FC Bayern München 1-1 Valencia CF (aet, Bayern win 5-4 on penalties)
(Effenberg 50p; Mendieta 2p)
Giuseppe Meazza, Milan
Twenty-five years on from their last European Champion Clubs' Cup success, FC Bayern München were at it again, lifting the trophy for a fourth time after a penalties win over Valencia CF.
UEFA had billed the Milan final as a 'footballing opera' in the city of La Scala - and paying customers certainly got value for money from a match of Wagnerian length. While captains Gaizka Mendieta and Stefan Effenberg traded spot-kicks in normal time, goalkeeper Oliver Kahn held on to one from Mauricio Pellegrino at the end of extra time to secure victory.
The 1. Bundesliga club had staked a claim to the title by beating their 1999 nemesis, Manchester United FC, home and away in the quarter-finals. Then, in another revenge mission, they heaped double misery on holders Real Madrid CF - winning 1-0 in the Spanish capital then 2-1 in Bavaria - in a repeat of the previous year's semi-final.
However, contrary to German media reports, 'FC Hollywood' were not the sole attraction. There were two Anglo-Spanish skirmishes in the last eight worthy of attention. Leeds United AFC claimed the scalp of Primera División champions RC Deportivo La Coruña in one; Valencia saw off Arsenal FC on away goals in the other. But when the two met in the next round, there was only one winner: Héctor Cúper's team, 3-0 on aggregate. Valencia, though, were destined to fall at last, which considering the quality of the opposition and their coach Ottmar Hitzfeld, was no cause for shame.
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