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International Dateline

The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

Champions League Final Preview: Who Will Come out on Top?


The Champions League is an annual soccer tournament that determines the best soccer team in Europe. One finalist in the tournament is Liverpool Football Club, who lost in the final last year to Spanish powerhouse Real Madrid, is looking for redemption for their loss. Liverpool is led by star Egyptian forward Mohamed ‘Mo’ Salah and star defender Virgil van Dijk of the Netherlands who won Premier League player of the season. Tottenham also did well in the Champions League last year making it to the round of 16. Tottenham, a fairly stacked team with star midfielders Christian Eriksen and Dele Alli, star forwards Harry Kane and Son Heung-min, and Hugo Lloris, a brick wall between the posts.

Liverpool’s Journey to the Final

Liverpool’s group consisted of Napoli, Crvena Zvezda, and Paris Saint-Germain, who was Liverpool’s biggest competition in the group. In the group stage, all 4 teams face off against each other twice, Liverpool came out of the group stage with three wins and three losses, second to PSG with four wins and two losses, and barely squeezed its way into the round of 16.

In the round of 16, Liverpool faced off against German club Bayern Munich. The first match of two was held in Liverpool, the game was fairly boring with no goals being scored. The second game of the two was in Munich and Liverpool came out on top scoring 3 goals to Bayern’s one and advanced with ease to the quarterfinals to face off against Porto.

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Liverpool’s quarterfinal was fairly easy, beating Porto 5-0 in the first match. After this large win, Liverpool had no reason to stress about the second match, where they ended up drawing the match 0-0. Liverpool won the aggregate 5-0 and advanced to the semi-final.

In the semi-final, Liverpool faced off against arguably one of the best clubs in the world, FC Barcelona. Liverpool did not start off well in the leg of two. The first match, held in Barcelona’s Camp Nou, did not go well for Liverpool, losing 3-0 and setting them back for the second match. Liverpool did not give up, in the second match Liverpool scored a whopping four goals to Barcelona’s zero, squeezing their way into the final on an aggregate score of 4-3.

Tottenham’s Journey to the Final

Tottenham’s initial group consisted of Barcelona, Inter Milan, and Eindhoven. Tottenham edged their way into the round of 16 with two wins, losses, and ties. Tottenham barely passed over Milan, who had the same record as Tottenham.

Tottenham faced off against Dortmund, a German Club, in the round of 16. The first match, held at legendary Wembley Stadium in London, was dominated by Tottenham winning 3-0. The second match was in Germany, and Tottenham came out on top again winning 1-0.

In the Quarterfinal, Tottenham faced off against fellow Premier League club, Manchester City. Tottenham squeezed out a 1-0 win against them at home in the first leg of two. The second leg was much more exciting, but Man City came out on top winning 4-3. The aggregate score over both matches was tied 4-4, but Tottenham ended up advancing because they scored more goals at the opponents’ stadium.

The first match of the semi-final was held in Tottenham, against Ajax, a Dutch club. Ajax took an early lead in the match and held onto it for the whole match winning 1-0 after full time. It was not looking good for Tottenham in the second match, with Ajax taking an early 2-0 lead, but that did not stop Tottenham from coming back. Tottenham managed to tie it up 2-2, both goals being scored by Brazilian forward Lucas Moura, and in the last minute of extra time, he scored another one, completing his hat trick and winning the game for Tottenham, and advancing them to the final.

Preview of the Match

Both teams have great potential, but the odds are in favor of Liverpool for many reasons. One being that Liverpool has a better overall starting lineup, as Tottenham star Harry Kane is coming back from injury, so he may not be as sharp as he used to be. Liverpool is favored in many areas of the field, especially out wide with speed demons Sadio Mane and Mo Salah.

Other than Liverpool’s players having the advantage individually, their team is overall better, in terms of the Premier League. Liverpool was 26 points ahead of Tottenham in the Premier League, so they have proven themselves as a better team throughout the whole season. Another point to add is that Liverpool had a 15 goal differential in the premier league, compared to Tottenham’s five-goal differential. Winning games is what matters the most, but especially in a one-match final, the ability to score goals more consistently is crucial.

Liverpool’s statistical advantage can only do so much, and no matter what the stats say, the only thing that matters is the score when that final whistle blows. So now one can just wait and see who the best team Europe will be.  

By Jonas Tomkin

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