The Champions League brings together the elite teams from nations around Europe and over the years it’s treated us to some memorable encounters. No more so than when the competition reaches the knock-out stages.
From underdog stories to legendary comebacks and simply unstoppable forces, here are five of the best matches we’ve ever seen in the competition.
MANCHESTER UNITED 7 - 1 ROMA (QUARTER-FINALS 2007)
This may seem like a long time ago in respect to current events at United, but in 2007 the Red Devils came back from a first leg 1-2 defeat to destroy a Roma side led by Totti. After the first goal commentator Clive Tyldesley said, “One nil will do for Manchester United.” They went on to put the Italian side to the sword winning 7-1.
BARCELONA 2 - 2 CHELSEA (SEMI-FINALS 2012)
In a season when Chelsea fired manager André Villas-Boas and replaced him with former club legend Roberto Di Matteo, it looked like they had little chance of beating Barcelona. Things only got bleaker when John Terry was sent off in the early stages of the game and then a goal from Iniesta made it 2-0. Cue Ramires scoring a delightful chip to put Chelsea ahead on away goals. And then the tie was put to bed when Torres ran through on goal in the final moments and slotted the ball in the back of the net.
JUVENTUS 2 - 3 MANCHESTER UNITED (SEMI-FINALS 1999)
After a 1-1 draw in the first leg, Manchester United travelled to Turin knowing that they had an uphill struggle to reach the final. Things started off badly with the Red Devils 2-0 down within 11 minutes. Roy Keane pulled them back into the game with a bullet of a header and then Dwight Yorke scored to take them ahead on away goals. Andy Cole tapped the ball into the net to finish off the tie and glory awaited in Barcelona.
DEPORTIVO LA CORUNA 4 - 0 AC MILAN (QUARTER-FINALS 2004)
Deportivo came into this quarter-final tie against AC Milan 1-4 down after the first leg but managed to pull off one of the greatest comebacks in the history of the competition. The defending champions were blown away by the Spanish side, heading into the break 3-0 down. Deportivo finished off the tournament favourites in the second half with a goal from captain Gonzalo Fran and won 4-0 on the night.
CHELSEA 4 - 4 LIVERPOOL (QUARTER-FINALS 2009)
Chelsea and Liverpool seem to have a tradition of entertaining encounters in the Champions League, and they didn’t disappoint with this quarter-final tie. The Stamford Bridge outfit were 3-1 up from the first leg but goals from Aurelio and Alonso put Liverpool in control at the interval. The second half treated us to six goals including two from Frank Lampard to take the Blues through in one of the most entertaining draws you will ever see.