In Depth

Champions League final reaction: trophy ‘King’ Coman, PSG’s missed chance and Neymar’s tears

Five things we learned from Bayern Munich’s 1-0 victory in the Lisbon final

2020 Uefa Champions League final Paris Saint-Germain 0 Bayern Munich 1 

Bayern Munich are celebrating becoming champions of Europe for the sixth time after a 1-0 victory against Paris Saint-Germain in Sunday’s Uefa Champions League final. 

Players, pundits and fans had hoped for a “goalfest” between the two attacking teams, but the showpiece was a nervy affair and settled only by a 59th-minute header from Bayern’s Kingsley Coman against his former team. 

Here we pick out five talking points from the final held in the Portuguese capital Lisbon.

‘The King’ of Munich: a serial trophy winner 

Coman started his career with PSG and only played three senior games for the French giants before moving on to Italian club Juventus in 2015. The French international then spent two seasons on loan with Bayern before making his move to Germany permanent in 2017. 

The 24-year-old - who is nicknamed “The King” - has been a serial winner in his short career so far, The Sun reports. He’s won 20 trophies despite playing just 193 games and has never failed to win a league title. Incredibly, he has won a trophy every 9.65 games he played. 

With half-an-hour to go in Sunday’s final he headed home Joshua Kimmich’s cross to help Bayern land the ultimate prize. 

Speaking after the final whistle, Coman said: “It’s extraordinary, a great happiness. I feel a little sad for Paris, they’ve had an extraordinary journey and we must respect what Paris have done. We tried to keep them under pressure and they played on the counterattack mostly. We didn’t concede a goal and that was the most important thing. Paris had a great game, but so did we. It was a great final.”

‘Masterstroke’ by Flick

Uefa.com reporter Jordan Maciel described Coman’s inclusion in the final as a “masterstroke of man-management” by Bayern head coach Hansi Flick. 

In the three previous knockout games Flick did not change his starting XI, but for the final he brought in Coman in place of Ivan Perisic and the decision proved to be match-winning. 

Maciel said: “The most uncharacteristic of goals sealed a sixth European Cup success and a second treble for Bayern. It was a masterstroke of man-management that made the difference in an otherwise even game.”

Perfect record, goals galore and Mr Safe Hands 

The victory in Lisbon means Bayern finish their Champions League campaign with a 100% perfect record - 11 wins from 11 matches. 

ESPN reports that the Germans are the first team to win every Champions League match en route to the title, first team in Champions League history to win 11 straight games and first unbeaten champion since Manchester United in 2007-08. 

“Now that is how you win a Champions League,” says ESPN’s Anirudh Menon. 

Bayern scored an impressive 43 goals in their 11 matches and star striker Robert Lewandowski ended the 2019-20 Champions League season as top scorer with 15. Poland international Lewandowski scored 55 goals in all competitions for Bayern.  

While much of the focus was on the star attackers ahead of the Lisbon final, it was goalkeeper Manuel Neuer who proved a major difference between the two teams. 

The Bayern captain made a number of great saves and produced a world-class performance before lifting the famous silver trophy.

What a turnaround

Flick was appointed Bayern caretaker manager in November when he stepped into the top job following Niko Kovac’s dismissal. 

Bayern were in crisis at the time having been crushed 5-1 by Eintracht Frankfurt and the result left the defending German champions fourth in the Bundesliga table. 

After a run of 18 wins in 21 competitive matches, the 55-year-old Flick was appointed head coach on a permanent basis in April and went on to lead his team to the Bundesliga title, German cup and now the Champions League. 

After “miraculously” transforming Bayern into Europe’s best club side, DW.com says Flick’s treble is “unparalleled in the modern era” and is the best debut season for a coach in football history. 

The Bayern head coach praised his whole team for their hardworking display against PSG. He said: “We really make life difficult for the opposition. When you think how we worked defensively until the 92nd minute - Lewandowski was chasing after the ball, that was incredible. It was a complete team performance.”

Missed chances leaves PSG and Neymar in tears   

While Kingsley Coman takes the spotlight for scoring Bayern’s winner, PSG and their star forwards will look back on missed opportunities. 

In the first half of the final Kylian Mbappé, Neymar and Ángel Di María all spurned opportunities to open the scoring - and the setbacks mean PSG still await a first-ever Champions League title. 

PSG head coach Thomas Tuchel said: “All we lacked was the first goal. We had chances and they got the first goal. I’m convinced that if we’d got the first goal, we would have won that same game 1-0.” 

Midfielder Ander Herrera added: “We’ve won four trophies and lost the Champions League final – without deserving to, I think. They were more clinical than us. When you play another top team in Europe, if you don’t score they will.”

When the final whistle was blown PSG’s Brazilian superstar Neymar was left in tears at what could have been for the dejected French giants.

Uefa.com’s Chris Burke said: “Neymar was unable to wield his influence when it mattered most. Despite coming close to giving Paris the advantage in the first half, he was mostly a fringe figure as Bayern’s players put him under close scrutiny. Without Neymar waving his wand, the French champions struggled for ideas after the restart.”  

Recommended

Gallery: every Team GB medal winner in Tokyo
Ben Maher won gold in the individual show jumping
In pictures

Gallery: every Team GB medal winner in Tokyo

Sky Brown: ‘I’m so stoked - I really hope I inspire some girls’
Sky Brown, 13, won bronze in the women’s skateboarding park event
Profile

Sky Brown: ‘I’m so stoked - I really hope I inspire some girls’

Tokyo 2020 Olympics: a guide to the games
Tokyo 2020 mascot Miraitowa poses with the Olympic Rings
In Depth

Tokyo 2020 Olympics: a guide to the games

Five of the best bike holders
Bike holders
The wish list

Five of the best bike holders

Popular articles

Why your AstraZeneca vaccine may mean no European holidays
Boris Johnson receives his second dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine
Getting to grips with . . .

Why your AstraZeneca vaccine may mean no European holidays

‘Wobbling’ Moon will cause worldwide flooding, Nasa warns
Flooding in Florida after Hurricane Irma hit in 2017
Why we’re talking about . . .

‘Wobbling’ Moon will cause worldwide flooding, Nasa warns

Does the Tokyo Olympics branding amount to cultural appropriation?
BBC Tokyo Olympics trailer
Expert’s view

Does the Tokyo Olympics branding amount to cultural appropriation?

The Week Footer Banner