” said Klopp on Friday.
So, I have nothing to say about it except that it is in great shape and exactly as you must be on the eve of a final.
If Ronaldo, back after an injury to an ankle, “is present for the final at 140% (his means), it is sure he will not do anything wrong,” hoped for his part Zidane. Double transfer of power to come, or affirmation of an undivided domination? Kiev is ready to live a moment of history …