Given the way the history of football has gone, it was perhaps appropriate that the Football Association should celebrate hits 150th anniversary, and Wembley its 90th, by staging a European Cup final between two German teams.
“Fussball came home,” wrote Jason Burt in the Telegraph, “and, frankly, it can come back any time; an open invitation, the most welcome of guests. This was the first all-German Champions League Final and it was simply wunderbar.”
As Owen Gibson put it in the Guardian, Wembley “felt like little Germany for the night.”
“Inside the stadium, Dortmund recreated their “yellow wall” to relentless drums, while Bayern fans bounced in unison,” Gibson went on.
It was, Mike Calvin wrote in the Independent, “a game of skill and spite, ebb and flow, will live long in the memory.” “The English game will not move on until it acknowledges, and addresses, the fault lines of a system, which permitted only 22 Academy products to make their Premier League debuts this season,” he went on.
“That’s seven fewer than the previous year, and exposes the revisionist nonsense that great strides are being made in youth development in the domestic game.” In the Sunday Times, meanwhile, David Walsh was taken by the excellence of the losers.
“The wonder,” he said, “was that Borussia Dortmund had only 502,567 applications for the 24,042 tickets made available to the club by UEFA for the Champions League final at Wembley. The city has a population of 579,012 and given the way the team play football, it’s hard to imagine anyone not wanting to watch them.
“They lost the match but would have earned the respect and affection of every neutral tuning into an excellent final. Their energy, their skill, the patterns they weave to find a path towards goal make them a joy to watch. But, clearly, they are at best the second best team in the Bundesliga.”