The Champions League final marks the end of the domestic season in Europe and today two of the most successful sides in European Cup/Champions League history go ahead to ahead in what we hope to be a thrilling final. Liverpool take on Real Madrid, who became the first team to retain the Champions League, since it replaced the European Club Cup in 1992, last year. Liverpool are the most successful English side are facing the competitions most successful side in Real Madrid.

The match itself could prove to be difficult for Real Madrid because Jurgen Klopp’s ‘gegenpressing’ brand of football heaps pressure onto opposition’s backlines.

However, it could prove to be the undoing of Liverpool against the attacking talent of the Galácticos that includes Cristiano Ronaldo.

Liverpool news

Jurgen Klopp stated in a press conference in Kiev yesterday that they have no fresh injury concerns and that he has settled on his team for the match and with James Milner returning from a minor muscle injury, it is likely that his only decision will be whether Danny Ings or Dominic Solanke make the final spot on the bench and that is down to the fact that Emre Can, who has been out since March, is expected to have recovered from injury to be on the bench.

Liverpool’s likely starting line-up is:

Loris Karius, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Dejan Lovren, Virgil van Dyke, Neil Robertson, James Milner, Jordan Henderson (Captain), Georginio Wijnaldum, Sadio Mané, Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah.

The key player for Liverpool will be of course, Mohamed Salah, who has not just helped his team by scoring vital goals to get the team to the final but has had the most successful domestic of his career by breaking several Liverpool and Premier League records that include the most player of the month awards with 3, he broke the Premier League record of most goals in a 38 game Premier League season with 32 and he also became the fastest player in Liverpool’s history to reach the 40-goal mark by doing it in 45 games, 4 fewer than the previous record of 49.

Real Madrid news

They have been formidable in the Champions League, winning 4 of the last 5 and this could be the 3rd year in a row that the Galácticos take the trophy. Their overall history in the competition is formidable and have been champions 12- times since the inception of the European Clubs Cup, otherwise just known as the European Cup, in 1955.

The current crop of players isn’t bad either and they include Cristiano Ronaldo, who has won the Ballon d’Or 5 times, Gareth Bale, Sergio Ramos, Karim Benzema and Luka Modric.

Their likely line-up is:

Keylor Navas, Dani Carvajal, Raphaël Varane, Sergio Ramos (Captain), Marcelo, Casemiro, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Isco, Karim Benzema, Cristiano Ronaldo.

The attack prowess of Cristiano Ronaldo is not disputed and as one of the greatest footballers to grace the pitch, stopping him will be vital for Liverpool. But that will prove difficult because their defence is a bit shaky. He has had his own record breaking season too that include the fastest player to reach 300 La Liga goals, by doing it on his 286th appearance and he became the first player to score in all 6 Champions League group games.

Needless to say, he has had yet another prolific season and has scored 1 more goal than Salah this season but there is little hype because this is expected of him.

The match

In theory this should be an exciting match to watch because Liverpool don’t hold back when attacking and that is down Klopp’s style of play, but it does invite counter attacking pressure. This is a match for the neutrals and both fans will be excited and nervous simultaneously as both defences receive different kinds of pressure. Real Madrid are the favourites to win because they are the holders and have the strongest team but Liverpool could pull off a surprise result.

The match itself will be shown in the UK on BT Sport 2 from 6pm with kick off at 7.45pm – but BT are also offering a free live stream on YouTube for non-subscribers.

Non-BT Sport subscribers can watch for free on YouTube, on BT Sport website and the BT Sport app. Subscribers will also be able to watch 360-degree highlights via the app, with the whole match broadcast in 4K Ultra HD.