The almost shocking conclusion to what had been a notable Juventus recovery against Real Madrid at the Bernabéu has not only divided opinion – it was a penalty all day long, one could only admire the stealth with which Medhi Benatia administered his shove in the back of Lucas Vázquez and the bravery of Michael Oliver for punishing it – but has also inspired much talk of the evening being one of the most dramatic in the history of the European Cup and Champions League. However the latter stages of the competition have frequently produced controversy, spectacle and drama. Here are six other notable European nights to consider.
Comebacks do not come any more unexpected or spellbinding than this. Call it the greatest of escapes, the miracle of Istanbul or just the ultimate games of two halves but the fact is the first half was so embarrassingly one-sided that some Liverpool supporters Womens Danton Heinen Jersey are said to http://www.officialbengalsfootballproshop.com/WOMENS_YOUTH_GEORGE_ILOKA_JERSEY.html have attempted to leave the stadium during the interval, only to find the gates locked. Cue a little tactical adjustment by Rafa Benítez, who brought on Didi Hamann for the second half, and heroic performances by Steven Gerrard and Jerzy Dudek, and Liverpool recovered a three-goal deficit, negotiated extra-time and then won on penalties. Unforgettable.
Almost certainly the height of European injustice, as the Norwegian referee Tom Henning Øvrebø waved away four reasonable Chelsea penalty appeals before a 90th-minute goal from Andrés Iniesta swept Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona into the final with their only shot on target. One of the most memorable images of the night was Michael Ballack sprinting half the length of the pitch while remonstrating with the hapless official, before Didier Drogba’s sweary rant to the camera at full-time earned him a five-match ban. Øvrebø apologised some years later but it was far too late to earn Guus Hiddink the shot at Manchester United in Rome he so craved.
Barcelona were at the height of their supremacy under Guardiola in 2010 but Inter arrived at the Camp Nou with a 3-1 lead from the first leg. The visitors soon went down to 10 men when Thiago Motta was dismissed in the first half but what followed was a defensive masterclass, more organisation than improvisation, as Inter virtually abandoned attack to concentrate their resources on stopping Barcelona from scoring again. This was peak José Mourinho who, after outwitting Guardiola while short-handed, was presented with few problems by Louis van Gaal’s Bayern Munich in the final. Perennial underachievers in Europe, Inter had suddenly landed the treble of the Serie A title, Coppa Italia and Champions League.
A 10-goal final certainly sounds dramatic, even if the distribution of goals suggests the showpiece might http://www.basketballofficialstore.com/DEMARCUS_COUSINS_JERSEY_AUTHENTIC-c-497_544.html have been a tad one-sided. In Britain at least, this felt like it was the moment when the European Cup came of age, when the scales fell from insular eyes and the attraction of continental competition was suddenly grasped. The final provided royal entertainment for an immense Hampden Park crowd of 127,621, an audience that seemingly included – just like the Sex Pistols at the Free Trade Hall or the Velvet Underground’s first LP – a great many people who would later be inspired to achievements of their own. If this was football, Britain wanted more.
Strange Authentic Sam Acho Jersey as it might seem now, it came as news to the nation at large to discover there was something intoxicatingly special about European nights at Anfield. Liverpool under Bob Paisley were breaking new ground – in Bill Shankly’s time the club had never been synonymous with European success – and when the French champions scored an away goal the home side needed two more to progress. Thanks in part to a hugely partisan crowd, Ray Kennedy and David “supersub” Fairclough they got them, though knowing what we know now the most arresting sight of the evening was the spilling, seething, all-standing Kop.
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