Bayern Munich's Thomas Muller (L) and Bastian Schweinsteiger attend a news conference in Barcelona April 30, 2013. Bayern Munich will face Barcelona in their Champions League semi-final second leg soccer match on Wednesday. (Photo : REUTERS/Albert Gea (SPAIN - Tags: SPORT SOCCER))
The Champions league final will be decided by the strength of each club's midfield. Both sides feature a number of major stars, but which team has the better stock of midfielders? Here is how they compare.
Major Players: Franck Ribery, Javi Martinez, Arjen Robben, Thomas Müller, Bastian Schweinsteiger
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Ribery and Robben on the flanks is arguably the most lethal combination in the entire tournament. Ribery has scored one goal and two assists in 10 UCL matches; Robben has three goals and one assist in only six Champions league games. Both players possess terrific pace that can wear down opposing defenders. While Ribery is a master passer, Robben's foot is a canon that can score from long range. Martinez is the defensive option and rarely disappoints while Schweinsteiger is the creative genius that has been hailed as the best midfielder in the world. Despite all of this terrific talent, 23-year old Müller might actually be the best of the lot. Aside from being a terrific playmaker and passer, Müller is an elite finisher. He had 13 goals in 25 Bundesliga matches, but has scored eight goals in only 11 UCL contests. He destroyed Barcelona with three goals in the two legs, including a terrific header over two defenders in the second leg.
Major Players: Sven Bender, Ilkay Gündogan, Mario Götze, Marco Reus, Jakub Blaszczykowski
The all-star cast assembled by Jürgen Klopp in the midfield destroyed Real Madrid in the semifinals. The centerpieces are Reus and Götze, but Blaszczykowski is possesses tremendous speed; he has one goal and one assist in seven matches. Reus leads the crew with four goals in the tournament; he also has two assists in the 12 matches. Götze has two goals in the competition but also has five assists to go along with them.
Edge: The two sides are even, but Bayern gets a slight edge due to its midfielders possessing superior finishing touch and abilities.
The final takes place on Friday May 25 at the Wembley Stadium.