Will it be Manchester City or Chelsea who will be honored as European champions on Saturday in the all-English Champions League final?
Premier League champions City is looking to win the prestigious tournament for the first time.
Chelsea, the European champions in 2012, the team Chelsea have beaten Pep Guardiola’s side twice in the league and the FA Cup in 2020-21.
Up to 16,500 people will be allowed to enter Porto’s Estadio do Dragao to watch.
‘You win, you are a hero, but if you lose, you almost fail.’
“I know exactly how we want to play. And who we’re going to play with, and I won’t bother them too much,” Guardiola said.
“It’s a beautiful feeling to be here. I know what I’m going to tell them. Guys who are worried and nervous, I’ll let them know that’s normal.
“I’m pretty sure we should have to suffer a lot in the training period to win the final. It’s good to say we enjoyed it, but sometimes it doesn’t happen. You have to be strong and prepared.”
The Manchester City midfielder Kevin de Bruyne said: “If you win, you are a hero. If you lose, you almost fail. Coming to this stage is done amazingly well by the team. But if you don’t win, it’s something I don’t want to hear.
“It’s been one of the major goals of the team and the players. Being able to be there tomorrow Saturday and playing on the top stage in the world is a wonderful thing.”
City’s Spanish manager Guardiola is looking to win the Champions League for the third time. After leading Barcelona to get the victory in 2009 and 2011.
Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel is looking for his first Champions League win. Last season, the German took Paris St-Germain to the final, losing to Bayern Munich 1-0.
“I hope everyone wants it,” Tuchel said.
“It’s about hunger and always at the top level in sports depending on how badly you want it? I felt like we were very focused and behaved positively this week.
“It’s always very hard to play against the teams like Manchester City, Bayern, or Barcelona when Pep is on the sidelines. He creates a great belief and success and has a great sense of win.
“Maybe they are currently the strongest team in Europe, or I can also say in the entire world. And they have created a big gap between us in the league. But we also have closed the gap for 90 minutes at Wembley and closed the gap again in Manchester.”
The final match will be decided on a day, with 30 minutes of extra time and penalties if required.
Each side will be allowed to fill five spaces, and a sixth will be permitted on each side of the finalists to go overtime.
Tuchel said: “Hitting the penalty shootouts in the Europa League final was good in terms of quality.
“We have also identified the boys those who should have to take the fines in the upcoming game. But I don’t know who is last on the field, so we need to know each other. But when we go to the pennies, we both go in and out together.”
A video assistant referee (VAR) system will be used, with City selected as the ‘home team, which means they will play with their blue and white colors.
This year final will be played in more than 200 countries worldwide. The opening ceremony will take place in about 10 minutes. Before the start of the biggest match in European football.
Where does the final match happen?
The final match was supposed to be held at Ataturk Olympic Stadium in Istanbul, Turkey. Still, it was postponed earlier this month to the Portuguese City of Porto due to coronavirus restrictions.
Portugal is on England’s green tourist list. So the players and fans can go there without being locked up on their own when they would return home. Turkey is on the red list.
The second consecutive year, the final has been held in Portugal. And Lisbon is the last resort for last season’s competition.
Estadio do Dragao has hosted the 2019 Nations League finals and is scheduled for Euro 2004.
The City has played in the Champions League this season. Pep Guardiola’s side is held to a goalless draw by Porto in the group stages in December.
Chelsea also played for Porto on their way to the finals. Still, both legs of their quarter-finals in April were played in Spain in Sevilla at Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium.
Due to coronavirus travel restrictions between Portugal and the UK, the country was handed a green list on May 17.
How many fans will be allowed in the final?
The 2020 final between Bayern Munich and Paris St-Germain was played in secret in Lisbon.
However, there will be about 16,500 fans attending this year. About one-third of the Estadio do Dragao capacity.
Manchester City and Chelsea each receive a share of about 6,000 tickets.
Chelsea has returned more than 800 unsold tickets.
There was a massive demand for 2,800 tickets sold on a confidential basis.
However, unsold tickets were part of the rental package, which included £ 200 sponsored flights.
Meanwhile, an additional 1,700 tickets sold by Uefa to the general public were sold on Tuesday.
Previous all-English finals
This is the third final for all Englishmen and the second in three seasons in the Champions League.
In 2008, Chelsea lost 6-5 on penalties against Manchester United in Moscow after a 1-1 draw in 120 minutes.
Eleven years later, Liverpool beat Tottenham 2-0 in Madrid to be played in front of a crowd in the final.
If City beats Chelsea, it will be the sixth different English club to be defeated as European champions. After the teams Liverpool, Manchester United, Nottingham Forest, Chelsea, and Aston Villa.
The City is the ninth different English team to reach the finals. After all the other teams; Liverpool, Manchester United, Nottingham Forest, Chelsea, Aston Villa, Leeds United, Arsenal, and Tottenham.
England’s last team to win their first final was Aston Villa in 1982 against Bayern Munich.
Will Aguero play?
Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero, who has 260 goals in 389 games for the club, will leave when his contract expires this summer.
Aguero had marked his last appearance at City Etihad Stadium with two goals. The new Premier League champions ended their home campaign with a massive win over Everton last Sunday.
If he plays in the final, it will be Argentina’s farewell to the club after ten years.
Aguero has scored 13 goals against Chelsea for Manchester City. However, he had not scored in the last four games against them since the draw in February 2019.
He is close to joining Barcelona next season, according to City Guardiola.
Both the team managers have fully fit squads to choose from.
City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan also returned after being beaten by Brighton on May 18.