After a dramatic night at the Cam Nou where Barcelona overturned a 4-0 deficit for the first time in a European second-leg, we look at some of the greatest comebacks in Champions League history.
Were you left joyous or even heartbroken by any of these results?
1. 2017 Champions League quarter-final: Barcelona 6-1 Paris Saint-Germain
Phew, most of us are still catching our breath back after Wednesday night’s quite incredible finish.
Luis Enrique may be departing at the end of the season but who would now bet against him leaving the Nou Camp club on a high and winning the Champions League?
The dramatic nature of three goals in the last seven minutes to secure a 6-5 aggregate victory over Paris Saint-Germain and overturn a 4-0 first-leg deficit was indeed the stuff of dreams.
Like other matches in our top five, it may not have been a final, but the comeback had absolutely everything and deservedly leads the way.
2. 2005 Champions League Final: Liverpool 3-3 AC Milan
The Merseysiders were 3-0 down at half-time in Istanbul and it looked all over – especially given the fact they were facing one of the great club side’s in recent history.
But Liverpool had other ideas.
A fine header from Steven Gerrard in the 54th minute got the ball rolling and when Vladimir Smicer fired in a piledriver from range just two minutes later, the comeback was well and truly on.
Xabi Alonso then levelled the match just a few minutes later, converting the rebound from his missed penalty.
And, after 30 minutes of extra-time, the deciding penalty shootout is famous for one man.
Jerzy Dudek’s wobbly knees clearly knocked Milan’s stars off their stride as he saved spotkicks from Andrea Pirlo and Andriy Shevchenkoas the Reds ran out 3-2 winners in the Turkish capital.
3. 1999 Champions League Final: Manchester United 2-1 Bayern Munich
The Red Devils were moments away from losing the final but then produced probably the most dramatic few minutes of injury-time in the history of football.
Teddy Sheringham poked home an equaliser in the 91st minute after a scramble in the penalty box and then, just a minute or so later, his header from a David Beckham corner was diverted into the net by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
It was a spectacular way to cap an epic turnaround for Manchester United and Alex Ferguson’s men lifted the trophy at the Nou Camp.
4. 2004 Champions League quarter-final: Deportivo 4-0 AC Milan
The most unlikely of turnarounds as Milan looked home and hosed with a 4-1 advantage from the San Siro.
Yet, Depor advanced with a 4-0 hammering courtesy of goals from Walter Pandiani, Juan Carlos Valeron, Alberto Luque and Fran.
5. 2012 Champions League round of 16: Chelsea 4-1 Napoli
The Blues’ 3-1 defeat in Naples had cost Andre Villas-Boas but back at Stamford Bridge, Didier Drogba, John Terry and Frank Lampard sent the game into extra-time – with Gokhan Inler making it 3-1 – before Branislav Ivanovic secured a 4-1 win.
What made this comeback more special was the fact Chelsea went on to win the trophy that season.
If you were expecting a stunning comeback story from Arsenal that would reassure fans of Arsene Wenger’s leadership, Tuesday night would’ve come as something of a disappointment.
Bayern Munich condemned Wenger and his troops to more humiliation as 10-man Arsenal were eliminated from the Champions League with a crushing 5-1 defeat amid furious protests against the beleaguered Gunners boss.
It was the first time Arsenal had conceded five at the Emirates and by the closing stages, there was a funereal atmosphere on an evening that started with Arsenal fans staging a protest march calling for Wenger to quit and ended with a chorus of boos and banners held up proclaiming: “Enough is enough – Wenger out”.
It was yet another chastening experience in the Champions League for Wenger, who has now seen Arsenal eliminated in the last 16 for seven successive seasons.
Having lost 10-2 on aggregate, Arsenal registered the second biggest margin of defeat in the Champions League.
Here’s a look at the top five highest aggregate defeats in the European competition.
Real Madrid 9-2 Schalke 04 | 2013-14 | Round of 16
A hat-trick of doubles then. Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale all bagged braces when Real Madrid visited Schalke in the Champions League three years ago.
An emphatic 6-1 win over the hosts was a stunning result for Los Blancos who went on to win the tournament. A 3-1 victory in the second leg then sealed a memorable 9-2 win on aggregate.
Bayern Munich 10-2 Arsenal | 2016-17 | Round of 16
Bayern repeated their 5-1 first-leg win in Tuesday’s second leg to condemn Arsenal to their heaviest defeat at the Emirates Stadium since they moved from Highbury in 2006.
Arturo Vidal scored a brace in the second leg but the tie was already dead and buried in the first when Thiago Alcantara registered a double at the Allianz Arena.
Barcelona 10-2 Bayer Leverkusen | 2011-12 | Round of 16
Yes, you guessed it. Lionel Messi had more than a little to do with this demolition story. The Argentine was on fire over the two legs. After a relatively modest 3-1 victory in Germany, he turned up the heat in the return leg, even setting a Champions League record.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner scored – fittingly – five times as Barcelona trashed Bayer Leverkusen 7-1 at the Camp Nou.
Lyon 10-2 Werder Bremen | 2004-05 | Round of 16
Werder Bremen were the German champions at the time but apparently, no one told Lyon that. Following a 3-0 win in the away leg, the French outfit ran riot back home and won 7-2.
Sylvain Wiltord bagged a hat-trick to put the Germans to the sword.
Bayern Munich 12-1 Sporting Lisbon | 2008-09 | Round of 16
If there was any danger of Sporting Lisbon being rather pleased with their standing Portuguese football and growing complacent, Bayern Munich took care of that with a good old fashioned spanking.
As if a 5-0 victory in the first leg wasn’t enough, Munich went on a rout that finished 7-1 in the return leg.
The massive 11-goal margin remains the highest winning aggregate in Champions League history.
It’s not over until the fat lady sings, but if she hasn’t already, someone needs to check on her.
Expecting any team other than Chelsea to lift the Premier League trophy at the end of this season would be flirting with delusion.
The Blues are 10 points ahead of Tottenham at the moment with only 11 games to go. A massive collapse from a well-drilled Antonio Conte side is increasingly difficult to imagine while any one of the chasing pack winning all of their remaining fixtures is simply unfathomable.
While Chelsea have secured four league titles in the last 12 years and are on the verge of adding a fifth, they’re still playing catch-up in Europe.
They’ve won the Champions League just once in their history, when they played the unfamiliar role of underdogs in 2012 under Roberto di Matteo.
But if they’re going to repeat the feat next season, they’ll need to bolster an already solid squad to give them an edge.
Here are three players they need to sign to be crowned Kings of Europe again.
Conte already brought David Luiz back to Stamford Bridge from Paris Saint-Germain last summer and what was perceived as a gamble at the time has paid off in a big way.
The Brazilian has worked marvellously in a three-man central defence alongside Gary Cahill and Cesar Azpilicueta who isn’t a natural centre-back. Instead, someone of Marquinhos’ calibre would offer them greater balance.
The PSG defender has all the tools to make it in the Premier League as well. Following reports that the players contract extension talks at the French club have stalled, Chelsea may be well positioned to swoop in.
Marquinhos' agent “He has not renewed, it's been 5 months we've negotiated with PSG. 🇪🇸 is interesting to play in and Barca is a great club" pic.twitter.com/qJAtNZTqbh— 🇧🇷 Football (@BrazilEdition) March 6, 2017
The ongoing feud between Sanchez and Arsene Wenger at Arsenal has been well-documented. Given the Chilean’s scintillating form since joining the Gunners, it’s no secret that he’s one of the most sought after players in Europe.
One can only imagine the havoc Chelsea’s attack could wreak if they were flanked by Sanchez and Eden Hazard.
The disgruntled Arsenal star would fit perfectly in Conte’s system and would have the freedom to operate at his explosive best. Despite playing for Barcelona for three seasons, Sanchez has never won the Champions League and will no doubt share Conte’s appetite for it.
Picture this – a midfield duo of N’Golo Kante and Radja Nainggolan. Conte has utilised Cesc Fabregas alongside the Frenchman at times this season, particularly against weaker opposition while Nemanja Matic has been the mainstay.
But when playing a back three against the likes of Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid, you need a tireless midfield and that’s precisely what Conte would have at his disposal should he sign the AS Roma player.
Furthermore, they would no longer be reliant on Kante. The whole system wouldn’t fall apart should he get injured.
Yeah...maybe closing down Radja Nainggolan would be a good idea, lads: pic.twitter.com/nHI8uTygr9— LateTackleMagazine (@LateTackle) February 27, 2017