If for some mad reason you were left in any doubt last week the balance of power in Europe has most certainly shifted. Barcelona are no longer at the top of the tree and either are Spain; Germany currently rules supreme.
Bayern Munich completed a 7-0 aggregate rout over Barcelona with a 3-0 top up to their 4-0 hammering in the Allianz at the Nou Camp last night to leave Spanish pundits stunned as the best they could offer failed to tumble German opposition.
Now the prospect of an all-German final at Wembley Stadium rings ominous for the Premier League and La Liga as the Bundesliga finally earns the widespread respect it has deserved for many a year.
While not many expected Barcelona to complete a comeback against Bayern last night it is fair to say that most people would have suggested more of a fight from Tito Villanova’s side; however they could not even muster a single goal against this imperious opposition.
Last night however the centre-back partnership that prevented the Spanish champions elect from a comeback was what truly caught my eye. Daniel Van Buyten and Jerome Boateng filled the spaces last night as Dante was considered a risk for the final due to a prior booking and potential suspension.
So what have the two got in common?
Well it does not take a footballing anorak to remember the two both have a mutual interest in their former club column; and I don’t mean Hamburg SV.
Of course I mean big-spending Manchester City.
Jerome Boateng spent one unhappy year in Manchester between 2010 and 2011 which was largely infringed by injury issues and a lack of first-team football. Unhappy with his position at the club he left for Bayern in June 2011 and has not looked back.
Daniel Van Buyten played for Manchester City in what seems a lifetime ago in terms of the clubs history.
The Belgian international you see adorned the light blue before the Sheikh Mansour days; in fact he was at the club before Thaksin Shinawatra had even had a go at rejuvenating things.
Struggling to earn a spot in the Marseille side back in 2003-04 he played for City on a short loan deal; making just the five appearances under Kevin Keegan.
From there he embarked on his German career first with Hamburg and now of course as a stalwart for this superb Bayern side.
Two ex-City players of completely differing eras who shut-out Barca in Catalonia are now ready to embark on a historic Champions League Final; while Manchester City cannot crack their European jinx.
Maybe if they had one of these two finalists’ things could be a little different.
What do you make of Van Buyten and Boateng’s careers since leaving Manchester City?
image: © wonker