Man City 0-1 Chelsea: Kai Havertz secures Champions League triumph – 6 talking points

Chelsea are celebrating their second Champions League title after deservedly beating Manchester City 1-0 in Porto.

After a frantic and frenetic first-half, Kai Havertz put Chelsea in the lead on 42 minutes as he ran on to Mason Mount’s through ball to round Ederson and slot home into an empty net and send the Blues fans wild.

City were dealt a huge blow in the second period when Kevin De Bruyne was taken off in tears after suffering a nasty neck injury.

And it was Chelsea who continued to dominate, with Christian Pulisic missing a glorious chance to double the lead around 20 minutes from full-time.

City had no reply, and Chelsea got the job done to repeat the joyous scenes in Munich in 2012.

Here are six talking points from the final.

Chelsea’s glory goes on

The trophies just keep coming for Chelsea
The trophies just keep coming for Chelsea(Image: Pierre-Philippe Marcou/POOL/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

This was Chelsea’s 17th trophy of the Roman Abramovich era, and undoubtedly one of the sweetest of the lot.

 

What Guardiola has done for City has been unbelievable, and the supporters will no doubt continue to back him for as long as he is at the club.

But his constant failure in the Champions League will continue to be an albatross around his neck, and the Catalan only has himself to blame for tonight’s latest bitter disappointment.

Havertz comes of age

Kai Havertz scored on the stroke of half-time
Kai Havertz scored on the stroke of half-time(Image: Pool via REUTERS)

A largely frustrating season will be completely forgotten after Havertz’s magic moment on the stroke of half-time.

The £73m signing from Bayer Leverkusen has sparkled at times but until now had not really lived up to expectations at Stamford Bridge.

But tonight he was brilliant, dropping deep to help with the link-up play and acting as a hugely important cog in Tuchel’s machine.

His goal is a real coming-of-age moment, and could well be the trigger for him to become unstoppable next season.

It is a terrifying prospect for the rest of the Premier League.

Guardiola vs Tuchel: the next great rivalry

Pep Guardiola and Thomas Tuchel met for the third time in a month-and-a-half
Pep Guardiola and Thomas Tuchel met for the third time in a month-and-a-half(Image: Pool via REUTERS)

A fascinating rivalry has been developing between Guardiola and Tuchel since the German’s arrival in England, with the two familiar foes from their days in the Bundesliga together.

Many have likened their battle of tactical wits to two great Chessmasters clashing, and they share a number similarities in their intensity and completely obsession with football.

There was plenty on the line tonight, with Tuchel the first man to manage back-to-back finals with different clubs and Guardiola attempting to become only the fourth person to win three European Cups as a coach.

But it was Tuchel’s night, and he has now amazingly beaten Guardiola with Chelsea three times over the last month-and-a-half – something Guardiola will no doubt absolutely hate.

There seems to be a grudging respect between the two, and this will certainly not be the last titanic clash between them.

Chelsea look the best-placed team to challenge City for their Premier League title next season, and there could be plenty more chapters to come in this intriguing managerial duel.

Mount outshines Foden in Battle of the Brits

0_Manchester-City-v-Chelsea-FC-UEFA-Champions-League-Final.jpg
(Image: Getty Images)

Much of the talk going into the game had been around which of the two brilliant young talents of Phil Foden or Mason Mount would shine brightest on the biggest stage.

And it was to be the latter’s evening, with Mount at the centre of everything positive Chelsea did while Foden had a largely subdued 90 minutes.

Mount became the first English player to create an assist in a Champions League final since Wes Brown in 2008 (you got that, right?) with his brilliant ball through to Hazard.

And although he tried his best, Foden just wasn’t quite able to show his best, and was not aided by Guardiola’s formation.

Regardless, the prospect of two such special talents playing for England at the Euros is a mouthwatering one for Three Lions followers, and the experience of a Champions League final will not do any harm to either of them.

Porto wonderful hosts

Porto's Estadio do Dragao was a stunning setting for the final
Porto’s Estadio do Dragao was a stunning setting for the final(Image: Pool via REUTERS)

Forgetting the shameful hooliganism incidents off the pitch, this was a Champions League final which truly made you feel optimistic about football again.

Porto stepped in as the host city at the last minute after the game was unable to be played in Istanbul.

And they certainly put on a show, with a spectacular firework show ahead of the match (although electronic DJ Marshmallo’s performance was perhaps not to everybody’s taste).

The stadium may not have been full, but the lucky Chelsea and City fans who were in attendance provided a superb atmosphere, and it without a doubt had an influence on the fast-paced, thrilling match we saw.

The next step is, of course, full houses, and the thought of supporters returning in large numbers in the next campaign is a truly hair-raising one.

But those involved in Porto hosting this showpiece event should feel proud of themselves for the wonderful show they put on in trying circumstances.

 

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