Of course, the Champions League is set to return to our screens this week, as host from the continent’s finest eyes a place in the final 4 of the competition.
One of those clubs is in need of a little miracle to keep up their hopes of new European glory, though, coming in the form of Chelsea.
Thomas Tuchel’s soldiers, current Champions League holders, are set to make the grueling trip to the Bernabéu to face Real Madrid on Tuesday night, knowing they will need to overturn the two-goal deficit in the first leg.
This comes due to Karim Benzema’s brilliance at Stamford Bridge last time out, leaving the Blues on a 3-1 hole.
– 2019/20: 5 goals
– 2020/21: 6 goals
After consecutive trebles, Karim Benzema now has the same number #UCL This season’s goals also scored in the previous two combined! 😳
The Frenchman might be the hottest striker on the planet right now! 🤩pic.twitter.com/6GO1YOyBdA
Football on BT Sport (btsportfootball) April 11, 2022
So, before what should prove to be a vibrant night of football in the Spanish capital, today at 101 we’ve researched some of the greatest comebacks in Champions League history, and picked five of what we feel have proven their worth. better:
Liverpool Vs Barcelona – Semi-finals 2018/19
Going: Barcelona 3-0 Liverpool
The return: Liverpool 4-0 Barcelona
“Quickly take the corner…ORIGIIII!!!”
The night the underappreciated Divock Origi’s name was carved into Liverpool folklore and, most importantly, put Jurgen Klopp’s men on their way to winning the Champions League for the first time in 14 years.
Heading into the second leg of their semi-final clash with Spanish heavyweight Barcelona, trailing by three goals on the back of some late Lionel Messi magic at Camp Nou, it wasn’t entirely surprising that Liverpool were left out by fans and pundits alike.
On a European night at Anfield, though, there was still a glimmer of hope…
The Reds, in turn, continued to shock the fans, appearing on the right side of the 4-0 result due to complications on the part of both the aforementioned Origi, and Georginio Wijnaldum, to send Messi and his co-workers. Packing from the competition.
Deportivo La Coruna vs AC Milan – Quarter-finals 2003/2004
Going: Milan 4-1 Deportivo
The second leg: Deportivo 4-0 AC Milan
The first entry on our list when it comes to the history in which it has been managed, Deportivo La Coruna’s four-goal comeback against a superb AC Milan side in the early 2000s remains one of the greatest Champions League surprises of all time.
Debore, who had already defied the odds to advance to the quarter-finals, looked as good as he did after losing 4-1 in the first leg at the San Siro.
After the Rossoneri boasted the talents of the likes of Paolo Maldini, Cafu, Andrea Pirlo, Clarence Seedorf and Kaka put their feet up strong, though, the underdogs cashed in in the most exciting fashion imaginable.
And four unanswered goals in the first 75 minutes of the evening proved it was enough to see Deportivo advance, before eventually qualifying for a point in the tournament final by Jose Mourinho.
UEFA Champions League April 7, 2020
AS Roma – Barcelona – Quarter-finals 2017/18
Going: Barcelona 4-1 Roma
The return: Roma 3-0 Barcelona
Barcelona’s second appearance on our list, and unfortunately for the Blaugrana, another appearance still brings the occasional nightmare on the part of the club’s supporters.
Their quarter-final encounter with AS Roma in Serie A during the 2017/18 season saw the Catalans, as expected, take a comfortable lead in the first leg, ensuring they make the trip to Stadio Olimpico a week later with one foot firmly. In the final 4.
Arrogance, poor team mentality, lack of respect for their opponents – put it what you want, but the fact of the matter was that Barcelona, once again, simply failed to get the job done.
Goals from Eden Dzeko, Daniel De Rossi and Costas Manolas set up a historic evening for all those associated with Roma, amid jubilant celebrations across the Italian capital.
Chelsea vs Napoli – Round of 16 2011/12
Going: Napoli 3-1 Chelsea
The second leg: Chelsea 4-1 Napoli (after the match ended)
Perhaps the hardest call on our list, a number of candidates were considered before the 101 finally decided to expel Chelsea from Napoli during the 2011/2012 campaign.
The talking points surrounding the Blues’ return proved almost unmatched, with the second leg quickly coming on the back of a change to the bench at Stamford Bridge, where Roberto Di Matteo was handed the reins on an interim basis, following the sacking of Andre Villas Boa.
The first, in turn, quickly put the likes of Ashley Cole and Frank Lampard back on duty, culminating in West London actions that had to take extra time due to goalscorers from Lampard, John Terry and Didier Drogba.
Then Branislav Ivanovic completed the transformation after a full 105 minutes on the clock, booking Chelsea’s berth in the quarter-finals at the expense of Napoli.
Not only that, but the result proved to be a stepping stone for the retirees on their path all the way to their first-ever Champions League title three months later.
Barcelona x Paris Saint-Germain – Round of 16 in 2016-2017
Going: Paris Saint-Germain 4-0 Barcelona
The return: Barcelona 6-1 Paris Saint-Germain
With age…always keep the best for last.
Barcelona’s third and final appearance on our list finally shows the Catalan giants on the right side of the score, due to a night aptly coined as “La Remontada” (The Return).
After Paris Saint-Germain exited the French capital with a four-goal advantage, the first team’s progression in Ligue 1 to the quarter-finals of the tournament was taken for granted.
Some have even gone so far as to say that Barcelona, as a group, is “finished”, on the way to relinquishing the La Liga title to arch-rival Real Madrid as well.
Despite this, the Blaugrana themselves, under the direction of Luis Enrique, seemed to have always believed … and for very good reason, as it turned out.
Luis Suarez’s finishing touch in the space of three minutes proved to be a sign of things to come at the Camp Nou, as the hosts, backed by a raucous crowd, rioted en route to a 6-1 eventual victory.
Sergi Roberto played the game-winner, eventually blasting off brilliantly after five minutes of stoppage time, but Neymar was the real inspiration for the result, scoring a late brace before taking a decisive sixth place lead for Barcelona.
Most importantly, the score represents the only occasion where a team from the first leg fought four goals to emerge victorious from a Champions League match.
Honorable mention: Tottenham vs Ajax – Tottenham’s historic semi-final victory in the 2018/19 season was only missed due to the fact that Mauricio Pochettino’s men had already headed into the return leg in Amsterdam with a single goal. Firmly talking about the greatest comeback in Champions League history, but it just doesn’t quite fit the criteria here.
The same can be said of Ajax’s turnaround itself in the last 16 of the season at Real Madrid, as the Dutch heavyweights recovered from a 2-1 first-leg deficit to riot at the Bernabeu, packing Real Madrid thanks to a dominant 4th. -1 victory.
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|The result of the Chelsea-Crystal Palace match / both teams score||yes||no|