The UEFA Champions League 2010/11 final is set to kick-off in less than two hours! Here are a few QUICK FACTS you shouldn’t miss ahead of the FC Barcelona vs Manchester United clash…
• This is the clubs’ 11th meeting and the record so far is three wins each and four draws; neither side has won consecutive games.
• The teams have contested two major finals, Barcelona prevailing in their last meeting in Rome in 2009 while United won their 1991 UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup decider in Rotterdam.
• Barcelona and United are both seeking a fourth European Cup, which would take them level with AFC Ajax and FC Bayern München and behind only Liverpool FC (five wins), AC Milan (seven) and Real Madrid (nine).
• Sir Alex Ferguson won his first European honour at United with a 2-1 win against Barcelona in the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup final 20 years ago.
• Paul Scholes made his UEFA Champions League debut against Barcelona in a 2-2 draw in October 1994.
Barcelona’s final record is W3 L3:
1960/61 SL Benfica 2-3
1985/86 FC Steaua Bucuresti 0-0 (0-2 pens)
1991/92 UC Sampdoria 1-0 (aet)
1993/94 AC Milan 0-4
2005/06 Arsenal FC 2-1
2008/09 Manchester United FC 2-0
United’s final record is W3 L1:
1967/68 SL Benfica 4-1 (aet)
1998/99 FC Bayern München 2-1
2007/08 Chelsea FC 1-1 (6-5 pens)
2008/09 FC Barcelona 0-2
• If successful, Sir Alex would join Liverpool’s Bob Paisley (1977, 1978, 1981) as the manager with most European Cup victories.
• United have played nine times at the new Wembley and five of their matches have gone to penalties.
• This is the 11th European Cup final involving a team playing in their home country and seven times the ‘home’ team have prevailed.
• United keeper Edwin van der Sar will retire after the final at the age of 40.
• Barcelona’s Lionel Messi is the competition’s top scorer with 11 goals.
• Messi was the competition’s top scorer in 2008/09 (nine goals) and 2009/10 (eight). Ruud van Nistelrooy holds the record for goals in a UEFA Champions League season having struck 12 in 2002/03.
• In the previous 18 finals, there have been 13 outright wins and five matches decided on shoot-outs.
• Fourteen European Cup finals have gone to extra time.
• No player has scored a hat-trick in a final.
• Only two teams have ever previously won – or even reached the final of – the UEFA Champions League on home soil: Borussia Dortmund (1997, final in Munich) and Juventus (1996, final in Rome).
(Facts compiled from the UEFA Media Services)