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Question of the Day
The buildup to the 101st competitive meeting between the two rivals has been overshadowed by Mario Goetze’s decision to leave Dortmund for Bayern and reports that Polish striker Robert Lewandowski is planning to follow.
For Dortmund defender Mats Hummels, the prospect of the club winning a second Champions League title _ after its triumph in 1997 _ was motivation enough.
“It would be great to show the players who may be going that our team can achieve great things too,” he said.
Goetze is out of what would have been his last Dortmund game with a hamstring injury, sustained after just 12 minutes of the second leg of his team’s semifinal at Real Madrid. Otherwise, Klopp has no injury concerns.
Hummels, who failed to establish himself at Bayern after coming through its youth teams, said he was fit after recovering from an ankle injury.
Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes declared all his players were fit, too, after completing what he called “the best season in 50 years of the Bundesliga.”
Bayern wrapped up the title with six weeks to spare and finished 25 points ahead of Dortmund _ both records in a season of many.
Heynckes said that the final would probably be his last chance to lift the trophy he won in 1998 as coach of Real Madrid.
The 68-year-old is making way for former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola and has hinted strongly that he’s retiring.
“This is special for Bayern and for the team,” Heynckes said. “You have players who are a little bit older and for them it would be the crowning achievement of their careers. For me too, but I’m a little more relaxed about it. There’s a little more distance because I won it before.”
Bayern is driven by the memory of losing last year’s final to Chelsea on penalties _ in Munich.
“We hope of course that Wembley is better and that the stadium brings us luck,” Heynckes said. “Last year we were the better team. Perhaps tomorrow the football gods are with us.”
By Robert N. Tracci
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