Bayern March On
Despite moments of defensive frailty, Bayern Munich advanced to their first Champions League final since beating Borussia Dortmund at Wembley in 2013. Serge Gnabry’s two first-half goals, the first a superb solo effort to create something out of nothing, ensured that Lyon, who had plenty of opportunities but very little finished product, had too much to do in the second-half. Several chances to put the game to bed were squandered, but when Robert Lewandowski put away a header on 88 minutes it confirmed what had become inevitable. Munich have been the form team in Germany from the moment Hans Flick took over in November. He has transformed a team that looked lethargic and clueless under his predecessor. The energy and speed with which they play is unmatched anywhere - not only in the Bundesliga - but also throughout the major leagues in Europe. Opponents get very little time on the ball, no matter where they are on the pitch. Lyon managed to create some openings but were very quickly closed down and were unable to generate consistent pressure. FCB had the ball for 2/3rds of the game and completed over twice as many passes as OL.
PSG await in the final. Whilst they have a more talented squad than Lyon, and in Neymar and Mbappe two of the most talented players in world football, it remains to be seen if they have the collective ability to cause Bayern any damage. What Flick has achieved is to create a team which seems to be so much more than the sum of its individual parts.