It’s just past midnight and today is May 1, Labor Day, a holiday in Taiwan. Therefore I am reasonably confident I can wake up to watch the Champions League* second-leg semifinal (2.45 am Taiwan time) between Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid. Dortmund shocked Madrid 4-1 in the first leg last week and are favored to reach the final. I like watching football, but I’m not a big fan of any particular club. However, in the Champions League, I always back German clubs, including Dortmund, Bayer Leverkusen, and Bayern Munich, who will play tomorrow’s second leg against Barcelona, themselves holding a 4-0 advantage. An all-German final is highly likely this year and I’ll certainly savor that. I hope I don’t jinx it by writing this post just hours before the game.
In the Asian Champions League**, China’s Guangzhou Evergrande and Beijing Guoan have qualified for the knockout stage already, while Guizhou Renhe just missed out. Jiangsu Sainty unfortunately will likely not make it after a 2-0 loss left them bottom of their four-team group with just one game to go, but they do have a slight chance if they win and the second and third placed teams in their group both lose.
*The UEFA Champions League is the most prestigious football club tournament in Europe and the world. It consists of 32 of Europe’s best clubs competing in a tournament that starts with a group stage, then moves on into a home-and-away knockout stage. The final is a single game held in a predetermined stadium. The 32 clubs are the champions, runners-up, (and the third and forth-placed teams from the top nations) of their countries.
**Other continents like Asia, Africa, and North and Central America (and the Caribbean) have their versions of the Champions League as well. South America’s own is called the Copa Libertadores.