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A warm welcome back to Istanbul!

UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin and Turkish Football Federation (TFF) counterpart Mehmet Büyükekşi look ahead to an occasion that has been a long time coming.

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Aleksander Čeferin, UEFA president:

It brings me great pleasure to finally say it: Welcome to Istanbul for the UEFA Champions League final!

A city like no other, lying in both Europe and Asia, will stage a match like no other at the absolute pinnacle of another fantastic season in UEFA club competitions.

I thank the Turkish Football Federation, its president Mehmet Büyükekşi and UEFA Executive Committee member Servet Yardımcı for their patience, enthusiasm, devotion and warm welcome. You waited for this moment too long, and I want you to enjoy this occasion as much as the players and fans from both clubs.

I would also like to extend my sincere appreciation and support to the people of Türkiye, who experienced a devastating loss of life earlier this year in a natural disaster. We hope your great nation will manage to overcome this tragedy with fortitude, grit and dignity.

Two outstanding teams have earned their shot at the legendary trophy in what promises to be a very special match. All the ingredients are there, including the venue itself, as the world’s best football competition returns to the legendary Atatürk Olympic Stadium. The 2005 final was one of the greatest-ever finals in sports history, and we are all hoping to witness another magical night of football.

May the best team win!

Check out Istanbul Champions League murals

Mehmet Büyükekşi, Turkish Football Federation president:

We are full of excitement, happiness and honour to be hosting another final at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium, where the most memorable decider in UEFA Champions League history was played in 2005. Following on from the 2009 UEFA Cup final and the 2019 UEFA Super Cup, football fever will heat up and brighten Istanbul once again.

This magical location, one of Europe’s flagship cities thanks to its historical and cultural riches, is the place where the heart of football beats in Türkiye. Passion for this wonderful sport runs deep in Istanbul and we take this opportunity to welcome all fellow football lovers – including the fans of both finalist teams – who are making the journey here for the biggest club game on the planet. Enjoy your stay, the match and our famous Turkish hospitality.

I am grateful to UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin, as well as FIFA and other football federations, for their valuable support during the devastating earthquake disaster we experienced in our country earlier this year. I respectfully thank all the fans around the world who share the pain of our people.

I sincerely wish the best of luck to the two teams that have played inspiring matches throughout this UEFA Champions League season to reach the final. I certainly hope to witness another final that will go down in history amid a magnificent atmosphere. Welcome to Istanbul, our esteemed guests.

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