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Preview of UEFA Europa League Final and Champions League Final - By Vighnesh Menon

The 2020-2021 league season is over, and what a roller coaster of a season we’ve had. From Man City dominating the PL to La liga going down till the last day until Atletico de Madrid won the title for the first time after 2013. We had Bayern again winning the Bundesliga for the 9th consecutive year while Lille broke PSG’s run and Inter Milan broke the streak of Juventus to clinch the Ligue 1 and Serie A respectively. And the European Super League drama, phew, what a season it was. But let’s not forget, we have the season’s 2 biggest matches coming up i.e the UEFA EUROPA LEAGUE FINAL and the UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL. On one hand we have Manchester United playing against Villareal FC in the UEL final and on the other hand we have Manchester City playing Chelsea in the UCL final. UEFA EUROPA LEAGUE FINAL ( Man United vs Villareal)

Man United go into the final being the clear favourites. They were dominant in the Premier league and they finished 2nd in the league. Villareal on the other hand have been the surprise factor this season. They created a huge upset by beating tournament favourites Arsenal in the semi finals. Also it will be Ole’s first final as Man United Manager while his counterpart Unai Amery is no short of experience, having won the Europa title three times with Sevilla and finishing once as runners up with Arsenal. He can be called as the ‘Zidane of Europa league’. United will be heavily dependent on Bruno and Cavani who’ve had a phenomenal season but the issues in the midfield continue for them with McTominay and Fred not having their best seasons and Pogba too has been inconsistent. Also Captain Harry Maguire missing out the final would be a huge blow to them as he has been a vital ingredient to United’s success this season. While Villareal have the deadly attacking duo of Gerard Moreno and Paco Alcacer who together have scored more than 30 goals this season. Not many people talk about Gerard Morena who has been at the top of his game this season scoring 23 goals in the league and 6 in the Europa. He will be the biggest threat for Man United in the finals. Overall Man United may be the favourites but it wont come as a surprise if Villareal gives a tough fight in the finals. UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL ( Man City vs Chelsea)

This is the big clash, two English giants up against each other in the champions league final. Man City are coming into the final after lifting the premier league trophy for the fifth time. Chelsea on the other had to fight till the end as they finished 4th in the table. Man City started off a bit slow but the 19 games unbeaten streak made sure they are winning the league title, the team strength they have is second to none with world class players at every position be it De Bruyne, Ederson, Aguero, Ruben Dias, Phil Foden and the list goes on. But Chelsea’s run haven’t been that smooth. They made some huge signings in the summer spending cash on buying players like Timo Werner, Kai Havertz, Hakim Ziyech, Thiago Silva and Eduard Mendy. But things didn’t go as planned for them until Manager Frank Lampard was sacked midseason to make way for Ex PSG Manager Thomas Tuchel and the change worked with Chelsea reaching their first final since 2013. For Man City, though it will be their first UCL final and it will be the perfect way to give a send off to club legend Sergio Aguero who reportedly is going to be a part of Barcelona next season. This will be Pep’s third UCL final having won it on previous both the occasions with FC Barcelona and for Tuchel it will be a second consecutive final having finished runners up with PSG last season. Chelsea also lost to Leicester in the FA Cup final and Tuchel will be determined to win a final. They changed Manager mid-season when they won the trophy in 2012 so who’s to say lightning wont strike twice? The two teams have faced each other twice in 2021 and both times Chelsea went onto win. Man City might just have a slight edge over Chelsea but in the end its all about handling the pressure of the finals, the team which handles the pressure well will go onto lift the silverware.


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