Why Always Us? That's the dilemma we face here at LeoVegas ahead of the Champions League final.
We began the season as official partners to two of the world's most prestigious clubs: Manchester City and Inter.
Now both of them meet in the final with the biggest trophy in European football up for grabs and we're absolutely thrilled for both - even if we can't choose between them!
So Why Always Us? Because we back winners, that's why.
But we're not the only ones whose loyalties have been tested by the final match-up. Let's take a closer look at others who might also be thinking the same...
One of the most famous players in Manchester City’s history, Balotelli donned the blue and black of Inter before moving to the Etihad. After scoring 20 goals in 59 appearances, and helping the Nerazzurri to three straight Serie A titles, the then 20-year-old made the move to Manchester to reunite with his former Inter boss Roberto Mancini.
Fireworks, “Why Always Me”, and struggling to put on bibs aside, the Italian forward had some impressive moments while representing the blue side of Manchester. After all, he did assist Manchester City’s memorable Premier League-winning goal from Sergio Aguero in 2011-12.
While Balotelli won’t be on show in the Champions League final, both Inter and City boast a plethora of attacking talent that could steal the headlines in Istanbul. Erling Haaland may well write his name into City folklore - much like predecessor Aguero - if he can find the net and secure the club a maiden European Cup in the process.
As for Inter, they’ll be hoping Edin Dzeko, Romelu Lukaku, or World Cup winner Lautaro Martinez can catapult Simone Inzaghi’s side to a first continental title since 2010.
You can, of course, add any of these strikers as anytime scorers on your Bet Builder here.
It’s not just players that have ties to both Manchester City and Inter. The aforementioned Mancini also made the move from the San Siro to the Etihad in 2009 before ending up back at the Nerazzurri again in 2014.
At the helm for three straight Scudetti, Mancini left Milan for Manchester and was the man who steered City to their first Premier League trophy. He will forever be revered amongst the City faithful but where will his loyalties lie as two of his former clubs meet in the Champions League final?
One of City’s longest-serving players during the Premier League era, Kolarov racked up 165 appearances and cemented himself as one of the club’s most consistent performers.
However, the former Serbia international actually ended his career as an Inter Milan player. The left-back only featured ten times for the Italian giants before hanging up his boots in 2022 but he handed the full-back baton to Federico Dimarco before leaving.
It is a position that Dimarco has now solidified. The 25-year-old defender already has five assists in 10 games in the Champions League - behind only City’s Kevin De Bruyne - and you can back him to grab another in the final via our Bet Builder.
While most on this list will be thinking #WhyAlwaysUs, Joao Cancelo will certainly know where his loyalty lies for the Champions League final. This is because the Portuguese defender is still in contention for a winner’s medal despite playing for Bayern Munich since January.
Before leaving for Germany, Cancelo tallied six UCL appearances for City - more than both Aymeric Laporte and Kyle Walker. However, we are sure the 28-year-old defender still holds a fondness for the team he made 26 Serie A appearances for in 2017-18 too.
Saturday’s final marks a battle between the final two clubs that the legendary Vieira played for.
Inter Milan, the French midfielder’s penultimate club, signed him from fellow Serie A rivals Juventus in 2006. He would go on to make 67 appearances across four years at the San Siro, ending his spell with 6 goals to his name.
After his departure, Vieira spent the final season of his illustrious career with the Citizens, playing 28 times during their 2010-11 season and ending City’s 35-year trophy drought by winning the FA Cup.
While he may be torn on who to support, the former Crystal Palace manager will surely be impressed by the midfield talent on display in Istanbul.
City’s midfield maestro Kevin De Bruyne leads the entire Champions League in assists (six), while the opposing midfield of Nicolo Barella and Hakan Calhanoglu haven’t been afraid to create themselves - both have six assists each in Serie A this term.
Only one person on this list will assuredly have no divided loyalties come matchday and that is because he is also the only one who will actually take to the field in Istanbul - former Manchester City and current Inter striker Dzeko.
The Bosnian frontman joined City in 2011 from Wolfsburg after four prolific years in the German Bundesliga. He went on to register a half-century of goals for the Sky Blues, including a memorable equaliser against Queens Park Rangers to kickstart the legendary 3-2 comeback in the 2011-12 Premier League finale.
In a quirk of fate, Dzeko now leads the line for Inter against City in a Champions League final. The 37-year-old has already averaged a goal every three games in this year’s competition (4 in 12 appearances) which includes becoming the second-oldest player to score in a Champions League semi-final when he netted in the Derby della Madonnina against AC Milan.
Overall, Dzeko has scored 29 goals in 74 Champions League appearances. You can back him to grab his 30th at odds of 24/5.
While this final has left us tearing our hair out and asking Why Always Us, we are honoured to be partnered with a pair of European powerhouses - no matter which team comes out on top.
But who do you think will lift the trophy between our two partners? We can’t pick a winner… can you?
All odds correct at time of publication