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Five who played for both Bayern Munich and Real Madrid

Bayern Munich and Real Madrid meet in the Champions League semi-finals this evening, a clash between two of the most decorated clubs in the game.

Nothing but the best is accepted at either giant, who are chasing European glory once again during the current campaign. Some of the game’s greatest have represented the clubs and a handful of illustrious names have been fortunate – and talented – enough to wear the colours of both.

Here are five of the best players to have played for Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.

Bayern Munich vs Real Madrid: Five who played for both

Ze Roberto

Real Madrid were the first club to bring the talents of Ze Roberto to European football, agreeing on a deal to sign the midfielder in 1997. He won the La Liga title in his debut campaign and formed part of the club’s Champions League triumph in 1997/98, though struggled for regular minutes and returned to Brazil in search of game time.

After a brief stint with Flamengo, Ze Roberto signed for Bayer Leverkusen. He starred during a successful period for Die Werkself, who finished as Bundesliga runners-up three times in four seasons and reached the 2002 Champions League final, losing to former club Real Madrid in Glasgow.

The Brazil international signed for divisional rivals Bayern Munich that summer, alongside Leverkusen teammate Michael Ballack, and together the duo helped the Bavarians dominate the Bundesliga.

In seven seasons in Munich, Ze Roberto made 248 appearances for Bayern and won four German league and cup doubles.

Arjen Robben

Arjen Robben’s early career saw him win league titles in the Netherlands and England, before joining Real Madrid for a fee of £24m from Chelsea in 2007.

He won La Liga during his debut campaign and scored 13 goals in 65 appearances across two seasons, though was squeezed out in the Spanish capital amid a second wave of Galactico signings.

Bayern Munich agreed a deal to sign the Dutchman and Robben produced the best football of his career during an iconic stay in German football. He was named Footballer of the Year in Germany as Bayern won the double in his debut season and went on to lift 17 trophies with the club, including eight Bundesliga titles.

Alongside Franck Ribery, the duo dovetailed to devastating effect on the flanks with Robben scoring 144 goals in 309 games for Bayern. The most crucial of all came in the 2013 Champions League final, as Robben’s last-gasp winner against Borussia Dortmund sealed treble success.

Iconic Duos: Robben and Ribery – The wing wizards who defined a decade

Xabi Alonso

Xabi Alonso sprinkled his midfield magic on some of Europe’s top clubs, spending time at Liverpool, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich.

Part of the second wave of Galactico signings at Real Madrid, he signed for the Spanish giants from Liverpool in 2009 alongside Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka and Karim Benzema – not a bad transfer window.

Alonso’s orchestration of games from a deep-lying role shone across six seasons with Los Blancos, which saw Real win La Liga, two Copa del Rey trophies and the 2014 Champions League.

Upon leaving the Bernabeu he signed for Bayern, working under the guidance of another Spanish pass-master, Pep Guardiola. Three consecutive Bundesliga titles brought a glittering career to a close.

Toni Kroos

Toni Kroos swapped clubs with the aforementioned Alonso in the 2014 summer transfer window.

Having won the World Cup with Germany in the summer, Kroos signed for Real Madrid from Bayern Munich for a fee of just €30m. It has proven to be insane value.

The midfielder has been an integral part of a trophy-laden era for the Spaniards and counts three La Liga titles and four Champions League trophies among his honours at the Bernabeu.

Before he departed from Germany, he had won three league titles and three DFB-Pokal titles with Bayern, alongside the 2012/13 Champions League that completed a treble under Jupp Heynckes.

The midfield metronome is still going strong at Real Madrid, where his immaculate use of the ball brings control on the biggest of occasions.

David Alaba

David Alaba’s potential was spotted at FK Austria Wien with Bayern moving quickly to bring the teenager across the border, and their show of faith was rewarded with over a decade of world-class service.

The Austrian is a Swiss Army Knife of a footballer and has excelled in multiple roles for club and country, during a career that has seen him collect honours at an astonishing rate.

Embed from Getty Images

The nine-time Austrian Footballer of the Year won 10 league titles, six German Cups and two Champions League crowns with Bayern Munich, before deciding on a new challenge in 2021. After a free transfer to Real Madrid, he added a La Liga title and a third Champions League winner’s medal in his debut season.

Read – Midfield Magicians: Xabi Alonso, the grand master of 4D chess

See more – Arjen Robben: The ‘one-trick pony’ who couldn’t be stopped

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