In recent years there has been a downward trend in the continental viewing figures of the Champions League. Some say it’s down to the commercialisation of the tournament, the relative weakness of the teams in the group stages and even an over-saturation of football in general.
Yet there are plenty of reasons to be watching Champions League football this season as well as a lot of teams and players to get excited about. Read on to find out the three reasons to be excited about the Champions League this season, you might even pick up some football accumulator tips along the way!
The Bald Fraud’s Final Reckoning
Pep Guardiola is the greatest manager that’s ever lived according to most Manchester City fans, but is that really the case? The last big game that Guardiola won in a Champions League knock-out tie was in 2011 against Real Madrid whilst managing Barcelona.
Since then his Bayern Munich and Manchester City sides have come up woefully short when it matters in Europe. That’s despite spending 1.3 billion Euros as a coach in 11 years and 513 million Euros at Manchester City.
If his side doesn’t win the Champions League this season then Irish journalist Ken Early will feel vindicated for labeling Guardiola a ‘bald fraud’ in 2018.
The Destruction Of The Death Star
If you’re not from Madrid what is there to love about Real? Seriously. They are, and always have been, one of the easiest to hate clubs in world football. If things aren’t going right on the pitch, they buy the best players in the world and employ the best coach in the world.
If a player makes a mistake, their fans take out their white handkerchiefs and wave them in disgust. Look at how Gareth Bale – one of the best players in the world until recently – was treated by Los Blancos fans after delivering decisive moments in numerous Champions League finals. Crazy.
If like most football fans, you love a bit of Schadenfreude, then this is the perfect season for you. Despite reinstating Zinedine Zidane as manager, Real have set course for disaster already this season.
Domestically and in Europe, they’re flattering to deceive and the wheels are going to come off in spectacular fashion at some point. Preferably in the knock-out stages of the Champions League against a minnow.
Liverpool Redefining Football
If Guardiola sees himself as the grand conductor of European football then Jurgen Klopp is Johnny Rotten, bursting onto the stage and smashing his guitar over the podium.
The German’s Liverpool side are by some distance the best team in Europe, make no doubt about that. In Mane, Salah and Firmino they have the most talented front three in world football, and the hardest to mark for opposition defenders.
They may not have won the Premier League title last season but they probably deserved to. Manchester City’s multi-million-pound reserve players probably proved the difference as City retained the league by the slenderest of margins.
In Europe, Liverpool needn’t worry about having 60 million pound players on the bench, they can just focus on the here and now and blow teams away with their firebrand style. The Reds remarkable comeback against Barcelona in the semi-finals last season demonstrated their commitment to drama, and this campaign will be no different.