Champions League Final: Viewers treated to spectacular battle between equally admirable football teams as Bayern Munich claimed prize and Borussia Dortmund's fairytale was ended

Klopp cemented his role as the most talked about – and possibly one of the most liked
managerial talents in Europe

“A huge welcome to our fans, who are not just from Munich, but from all over Germany,” beamed FC Bayern's stadium announcer Stephan Lehmann during the build up to kick off at Wembley on Saturday evening.

Whether he meant it or not, Lehmann had, in one short phrase, summarised the nature of the rivalry between his club and Borussia Dortmund. While the latter have, since the profligate days of the nineties, regained their image as a rooted, worker's club with a local fanbase, Bayern's growing global appeal is almost as relentless as their success. This Final was to be one between the lovable homegrown boys of Dortmund, and the financial behemoth of FC Bayern. Or, as Jürgen Klopp had put it, a Final between 007 and the Bond villain.

Bayern, however, did not stick to that particular script. They proved a malevolent genius too much for Bond at Wembley, and put a valiant BVB to the sword in the 89 minute. For Dortmund, who had captured the hearts of neutrals across Europe, the fairytale was over.

No one, though, should begrudge Bayern their fifth European Cup. While they may not be quite as likeable as Dortmund, they remain an admirable club, whose primary focus on youth production, financial stability and attacking football renders them in many ways no different to BVB.

Their traditional domination of German football remains one based on success – a notion which has, over the decades, become the lifeblood of this club – and history, not on debt, foreign ownership, and exploitation of the fans. And while the current furore over Uli Hoeness' tax returns may see them maintain their image as FC Hollywood for a little while yet, there is little danger that the core values of FC Bayern will change for the worse at any time soon.

They are values which Jupp Heynckes has upheld marvellously in his two year spell. At Bayern's celebratory banquet, the 68 year old was his usual self. Dignified, humble but driven by success and ostensibly delighted to have joined an elite group of managers who have won the European Cup with two different clubs. He is likely to retire when Pep Guardiola replaces him this summer, and few could ever hope for as impressive a send off.

Dortmund, meanwhile, have their own hero. Klopp may have fallen at this particular hurdle, but he has now cemented his role as the most talked about – and possibly one of the most liked managerial talents in Europe. The BVB faithful, devoted and vocal to the last as always, will have been delighted to hear him declare his plan to stay put for several years to come.

The fans themselves, despite Lehmann's pointed remark, proved this weekend why they are considered the best in Europe. Their rapturous display of pride in their defeated team after the final whistle was only a few decibels lower than the celebrations of the Bayern fans at the other end, while the team's arrival in Dortmund was greeted with nearly as much jubilation as Bayern's victorious touchdown in Munich.

Such devotion was well rewarded on Saturday, even if the result left BVB empty handed. The performance of a weakened Dortmund side was more than the spirited fight of the underdog, it was the authoritative, glistening display of an equal power.

In their pressing, their swift changes of pace and their endless capacity to create chances, Dortmund showed that, even without Mario Götze, they are a magnificent outfit. The fans, for their part, showed just why they are known as the best in Europe, by honouring their defeated team in some style at the final whistle.

The evening did not just belong to Bayern, but nor was it about the bad guys overcoming the lovable underdogs. For once, this was a Champions League Final in which two relatively equal forces played an open, enthralling game of football, which could only ever have ended with a last minute winner. The backstage chaos over tax scandals, expensive transfers and psychological warfare were all forgotten, and the world was treated to a spectacular battle between two equally admirable football teams.

Voices
Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
Sport
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy as ECB finally wield the axe
Life and Style
food + drink
Voices
John Profumo and his wife Valerie Robson in 1959
voicesWard committed no crime, and the truth is still being covered up, writes Geoffrey Robertson QC
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas