Arjen Robben saw his penalty saved
This is, indeed, the first match we've lost that I've cried about. While the Champions League defeats in '99 to Manchester United and '10 to Inter Milan were bitter, Bayern Munich had other titles to compensate. In 1999 we won the Bundesliga and in 2010 we had achieved a double. To come away this season empty-handed - as talented as this squad is - is incredibly disappointing.
I used to laugh at my friends that are Leverkusen supporters. In 2002, "Neverkusen" lost the Bundesliga title to Borussia Dortmund, the DFB Pokal final to Schalke 04, and the Champions League final to Real Madrid. I now know exactly what that feels like. And I will never laugh at them again.
Seven minutes away from our fifth European title. Manhandling Chelsea through the majority of the match. The German press labelled it a "farce". But, a dear friend of mine, who texted me directly after, seemed to sum it up better. He wrote, "It was written in the stars."
Perhaps it was.
Would you like to know how I was finally able to get my fingers on a keyboard? I was leaving work late last night, and the bar across from mine inexplicably had "O Fortuna" blasting from their speakers: The thunderous Carl Orff piece that is used to open many Bayern matches in the Allianz Arena. The song never fails to leave me with chills, and floods my heart and soul with memories; all the exultant times I have had supporting the most magnificent club in Germany, this jewel in the crown of European football. Meine Liebe, mein Leben, mein Verein. I looked down at the tattoo on my forearm, and smiled.
And now I can finally say, "Well done, Chelsea". I watched your improbable comeback against Napoli. I heartily applauded your defeat of Barcelona. Were you the better team in those matches? Perhaps not. But you never, ever gave up. And that has made all the difference.
FC Bayern, Stern des Südens, du wirst niemals untergehn,
weil wir in guten wie in schlechten Zeiten zu einander stehn,
FC Bayern, Deutscher Meister, ja, so heißt er mein Verein,
Ja, so war es und so ist es und so wird es immer sein!
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