Everton FC manager Roberto Martínez believes the UEFA Champions League final will be a matter of psychology over style.
The Spaniard has an added interest in the match as two teams from his homeland – Club Atlético de Madrid and Real Madrid CF – meet in the first decider between sides from the same city in the 59-year history of the European Cup. However, while he chooses to sit on the fence when asked to tip the winner, he believes the squad that handles the pressure of the occasion will have the edge in Lisbon on Saturday.
"You have to remember that in a final it's about the team that reacts to the moment of playing in a final, and not about changing the way they play," Martinez told UEFA.com. "I don't think it's going to be too much about the different styles of play, but more about how good you are in a particular style.
"However, more so it will be down to which team copes with the different pressure of having to win either your tenth Champions League, or having to win the Champions League for the first time. I will be looking more at the psychological aspect of this game and how the players can be themselves under such massive pressure."
Handling the tension aside, Martínez also acknowledges the respective footballing talents that the teams boast. "You learn never to bet against Atlético Madrid because they are an incredible group of players who face adversity in a phenomenal manner," added the former Real Zaragoza and CF Balaguer midfielder, who has played and managed in British football since moving to Wigan Athletic FC in 1995.
"But in the same way you look at Real Madrid and the way they played against Bayern München [in the semi-final]. The quality that they have in their forward line makes them the best counterattacking team in the world. But, I don't think they are going to get too many opportunities to do that against Atlético Madrid, so it's a fascinating game of football.
"It's the final, and it's going be just that, a final, so for that reason there is no real favourite. It's going to be very, very close, and my tip is that it's going to go to penalties."
©UEFA.com 1998-2015. All rights reserved.