With Bayern and Lyon squaring off for a spot in the Champion’s League final we’ve got a win-win situation on our hands. We have a German team that no expected to get this far paired with a French team who just took out the dominant team in Ligue 1 this season to get here.
Bayern put it to Manchester United to come into the Semi-Finals and Lyon dispatched Bordeuax–who led Ligue 1 all season only to lose the final match.
So, what can we expect when we face upstart with upstart? How is it going to work when two teams who didn’t realistically expect to be here have to vie to knock each other out when they can COMPLETELY appreciate each other’s delicate position?
Well, let’s look at it purely from a cultural perspective. I have a friend who lived in Germany for a couple years who speaks fluent German and is half-German himself. He always jokes that, “The French never will trust the Germans and the Germans don’t feel much better about the French”.
Well, if that’s the case then each team is weary of the other. I anticipate a long “feeling out” process for both teams as they spend a great deal of time in their own ends deciding what to do and trying things they wouldn’t normally try to attempt to build a gameplan.
So, I bet the first half will be a snoozer. A scoreless tie that will reflect the restraint of each club as it tries to decide what to do in the second half.
Since we’re on aggregate scoring there won’t be a “bum’s rush” on goals in the second half–but at some point SOMEONE will have to make a move.
For my money it’ll be Lyon. They beat the best team in their league–they crushed Bordeaux’s whole “magical season”. They feel good about themselves right now.