KEIR RADNEDGE at WEMBLEY: Dutchman Arjen Robben made up for his penalty miss against Chelsea last year by scoring Bayern Munich’s late winner in the all-German Champions League Final.
Robben struck from close range one minute from the end of normal time to edge the German champions to a thrilling 2-1 win over Borussia Dortmund.
He was voted man of the match by the technical study panel appointed by European federation UEFA and the award was handed over by Sir Alex Ferguson – who had once tried in vain to sign him for Manchester United.
Robben found it impossible to describe the climatic, decisive moment of the match when he pounced on a backheel from Frank Ribery and popped the ball wide of Dortmund keeper Roman Weidenfeller.
He said: “I was prepared for this match and had run it through a few times in my head beforehand. But when you provide the assist for the first goal and then score your own it’s like a dream, it’s very hard to believe it.
“A lot of things went through my mind [at the end]. For a footballer this is the peak, the greatest you can achieve.
“Also, it was the only thing we still really needed after the disappointment last year [in the final against Chelsea]. That’s three finals and you don’t want the stamp of a loser so at last we did it today and we can forget about the other things a bit.”
Recalling his goal, Robben said: “I had anticipated Frank’s move and my first choice was to go past the goalkeeper on the left – but then he moved so I could put the ball past him on other side because he was on the wrong leg.”
The ex-Chelsea and Real Madrid winger had tried to turn the bitter memory of last year into “positive energy” not so much for his own sake but for that of the team.
He said: “The biggest reason we reached the final is that we are a real team and fight for each other and run for each other. Defensively we were unbelievably strong this season and we have players who can make a difference.
“I scored the goal but the credit goes to the whole team and I’m really proud to be part of it.”