Two Of The Most Memorable Champions League Finals Involved English Teams

Two Of The Most Memorable Champions League Finals Involved English Teams

Manchester City and Chelsea are set to lock horns with each other at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium at the end of this month.

Both teams are looking exceptional at the moment and so it seems hard to say who will ultimately take away the coveted trophy.

But the competition has a history of producing some of its best finals when English clubs are involved, but will the same occur when two go head to head?

The final is expected to be a very interesting encounter and fans can take advantage of a promo code for Betfred in the unlikely event they think the outcome can be predicted!

Here’s a quick look back at those two finals, whose stories have been told every year since by those involved in them. 

AC Milan vs Liverpool (2005) 

Search in the long history of the European Cup and you cannot find a better Champions League final than the one between Liverpool and AC Milan in 2005.

Known as the Miracle of Istanbul, the match saw the remarkable comeback of the Reds from the brink of defeat.

Liverpool just managed to make it to the finals thanks to Luis Garcia’s strike during their two-legged semi-final with Chelsea.

Meanwhile, Milan came into the game on the back of an emphatic 5-1 aggregate victory over PSV Eindhoven. The Italian giants were regarded as heavy favourites for the night in Istanbul.

The next part of the story has been told a million times.

The first half was completely one-sided as Carlo Ancelotti’s men took full advantage of Liverpool’s defensive frailties.

Paulo Maldini struck inside the first minute of the game and the Reds’ miseries were further compounded when Hernan Crespo fired two quick goals just before the interval. 

With Milan 3-0 up, the game looked to have slipped from the Premier League giants. However, they put an almighty effort in the second half and changed the course of the match. 

Rafael Benitez brought Dietmar Hamann to replace Steve Finnan and pushed more players forward. Steven Gerrard pulled one back on 54 minutes to revive hopes, then Vladimir Smicer popped up with another goal in the next two minutes to completely spook their opponents.

The massive advantage of the Italians had melted away by then and they were looking bewildered by the continuous attacks of Liverpool. 

Gennaro Gattuso conceded a penalty on the hour mark and Xabi Alonso stepped up to take the spot-kick. The Spaniard’s spot-kick was saved but he smashed home the rebound in dramatic fashion to complete the Reds’ recovery. 

Liverpool were now back in the game, but both sides failed to move the score-line during the remaining 30 minutes plus the two 15 minutes periods of extra time.

And with their confidence very high, Rafael Benitez’s side went on to prevail in the shoot-out to lift their fifth European Cup. 

Manchester United vs Bayern Munich (1999)

The 1999 Champions League final witnessed another of the greatest comebacks in the history of the European Cup.

Manchester United’s defeat looked certain for the majority of the game but something extraordinary happened in extra time to completely change everything. 

Mario Balser put his side ahead in the 6th minute and that lead remained for the entirety of the 90 minutes. However, just when all hopes looked over for the Red Devils, Teddy Sheringham found an equalizer in the first minute of added time, and it took only two more minutes for United to come up with the winner via Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The Norwegian became just as famous as any of the club’s leading scorers just for that hugely important Champions League goal.