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Monday, May 24, 1999 Published at 21:07 GMT 22:07 UK


Sport: Football

Bayern unveil final line-up

Markus Babbel: The man Ryan Giggs must get past

Bayern Munich have revealed their starting line-up for the European Cup final with Manchester United - 48 hours before the match in Barcelona.

United's Euro Showdown
Defender Markus Babbel is to be employed in a man-marking job on United's left-wing maestro Ryan Giggs.

The German giants see Giggs as one of United's main dangermen.

Bayern coach Ottmar Hitzfeld took the unusual step of naming his side two days in advance to give his players time to prepare.

Hitzfeld has opted for the surprise choice of Babbel on the right side of midfield instead of Thomas Strunz because of his defensive qualities.

"Giggs is more of a striker than a midfielder, hence we need stability in defence," explained Hitzfeld.

Wings the key

On the other flank Michael Tarnat will he handed the job of trying to contain David Beckham, who the Germans have dubbed the "flankengott" or crossing god.

Bayern are well aware of United's strengths down the flanks and intend to cut off the supply to the front men.

Babbel said: "It is important that the wide positions are closed off. "If we can do that then we will have a very good chance of winning."

Bayern, like United, have clinched their own domestic league title and are on course for the Treble, just like the Manchester club.

So far their celebrations have been restrained, but general manager Uli Hoeness claims there will be no holding back if they win in Barcelona.

"On Wednesday night we plan to celebrate the party of all parties," he said. Bayern Munich team (3-4-3 formation): Kahn; Matthaus, Linke, Kuffour; Babbel, Jeremies, Effenberg, Tarnat; Basler, Jancker, Zickler.



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