Barcelona is overconfident
Barcelona wins a fourth consecutive La Liga title the previous weekend, so Cruyff arrives in Athens for the Champions League 1994/1995 final more confident than ever: “The true Milan, was the one of Sacchi, and of Gullit-Rijkaard-Van Basten dutch trio. Cappelo preferred to base his game on Desailly…” said Cruyff before picturing Barca holding the trophy. “We’re more complete, competitive and experienced than [in the 1992 final] at Wembley. Milan are nothing out of this world. They base their game on defense, we base ours on the attack.”
Capello: “We reached perfection”
The rosonneri did not follow and cheer themselves seeing Barca as the bookie’s favorite. The Milanese know that they got more juice than their opponents during this end of the season. They trust their mental and iron defense (no defeat and two goals received until the final) which let them concentrate on what they are the best at: winning.
Capello studied Barca’s game from all the angles and spot a few flaws. He also found a solution to the central back duo Costacurta-Baressi absence (because of suspension): “Filippo Galli-Paolo Maldini will do the job”, says the Italian coach. His battle plan that aims to suffocate Ronald Koeman, Guardiola and Jose Maria Bakero, disarm Romario and Stoichkov, and put high-pressure on the opponent performed better than his expectations.
Milan, the capital of European football
Barcelona is drowned at the half-time. Milan’s force unleashes two goals by Daniele Massaro. The man of the match Dejan Savicevic adds an elegant third goal at the start of the second half, and Marcel Desailly concludes the collective masterpiece with a fourth goal.
The final score is 4-0, the same as in Barcelona’s 1989 final against Steaua (my favorite Romanian team). Never had Berlusconi’s Milan achieved such success. They now got five European Cup trophies, more than Liverpool, and just before Real Madrid with its six victories from the 1950s. Speaking of performances, the city of Milan got two trophies for the first time as Inter wins the UEFA Cup. So yes, after the Champions League 1994 final, Milan is the capital of European football.