Football, you nice game! | TIME ONLINE


Football, you nice game! How could you ever doubt your magic? Fans all over the continent got glowing eyes this week: the two crazy semi-finals in Liverpool and Amsterdam roused them to sleep badly. The Champions League is good and exciting like never before.

The two games took courses that hardly anyone had expected before. Not even at halftime was the end in sight, which overcame even the winners. Tears poured, people sang, coaches dropped to their knees. Gary Lineker, the English striker legend, jumped around screaming in the TV studio when Tottenham scored the winner in the 96th minute. And Jürgen Klopp He said he had not seen the deciding goal of his Liverpool team, one of the strangest corners of all time.

It was tight. Would have Barcelona In Liverpool, in the first round only one of his great chances scored and had targeted the boys of Ajax against the Spurs just a bit more accurate, two other clubs would compete on June 1, the final in Madrid. Already in the earlier knockout phase of this season there were 50/50 duels. Atlético lost in Turin with a goal that was only a few inches behind the goal line. Manchester City were eliminated by Tottenham as they were minimally off the bench before the winner. Paris Saint-Germain and Thomas Tuchel were eliminated by Manchester City in injury time in injury time. Dramas about dramas.

Short interruption of enthusiasm: The new attraction of this league is, of course, the highly commercial competition, from which the product profits in the end. With this keyword you are fast in Englandthat is, in the country that has now ended the Spanish rule of the passing decade in the European Cup.

Spanish era

The English have the most money and spend it now meaningful. They bring the best of the football world to the island, make it their own, transform it into an international structure with a strong English touch. The fact that the pulse of the football fans beats even faster on the days after, has to do with the kind of football that the new winners traditionally foster: England, that is still overpowering, surprise, escalation, fanfare, force of nature.

England's football history knows of successful times, such as in the late seventies and early eighties or at the beginning of the twenty-first century. About ten years ago, things went downhill. But just now, where they want to leave the EU, if you interpret them correctly, they are back. Long enough they watched the Spanish victories.

So far, it has been the decade of the football nation Spain, who dominated the competition with her pronounced idea of ​​technically strong positional play with possession in the opponent's half. Six of the last nine finals of the Europa League have been won by Spanish teams, seven of the last ten Champions League titles have been shared by Real Madrid and FC Barcelona.

So often teams came at least in a European Cup semi-final

Spanish clubs have come to 30 semi-finals in the last decade in both European competitions. England is ahead of Germany with 15 semi-finalists (11). Each title win is marked with a C.

Not in the picture: Ukraine with two semi-finalists and Austria, Switzerland, Turkey with one entry each © TIME ONLINE

Now European club football is on the cusp of a new era, which is at least influenced by England. Last year Liverpool reached the final. For the first time since 2013, it will not be Spain that will be in Europe's football for the current season, but Tottenham or Liverpool. FC Valencia still have a chance in the Europa League, but a London final between Chelsea and Arsenal is also possible. It is the best team in the Premier League, Manchester City, long out.

The Premier League dominates the continent with money and cosmopolitanism. No other league takes so many billions with TV rights, no one else is so open to foreign capital. Stars from all over the world come for English clubs, and they are also coached by the best coaches. So no Englishmen, but those from Spain, Italy, Portugal, Argentina. And Jürgen Klopp, Germany's best.

(tTTranslate) Sport (t) Champions League (t) Premier League (t) Tottenham Hotspur (t) Jürgen Klopp (t) England (t) Liverpool (t) Liverpool (t) Barcelona (t) Spain (t) Amsterdam (t) Gary Lineker (t) Ajax Amsterdam (t) Thomas Tuchel (t) Chelsea (t) Italy (t) Madrid (t) Turin (t) Paris (t) FC Barcelona (t) Real Madrid


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