All eyes will be on the San Siro as Real Madrid square off against Atletico in what looks to be the most intense Madrid derby till date.
While many didn’t expect the two rivals to lock horns once again in the Champions League final, the Spanish neighbours will be keen on grabbing the victory in Europe’s elite club competition.
We witnessed this fixture in the 2013-14 Champions League final that saw Real Madrid claim their tenth UCL trophy after Sergio Ramos staged a superb comeback and took the game to extra time before Cristiano Ronaldo and Co’ went on to seal a 4-1 win.
Atletico will be seeking revenge against their city rivals in Milan following the sad turn of events that unfolded during their last meeting on Europe’s grandest stage.
Since that time, Diego Simeone seems to have gotten Atleti to a state of near-perfection regarding their style of play as they’ve exhibited their stringent intensity on some occasions this season.
Keeping in mind the high stakes involved in the penultimate game of the Champions League, war seems to be the only word capable of defining the intensity of the fixture as both sides are rearing to battle it out on the pitch right after the sound of the referee’s whistle.
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane will be keen on becoming the seventh man to win the Champions League trophy both as a player and as a manager. It will surely be a magnificent way to cap off an already impressive five months in charge at the Bernabeu.
Despite Zidane’s top-drawer showings in the dugout, he’s going to feel the pressure of going up against a hardworking team such as Atletico.
Simeone has done very well to cement Atletico’s place alongside Barcelona and Real Madrid. Atleti has infiltrated the La Liga’s usual two-way horse race in the past couple of years.
The 2015-16 campaign was among the most competitive La Liga seasons by its standard as the race for the title lasted up until the very end before the Catalans finally claimed the title after an incredible finish to the season.
There’s no doubt that part of Atletico’s motivation and drive will be fueled by revenge considering how their last Champions League final turned out.
Their sheer will and utter determination will be up against the attacking masterclass of the so-called ‘Galacticos’, but it remains to be seen if either side will be able to suppress their passion once they enter the field.
Ronaldo to break his record?
Ronaldo has enjoyed another stellar campaign, hitting the back of the net on over 50 occasions this season.
He’s close to breaking his own Champions League goalscoring record of 17 goals as he’s amassed a tally of 16 goals so far in the tournament. While Ronaldo remains just two goals shy of setting a new record, it will be tough for him to score a brace against Europe’s sturdiest defensive set-up.
Ronaldo is seemingly struggling with fitness issues as the Portuguese international limped off the pitch during Tuesday’s training session. Ronaldo might not be at his best right now, but he will have his sights set on lifting the Champions League trophy against Atleti.
Zidane versus Simeone
The two ex-players will be hoping to bring Champions League glory to their respective clubs when they face off in Milan.
Simeone will undoubtedly be the most agitated of the two as the Argentine tactician never seems to be settled on the touchline, especially in big games.
Zidane will be looking towards his ‘BBC’ attacking triumvirate to bang in the goals for Los Blancos, while Simeone will be hoping Antoine Griezmann and Fernando Torres make the most of the chances presented to them.