Aviva Premiership Rugby Final 2018

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The two best club teams in English rugby will meet in the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final on Saturday as Exeter Chiefs and Saracens clash at Twickenham.

Defending champions Chiefs finished top of the league at the end of the regular season and proved too good for Newcastle Falcons in the semi-finals as they triumphed 36-5.

Three-time winners Saracens were eight points behind in second following 22 rounds, before Mark McCall’s side came out on top against Wasps with a 57-33 victory in the last-four.

Saracens prevailed when the two sides met in the Final in 2016, but the Devon side won both meetings during the regular league campaign.

Ahead of what looks set to be a thrilling Aviva Premiership Rugby finale, we have picked out a few of the key things to look out for this weekend…

Possession key for Chiefs

One of the most remarkable stats from Exeter’s impressive display against Newcastle Falcons was that they enjoyed 92 per cent of possession during the first half.

It’s unlikely Rob Baxter’s side will be able to repeat that feat against Saracens, but their ability to retain the ball and deny opposition scoring opportunities has been key to their success.

Should they get anywhere near that figure then they should be favourites to defend their title as starving Saracens of the ball is the best way to defend against their fearsome attack.

In both their meetings in the regular season, Exeter had more than 60 per cent possession and won home and away. Can they do it again on the biggest stage, though?So said Jamie George this week. Tomorrow, at Twickenham in the Premiership Final, he and his Saracens team-mates get that shot at revenge for last year’s semi-final defeat, when Sam Simmonds crossed in the 80th minute to break their hearts.

Simmonds was an impact sub then. He will be a thorn in their side from the off tomorrow but Saracens have a bulwark of a No8 of their own, Billy Vunipola. He lasted just half an hour in last week’s semi-final but is fit to start in an unchanged XV. The two England No8s’ clashes of style and status will be both fascinating and ferocious.

The same is true of the battle up front more broadly, where the Zimbabwean-born Exeter pair of Dave Ewers and Don Armand will be to the fore, and Luke Cowan-Dickie will fly about with purpose and passion. Saracens will be fierce, though. Of their forward effort in the semi-final win over Wasps, Mako Vunipola said: “We wanted to put an imprint on the game and outmuscle them.”

George also used that word, “imprint”. Pound and punch away with power like that and gaps will emerge. In their electric opening 30 minutes against Wasps, Saracens’ pack did that, with George, both Vunipola brothers, flanker Nick Isiekwe and prop Vincent Koch all superb. Start with the same intensity as they did last week and Sarries will be damned difficult to live with. They did that, too, when beating Exeter in the final two years ago.

They have also been difficult to live with at the end of games. Michael Rhodes, Ben Spencer and Schalk Brits — who, like Chris Wyles, plays the final game of a storied spell with Saracens — are all on the bench again. That helps explain why their last four regular season games brought a combined second-half scoreline of 149-0.

Exeter are the choice of the romantics. They are living the Premiership dream that keeps the promotion and relegation model intact. Sarries, meanwhile, represent the monied, urban elite. t is Saracens who will bring the more expansive game to Twickenham. They have scored 13 more tries than Exeter this season, despite winning a game fewer. They have scored more than 50 points in five of their last six games, and in the one they did not, they still managed 41. With that forward pack firing and Owen Farrell pulling the strings behind, they are flying.

Newcastle were Exeter’s semi-final opponents at Sandy Park and they were ground down by the hosts’ ability to keep the ball: Exeter had 93 per cent of the ball in the first half. That possession was broadly kept among the forwards to minimise risk and maximise the effectiveness of a limited gameplan. It works beautifully, though, and their margin of victory — 36-5 — was emphatic.

Exeter are the model of consistency, while Saracens’ mid-season blip (they lost seven successive games) feels a lifetime ago and set them up for the way they have roared into the final. One thing is certain, as the Sarries scrum-half Richard Wigglesworth pointed out: the league’s two best teams are contesting the finalt’s been a long, hard season and the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final is what it all comes down to. It takes fifteen of the world’s best players at the peak of their game and aims them at fifteen more, equally awesome players. The collision will, no doubt, be cataclysmic – and you can watch the whole thing with a live stream, even if it’s not being shown where you live

Add to that the drama of this year where the Exeter Chiefs are hoping to retain their title against the Saracens. Yup, this win will make the Chiefs the fourth team ever to do this, joining the ranks alongside Leicester, Wasps and Saracens themselves.

Since February, when Exeter lost to Wasps, they’ve not been defeated – that’s ten games of pure winning. It won’t be an easy final though as Saracens have won their last six visits to Twickenham Stadium and have been the Premiership Rugby Champions three times beating Leicester in 2011, Bath in 2015 and Exeter in 2016.

All that said, Exeter have won their last four matches against Saracens in all tournaments. So it’s really anybody’s guess who will take this title. So, how do you get to see all the nail-biting action? We’ve laid out exactly what you need to do to get a live stream below so you can simply click and enjoy.The most experienced referee in Aviva Premiership Rugby history will take charge of his 200th game when the kings of this season are crowned this weekend.

Wayne Barnes is set to hit the officiating landmark at Twickenham Stadium as defending Champions Exeter Chiefs take on Saracens on Saturday in the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final 2018.

The 39-year-old former barrister began his professional refereeing career in 2005 and will be overseeing his eighth Aviva Premiership Rugby Final – the most ever.

His first Final was a decade ago in 2008 when he took charge of Wasps’ 27-16 victory over Leicester Tigers.

Luke Pearce and Paul Dix will be Barnes’ assistants as he brings up his double century, while David Grashoff has been appointed as TMO and Paul Hull will be the citing officer for Aviva Premiership Rugby’s showpiece.

Saracens were 28-20 winners when the two sides met in the Final in 2016 but the Chiefs got their revenge at the semi-final stage last year.

Exeter went on to defeat Wasps 23-20 after extra-time at Twickenham and two additional ten-minute periods will be played should the scores be level again at the conclusion of regulation time.

If the two sides cannot be separated after extra time, then the winner will be the team that has scored the most tries in the game.

And, should that still not be enough to determine a winner, the 2018 Aviva Premiership Rugby Final will be decided in a place-kicking competition.

Read more at https://www.premiershiprugby.com/2017-2018/barnes-to-bring-up-his-double-ton-at-the-2018-aviva-premiership-rugby-final/#FGlO6youIM8WhPpj.99This year’s Aviva Premiership Final is a repeat of the 2016 final, which Saracens won 28-20, while Exeter return to defend a title they clinched following an extra-time triumph against Wasps last season.

A Chiefs victory would see them become only the fourth club after Sarries, Leicester and Wasps to successfully defend Premiership silverware since the competition began 20 years ago.

The form guide has so far held, with this season’s top two clubs after the regular 22-game Premiership campaign now going head to head.

The Chiefs remain unbeaten in all competitions since mid-February, setting up a heavyweight showdown against a Saracens side through to a fourth Premiership final in the past five seasons.Billy Vunipola is expected to start at Twickenham as Saracens continue to monitor his tight hamstring.

The England No 8 lasted only the first half of the semi-final victory over Wasps in his latest comeback from injury but director of rugby Mark McCall insists he should be given the all-clear.

Wales full-back Liam Williams could return from the shoulder issue sustained against Gloucester on May 5 but his outlook to make the showpiece against the Premiership champions is less positive.

Vunipola’s fitness has repercussions for England as the powerful back row has been named in Eddie Jones’ squad bound for South Africa next month.

The 25 year-old returned from a fractured arm against London Irish earlier this month only to be struck by the hamstring complaint that has limited his game time ahead of the three-Test series against the Springboks.At the eagerly-awaited Final between Exeter Chiefs and Saracens fans will be asked to support the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation around Twickenham via a text-to-donate line and from the sale of wristbands and headbands. And with limited tickets still available for the match there is still time for supporters to join the celebrations from the link below.

Doddie – who is unable to make Saturday’s showpiece Final – won the first ever Premiership Rugby title with Newcastle Falcons in 1998, earned 61 caps for Scotland and represented the British and Irish Lions on their successful tour to South Africa in 1997.

Alongside Wilkinson and Andrew, Doddie was part of the Newcastle Falcons side that lifted the first Premiership Rugby trophy in 1998, while Dallaglio has become a big supporter of the Foundation.

The great man was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease in December 2016 and is now the inspiration behind The My Name’5 Doddie Foundation raising funds for research into Motor Neurone Disease and he has gained global support from rugby fans everywhere.

Read more at https://www.premiershiprugby.com/2017-2018/honouring-doddie-weir-at-saturdays-aviva-premiership-rugby-final/#vPfBgx42uCQmKmkg.99

Champions League Final 2018 live

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The 2018 UEFA Champions League final will be played between Liverpool FC (England) and Real Madrid (Spain) on Saturday, May 26. Real Madrid — behind its star player, Cristiano Ronaldo — is going for a third consecutive Champions League crown (and fourth in five years). In all, Real Madrid has won the Champions League title 12 times (the competition goes back to the 1955-56 season). This is the 16th time Real Madrid has played in the Champions League final. Liverpool — behind a breakout season for Mohamed Salah — is in the Champions League final for the first time since 2007. Liverpool last won the competition in 2005, and is a five-time Champions League winner all-time. No club has won more UEFA Champions League crowns. In fact, no other team is even close to matching Real Madrid’s 12 Champions League triumphs; AC Milan is second with seven, while Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Liverpool each have five. Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice en route to Man of the Match honors in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win over Juventus last year, and look for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be a focal point for Los Blancos on Saturday. Under manager Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool has returned to prominence in Europe. Klopp — who has been with Liverpool since 2015 — has prior experience in leading a team to the Champions League final. In 2013, he delivered Borussia Dortmund to the brink of European glory, only to lose to German rival Bayern Munich. Klopp’s team features Mohamed Salah, who scored a record 32 goals in 36 Premier League games this season. Real Madrid and Liverpool will face off in the final of the 2017-18 Champions League this weekend.

Defending champions Madrid are aiming to win the competition for a third consecutive season, whle Liverpool are looking for their sixth European crown and a first in 13 years. Neither side managed to finish in the top two of their domestic leagues, but victory on the grandest stage would more than compensate for the lack of a league title. The final will be played at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium — or Olympic Stadium — in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. While the stadium can hold more than 70,000 spectators, UEFA says the “net capacity” for the final will be 63,000.

The ground hosted the Euro 2012 final between Spain and Italy, a match which starred current Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. His opposite number at Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, and vice-captain James Milner, played there in England’s quarterfinal defeat to the Italians in the same tournament. The referee will be Milorad Mazic. The Serbian official took charge of the 2017 Confederations Cup final, the 2016 European Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla, and Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United in the 2015-16 Europa League Real Madrid will become the first side to claim three successive Champions League titles since the competition was re-branded in 1992 with a win.

Madrid will also extend their record of most European Cup/Champions League titles won with victory — their current tally stands at 12. Liverpool’s front three — Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah — can extend their record of most goals in tournament. Their total of 29 goals so far surpassed the 28 set by Real Madrid trio Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema during the 2013-14 season. While most of this Real Madrid squad will be featuring in their fourth Champions League final in five seasons, no Liverpool player has featured in one before.

Zinedine Zidane could become the third manager to win the European Cup/Champions League three times — after Bob Paisley (all with Liverpool) and Carlo Ancelotti (two with AC Milan, one with Real Madrid) — while he would be the first to win it in three consecutive seasons. Cristiano Ronaldo could become the first player to score in consecutive finals in the Champions League era. The last player to do so in the European Cup was Franz Roth (for Bayern Munich in 1975 and 1976). While Liverpool were in the middle of an engrossing — but what would ultimately prove fruitless — Premier League title charge, they also had one eye on winning their second Champions League title with Rafa Benitez at the helm. Having won the first leg of this round-of-16 tie 1-0 away from home, Liverpool ran rampant on a famous night at Anfield. A double from Steven Gerrard between a Fernando Torres opener and Andrea Dossena’s cherry on the cake saw Real Madrid dumped out The first meeting between these heavyweights came in the 1981 European Cup final. Alan Kennedy scored a late winner to hand Liverpool their third European Cup. This would prove to be the last time Real Madrid lost a European Cup/Champions League final, going on to win their next six. The stage is set for the kings of Europe to be crowned. The 2018 UEFA Champions League final kicks off from Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, on Saturday, May 26 at 2:45 p.m. ET. Real Madrid is favored by half a goal over Liverpool, unchanged from the opening line. Madrid is +120 on the money line, meaning you would have to wager $100 to win $120. The over-under, or total number of goals oddsmakers think will be scored, is three.

Before you bet on Real Madrid vs. Liverpool, you need to see what renowned European soccer expert David Sumpter has to say. Sumpter is an applied mathematician who wrote Soccermatics, the book that shows how math works inside the game. Together with experienced analysts, Sumpter developed the powerful Soccerbot model. Sumpter’s Soccerbot reads current odds and all team performance data, calculates key metrics and predicts upcoming matches. In the two-and-a-half seasons since it was born, the Soccerbot is up 1,800 percent on bookmakers’ closing odds. That’s right — 1,800 percent.

Now, he has set his sights on Saturday’s Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool and his picks are in. We can tell you Sumpter is leaning toward the total going over, but what about betting the money line and against the spread? Sumpter knows Real Madrid, seeking its fourth European title in five years and 13th overall, can make history by winning its third consecutive UEFA Champions League trophy.

Meanwhile, Liverpool, which has won the European Cup five times, will be looking to secure its first piece of silverware in six years. And the Reds enter Saturday’s final full of confidence, thanks in part to Mohamed Salah, who has scored 44 goals in his debut campaign with Liverpool. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a poor record in finals. He lost the 2012-13 Champions League final against Bayern Munich during his time at Borussia Dortmund, along with League Cup and Europa League finals with Liverpool.

Sumpter has evaluated all of these circumstances and identified where the value lies on the money line and against the spread. Like many Russians under the age of 30, Andrei grew up in a post-Soviet world. For him and other residents of Nizhny Novgorod, the dissolution of the Soviet Union was particularly significant. Until then the city, named Gorky, had been “closed.” Foreigners were strictly prohibited. Now, 26 years later, the World Cup will bring people from all over the world. Many residents are preparing for the greatest influx of foreig n visitors they will ever witness. Embankments, streets and squares that were once only frequented by Soviet citizens will heave with the sights and sounds of fans from Argentina, England, Panama and elsewhere.

Ruminating over a pint stout and a bowl of Grenki, the long, black garlic bread sticks that accompany beer in Russia, Andrei laid out his hopes for the World Cup. For Nizhny Novgorod, he said, the tournament is an opportunity to open the city up to the world and shake off the legacy of Gorky, the closed city. Such a huge event is very important for Nizhny to show for the world its history and its culture,” he told ESPN FC. “It is very good motivation to work hard and to show what has changed. For example, English people didn’t have the chance to visit during the 20th century. It is a very good chance to create a very good atmosphere. He also saw hope for some reconciliation between Russia and the outside world, an opportunity to break media narratives. “It’s a big stereotype that Russia is a terrible place”, he said. “This World Cup is a very good chance to break stereotypes. It’s a very good possibility to understand that Russia is part of Europe, like all the other eastern European countries.”

But the World Cup’s legacy in Nizhny Novgorod, all open hearts, minds and new infrastructure, might not be enough to sustain a lasting football culture. It is not a city accustomed to hosting huge matches. At the moment, there is no local team in the Russian Premier League. Most recently, Volga Nizhny Novgorod competed in the top flight from the 2011-12 season until their relegation in the 2013-14 campaign. A year later, they were wound up. In the 1990s, Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod represented the city, even reaching the Intertoto Cup. But like Volga, they were ultimately relegated, shuttered and reformed as an amateur team. Local hopes now rest on Olimpiyets, founded in 2015. They compete in the second tier of Russian football but are closer to relegation than promotion. Until recently, they played their matches in Dzherzhinsk, a city in Nizhny Novgorod Region, attracting crowds of a couple of thousand at most.

In April, Olimpiyets moved into the Nizhny Novgorod Arena, ready for the obligatory test matches before the World Cup. The stadium, a set of pillars wrapped around in a blue and white façade, was built on an unused patch of land next to where the Volga and Oka rivers meet. The Kremlin and the elevated city centre are viewable across the Oka while the stadium is surrounded by a retail park and a set of Soviet-era apartment blocks.

After delays, it finally opened in April. In the first game there, Olimpiyets played Zenit St Petersburg’s second team. Only 15,000 people turned up for the match, just 33 percent of its capacity. Two weeks later, against Rotor Volgograd, an established, historic team, things improved and 26,800 fans came to the stadium. It was an impressive figure for a side who only attracted 500 fans in their final game in Dzherzhinsk, but still just 58 percent of the total capacity, with the attendance falling in subsequent weeks.

If Olimpiyets play in the Premier League, 20,000 people [will attend] without any problem,” he hoped. “It depends on marketing. It depends on the weather. It depends on a lot of things. When Volga played in the Premier League it got 17,000 [spectators] against Spartak Moscow, Dinamo Moscow, Zenit St Petersburg and Lokomotiv Moscow.”

Though 20,000 would be a large crowd for Nizhny Novgorod, a city more passionate about ice hockey, it would still leave oceans of empty blue and white in the stands. But Aleksei Dmitrov, a flat-capped, fast-talking shop owner, believed that ice hockey provided a model for football in the city. He pointed to the success of local ice hockey team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod, who provided a number of players for successful Soviet Olympic teams. If residents could see talented players in a new stadium, he said, the popularity of local football would grow.

There is an existing football culture in Nizhny Novgorod but it rarely involves watching the city’s teams. Local football in the city, as in many across Russia, struggles to compete with the popularity of the Moscow clubs and foreign leagues. During our meeting Andrei received a few calls, each time putting the phone back down on the table, saying “Liverpool fan”, or “Tottenham fan.” As a Spurs supporter, he was arranging where he and his friends would watch the two teams do battle that evening.

2018 Champions League Final live

Welcome to Watch 2018 Champions League Final Live Streaming                                                       Online Free HD TV Coverage

Click Here To Watch Now Live

The 2018 UEFA Champions League final will be played between Liverpool FC (England) and Real Madrid (Spain) on Saturday, May 26. Real Madrid — behind its star player, Cristiano Ronaldo — is going for a third consecutive Champions League crown (and fourth in five years). In all, Real Madrid has won the Champions League title 12 times (the competition goes back to the 1955-56 season). This is the 16th time Real Madrid has played in the Champions League final. Liverpool — behind a breakout season for Mohamed Salah — is in the Champions League final for the first time since 2007. Liverpool last won the competition in 2005, and is a five-time Champions League winner all-time. No club has won more UEFA Champions League crowns. In fact, no other team is even close to matching Real Madrid’s 12 Champions League triumphs; AC Milan is second with seven, while Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Liverpool each have five. Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice en route to Man of the Match honors in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win over Juventus last year, and look for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be a focal point for Los Blancos on Saturday. Under manager Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool has returned to prominence in Europe. Klopp — who has been with Liverpool since 2015 — has prior experience in leading a team to the Champions League final. In 2013, he delivered Borussia Dortmund to the brink of European glory, only to lose to German rival Bayern Munich. Klopp’s team features Mohamed Salah, who scored a record 32 goals in 36 Premier League games this season. Real Madrid and Liverpool will face off in the final of the 2017-18 Champions League this weekend.

Defending champions Madrid are aiming to win the competition for a third consecutive season, whle Liverpool are looking for their sixth European crown and a first in 13 years. Neither side managed to finish in the top two of their domestic leagues, but victory on the grandest stage would more than compensate for the lack of a league title. The final will be played at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium — or Olympic Stadium — in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. While the stadium can hold more than 70,000 spectators, UEFA says the “net capacity” for the final will be 63,000.

The ground hosted the Euro 2012 final between Spain and Italy, a match which starred current Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. His opposite number at Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, and vice-captain James Milner, played there in England’s quarterfinal defeat to the Italians in the same tournament. The referee will be Milorad Mazic. The Serbian official took charge of the 2017 Confederations Cup final, the 2016 European Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla, and Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United in the 2015-16 Europa League Real Madrid will become the first side to claim three successive Champions League titles since the competition was re-branded in 1992 with a win.

Madrid will also extend their record of most European Cup/Champions League titles won with victory — their current tally stands at 12. Liverpool’s front three — Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah — can extend their record of most goals in tournament. Their total of 29 goals so far surpassed the 28 set by Real Madrid trio Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema during the 2013-14 season. While most of this Real Madrid squad will be featuring in their fourth Champions League final in five seasons, no Liverpool player has featured in one before.

Zinedine Zidane could become the third manager to win the European Cup/Champions League three times — after Bob Paisley (all with Liverpool) and Carlo Ancelotti (two with AC Milan, one with Real Madrid) — while he would be the first to win it in three consecutive seasons. Cristiano Ronaldo could become the first player to score in consecutive finals in the Champions League era. The last player to do so in the European Cup was Franz Roth (for Bayern Munich in 1975 and 1976). While Liverpool were in the middle of an engrossing — but what would ultimately prove fruitless — Premier League title charge, they also had one eye on winning their second Champions League title with Rafa Benitez at the helm. Having won the first leg of this round-of-16 tie 1-0 away from home, Liverpool ran rampant on a famous night at Anfield. A double from Steven Gerrard between a Fernando Torres opener and Andrea Dossena’s cherry on the cake saw Real Madrid dumped out The first meeting between these heavyweights came in the 1981 European Cup final. Alan Kennedy scored a late winner to hand Liverpool their third European Cup. This would prove to be the last time Real Madrid lost a European Cup/Champions League final, going on to win their next six. The stage is set for the kings of Europe to be crowned. The 2018 UEFA Champions League final kicks off from Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, on Saturday, May 26 at 2:45 p.m. ET. Real Madrid is favored by half a goal over Liverpool, unchanged from the opening line. Madrid is +120 on the money line, meaning you would have to wager $100 to win $120. The over-under, or total number of goals oddsmakers think will be scored, is three.

Before you bet on Real Madrid vs. Liverpool, you need to see what renowned European soccer expert David Sumpter has to say. Sumpter is an applied mathematician who wrote Soccermatics, the book that shows how math works inside the game. Together with experienced analysts, Sumpter developed the powerful Soccerbot model. Sumpter’s Soccerbot reads current odds and all team performance data, calculates key metrics and predicts upcoming matches. In the two-and-a-half seasons since it was born, the Soccerbot is up 1,800 percent on bookmakers’ closing odds. That’s right — 1,800 percent.

Now, he has set his sights on Saturday’s Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool and his picks are in. We can tell you Sumpter is leaning toward the total going over, but what about betting the money line and against the spread? Sumpter knows Real Madrid, seeking its fourth European title in five years and 13th overall, can make history by winning its third consecutive UEFA Champions League trophy.

Meanwhile, Liverpool, which has won the European Cup five times, will be looking to secure its first piece of silverware in six years. And the Reds enter Saturday’s final full of confidence, thanks in part to Mohamed Salah, who has scored 44 goals in his debut campaign with Liverpool. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a poor record in finals. He lost the 2012-13 Champions League final against Bayern Munich during his time at Borussia Dortmund, along with League Cup and Europa League finals with Liverpool.

Sumpter has evaluated all of these circumstances and identified where the value lies on the money line and against the spread. Like many Russians under the age of 30, Andrei grew up in a post-Soviet world. For him and other residents of Nizhny Novgorod, the dissolution of the Soviet Union was particularly significant. Until then the city, named Gorky, had been “closed.” Foreigners were strictly prohibited. Now, 26 years later, the World Cup will bring people from all over the world. Many residents are preparing for the greatest influx of foreig n visitors they will ever witness. Embankments, streets and squares that were once only frequented by Soviet citizens will heave with the sights and sounds of fans from Argentina, England, Panama and elsewhere.

Ruminating over a pint stout and a bowl of Grenki, the long, black garlic bread sticks that accompany beer in Russia, Andrei laid out his hopes for the World Cup. For Nizhny Novgorod, he said, the tournament is an opportunity to open the city up to the world and shake off the legacy of Gorky, the closed city. Such a huge event is very important for Nizhny to show for the world its history and its culture,” he told ESPN FC. “It is very good motivation to work hard and to show what has changed. For example, English people didn’t have the chance to visit during the 20th century. It is a very good chance to create a very good atmosphere. He also saw hope for some reconciliation between Russia and the outside world, an opportunity to break media narratives. “It’s a big stereotype that Russia is a terrible place”, he said. “This World Cup is a very good chance to break stereotypes. It’s a very good possibility to understand that Russia is part of Europe, like all the other eastern European countries.”

But the World Cup’s legacy in Nizhny Novgorod, all open hearts, minds and new infrastructure, might not be enough to sustain a lasting football culture. It is not a city accustomed to hosting huge matches. At the moment, there is no local team in the Russian Premier League. Most recently, Volga Nizhny Novgorod competed in the top flight from the 2011-12 season until their relegation in the 2013-14 campaign. A year later, they were wound up. In the 1990s, Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod represented the city, even reaching the Intertoto Cup. But like Volga, they were ultimately relegated, shuttered and reformed as an amateur team. Local hopes now rest on Olimpiyets, founded in 2015. They compete in the second tier of Russian football but are closer to relegation than promotion. Until recently, they played their matches in Dzherzhinsk, a city in Nizhny Novgorod Region, attracting crowds of a couple of thousand at most.

In April, Olimpiyets moved into the Nizhny Novgorod Arena, ready for the obligatory test matches before the World Cup. The stadium, a set of pillars wrapped around in a blue and white façade, was built on an unused patch of land next to where the Volga and Oka rivers meet. The Kremlin and the elevated city centre are viewable across the Oka while the stadium is surrounded by a retail park and a set of Soviet-era apartment blocks.

After delays, it finally opened in April. In the first game there, Olimpiyets played Zenit St Petersburg’s second team. Only 15,000 people turned up for the match, just 33 percent of its capacity. Two weeks later, against Rotor Volgograd, an established, historic team, things improved and 26,800 fans came to the stadium. It was an impressive figure for a side who only attracted 500 fans in their final game in Dzherzhinsk, but still just 58 percent of the total capacity, with the attendance falling in subsequent weeks.

If Olimpiyets play in the Premier League, 20,000 people [will attend] without any problem,” he hoped. “It depends on marketing. It depends on the weather. It depends on a lot of things. When Volga played in the Premier League it got 17,000 [spectators] against Spartak Moscow, Dinamo Moscow, Zenit St Petersburg and Lokomotiv Moscow.”

Though 20,000 would be a large crowd for Nizhny Novgorod, a city more passionate about ice hockey, it would still leave oceans of empty blue and white in the stands. But Aleksei Dmitrov, a flat-capped, fast-talking shop owner, believed that ice hockey provided a model for football in the city. He pointed to the success of local ice hockey team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod, who provided a number of players for successful Soviet Olympic teams. If residents could see talented players in a new stadium, he said, the popularity of local football would grow.

There is an existing football culture in Nizhny Novgorod but it rarely involves watching the city’s teams. Local football in the city, as in many across Russia, struggles to compete with the popularity of the Moscow clubs and foreign leagues. During our meeting Andrei received a few calls, each time putting the phone back down on the table, saying “Liverpool fan”, or “Tottenham fan.” As a Spurs supporter, he was arranging where he and his friends would watch the two teams do battle that evening.

2018 Champions League Final

Welcome to Watch 2018 Champions League Final Live Streaming                                                      Online Free HD TV Coverage

Click Here To Watch Now Live

The 2018 UEFA Champions League final will be played between Liverpool FC (England) and Real Madrid (Spain) on Saturday, May 26. Real Madrid — behind its star player, Cristiano Ronaldo — is going for a third consecutive Champions League crown (and fourth in five years). In all, Real Madrid has won the Champions League title 12 times (the competition goes back to the 1955-56 season). This is the 16th time Real Madrid has played in the Champions League final. Liverpool — behind a breakout season for Mohamed Salah — is in the Champions League final for the first time since 2007. Liverpool last won the competition in 2005, and is a five-time Champions League winner all-time. No club has won more UEFA Champions League crowns. In fact, no other team is even close to matching Real Madrid’s 12 Champions League triumphs; AC Milan is second with seven, while Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Liverpool each have five. Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice en route to Man of the Match honors in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win over Juventus last year, and look for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be a focal point for Los Blancos on Saturday. Under manager Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool has returned to prominence in Europe. Klopp — who has been with Liverpool since 2015 — has prior experience in leading a team to the Champions League final. In 2013, he delivered Borussia Dortmund to the brink of European glory, only to lose to German rival Bayern Munich. Klopp’s team features Mohamed Salah, who scored a record 32 goals in 36 Premier League games this season. Real Madrid and Liverpool will face off in the final of the 2017-18 Champions League this weekend.

Defending champions Madrid are aiming to win the competition for a third consecutive season, whle Liverpool are looking for their sixth European crown and a first in 13 years. Neither side managed to finish in the top two of their domestic leagues, but victory on the grandest stage would more than compensate for the lack of a league title. The final will be played at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium — or Olympic Stadium — in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. While the stadium can hold more than 70,000 spectators, UEFA says the “net capacity” for the final will be 63,000.

The ground hosted the Euro 2012 final between Spain and Italy, a match which starred current Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. His opposite number at Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, and vice-captain James Milner, played there in England’s quarterfinal defeat to the Italians in the same tournament. The referee will be Milorad Mazic. The Serbian official took charge of the 2017 Confederations Cup final, the 2016 European Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla, and Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United in the 2015-16 Europa League Real Madrid will become the first side to claim three successive Champions League titles since the competition was re-branded in 1992 with a win.

Madrid will also extend their record of most European Cup/Champions League titles won with victory — their current tally stands at 12. Liverpool’s front three — Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah — can extend their record of most goals in tournament. Their total of 29 goals so far surpassed the 28 set by Real Madrid trio Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema during the 2013-14 season. While most of this Real Madrid squad will be featuring in their fourth Champions League final in five seasons, no Liverpool player has featured in one before.

Zinedine Zidane could become the third manager to win the European Cup/Champions League three times — after Bob Paisley (all with Liverpool) and Carlo Ancelotti (two with AC Milan, one with Real Madrid) — while he would be the first to win it in three consecutive seasons. Cristiano Ronaldo could become the first player to score in consecutive finals in the Champions League era. The last player to do so in the European Cup was Franz Roth (for Bayern Munich in 1975 and 1976). While Liverpool were in the middle of an engrossing — but what would ultimately prove fruitless — Premier League title charge, they also had one eye on winning their second Champions League title with Rafa Benitez at the helm. Having won the first leg of this round-of-16 tie 1-0 away from home, Liverpool ran rampant on a famous night at Anfield. A double from Steven Gerrard between a Fernando Torres opener and Andrea Dossena’s cherry on the cake saw Real Madrid dumped out The first meeting between these heavyweights came in the 1981 European Cup final. Alan Kennedy scored a late winner to hand Liverpool their third European Cup. This would prove to be the last time Real Madrid lost a European Cup/Champions League final, going on to win their next six. The stage is set for the kings of Europe to be crowned. The 2018 UEFA Champions League final kicks off from Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, on Saturday, May 26 at 2:45 p.m. ET. Real Madrid is favored by half a goal over Liverpool, unchanged from the opening line. Madrid is +120 on the money line, meaning you would have to wager $100 to win $120. The over-under, or total number of goals oddsmakers think will be scored, is three.

Before you bet on Real Madrid vs. Liverpool, you need to see what renowned European soccer expert David Sumpter has to say. Sumpter is an applied mathematician who wrote Soccermatics, the book that shows how math works inside the game. Together with experienced analysts, Sumpter developed the powerful Soccerbot model. Sumpter’s Soccerbot reads current odds and all team performance data, calculates key metrics and predicts upcoming matches. In the two-and-a-half seasons since it was born, the Soccerbot is up 1,800 percent on bookmakers’ closing odds. That’s right — 1,800 percent.

Now, he has set his sights on Saturday’s Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool and his picks are in. We can tell you Sumpter is leaning toward the total going over, but what about betting the money line and against the spread? Sumpter knows Real Madrid, seeking its fourth European title in five years and 13th overall, can make history by winning its third consecutive UEFA Champions League trophy.

Meanwhile, Liverpool, which has won the European Cup five times, will be looking to secure its first piece of silverware in six years. And the Reds enter Saturday’s final full of confidence, thanks in part to Mohamed Salah, who has scored 44 goals in his debut campaign with Liverpool. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a poor record in finals. He lost the 2012-13 Champions League final against Bayern Munich during his time at Borussia Dortmund, along with League Cup and Europa League finals with Liverpool.

Sumpter has evaluated all of these circumstances and identified where the value lies on the money line and against the spread. Like many Russians under the age of 30, Andrei grew up in a post-Soviet world. For him and other residents of Nizhny Novgorod, the dissolution of the Soviet Union was particularly significant. Until then the city, named Gorky, had been “closed.” Foreigners were strictly prohibited. Now, 26 years later, the World Cup will bring people from all over the world. Many residents are preparing for the greatest influx of foreig n visitors they will ever witness. Embankments, streets and squares that were once only frequented by Soviet citizens will heave with the sights and sounds of fans from Argentina, England, Panama and elsewhere.

Ruminating over a pint stout and a bowl of Grenki, the long, black garlic bread sticks that accompany beer in Russia, Andrei laid out his hopes for the World Cup. For Nizhny Novgorod, he said, the tournament is an opportunity to open the city up to the world and shake off the legacy of Gorky, the closed city. Such a huge event is very important for Nizhny to show for the world its history and its culture,” he told ESPN FC. “It is very good motivation to work hard and to show what has changed. For example, English people didn’t have the chance to visit during the 20th century. It is a very good chance to create a very good atmosphere. He also saw hope for some reconciliation between Russia and the outside world, an opportunity to break media narratives. “It’s a big stereotype that Russia is a terrible place”, he said. “This World Cup is a very good chance to break stereotypes. It’s a very good possibility to understand that Russia is part of Europe, like all the other eastern European countries.”

But the World Cup’s legacy in Nizhny Novgorod, all open hearts, minds and new infrastructure, might not be enough to sustain a lasting football culture. It is not a city accustomed to hosting huge matches. At the moment, there is no local team in the Russian Premier League. Most recently, Volga Nizhny Novgorod competed in the top flight from the 2011-12 season until their relegation in the 2013-14 campaign. A year later, they were wound up. In the 1990s, Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod represented the city, even reaching the Intertoto Cup. But like Volga, they were ultimately relegated, shuttered and reformed as an amateur team. Local hopes now rest on Olimpiyets, founded in 2015. They compete in the second tier of Russian football but are closer to relegation than promotion. Until recently, they played their matches in Dzherzhinsk, a city in Nizhny Novgorod Region, attracting crowds of a couple of thousand at most.

In April, Olimpiyets moved into the Nizhny Novgorod Arena, ready for the obligatory test matches before the World Cup. The stadium, a set of pillars wrapped around in a blue and white façade, was built on an unused patch of land next to where the Volga and Oka rivers meet. The Kremlin and the elevated city centre are viewable across the Oka while the stadium is surrounded by a retail park and a set of Soviet-era apartment blocks.

After delays, it finally opened in April. In the first game there, Olimpiyets played Zenit St Petersburg’s second team. Only 15,000 people turned up for the match, just 33 percent of its capacity. Two weeks later, against Rotor Volgograd, an established, historic team, things improved and 26,800 fans came to the stadium. It was an impressive figure for a side who only attracted 500 fans in their final game in Dzherzhinsk, but still just 58 percent of the total capacity, with the attendance falling in subsequent weeks.

If Olimpiyets play in the Premier League, 20,000 people [will attend] without any problem,” he hoped. “It depends on marketing. It depends on the weather. It depends on a lot of things. When Volga played in the Premier League it got 17,000 [spectators] against Spartak Moscow, Dinamo Moscow, Zenit St Petersburg and Lokomotiv Moscow.”

Though 20,000 would be a large crowd for Nizhny Novgorod, a city more passionate about ice hockey, it would still leave oceans of empty blue and white in the stands. But Aleksei Dmitrov, a flat-capped, fast-talking shop owner, believed that ice hockey provided a model for football in the city. He pointed to the success of local ice hockey team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod, who provided a number of players for successful Soviet Olympic teams. If residents could see talented players in a new stadium, he said, the popularity of local football would grow.

There is an existing football culture in Nizhny Novgorod but it rarely involves watching the city’s teams. Local football in the city, as in many across Russia, struggles to compete with the popularity of the Moscow clubs and foreign leagues. During our meeting Andrei received a few calls, each time putting the phone back down on the table, saying “Liverpool fan”, or “Tottenham fan.” As a Spurs supporter, he was arranging where he and his friends would watch the two teams do battle that evening.

Champions League Final 2018

Welcome to Watch Champions League Final 2018 Live Streaming                                                       Online Free HD TV Coverage

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The 2018 UEFA Champions League final will be played between Liverpool FC (England) and Real Madrid (Spain) on Saturday, May 26. Real Madrid — behind its star player, Cristiano Ronaldo — is going for a third consecutive Champions League crown (and fourth in five years). In all, Real Madrid has won the Champions League title 12 times (the competition goes back to the 1955-56 season). This is the 16th time Real Madrid has played in the Champions League final. Liverpool — behind a breakout season for Mohamed Salah — is in the Champions League final for the first time since 2007. Liverpool last won the competition in 2005, and is a five-time Champions League winner all-time. No club has won more UEFA Champions League crowns. In fact, no other team is even close to matching Real Madrid’s 12 Champions League triumphs; AC Milan is second with seven, while Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Liverpool each have five. Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice en route to Man of the Match honors in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win over Juventus last year, and look for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be a focal point for Los Blancos on Saturday. Under manager Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool has returned to prominence in Europe. Klopp — who has been with Liverpool since 2015 — has prior experience in leading a team to the Champions League final. In 2013, he delivered Borussia Dortmund to the brink of European glory, only to lose to German rival Bayern Munich. Klopp’s team features Mohamed Salah, who scored a record 32 goals in 36 Premier League games this season. Real Madrid and Liverpool will face off in the final of the 2017-18 Champions League this weekend.

Defending champions Madrid are aiming to win the competition for a third consecutive season, whle Liverpool are looking for their sixth European crown and a first in 13 years. Neither side managed to finish in the top two of their domestic leagues, but victory on the grandest stage would more than compensate for the lack of a league title. The final will be played at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium — or Olympic Stadium — in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. While the stadium can hold more than 70,000 spectators, UEFA says the “net capacity” for the final will be 63,000.

The ground hosted the Euro 2012 final between Spain and Italy, a match which starred current Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. His opposite number at Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, and vice-captain James Milner, played there in England’s quarterfinal defeat to the Italians in the same tournament. The referee will be Milorad Mazic. The Serbian official took charge of the 2017 Confederations Cup final, the 2016 European Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla, and Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United in the 2015-16 Europa League Real Madrid will become the first side to claim three successive Champions League titles since the competition was re-branded in 1992 with a win.

Madrid will also extend their record of most European Cup/Champions League titles won with victory — their current tally stands at 12. Liverpool’s front three — Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah — can extend their record of most goals in tournament. Their total of 29 goals so far surpassed the 28 set by Real Madrid trio Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema during the 2013-14 season. While most of this Real Madrid squad will be featuring in their fourth Champions League final in five seasons, no Liverpool player has featured in one before.

Zinedine Zidane could become the third manager to win the European Cup/Champions League three times — after Bob Paisley (all with Liverpool) and Carlo Ancelotti (two with AC Milan, one with Real Madrid) — while he would be the first to win it in three consecutive seasons. Cristiano Ronaldo could become the first player to score in consecutive finals in the Champions League era. The last player to do so in the European Cup was Franz Roth (for Bayern Munich in 1975 and 1976). While Liverpool were in the middle of an engrossing — but what would ultimately prove fruitless — Premier League title charge, they also had one eye on winning their second Champions League title with Rafa Benitez at the helm. Having won the first leg of this round-of-16 tie 1-0 away from home, Liverpool ran rampant on a famous night at Anfield. A double from Steven Gerrard between a Fernando Torres opener and Andrea Dossena’s cherry on the cake saw Real Madrid dumped out The first meeting between these heavyweights came in the 1981 European Cup final. Alan Kennedy scored a late winner to hand Liverpool their third European Cup. This would prove to be the last time Real Madrid lost a European Cup/Champions League final, going on to win their next six. The stage is set for the kings of Europe to be crowned. The 2018 UEFA Champions League final kicks off from Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, on Saturday, May 26 at 2:45 p.m. ET. Real Madrid is favored by half a goal over Liverpool, unchanged from the opening line. Madrid is +120 on the money line, meaning you would have to wager $100 to win $120. The over-under, or total number of goals oddsmakers think will be scored, is three.

Before you bet on Real Madrid vs. Liverpool, you need to see what renowned European soccer expert David Sumpter has to say. Sumpter is an applied mathematician who wrote Soccermatics, the book that shows how math works inside the game. Together with experienced analysts, Sumpter developed the powerful Soccerbot model. Sumpter’s Soccerbot reads current odds and all team performance data, calculates key metrics and predicts upcoming matches. In the two-and-a-half seasons since it was born, the Soccerbot is up 1,800 percent on bookmakers’ closing odds. That’s right — 1,800 percent.

Now, he has set his sights on Saturday’s Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool and his picks are in. We can tell you Sumpter is leaning toward the total going over, but what about betting the money line and against the spread? Sumpter knows Real Madrid, seeking its fourth European title in five years and 13th overall, can make history by winning its third consecutive UEFA Champions League trophy.

Meanwhile, Liverpool, which has won the European Cup five times, will be looking to secure its first piece of silverware in six years. And the Reds enter Saturday’s final full of confidence, thanks in part to Mohamed Salah, who has scored 44 goals in his debut campaign with Liverpool. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a poor record in finals. He lost the 2012-13 Champions League final against Bayern Munich during his time at Borussia Dortmund, along with League Cup and Europa League finals with Liverpool.

Sumpter has evaluated all of these circumstances and identified where the value lies on the money line and against the spread. Like many Russians under the age of 30, Andrei grew up in a post-Soviet world. For him and other residents of Nizhny Novgorod, the dissolution of the Soviet Union was particularly significant. Until then the city, named Gorky, had been “closed.” Foreigners were strictly prohibited. Now, 26 years later, the World Cup will bring people from all over the world. Many residents are preparing for the greatest influx of foreig n visitors they will ever witness. Embankments, streets and squares that were once only frequented by Soviet citizens will heave with the sights and sounds of fans from Argentina, England, Panama and elsewhere.

Ruminating over a pint stout and a bowl of Grenki, the long, black garlic bread sticks that accompany beer in Russia, Andrei laid out his hopes for the World Cup. For Nizhny Novgorod, he said, the tournament is an opportunity to open the city up to the world and shake off the legacy of Gorky, the closed city. Such a huge event is very important for Nizhny to show for the world its history and its culture,” he told ESPN FC. “It is very good motivation to work hard and to show what has changed. For example, English people didn’t have the chance to visit during the 20th century. It is a very good chance to create a very good atmosphere. He also saw hope for some reconciliation between Russia and the outside world, an opportunity to break media narratives. “It’s a big stereotype that Russia is a terrible place”, he said. “This World Cup is a very good chance to break stereotypes. It’s a very good possibility to understand that Russia is part of Europe, like all the other eastern European countries.”

But the World Cup’s legacy in Nizhny Novgorod, all open hearts, minds and new infrastructure, might not be enough to sustain a lasting football culture. It is not a city accustomed to hosting huge matches. At the moment, there is no local team in the Russian Premier League. Most recently, Volga Nizhny Novgorod competed in the top flight from the 2011-12 season until their relegation in the 2013-14 campaign. A year later, they were wound up. In the 1990s, Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod represented the city, even reaching the Intertoto Cup. But like Volga, they were ultimately relegated, shuttered and reformed as an amateur team. Local hopes now rest on Olimpiyets, founded in 2015. They compete in the second tier of Russian football but are closer to relegation than promotion. Until recently, they played their matches in Dzherzhinsk, a city in Nizhny Novgorod Region, attracting crowds of a couple of thousand at most.

In April, Olimpiyets moved into the Nizhny Novgorod Arena, ready for the obligatory test matches before the World Cup. The stadium, a set of pillars wrapped around in a blue and white façade, was built on an unused patch of land next to where the Volga and Oka rivers meet. The Kremlin and the elevated city centre are viewable across the Oka while the stadium is surrounded by a retail park and a set of Soviet-era apartment blocks.

After delays, it finally opened in April. In the first game there, Olimpiyets played Zenit St Petersburg’s second team. Only 15,000 people turned up for the match, just 33 percent of its capacity. Two weeks later, against Rotor Volgograd, an established, historic team, things improved and 26,800 fans came to the stadium. It was an impressive figure for a side who only attracted 500 fans in their final game in Dzherzhinsk, but still just 58 percent of the total capacity, with the attendance falling in subsequent weeks.

If Olimpiyets play in the Premier League, 20,000 people [will attend] without any problem,” he hoped. “It depends on marketing. It depends on the weather. It depends on a lot of things. When Volga played in the Premier League it got 17,000 [spectators] against Spartak Moscow, Dinamo Moscow, Zenit St Petersburg and Lokomotiv Moscow.”

Though 20,000 would be a large crowd for Nizhny Novgorod, a city more passionate about ice hockey, it would still leave oceans of empty blue and white in the stands. But Aleksei Dmitrov, a flat-capped, fast-talking shop owner, believed that ice hockey provided a model for football in the city. He pointed to the success of local ice hockey team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod, who provided a number of players for successful Soviet Olympic teams. If residents could see talented players in a new stadium, he said, the popularity of local football would grow.

There is an existing football culture in Nizhny Novgorod but it rarely involves watching the city’s teams. Local football in the city, as in many across Russia, struggles to compete with the popularity of the Moscow clubs and foreign leagues. During our meeting Andrei received a few calls, each time putting the phone back down on the table, saying “Liverpool fan”, or “Tottenham fan.” As a Spurs supporter, he was arranging where he and his friends would watch the two teams do battle that evening.

2018 UEFA Champions League Final live

Welcome to Watch UEFA Champions League Final Live Streaming                                                       Online Free HD TV Coverage

Click Here To Watch Now Live

The 2018 UEFA Champions League final will be played between Liverpool FC (England) and Real Madrid (Spain) on Saturday, May 26. Real Madrid — behind its star player, Cristiano Ronaldo — is going for a third consecutive Champions League crown (and fourth in five years). In all, Real Madrid has won the Champions League title 12 times (the competition goes back to the 1955-56 season). This is the 16th time Real Madrid has played in the Champions League final. Liverpool — behind a breakout season for Mohamed Salah — is in the Champions League final for the first time since 2007. Liverpool last won the competition in 2005, and is a five-time Champions League winner all-time. No club has won more UEFA Champions League crowns. In fact, no other team is even close to matching Real Madrid’s 12 Champions League triumphs; AC Milan is second with seven, while Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Liverpool each have five. Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice en route to Man of the Match honors in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win over Juventus last year, and look for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be a focal point for Los Blancos on Saturday. Under manager Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool has returned to prominence in Europe. Klopp — who has been with Liverpool since 2015 — has prior experience in leading a team to the Champions League final. In 2013, he delivered Borussia Dortmund to the brink of European glory, only to lose to German rival Bayern Munich. Klopp’s team features Mohamed Salah, who scored a record 32 goals in 36 Premier League games this season. Real Madrid and Liverpool will face off in the final of the 2017-18 Champions League this weekend.

Defending champions Madrid are aiming to win the competition for a third consecutive season, whle Liverpool are looking for their sixth European crown and a first in 13 years. Neither side managed to finish in the top two of their domestic leagues, but victory on the grandest stage would more than compensate for the lack of a league title. The final will be played at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium — or Olympic Stadium — in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. While the stadium can hold more than 70,000 spectators, UEFA says the “net capacity” for the final will be 63,000.

The ground hosted the Euro 2012 final between Spain and Italy, a match which starred current Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. His opposite number at Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, and vice-captain James Milner, played there in England’s quarterfinal defeat to the Italians in the same tournament. The referee will be Milorad Mazic. The Serbian official took charge of the 2017 Confederations Cup final, the 2016 European Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla, and Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United in the 2015-16 Europa League Real Madrid will become the first side to claim three successive Champions League titles since the competition was re-branded in 1992 with a win.

Madrid will also extend their record of most European Cup/Champions League titles won with victory — their current tally stands at 12. Liverpool’s front three — Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah — can extend their record of most goals in tournament. Their total of 29 goals so far surpassed the 28 set by Real Madrid trio Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema during the 2013-14 season. While most of this Real Madrid squad will be featuring in their fourth Champions League final in five seasons, no Liverpool player has featured in one before.

Zinedine Zidane could become the third manager to win the European Cup/Champions League three times — after Bob Paisley (all with Liverpool) and Carlo Ancelotti (two with AC Milan, one with Real Madrid) — while he would be the first to win it in three consecutive seasons. Cristiano Ronaldo could become the first player to score in consecutive finals in the Champions League era. The last player to do so in the European Cup was Franz Roth (for Bayern Munich in 1975 and 1976). While Liverpool were in the middle of an engrossing — but what would ultimately prove fruitless — Premier League title charge, they also had one eye on winning their second Champions League title with Rafa Benitez at the helm. Having won the first leg of this round-of-16 tie 1-0 away from home, Liverpool ran rampant on a famous night at Anfield. A double from Steven Gerrard between a Fernando Torres opener and Andrea Dossena’s cherry on the cake saw Real Madrid dumped out The first meeting between these heavyweights came in the 1981 European Cup final. Alan Kennedy scored a late winner to hand Liverpool their third European Cup. This would prove to be the last time Real Madrid lost a European Cup/Champions League final, going on to win their next six. The stage is set for the kings of Europe to be crowned. The 2018 UEFA Champions League final kicks off from Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, on Saturday, May 26 at 2:45 p.m. ET. Real Madrid is favored by half a goal over Liverpool, unchanged from the opening line. Madrid is +120 on the money line, meaning you would have to wager $100 to win $120. The over-under, or total number of goals oddsmakers think will be scored, is three.

Before you bet on Real Madrid vs. Liverpool, you need to see what renowned European soccer expert David Sumpter has to say. Sumpter is an applied mathematician who wrote Soccermatics, the book that shows how math works inside the game. Together with experienced analysts, Sumpter developed the powerful Soccerbot model. Sumpter’s Soccerbot reads current odds and all team performance data, calculates key metrics and predicts upcoming matches. In the two-and-a-half seasons since it was born, the Soccerbot is up 1,800 percent on bookmakers’ closing odds. That’s right — 1,800 percent.

Now, he has set his sights on Saturday’s Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool and his picks are in. We can tell you Sumpter is leaning toward the total going over, but what about betting the money line and against the spread? Sumpter knows Real Madrid, seeking its fourth European title in five years and 13th overall, can make history by winning its third consecutive UEFA Champions League trophy.

Meanwhile, Liverpool, which has won the European Cup five times, will be looking to secure its first piece of silverware in six years. And the Reds enter Saturday’s final full of confidence, thanks in part to Mohamed Salah, who has scored 44 goals in his debut campaign with Liverpool. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a poor record in finals. He lost the 2012-13 Champions League final against Bayern Munich during his time at Borussia Dortmund, along with League Cup and Europa League finals with Liverpool.

Sumpter has evaluated all of these circumstances and identified where the value lies on the money line and against the spread. Like many Russians under the age of 30, Andrei grew up in a post-Soviet world. For him and other residents of Nizhny Novgorod, the dissolution of the Soviet Union was particularly significant. Until then the city, named Gorky, had been “closed.” Foreigners were strictly prohibited. Now, 26 years later, the World Cup will bring people from all over the world. Many residents are preparing for the greatest influx of foreig n visitors they will ever witness. Embankments, streets and squares that were once only frequented by Soviet citizens will heave with the sights and sounds of fans from Argentina, England, Panama and elsewhere.

Ruminating over a pint stout and a bowl of Grenki, the long, black garlic bread sticks that accompany beer in Russia, Andrei laid out his hopes for the World Cup. For Nizhny Novgorod, he said, the tournament is an opportunity to open the city up to the world and shake off the legacy of Gorky, the closed city. Such a huge event is very important for Nizhny to show for the world its history and its culture,” he told ESPN FC. “It is very good motivation to work hard and to show what has changed. For example, English people didn’t have the chance to visit during the 20th century. It is a very good chance to create a very good atmosphere. He also saw hope for some reconciliation between Russia and the outside world, an opportunity to break media narratives. “It’s a big stereotype that Russia is a terrible place”, he said. “This World Cup is a very good chance to break stereotypes. It’s a very good possibility to understand that Russia is part of Europe, like all the other eastern European countries.”

But the World Cup’s legacy in Nizhny Novgorod, all open hearts, minds and new infrastructure, might not be enough to sustain a lasting football culture. It is not a city accustomed to hosting huge matches. At the moment, there is no local team in the Russian Premier League. Most recently, Volga Nizhny Novgorod competed in the top flight from the 2011-12 season until their relegation in the 2013-14 campaign. A year later, they were wound up. In the 1990s, Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod represented the city, even reaching the Intertoto Cup. But like Volga, they were ultimately relegated, shuttered and reformed as an amateur team. Local hopes now rest on Olimpiyets, founded in 2015. They compete in the second tier of Russian football but are closer to relegation than promotion. Until recently, they played their matches in Dzherzhinsk, a city in Nizhny Novgorod Region, attracting crowds of a couple of thousand at most.

In April, Olimpiyets moved into the Nizhny Novgorod Arena, ready for the obligatory test matches before the World Cup. The stadium, a set of pillars wrapped around in a blue and white façade, was built on an unused patch of land next to where the Volga and Oka rivers meet. The Kremlin and the elevated city centre are viewable across the Oka while the stadium is surrounded by a retail park and a set of Soviet-era apartment blocks.

After delays, it finally opened in April. In the first game there, Olimpiyets played Zenit St Petersburg’s second team. Only 15,000 people turned up for the match, just 33 percent of its capacity. Two weeks later, against Rotor Volgograd, an established, historic team, things improved and 26,800 fans came to the stadium. It was an impressive figure for a side who only attracted 500 fans in their final game in Dzherzhinsk, but still just 58 percent of the total capacity, with the attendance falling in subsequent weeks.

If Olimpiyets play in the Premier League, 20,000 people [will attend] without any problem,” he hoped. “It depends on marketing. It depends on the weather. It depends on a lot of things. When Volga played in the Premier League it got 17,000 [spectators] against Spartak Moscow, Dinamo Moscow, Zenit St Petersburg and Lokomotiv Moscow.”

Though 20,000 would be a large crowd for Nizhny Novgorod, a city more passionate about ice hockey, it would still leave oceans of empty blue and white in the stands. But Aleksei Dmitrov, a flat-capped, fast-talking shop owner, believed that ice hockey provided a model for football in the city. He pointed to the success of local ice hockey team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod, who provided a number of players for successful Soviet Olympic teams. If residents could see talented players in a new stadium, he said, the popularity of local football would grow.

There is an existing football culture in Nizhny Novgorod but it rarely involves watching the city’s teams. Local football in the city, as in many across Russia, struggles to compete with the popularity of the Moscow clubs and foreign leagues. During our meeting Andrei received a few calls, each time putting the phone back down on the table, saying “Liverpool fan”, or “Tottenham fan.” As a Spurs supporter, he was arranging where he and his friends would watch the two teams do battle that evening.

UEFA Champions League Final 2018 Live

Welcome to Watch UEFA Champions League Final 2018 Live Streaming  Online Free HD TV Coverage

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The 2018 UEFA Champions League final will be played between Liverpool FC (England) and Real Madrid (Spain) on Saturday, May 26. Real Madrid — behind its star player, Cristiano Ronaldo — is going for a third consecutive Champions League crown (and fourth in five years). In all, Real Madrid has won the Champions League title 12 times (the competition goes back to the 1955-56 season). This is the 16th time Real Madrid has played in the Champions League final. Liverpool — behind a breakout season for Mohamed Salah — is in the Champions League final for the first time since 2007. Liverpool last won the competition in 2005, and is a five-time Champions League winner all-time. No club has won more UEFA Champions League crowns. In fact, no other team is even close to matching Real Madrid’s 12 Champions League triumphs; AC Milan is second with seven, while Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Liverpool each have five. Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice en route to Man of the Match honors in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win over Juventus last year, and look for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be a focal point for Los Blancos on Saturday. Under manager Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool has returned to prominence in Europe. Klopp — who has been with Liverpool since 2015 — has prior experience in leading a team to the Champions League final. In 2013, he delivered Borussia Dortmund to the brink of European glory, only to lose to German rival Bayern Munich. Klopp’s team features Mohamed Salah, who scored a record 32 goals in 36 Premier League games this season. Real Madrid and Liverpool will face off in the final of the 2017-18 Champions League this weekend.

Defending champions Madrid are aiming to win the competition for a third consecutive season, whle Liverpool are looking for their sixth European crown and a first in 13 years. Neither side managed to finish in the top two of their domestic leagues, but victory on the grandest stage would more than compensate for the lack of a league title. The final will be played at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium — or Olympic Stadium — in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. While the stadium can hold more than 70,000 spectators, UEFA says the “net capacity” for the final will be 63,000.

The ground hosted the Euro 2012 final between Spain and Italy, a match which starred current Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. His opposite number at Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, and vice-captain James Milner, played there in England’s quarterfinal defeat to the Italians in the same tournament. The referee will be Milorad Mazic. The Serbian official took charge of the 2017 Confederations Cup final, the 2016 European Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla, and Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United in the 2015-16 Europa League Real Madrid will become the first side to claim three successive Champions League titles since the competition was re-branded in 1992 with a win.

Madrid will also extend their record of most European Cup/Champions League titles won with victory — their current tally stands at 12. Liverpool’s front three — Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah — can extend their record of most goals in tournament. Their total of 29 goals so far surpassed the 28 set by Real Madrid trio Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema during the 2013-14 season. While most of this Real Madrid squad will be featuring in their fourth Champions League final in five seasons, no Liverpool player has featured in one before.

Zinedine Zidane could become the third manager to win the European Cup/Champions League three times — after Bob Paisley (all with Liverpool) and Carlo Ancelotti (two with AC Milan, one with Real Madrid) — while he would be the first to win it in three consecutive seasons. Cristiano Ronaldo could become the first player to score in consecutive finals in the Champions League era. The last player to do so in the European Cup was Franz Roth (for Bayern Munich in 1975 and 1976). While Liverpool were in the middle of an engrossing — but what would ultimately prove fruitless — Premier League title charge, they also had one eye on winning their second Champions League title with Rafa Benitez at the helm. Having won the first leg of this round-of-16 tie 1-0 away from home, Liverpool ran rampant on a famous night at Anfield. A double from Steven Gerrard between a Fernando Torres opener and Andrea Dossena’s cherry on the cake saw Real Madrid dumped out The first meeting between these heavyweights came in the 1981 European Cup final. Alan Kennedy scored a late winner to hand Liverpool their third European Cup. This would prove to be the last time Real Madrid lost a European Cup/Champions League final, going on to win their next six. The stage is set for the kings of Europe to be crowned. The 2018 UEFA Champions League final kicks off from Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, on Saturday, May 26 at 2:45 p.m. ET. Real Madrid is favored by half a goal over Liverpool, unchanged from the opening line. Madrid is +120 on the money line, meaning you would have to wager $100 to win $120. The over-under, or total number of goals oddsmakers think will be scored, is three.

Before you bet on Real Madrid vs. Liverpool, you need to see what renowned European soccer expert David Sumpter has to say. Sumpter is an applied mathematician who wrote Soccermatics, the book that shows how math works inside the game. Together with experienced analysts, Sumpter developed the powerful Soccerbot model. Sumpter’s Soccerbot reads current odds and all team performance data, calculates key metrics and predicts upcoming matches. In the two-and-a-half seasons since it was born, the Soccerbot is up 1,800 percent on bookmakers’ closing odds. That’s right — 1,800 percent.

Now, he has set his sights on Saturday’s Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool and his picks are in. We can tell you Sumpter is leaning toward the total going over, but what about betting the money line and against the spread? Sumpter knows Real Madrid, seeking its fourth European title in five years and 13th overall, can make history by winning its third consecutive UEFA Champions League trophy.

Meanwhile, Liverpool, which has won the European Cup five times, will be looking to secure its first piece of silverware in six years. And the Reds enter Saturday’s final full of confidence, thanks in part to Mohamed Salah, who has scored 44 goals in his debut campaign with Liverpool. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a poor record in finals. He lost the 2012-13 Champions League final against Bayern Munich during his time at Borussia Dortmund, along with League Cup and Europa League finals with Liverpool.

Sumpter has evaluated all of these circumstances and identified where the value lies on the money line and against the spread. Like many Russians under the age of 30, Andrei grew up in a post-Soviet world. For him and other residents of Nizhny Novgorod, the dissolution of the Soviet Union was particularly significant. Until then the city, named Gorky, had been “closed.” Foreigners were strictly prohibited. Now, 26 years later, the World Cup will bring people from all over the world. Many residents are preparing for the greatest influx of foreig n visitors they will ever witness. Embankments, streets and squares that were once only frequented by Soviet citizens will heave with the sights and sounds of fans from Argentina, England, Panama and elsewhere.

Ruminating over a pint stout and a bowl of Grenki, the long, black garlic bread sticks that accompany beer in Russia, Andrei laid out his hopes for the World Cup. For Nizhny Novgorod, he said, the tournament is an opportunity to open the city up to the world and shake off the legacy of Gorky, the closed city. Such a huge event is very important for Nizhny to show for the world its history and its culture,” he told ESPN FC. “It is very good motivation to work hard and to show what has changed. For example, English people didn’t have the chance to visit during the 20th century. It is a very good chance to create a very good atmosphere. He also saw hope for some reconciliation between Russia and the outside world, an opportunity to break media narratives. “It’s a big stereotype that Russia is a terrible place”, he said. “This World Cup is a very good chance to break stereotypes. It’s a very good possibility to understand that Russia is part of Europe, like all the other eastern European countries.”

But the World Cup’s legacy in Nizhny Novgorod, all open hearts, minds and new infrastructure, might not be enough to sustain a lasting football culture. It is not a city accustomed to hosting huge matches. At the moment, there is no local team in the Russian Premier League. Most recently, Volga Nizhny Novgorod competed in the top flight from the 2011-12 season until their relegation in the 2013-14 campaign. A year later, they were wound up. In the 1990s, Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod represented the city, even reaching the Intertoto Cup. But like Volga, they were ultimately relegated, shuttered and reformed as an amateur team. Local hopes now rest on Olimpiyets, founded in 2015. They compete in the second tier of Russian football but are closer to relegation than promotion. Until recently, they played their matches in Dzherzhinsk, a city in Nizhny Novgorod Region, attracting crowds of a couple of thousand at most.

In April, Olimpiyets moved into the Nizhny Novgorod Arena, ready for the obligatory test matches before the World Cup. The stadium, a set of pillars wrapped around in a blue and white façade, was built on an unused patch of land next to where the Volga and Oka rivers meet. The Kremlin and the elevated city centre are viewable across the Oka while the stadium is surrounded by a retail park and a set of Soviet-era apartment blocks.

After delays, it finally opened in April. In the first game there, Olimpiyets played Zenit St Petersburg’s second team. Only 15,000 people turned up for the match, just 33 percent of its capacity. Two weeks later, against Rotor Volgograd, an established, historic team, things improved and 26,800 fans came to the stadium. It was an impressive figure for a side who only attracted 500 fans in their final game in Dzherzhinsk, but still just 58 percent of the total capacity, with the attendance falling in subsequent weeks.

If Olimpiyets play in the Premier League, 20,000 people [will attend] without any problem,” he hoped. “It depends on marketing. It depends on the weather. It depends on a lot of things. When Volga played in the Premier League it got 17,000 [spectators] against Spartak Moscow, Dinamo Moscow, Zenit St Petersburg and Lokomotiv Moscow.”

Though 20,000 would be a large crowd for Nizhny Novgorod, a city more passionate about ice hockey, it would still leave oceans of empty blue and white in the stands. But Aleksei Dmitrov, a flat-capped, fast-talking shop owner, believed that ice hockey provided a model for football in the city. He pointed to the success of local ice hockey team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod, who provided a number of players for successful Soviet Olympic teams. If residents could see talented players in a new stadium, he said, the popularity of local football would grow.

There is an existing football culture in Nizhny Novgorod but it rarely involves watching the city’s teams. Local football in the city, as in many across Russia, struggles to compete with the popularity of the Moscow clubs and foreign leagues. During our meeting Andrei received a few calls, each time putting the phone back down on the table, saying “Liverpool fan”, or “Tottenham fan.” As a Spurs supporter, he was arranging where he and his friends would watch the two teams do battle that evening.

Racing 92 vs Castres Olympique

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A pair of stunning upsets made for an unpredictable start to the French Top 14 playoffs, but that might be just the start of the chaos as this weekend’s semifinals get underway at Groupama Stadium in Lyon.

This past week’s quarterfinals saw Castres Olympique bounce favorite Toulouse from the postseason in an impressive 23-11 road victory, while Lyon advanced to its first-ever Top 14 semifinal after playing host Toulon to a 19-19 draw in extra time but winning the tiebreaker with a 2-1 advantage in tries scored.

Regular-season kings Montpellier and second place Racing 92 each received a quarterfinal bye as one of the two top seeds, but both can expect stern challenges as they head into their respective semifinals this weekend.The top try-scoring team in Top 14 also finished the regular season with the best overall record at 17-9. But will that unmatched success translate into Montpellier winning its first league title?

Les Cistes last earned a spot in the championship final in 2011, and with the South African duo of Ruan Pienaar and Jan Serfontein leading the way, Montpellier is in position for a return trip to the Stade de France on June 2. Pienaar paces the team’s attack at scrumhalf with 173 points, while Serfontein bolsters Les Cistes’ stout defensive unit at centre. Fijian wing Nemani Nadolo also dazzled for Montpellier this season with 18 tries—good for second most in Top 14.

Meanwhile, Lyon may be entering as the No. 5 seed, but Les Loups will have all the confidence of their hometown fans behind them and the reassurance of a 2-2 overall record against Montpellier—including a 32-24 victory to close the regular season.

After missing the playoffs altogether in 2017, Lyon turned around its fortunes behind an offense and defense that both rank in the top five in total points. Reaching the semifinals is a breakthrough achievement for the club, but Les Loups are in a position to reach for much more.
Racing 92 already has one championship appearance under its belt this year—a 15-12 loss to Leinster in the European Champions Cup final two weeks ago—and will look to exact the pain of that disappointment by booking another title game berth on Saturday.

However, any lessons learned from that experience will once again have to be implemented by a shorthanded roster.

Les Ciel et Blanc lost both French scrumhalf Maxime Machenaud and All Blacks legend Dan Carter to injuries before the European Champions Cup final. While Machenaud suffered a serious knee injury that will sideline him for 6-9 months, Carter is expected to recover from his hamstring injury in time to rejoin Racing 92’s lineup if it makes the Top 14 title game.

Castres Olympique is also missing an important piece Saturday in hooker Jody Jenneker, who was issued a three-week ban by the league’s governing body for striking Toulouse’s Maxime Medard in a ruck.

Castres owns a number of quality wins this season, including an 18-13 victory over Racing 92 in their fourth and final regular-season clash on Jan. 27. Altogether, Racing 92 went 3-1 against Castres, with three of those matchups decided by five or fewer points.
Friday night at the Groupama Stadium sees regular season table-toppers Montpellier face Lyon while on Saturday, European runners-up Racing 92 take on Castres.

And there are a number of French stars from the NatWest 6 Nations in action across the double-header.

Montpellier v Lyon

Vern Cotter’s Montpellier side finished the season on top of the pile and have had the best part of three weeks off to prepare for this clash.

By contrast, Lyon had to come through a dramatic clash with Toulon in the barrages last weekend just to make it this far.

But what they lack in freshness, they will make up for in home support in the city’s football team’s stadium across town.

Pierre Mignoni’s side held on to a 19-19 draw to down Toulon in the previous round, winning the match by virtue of having outscored their rivals two tries to one after extra time.
Read more at https://www.sixnationsrugby.com/en/news/33220.php#zD7yCqzDBTsx7T95.99The 14 men of Castres had to dig deep to knock out Toulouse last weekend.

Their reward for that heroic effort is a meeting with France’s in-form team Racing 92, who came within a whisker of downing Leinster and becoming champions of Europe.

Teddy Thomas will carry the chief threat out wide for the capital side while Remi Tales again steps in at fly-half in the absence of Dan Carter and Patrick Lambie.

 

2018 UEFA Champions League Final

Welcome to Watch 2018 UEFA Champions League Final Live Streaming   Online Free HD TV Coverage

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The 2018 UEFA Champions League final will be played between Liverpool FC (England) and Real Madrid (Spain) on Saturday, May 26. Real Madrid — behind its star player, Cristiano Ronaldo — is going for a third consecutive Champions League crown (and fourth in five years). In all, Real Madrid has won the Champions League title 12 times (the competition goes back to the 1955-56 season). This is the 16th time Real Madrid has played in the Champions League final. Liverpool — behind a breakout season for Mohamed Salah — is in the Champions League final for the first time since 2007. Liverpool last won the competition in 2005, and is a five-time Champions League winner all-time. No club has won more UEFA Champions League crowns. In fact, no other team is even close to matching Real Madrid’s 12 Champions League triumphs; AC Milan is second with seven, while Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Liverpool each have five. Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice en route to Man of the Match honors in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win over Juventus last year, and look for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be a focal point for Los Blancos on Saturday. Under manager Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool has returned to prominence in Europe. Klopp — who has been with Liverpool since 2015 — has prior experience in leading a team to the Champions League final. In 2013, he delivered Borussia Dortmund to the brink of European glory, only to lose to German rival Bayern Munich. Klopp’s team features Mohamed Salah, who scored a record 32 goals in 36 Premier League games this season. Real Madrid and Liverpool will face off in the final of the 2017-18 Champions League this weekend.

Defending champions Madrid are aiming to win the competition for a third consecutive season, whle Liverpool are looking for their sixth European crown and a first in 13 years. Neither side managed to finish in the top two of their domestic leagues, but victory on the grandest stage would more than compensate for the lack of a league title. The final will be played at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium — or Olympic Stadium — in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. While the stadium can hold more than 70,000 spectators, UEFA says the “net capacity” for the final will be 63,000.

The ground hosted the Euro 2012 final between Spain and Italy, a match which starred current Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. His opposite number at Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, and vice-captain James Milner, played there in England’s quarterfinal defeat to the Italians in the same tournament. The referee will be Milorad Mazic. The Serbian official took charge of the 2017 Confederations Cup final, the 2016 European Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla, and Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United in the 2015-16 Europa League Real Madrid will become the first side to claim three successive Champions League titles since the competition was re-branded in 1992 with a win.

Madrid will also extend their record of most European Cup/Champions League titles won with victory — their current tally stands at 12. Liverpool’s front three — Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah — can extend their record of most goals in tournament. Their total of 29 goals so far surpassed the 28 set by Real Madrid trio Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema during the 2013-14 season. While most of this Real Madrid squad will be featuring in their fourth Champions League final in five seasons, no Liverpool player has featured in one before.

Zinedine Zidane could become the third manager to win the European Cup/Champions League three times — after Bob Paisley (all with Liverpool) and Carlo Ancelotti (two with AC Milan, one with Real Madrid) — while he would be the first to win it in three consecutive seasons. Cristiano Ronaldo could become the first player to score in consecutive finals in the Champions League era. The last player to do so in the European Cup was Franz Roth (for Bayern Munich in 1975 and 1976). While Liverpool were in the middle of an engrossing — but what would ultimately prove fruitless — Premier League title charge, they also had one eye on winning their second Champions League title with Rafa Benitez at the helm. Having won the first leg of this round-of-16 tie 1-0 away from home, Liverpool ran rampant on a famous night at Anfield. A double from Steven Gerrard between a Fernando Torres opener and Andrea Dossena’s cherry on the cake saw Real Madrid dumped out The first meeting between these heavyweights came in the 1981 European Cup final. Alan Kennedy scored a late winner to hand Liverpool their third European Cup. This would prove to be the last time Real Madrid lost a European Cup/Champions League final, going on to win their next six. The stage is set for the kings of Europe to be crowned. The 2018 UEFA Champions League final kicks off from Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, on Saturday, May 26 at 2:45 p.m. ET. Real Madrid is favored by half a goal over Liverpool, unchanged from the opening line. Madrid is +120 on the money line, meaning you would have to wager $100 to win $120. The over-under, or total number of goals oddsmakers think will be scored, is three.

Before you bet on Real Madrid vs. Liverpool, you need to see what renowned European soccer expert David Sumpter has to say. Sumpter is an applied mathematician who wrote Soccermatics, the book that shows how math works inside the game. Together with experienced analysts, Sumpter developed the powerful Soccerbot model. Sumpter’s Soccerbot reads current odds and all team performance data, calculates key metrics and predicts upcoming matches. In the two-and-a-half seasons since it was born, the Soccerbot is up 1,800 percent on bookmakers’ closing odds. That’s right — 1,800 percent.

Now, he has set his sights on Saturday’s Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool and his picks are in. We can tell you Sumpter is leaning toward the total going over, but what about betting the money line and against the spread? Sumpter knows Real Madrid, seeking its fourth European title in five years and 13th overall, can make history by winning its third consecutive UEFA Champions League trophy.

Meanwhile, Liverpool, which has won the European Cup five times, will be looking to secure its first piece of silverware in six years. And the Reds enter Saturday’s final full of confidence, thanks in part to Mohamed Salah, who has scored 44 goals in his debut campaign with Liverpool. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a poor record in finals. He lost the 2012-13 Champions League final against Bayern Munich during his time at Borussia Dortmund, along with League Cup and Europa League finals with Liverpool.

Sumpter has evaluated all of these circumstances and identified where the value lies on the money line and against the spread. Like many Russians under the age of 30, Andrei grew up in a post-Soviet world. For him and other residents of Nizhny Novgorod, the dissolution of the Soviet Union was particularly significant. Until then the city, named Gorky, had been “closed.” Foreigners were strictly prohibited. Now, 26 years later, the World Cup will bring people from all over the world. Many residents are preparing for the greatest influx of foreig n visitors they will ever witness. Embankments, streets and squares that were once only frequented by Soviet citizens will heave with the sights and sounds of fans from Argentina, England, Panama and elsewhere.

Ruminating over a pint stout and a bowl of Grenki, the long, black garlic bread sticks that accompany beer in Russia, Andrei laid out his hopes for the World Cup. For Nizhny Novgorod, he said, the tournament is an opportunity to open the city up to the world and shake off the legacy of Gorky, the closed city. Such a huge event is very important for Nizhny to show for the world its history and its culture,” he told ESPN FC. “It is very good motivation to work hard and to show what has changed. For example, English people didn’t have the chance to visit during the 20th century. It is a very good chance to create a very good atmosphere. He also saw hope for some reconciliation between Russia and the outside world, an opportunity to break media narratives. “It’s a big stereotype that Russia is a terrible place”, he said. “This World Cup is a very good chance to break stereotypes. It’s a very good possibility to understand that Russia is part of Europe, like all the other eastern European countries.”

But the World Cup’s legacy in Nizhny Novgorod, all open hearts, minds and new infrastructure, might not be enough to sustain a lasting football culture. It is not a city accustomed to hosting huge matches. At the moment, there is no local team in the Russian Premier League. Most recently, Volga Nizhny Novgorod competed in the top flight from the 2011-12 season until their relegation in the 2013-14 campaign. A year later, they were wound up. In the 1990s, Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod represented the city, even reaching the Intertoto Cup. But like Volga, they were ultimately relegated, shuttered and reformed as an amateur team. Local hopes now rest on Olimpiyets, founded in 2015. They compete in the second tier of Russian football but are closer to relegation than promotion. Until recently, they played their matches in Dzherzhinsk, a city in Nizhny Novgorod Region, attracting crowds of a couple of thousand at most.

In April, Olimpiyets moved into the Nizhny Novgorod Arena, ready for the obligatory test matches before the World Cup. The stadium, a set of pillars wrapped around in a blue and white façade, was built on an unused patch of land next to where the Volga and Oka rivers meet. The Kremlin and the elevated city centre are viewable across the Oka while the stadium is surrounded by a retail park and a set of Soviet-era apartment blocks.

After delays, it finally opened in April. In the first game there, Olimpiyets played Zenit St Petersburg’s second team. Only 15,000 people turned up for the match, just 33 percent of its capacity. Two weeks later, against Rotor Volgograd, an established, historic team, things improved and 26,800 fans came to the stadium. It was an impressive figure for a side who only attracted 500 fans in their final game in Dzherzhinsk, but still just 58 percent of the total capacity, with the attendance falling in subsequent weeks.

If Olimpiyets play in the Premier League, 20,000 people [will attend] without any problem,” he hoped. “It depends on marketing. It depends on the weather. It depends on a lot of things. When Volga played in the Premier League it got 17,000 [spectators] against Spartak Moscow, Dinamo Moscow, Zenit St Petersburg and Lokomotiv Moscow.”

Though 20,000 would be a large crowd for Nizhny Novgorod, a city more passionate about ice hockey, it would still leave oceans of empty blue and white in the stands. But Aleksei Dmitrov, a flat-capped, fast-talking shop owner, believed that ice hockey provided a model for football in the city. He pointed to the success of local ice hockey team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod, who provided a number of players for successful Soviet Olympic teams. If residents could see talented players in a new stadium, he said, the popularity of local football would grow.

There is an existing football culture in Nizhny Novgorod but it rarely involves watching the city’s teams. Local football in the city, as in many across Russia, struggles to compete with the popularity of the Moscow clubs and foreign leagues. During our meeting Andrei received a few calls, each time putting the phone back down on the table, saying “Liverpool fan”, or “Tottenham fan.” As a Spurs supporter, he was arranging where he and his friends would watch the two teams do battle that evening.

UEFA Champions League Final 2018

Welcome to Watch UEFA Champions League Final 2018 Live Streaming    Online Free HD TV Coverage

Click Here To Watch Now Live

The 2018 UEFA Champions League final will be played between Liverpool FC (England) and Real Madrid (Spain) on Saturday, May 26. Real Madrid — behind its star player, Cristiano Ronaldo — is going for a third consecutive Champions League crown (and fourth in five years). In all, Real Madrid has won the Champions League title 12 times (the competition goes back to the 1955-56 season). This is the 16th time Real Madrid has played in the Champions League final. Liverpool — behind a breakout season for Mohamed Salah — is in the Champions League final for the first time since 2007. Liverpool last won the competition in 2005, and is a five-time Champions League winner all-time. No club has won more UEFA Champions League crowns. In fact, no other team is even close to matching Real Madrid’s 12 Champions League triumphs; AC Milan is second with seven, while Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Liverpool each have five. Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice en route to Man of the Match honors in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win over Juventus last year, and look for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be a focal point for Los Blancos on Saturday. Under manager Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool has returned to prominence in Europe. Klopp — who has been with Liverpool since 2015 — has prior experience in leading a team to the Champions League final. In 2013, he delivered Borussia Dortmund to the brink of European glory, only to lose to German rival Bayern Munich. Klopp’s team features Mohamed Salah, who scored a record 32 goals in 36 Premier League games this season. Real Madrid and Liverpool will face off in the final of the 2017-18 Champions League this weekend.

Defending champions Madrid are aiming to win the competition for a third consecutive season, whle Liverpool are looking for their sixth European crown and a first in 13 years. Neither side managed to finish in the top two of their domestic leagues, but victory on the grandest stage would more than compensate for the lack of a league title. The final will be played at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium — or Olympic Stadium — in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. While the stadium can hold more than 70,000 spectators, UEFA says the “net capacity” for the final will be 63,000.

The ground hosted the Euro 2012 final between Spain and Italy, a match which starred current Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. His opposite number at Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, and vice-captain James Milner, played there in England’s quarterfinal defeat to the Italians in the same tournament. The referee will be Milorad Mazic. The Serbian official took charge of the 2017 Confederations Cup final, the 2016 European Super Cup between Real Madrid and Sevilla, and Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Manchester United in the 2015-16 Europa League Real Madrid will become the first side to claim three successive Champions League titles since the competition was re-branded in 1992 with a win.

Madrid will also extend their record of most European Cup/Champions League titles won with victory — their current tally stands at 12. Liverpool’s front three — Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah — can extend their record of most goals in tournament. Their total of 29 goals so far surpassed the 28 set by Real Madrid trio Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema during the 2013-14 season. While most of this Real Madrid squad will be featuring in their fourth Champions League final in five seasons, no Liverpool player has featured in one before.

Zinedine Zidane could become the third manager to win the European Cup/Champions League three times — after Bob Paisley (all with Liverpool) and Carlo Ancelotti (two with AC Milan, one with Real Madrid) — while he would be the first to win it in three consecutive seasons. Cristiano Ronaldo could become the first player to score in consecutive finals in the Champions League era. The last player to do so in the European Cup was Franz Roth (for Bayern Munich in 1975 and 1976). While Liverpool were in the middle of an engrossing — but what would ultimately prove fruitless — Premier League title charge, they also had one eye on winning their second Champions League title with Rafa Benitez at the helm. Having won the first leg of this round-of-16 tie 1-0 away from home, Liverpool ran rampant on a famous night at Anfield. A double from Steven Gerrard between a Fernando Torres opener and Andrea Dossena’s cherry on the cake saw Real Madrid dumped out The first meeting between these heavyweights came in the 1981 European Cup final. Alan Kennedy scored a late winner to hand Liverpool their third European Cup. This would prove to be the last time Real Madrid lost a European Cup/Champions League final, going on to win their next six. The stage is set for the kings of Europe to be crowned. The 2018 UEFA Champions League final kicks off from Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, on Saturday, May 26 at 2:45 p.m. ET. Real Madrid is favored by half a goal over Liverpool, unchanged from the opening line. Madrid is +120 on the money line, meaning you would have to wager $100 to win $120. The over-under, or total number of goals oddsmakers think will be scored, is three.

Before you bet on Real Madrid vs. Liverpool, you need to see what renowned European soccer expert David Sumpter has to say. Sumpter is an applied mathematician who wrote Soccermatics, the book that shows how math works inside the game. Together with experienced analysts, Sumpter developed the powerful Soccerbot model. Sumpter’s Soccerbot reads current odds and all team performance data, calculates key metrics and predicts upcoming matches. In the two-and-a-half seasons since it was born, the Soccerbot is up 1,800 percent on bookmakers’ closing odds. That’s right — 1,800 percent.

Now, he has set his sights on Saturday’s Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool and his picks are in. We can tell you Sumpter is leaning toward the total going over, but what about betting the money line and against the spread? Sumpter knows Real Madrid, seeking its fourth European title in five years and 13th overall, can make history by winning its third consecutive UEFA Champions League trophy.

Meanwhile, Liverpool, which has won the European Cup five times, will be looking to secure its first piece of silverware in six years. And the Reds enter Saturday’s final full of confidence, thanks in part to Mohamed Salah, who has scored 44 goals in his debut campaign with Liverpool. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a poor record in finals. He lost the 2012-13 Champions League final against Bayern Munich during his time at Borussia Dortmund, along with League Cup and Europa League finals with Liverpool.

Sumpter has evaluated all of these circumstances and identified where the value lies on the money line and against the spread. Like many Russians under the age of 30, Andrei grew up in a post-Soviet world. For him and other residents of Nizhny Novgorod, the dissolution of the Soviet Union was particularly significant. Until then the city, named Gorky, had been “closed.” Foreigners were strictly prohibited. Now, 26 years later, the World Cup will bring people from all over the world. Many residents are preparing for the greatest influx of foreig n visitors they will ever witness. Embankments, streets and squares that were once only frequented by Soviet citizens will heave with the sights and sounds of fans from Argentina, England, Panama and elsewhere.

Ruminating over a pint stout and a bowl of Grenki, the long, black garlic bread sticks that accompany beer in Russia, Andrei laid out his hopes for the World Cup. For Nizhny Novgorod, he said, the tournament is an opportunity to open the city up to the world and shake off the legacy of Gorky, the closed city. Such a huge event is very important for Nizhny to show for the world its history and its culture,” he told ESPN FC. “It is very good motivation to work hard and to show what has changed. For example, English people didn’t have the chance to visit during the 20th century. It is a very good chance to create a very good atmosphere. He also saw hope for some reconciliation between Russia and the outside world, an opportunity to break media narratives. “It’s a big stereotype that Russia is a terrible place”, he said. “This World Cup is a very good chance to break stereotypes. It’s a very good possibility to understand that Russia is part of Europe, like all the other eastern European countries.”

But the World Cup’s legacy in Nizhny Novgorod, all open hearts, minds and new infrastructure, might not be enough to sustain a lasting football culture. It is not a city accustomed to hosting huge matches. At the moment, there is no local team in the Russian Premier League. Most recently, Volga Nizhny Novgorod competed in the top flight from the 2011-12 season until their relegation in the 2013-14 campaign. A year later, they were wound up. In the 1990s, Lokomotiv Nizhny Novgorod represented the city, even reaching the Intertoto Cup. But like Volga, they were ultimately relegated, shuttered and reformed as an amateur team. Local hopes now rest on Olimpiyets, founded in 2015. They compete in the second tier of Russian football but are closer to relegation than promotion. Until recently, they played their matches in Dzherzhinsk, a city in Nizhny Novgorod Region, attracting crowds of a couple of thousand at most.

In April, Olimpiyets moved into the Nizhny Novgorod Arena, ready for the obligatory test matches before the World Cup. The stadium, a set of pillars wrapped around in a blue and white façade, was built on an unused patch of land next to where the Volga and Oka rivers meet. The Kremlin and the elevated city centre are viewable across the Oka while the stadium is surrounded by a retail park and a set of Soviet-era apartment blocks.

After delays, it finally opened in April. In the first game there, Olimpiyets played Zenit St Petersburg’s second team. Only 15,000 people turned up for the match, just 33 percent of its capacity. Two weeks later, against Rotor Volgograd, an established, historic team, things improved and 26,800 fans came to the stadium. It was an impressive figure for a side who only attracted 500 fans in their final game in Dzherzhinsk, but still just 58 percent of the total capacity, with the attendance falling in subsequent weeks.

If Olimpiyets play in the Premier League, 20,000 people [will attend] without any problem,” he hoped. “It depends on marketing. It depends on the weather. It depends on a lot of things. When Volga played in the Premier League it got 17,000 [spectators] against Spartak Moscow, Dinamo Moscow, Zenit St Petersburg and Lokomotiv Moscow.”

Though 20,000 would be a large crowd for Nizhny Novgorod, a city more passionate about ice hockey, it would still leave oceans of empty blue and white in the stands. But Aleksei Dmitrov, a flat-capped, fast-talking shop owner, believed that ice hockey provided a model for football in the city. He pointed to the success of local ice hockey team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod, who provided a number of players for successful Soviet Olympic teams. If residents could see talented players in a new stadium, he said, the popularity of local football would grow.

There is an existing football culture in Nizhny Novgorod but it rarely involves watching the city’s teams. Local football in the city, as in many across Russia, struggles to compete with the popularity of the Moscow clubs and foreign leagues. During our meeting Andrei received a few calls, each time putting the phone back down on the table, saying “Liverpool fan”, or “Tottenham fan.” As a Spurs supporter, he was arranging where he and his friends would watch the two teams do battle that evening.