After 93 minutes of fast-paced action between the two giants of Germany, and the world this season, Bayern Munich defeated Borussia Dortmund by the final score of 2-1 to hoist the most sought after cup in European club football: The Champions League trophy. From the first whistle, the Bundesliga rivals were locked-in to attack each others’ defenses in the hopes of scoring first and setting the tone in the stunningly massive Wembley Stadium in London.
An insightful pass from Frenchman Franck Ribéry got to the perfectly cutting Dutchman Arjen Robben who, after dribbling just past the goalkeeper, while simultaneously dancing towards the baseline, was able to cross the ball in front of the goal and past a defender where Croatian Mario Mandžukić was waiting for the bouncing kick-in.
1-nil Bayern Munich in the 59th minute.
Just a mere nine minutes later, Bayern Munich defender Dante, in a very ill-advised move, raised his cleats to the stomach of Marco Reus. A rightly deserved penalty kick followed and Ilkay Gundogan of Borussia Dortmund guessed correctly and easily scored the equalizer for the men in black and yellow.
1-1 in the 68th minute.
In the closing moments of regulation, with the game level at 1-1, an advantageous pass into the feet of the offensively charging Ribéry at the top of the eighteen quickly evolved into a perfectly timed touch to the charging Robben. Following a touch of control, he split a couple defenders and led the goalie to his strong foot: his left. At the last gasp of his attack, Robben, ever so eloquently, cut the ball back across the goalie’s body for a slow-moving, yet definitive, game winning goal.
2-1 Bayern Munich in the 89th minute.
The goal was as stunning as a robin itself on a perfect spring day. If only for a moment, indulge me:
The primary color of Bayern Munich is red. A robin’s feathers are a red-orange mix. The beautiful game winning goal for Bayern Munich was scored by Dutchman (primary national team color is orange) Arjen Robben, who was wearing his club’s power color red.
There was terrific offense, with quite a few goals that were left just begging. The goalies made their share of spectacular saves. The defenses were tough and tireless as well. The 2013 UEFA Champions League Final saw the two best teams in Europe this season for the first-ever German versus German championship. Es war fantastisch!
After Bayern Munich’s record-breaking season, holding up the club’s fifth (third most all-time!) Champions League trophy was fitting. Jupp Heynckes will forever be a treasured name with the Bayern Munich faithful. This year’s win may very well set-up a Barcelona-like era of dominance in wins, trophies and admired style. But, regardless of the future, this year’s squad will be remembered and celebrated for many years to come, most especially throughout the second-half of 2013.
The final was redemption for Bayern Munich in the Champions League after recent final defeats in 2010 and 2012 (in Munich). The final was redemption and pure joy for Jupp Heynckes after being “forced” to retire at the conclusion of this season’s campaign. The final solidified a European and global power-shift of defining the world’s best club from Barcelona to Bayern Munich. The final officially relocated the capital of club soccer for the world from Catalonia to Munich.
Bayern Munich is the best football club Europe and the world. They are unequivocally #1.
Be sure to check out a video showing Bayern Munich’s go-ahead goal in the “Amazing” section of this blog!
After experiencing so many personal nightmares in the past three years with his club and national team, this was one of Man of the Match Robben’s reactions post-game.
“This is a dream,” he said.