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Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Champions League: Barcelona, Bayern, Dortmund or Real - Who will win the trophy?

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Wembley is set to host its second Champions League final inside three years next month and there's every chance that UEFA get their dream all-Spanish final of Barcelona against Real Madrid as the pair were kept apart in the semi-finals. However, it's by far a foregone conclusion as Barca must first see off Bayern Munich and Real Madrid have to dispose of Borussia Dortmund. 

But who do the bookies think will win the coveted trophy on May 25?

Mourinho and champions leagueReal Madrid, who travel to Dortmund on Wednesday night for the first leg, are desperate to be crowned champions of Europe for a 10th time and in manager Jose Mourinho they have one of the best managers in the world. Mourinho has won the trophy with Porto and Inter Milan and would love to win it for a third time with a third different club. Given that this is set to be his final challenge at the Bernabeu, he'd love to go out on a high.

Mourinho's men are 11/5 to cap an unbelievable feat at the home of football.

Their Spanish rivals Barcelona, arguably one of the greatest club sides ever in recent years, are the bookies' second favourites for glory. With the likes of Lionel Messi, Xavi and Iniesta in their team, Barca have brushed teams aside, although last season they were outdone by a resilient Chelsea side - who went on to beat Bayern in their own stadium in the final.

Barcelona have La Liga in the bag but they would love to win the Champions League for a fifth time for manager Tito Vilanova. The bookies have Barca at 9/4 to win the trophy for the third time in seven years.

German giants Bayern Munich, who of course lost the final in their own backyard to Chelsea last season, have been a team possessed this season and the former Real Madrid boss Jupp Heynckes would love to leave the club having won it all. They host Barcelona tonight and there will be one very interested spectator in the form of former Barca chief Pep Guardiola. He is set to replace Heynckes as Bayern coach in the summer and I'm sure he'd love to take over the reigning European champions.

Bayern saw off Real Madrid in the semi-finals last season in a penalty shoout out and are 20 points clear of Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga having conceded just 14 goals all season. They are determined to win the trophy after last year's disappointment and the bookies have them at 11/4 for glory at Wembley.

Finally we have Borussia Dortmund who have been everyone's favourite surprise package. They topped their group of champions, which included Real Madrid, Man City and Ajax, beating Madrid at home and drawing at the Bernabeu. Jurgen Klopp's men needed injury time against Malaga to book their place in the semis and are ranked as outsiders for the title they won in 1997. But they will have the full backing of most of the neutrals for their attacking endeavour during this campaign.

Dortmund are 13/2 with the bookies to win the trophy in May.

Here are the latest odds from the bookies.

Real Madrid 11/5

Barcelona 9/4

Bayern Munich 11/4

Borussia Dortmund 13/2

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