It may be a tale of two cities but Germany, as a nation, is enjoying the best of times. Never in the history has the world's attention been focused on Deutschland with such intensity. It will reach its high point when some 50,000 Germans will bring the roof down as Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund engage themselves in the Champions League final in London's Wembley on Saturday night.

The venue is the pride of England. At the old Wembley, some 44 German POWs were employed during rebuilding of the arena for the 1948 London Olympics. Germany wasn't invited to participate in the event, though. The Wembley underwent another facelift before the 2012 London Games but one can't wish away the historical facts. Nor can one overlook the strange absurdity of the situation. The Champions League final has a surreal and theatrical element to it.

In the semifinals, Jupp Heynckes' costly conglomeration cleaved right through Barcelona's heart and Juergen Klopp's rising stars took a rift-ridden Real Madrid to the cleaners. The world sat up and took notice of the power shift from the Iberian peninsula to the industrial towns of Bavaria and Ruhr.

The rites of passage, though, were as different as chalk and cheese. Bayern can consider themselves unlucky, unfortunate or simply chokers at Europe's premier club competition. This has been their third final in the last four years and the manner of their losses doesn't reflect generously on their glorious tradition. Last season, Bayern fluffed the lines during shootout. Pundits say that the injury time loss to Manchester United in the 1999 final has scarred the psyche of the team so deeply, that a summit showdown comes with a heavy baggage for the Munich club even though they raised visions of redemption winning the trophy in 2001.

Ruhr representatives Borussia Dortmund's yellow burst is a much recent phenomenon that has come hand in hand with Klopp's appointment in 2008. Since then, Borussia have broken the Munich monopoly in Bundesliga, winning the domestic title twice and more importantly showcasing to the world new talents like Mario Goetze, Marco Reus, Sven Bender and Ilkay Gundogan. All of them, barely in their twenties, also strut their stuff in the national team.

There is something universally appealing about Dortmund who resuscitated themselves from near-bankruptcy under a coach who adds a lot of flair and character to the viewing public. His caustic taunts aimed at Bayern in the run-up to the final and the now famous duel with Munich club official Mathias Sammer has given him an iconic status among the fans who swear by the club motto "Real Love".

Klopp's latest swipe says it all. "If you look at the results of Bayern Munich this season, they basically destroyed anyone in a heartbeat — anyone but us... We can beat Bayern Munich. We know this, and so do they." Not that Heynckes,68, who might walk in to the sunset after Saturday's final, isn't aware of it. "There are no favourites in a Champions League final... (but) the attractive, successful football we're playing is unparalleled. And we're not finished yet."

Munich's recent swoop on Mario Goetze — Dortmund's biggest star — has muddied the waters even more. The acrimony has taken such a nasty turn that after Bayern were declared champions this season, Borussia removed the replica of the Bundesliga shield won last season from their cabinet. They replaced it with Ole Gunnar Solksjaer's Man United shirt to drive home the point that broke Bayern hearts in 1999.

Funnily, a thigh muscle injury has ruled Goetze out of the Wembley final. Klopp needs to tinker with his lineup. Nuri Sahin is likely to get the holding midfielder's role while Gundogan will try and fill in Goetze's shoes.

Bayern are not plagued by any such issues. The team comprises the best of German talent in Lahm, Schweinsteiger and Mueller with tremendous support from foreign reinforcements in Frenchman Ribery, Dutchman Robben, Spaniard Martinez and Brazilian Dante.

On Saturday, as the clubs renew their feisty rivalry at the Wembley, rants of "Deutschland uber alles!" (Germany above all) will fill the London air. A rallying cry that may take some Englishmen back in time.