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Where to watch Real Madrid vs. Borussia Dortmund: Live stream Champions League final online, time, TV channel

Here’s the best of the best from this season’s UCL when it comes to statistical output

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A mere 124 games after the competition proper began in Milan and Bern, the Champions League reaches its last match on Saturday at Wembley Stadium. This year has seen a wild 374 goals scored and just 53 clean sheets kept. The 2023-24 season has been one replete with drama, plot twists and, surely best of all, stats. Even with only Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund left standing, there are still individual accolades to be claimed, history to be made and curios to be uncovered. 

Viewing information

  • Date: Saturday, June 1 | Time: 3 p.m. ET
  • Location: Wembley Stadium — London, England
  • TV: CBS  | Live stream: Paramount+
  • Odds: Borussia Dortmund +420; Draw +330; Real Madrid -165
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Champions League final broadcast schedule

All times U.S./Eastern

Here’s a look at the competition’s individual leaders:

Golden Boot

One day to doubtless be named the Cristiano Ronaldo award, this one looks to be done and dusted even before the competition itself is concluded. Two players occupy top spot, Bayern Munich’s Harry Kane and Kylian Mbappe of Paris Saint-Germain, with eight goals to their name. You may remember that the semifinals did not go to plan for either superstar and even a player of Mbappe’s swiftness can’t bring his move to Madrid that far forward. Unlike FIFA’s curious insistence that the player with the most assists should win the World Cup’s prize for its best scorer, UEFA does not apply tiebreakers to the Champions League scoring race. It’ll just have to be half a trophy for Kane.

With their nearest rivals, Antoine Griezmann and Erling Haaland, having reached the Champions League club house with tallies of six to their name, it looks like this will be a prize shared by Kane and Mbappe. Their eight goals will be the first time the Golden Boot has been won by a player who hasn’t hit double figures since 2009-10, when Lionel Messi hit a high watermark of eight, back in the less-than-illustrious days of Jose Mourinho’s sufferball.

Then again this is the Champions League and there are honors to be handed out. Using words like “done and dusted” tends to have a remarkably restorative impact on Real Madrid. Three of their players — Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo and semifinal hero Joselu — have five goals to their name so far. Three of the four players to score hat tricks in European Cup finals did so in Madrid colors. I’m just saying.

Rank Player Club Goals Shots xG Minutes

1.

Harry Kane

Bayern Munich

8

36

6.78

1065

1.

Kylian Mbappe

Paris Saint-Germain

8

51

8.16

1080

3.

Antoine Griezmann

Atletico Madrid

6

22

4.8

822

3.

Erling Haaland

Manchester City

6

43

6.99

778

Oh as for Dortmund? Niklas Fullkrug’s on three. Probably not then…

Assist leader

Now we’ve got a tussle on our hands! The man with his digits on the prize right now rather typifies Borussia Dortmund’s well-timed heater in the spring. Marcel Sabitzer has completed 213 passes, created 13 chances and provided 1.32 expected assists (xA) to the cause. That has resulted in five assists, more than anyone else in the competition so far. Mbappe and Achraf Hakimi must be wondering what they have to do to get finishers like that on the end of the opportunities they create.

It’s still all to play for at Wembley though with Vinicius and Bellingham only one assist away from drawing level with Sabitzer. The former in particular has been on a creative tear in the New Year, one to rival David Bowie in Berlin. Eleven of the 19 chances he has created have come at the high-stakes knockout stage moments, as has 1.61 of his 2.58 xA. Whether he tops the scoring or assist charts, who knows, but keep this form running through to Wembley and into the Copa America and you might just be reading about the next Ballon d’Or winner.

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Golden glove

The footballing community is for the most part now sufficiently well-versed to know that clean sheets is far from the best measure of a goalkeeper’s qualities. But look, what else would you have me use? Saves? That just favors busy players on bad teams. Goals prevented? Too nerdy. Possession value? What did I just say? It might not be perfect, it might reward the defense as a whole rather than goalkeepers individually but clean sheets will do.

Fortunately, on this occasion it also spotlights a player who is quite clearly the best goalkeeper in the 2023-24 Champions League. Gregor Kobel has this in the bag anyway with six clean sheets to his name, though as Chuck Booth notes, having the best goalkeeper in the tournament is something of a double-edged sword. All credit to Alex Remiro, David Raya, Manuel Neuer and Yann Sommer, but it’s the Borussia Dortmund man who takes this prize. He would by plenty of other statistical measures you might like to name.

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Shots faced by Gregor Kobel in the 2023-24 Champions League, sized by xG value. TruMedia

Kobel’s 42 saves are four more than anyone else in the competition, his 7.09 goals prevented almost double the second-best mark set by Anatoliy Trubin. Sommer has his compatriot Kobel beaten on save percentage and goals conceded per 90 minutes but look, Inter came through a fairly pat-a-cake group before exiting to Atletico Madrid. Half of Dortmund’s 12 games were against oil state soft power vehicles masquerading as football clubs. They beat both of them to top spot in a group that also contained AC Milan … then they knocked out PSV Eindhoven, Atletico Madrid before running into one of those sovereign wealth concerns again. There could hardly be a tougher test for a team and in particular for a goalkeeper. Kobel aced it.

Other statistics we like

  • The problem with defensive stats is that some of the best work done out of possession involves stopping any meaningful action from taking place. How often does the opposition not hit a long ball into the channel because they know that Virgil van Dijk or William Saliba are going to bully their center forward? Still, there is a world for celebrating the active side of defending: hitting your opponent firmly but fairly, booting the ball, reading the pass before it comes. Enter Mats Hummels, who leads the Champions League in tackles, interceptions and clearances with the second-most ball recoveries. Aaah, you say, but that’s just because he has logged the most minutes in the tournament. Adjust your numbers to per 90, however, and the Borussia Dortmund center back still leads the way for tackles, ranks third for interceptions and sixth for clearances. His season has been a masterclass in busy defending.
  • Shooting goals added (SGA) is one of those curious metrics. Assessing the pre and post-shot xG values, it does not necessarily tell you all that much more meaningfully over a long timescale than xG itself might. The best strikers are not necessarily the ones who hit the corners every time — Heung-min Son might say otherwise though — but the ones who keep getting themselves in shooting positions. Still over the relatively brief lifecycle of a Champions League campaign, SGA does serve a different purpose, highlighting the men whose yikes games had an outsized impact on the tournament. Oh Lautaro Martinez (34 shots, two goals, 5.13 xG, -1.83 SGA), if only you’d kept your Serie A form up in the big leagues, there might have been another Champions League final on the cards. Fabian Ruiz, we really need to get you some heading practice.
  • Are we seeing a new post-pressing approach at the top of the European game? Even Borussia Dortmund are no longer the practitioners of Jurgen Klopp’s heavy metal, returning to the Wembley promised land thanks to tight defensive lines and immaculate off-ball shape. Manchester City’s 92.4% pass completion is the highest in five years of Champions League football. Real Madrid’s 90.1% ranks third while PSG, Bayern Munich and Feyenoord were among those to be notably more accurate than in previous years. For the competition as a whole pass completion was at 83.6%, in pre-COVID 2019-20 it was somewhat lower at 82.1%. Similarly, this year sides have won the ball in the middle third on 22.6 occasions per game. Five years ago that was 24.3.
  • Perhaps that is partly explained by just how long everyone is hanging about. Twenty players have made more than 150 appearances in the history of UEFA club competitions. Four of them — Sergio Ramos, Luka Modric, Thomas Muller and Ivan Rakitic — joined that club this season. With all those games coming in the Champions League, Muller now ranks level with the ageless Xavi Hernandez on 151 Champions League appearances, just one ahead of his compatriot Toni Kroos, who will retire from club football after Saturday’s final. For now, at least that means that of the 15 players with the most Champions League games ever, 10 are currently still active. Eight of the top 15 have been managed by Carlo Ancelotti. This era of football has gone on!

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