The UEFA Champions League is the highest club soccer competition of the Old World. Europe’s best teams face each other in a tournament where outsiders and giants battle it out to reach the finals. While the Champions League is usually great entertainment, it is also exciting and dramatic at times.
The beauty of the Champions League is its unpredictability, which makes it similar to Canadian casino games for real money or a circle of fortune. Anything can indeed happen in this tournament, up to and including the fiasco of the clear favorites from the clear outsiders. What were the 10 greatest matches in the history of the Champions League? Let’s look at them.
Manchester United – Bayern Munich (1999)
FC Bayern Munich were 1-0 up but two late goals from Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjær tipped the game over. In the end, UEFA clinched the victory and won that season.
AC Milan – Barcelona (1994)
Barcelona was the favorite to win their second European Cup in three years, while Milan played without Van Basten, Baresi and other key players. Somehow they began to dominate the match and scored two goals in each half. It was a shock not only for Barcelona fans, but for all fans of the game.
Chelsea – Liverpool (2009)
In 2009, there was an eight-goal thriller between two of the toughest teams in the Premier League in an all-English quarterfinal. Some expected cautious soccer, but it turned out to be a mega spectacle. “The Blues came back from 2-0 down, took the lead, then conceded two goals. And only at the very end, on 89 minutes, Lampard equalized the score.
Chelsea – Barcelona (2005)
Despite Barcelona’s best efforts and the magic of Ronaldinho, who scored on the edge of the penalty box, Chelsea qualified for the quarterfinals. José Mourinho’s team was at its best and gave fans truly iconic moments like this one.
Liverpool – Arsenal (2008)
Who else but Steven Gerrard, who scored a penalty, could have turned the tide in Liverpool’s favor? Anfield exploded when Ryan Babel netted his fourth goal of the season.
Deportivo La Coruña – AC Milan (2004)
The Italian were already on the doorstep of the semi-finals after a 4-1 victory against Deportivo in the first leg and they took revenge in the return leg with a 4-0 win and a 5-4 aggregate win, literally clinching a place in the semi-finals. Such a comeback by the players of Deportivo, a club currently experiencing far from the best of times.
Ajax – Tottenham (2019)
The incredibly talented young Ajax team from 1995 suffered a dramatic defeat in the 2019 semifinals. Eric Ten Hag’s charges, which included such talented youngsters as Matteis De Lig, Frankie De Jong, Hakim Ziesch and others, surprised all of Europe with their amazing performances in the group stage and playoff rounds.
In the second game, the teams put on a productive performance and by the end of the game, the scoreboard showed the 2-2 score. A spectacular winning goal by Lucas Moura in the compensatory time brought Spurs an important victory and ensured their participation in the final. By the way, the Brazilian Moura scored a hat-trick in this match.
Juventus – Manchester United (1999)
Roy Keane’s superb play was the key to United’s comeback within 11 minutes after two missed goals from Inzaghi. Keane missed the final, but United would not have made it if not for his goal and the tremendous work against Juventus that inspired a dramatic win for MJ.
Barcelona – PSG (2017)
Luis Suarez’s goal in the third minute of the return match was important, but only thanks to a flurry of goals scored by Messi, Neymar and Sergi Roberto did Barcelona have an incredible comeback. Leo Messi scored in the 50th minute on a penalty kick, and the teams were scoreless until the end. However, on 88 and 90 +1 minutes of the game Neymar made the score 5-1, and on 90 + 6 minutes, Sergi Roberto brought a crucial victory for the “bluegranatas. By the way, after this season Brazilian Neymar moved to PSG for 222 million euros.
AC Milan – Liverpool (2005)
Milan went into halftime winning 3-0, and it seemed to be a done deal, just to finish the match. But three conceded goals in six minutes and a penalty shootout loss allowed Liverpool to win the Champions League. That’s why we love the Champions League!