Champions League final: Manchester City defeat Inter Milan 1-0 to complete historic treble

Manchester City's Rodri shoots towards goal, during the Champions League semi-final second leg match between Manchester City and Real Madrid, at Etihad Stadium, in Manchester, England, Wednesday May 17, 2023. (Nick Potts/PA via AP)

The most lopsided Champions League final in recent memory delivered a historic win as Manchester City added its third trophy of the season to complete the treble and prove, beyond any shadow of a doubt, it is the best team on this planet and perhaps of this era.

City won its first Champions League, and its first continental crown of any kind, with a 1-0 triumph over Inter Milan on Saturday. It labored, agonizingly, for much of the game, just as it had labored, agonizingly, for much of the 20th century. But with midnight near in Istanbul, Rodri stepped up to a loose ball at the top of the penalty area, and he, his team, his controversial club, and the entire blue half of Manchester all broke through.

Man City had already won the English Premier League and FA Cup. It had already won the Final Before The Final, a gigantic semifinal clash with Real Madrid, in style. Its net spending on players since 2009-10 — its first full season owned by Abu Dhabi's royal family — has been the highest in the world, more than $1 billion greater than Inter Milan's; and its all-star squad reflects those riches.

Now a Champions League trophy concludes the City takeover and it ends with triumph, and a treble, and a celebration that can't yet be tarnished by asterisks.

Champions League final: Manchester City vs. Inter Milan live tracker