Atletico Madrid will have to overturn a three-goal deficit if they are to beat arch-rivals Real Madrid and secure a place in the Champions League final in Cardiff next month.
Diego Simeone’s Atletico side have home advantage in the second leg but with it all to do after Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat-trick at the Bernabeu last week.
Here, we look at some of the more memorable occasions on which teams have overturned big deficits to go through after a rousing second-leg performance.
After being humbled 4-0 in the first leg in Paris, few gave Barcelona a chance of overturning such a big deficit in the second leg at the Nou Camp but in Luis Enrique’s final season as head coach that is exactly what Lionel Messi and Co pulled off.
Barca surged ahead through Luis Suarez, an own goal from Layvin Kurzawa and a Messi penalty only for Edinson Cavani to hit back for PSG. All looked lost for the Spanish giants but Neymar scored after 88 minutes and with an injury-time penalty before Sergi Roberto struck the final blow five minutes into stoppage time.
No eyebrows were raised when Serie A giants Milan thumped Deportivo 4-1 in the first leg at San Siro, with superstars Kaka, Andriy Shevchenko and Andrea Pirlo living up to their star billing.
But three goals in a remarkable first half at Riazor, sparked by Walter Pandiani’s opener, turned the tie around. The Rossoneri were hanging on until the 76th minute, when Fran sent Deportivo through.
Real Madrid should have read the small print when they sent Fernando Morientes to Monaco on loan in 2003. Annoyingly, he scored against them in the first leg of this quarter-final tie, but they won 4-2.
A healthy lead established, Los Blancos headed for Monte Carlo full of confidence, only for Morientes to once again stick the knife into his employers, with Ludovic Giuly’s brace sealing their fate.
Milan, by 2013 no longer the all-conquering side of old, had scored two unanswered goals in the first leg at San Siro.
Never before had a team recovered from 2-0 down without an away goal, but there was no reckoning with the magic of Messi, as his brace preceded goals from David Villa and Jordi Alba.
Patience with Sir Alex Ferguson’s successor David Moyes was already wearing thin among the Old Trafford faithful, and a 2-0 defeat to Greek side Olympiacos a month earlier did little to aid the Scot.
But Robin van Persie gave Moyes a little longer in the hotseat by scoring a hat-trick in Manchester to steer United into the quarter-finals, a stage at which Bayern Munich proved too strong for them.
Provided by Press Association Sport
If Juventus’ defence carries on playing the way it has in the Champions League so far, Corentin Tolisso and Nico Pareja could end up becoming top trivia answers soon.
Why? They’re the only players to have scored against the Italian side in the Champions League this season.
Not the magical Lionel Messi and his vaunted sidekicks, Luis Suarez and Neymar. And not – at least through one leg of the Champions League semi-final – hotshot youngster Kylian Mbappe and the elusive Radamel Falcao.
Through six group stage games, two knockout legs against Porto, two quarter-final matches against Barcelona, and one semi-final match against Monaco – Gianluigi Buffon, Leonardo Bonucci, Giorgi Chiellini and company have only conceded twice.
Juventus: Are the only team yet to concede a goal from open play in the Champions League this season pic.twitter.com/iwlQ2DIWsk— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) May 4, 2017
Neither of those goals came from open play. Lyon’s Tolisso headed the ball in from a free kick, while Sevilla’s Pareja volleyed home after a corner was only partially cleared.
Monaco’s task in the second leg is simple: score three times (and don’t concede), and they’re in the final. That is, score more times in one game than Juventus have conceded in 11.
A Real Madrid vs Juventus final seems the likely outcome. Would Cristiano Ronaldo and company be able to breach this Juventus defence?
Gonzalo Higuain scored both goals as an imperious Juventus beat Monaco 2-0 in their Champions League semi-final first leg to take a huge step towards next month’s final in Cardiff.
Both of Higuain’s goals came from Dani Alves assists, with the Argentine hitman rounding off a breathtaking team move to open the scoring just before the half-hour mark and converting the second from close range after the break.
While the second leg in Turin next Tuesday will be no formality, Juventus have never lost a two-legged European tie to French opposition and so impressive were they at the Stade Louis II that it is hard to imagine Monaco recovering.
We take a look at the two key stars from the game and compare Kylian Mbappe with Juve’s Paulo Dybala.
Goals – 0
Shots – 3
Dribbles – 4
Pass success – 83%
Chances created – 0
Dispossessed – 2
Monaco fail to score at home for the first time since 26th November 2015; ending a scoring run of 41 consecutive games in all competitions. pic.twitter.com/YRQCKtWCis— Squawka Football (@Squawka) May 3, 2017
Goals – 0
Shots – 1
Dribbles – 4
Pass success – 86%
Chances created – 1
Dispossessed – 1
In the first half the 18-year-old was electric and Juventus were grateful to – who else? – 39-year-old goalkeeper Gigi Buffon who twice in quick succession was forced to deny the Monaco frontman.
When he was not feeding on the assists provided by Bernardo Silva, Thomas Lemar and the rest of Monaco’s incisive attacking unit, Mbappe was living up to comparisons with Thierry Henry by storming down the left before switching feet to pull makeshift right-back Andrea Barzagli out of position. That way, Radamel Falcao was able to get into shooting positions, and the Colombian did enjoy chances.
But Juve soon adapted and handcuffed to the touchline for much of the second half, his influence on the game waning as Monaco struggled to pick the visitor’s lock.
Juve’s night went something like this: a move started by Dybala, then brilliantly assisted by Dani Alves for a clinical finish from the classy Gonzalo Higuain.
The statistics do the 23-year-old a disservice because he was central to Juve’s sharp attacking threat. They rely on Dybala’s creative ingenuity to manufacture opportunities for Higuain and he didn’t let them down tonight.
His sumptuous flick in the build-up to the opening goal was a fine illustration of his creative exploits – watch it, gorgeous.
A masterclass display from the Argentine, even without a goal to his name.
The flick from Dybala in the buildup. 👏 pic.twitter.com/rdVYFcv6Yr— Dybala Stuff (@DybalaStuff) May 3, 2017
13th min: Juventus clearly ignored all the column inches in the build-up because the backline pushed up too far from a corner and totally ignored Mbappe who was left free to meet Nabil Dirar’s lofted pass back into the box. But from 12 yards he can only direct a tame header straight at Buffon.
16th min: Dirar again is the man to find the 18-year-old as he intercepted a pass in midfield, charged down the right wing and fired in a low hanging cross to the near post. Mbappe’s movement was first class and but Buffon’s reactions were more than a match as he moved to deny the striker with a fine save to his left.
53rd min: He whipped out his box of tricks to try and jink past Alves but the full-back was too alert and when Mbappe dived to the floor the referee wasn’t having any of it – a microcosm for his night, clever but not quite clever enough.
28th min: A beautiful team goal from back to front with the transition picking up pace after a lovely flick from Dybala in midfield before Alves’ delightful backheel finds Higuain on the edge of the area to coolly slot home.
59th min: The Alves-Dybala combination pays dividends again as the pair work to dispossess Tiemoue Bakayoko in midfield. The Argentine springs clear on the right-wing, feeds Alves who pings a perfect cross to the back post for Higuain to easily stab past Danijel Subasic.
64th min: He can really do it all. On his left foot, he works a yard of space inside his own half on the left-wing and sprays a stunning cross-field pass right into the path of Alves but the full-back loses his footing and couldn’t find the cross for what would have been a third.
Plenty of promise from the 18-year-old and more than justifying his hype with this performance.
A little more conviction would have seen this be his night but Buffon and the Juve defence are a colossal force to contend with.
It looks like he won’t be a Champions League winner but continue his progression at this rate and it won’t be long before he is.
He’s a kid himself and it’s difficult to comprehend that when he’s five years older than Mbappe.
Make no mistake, though, Dybala is a special talent and he put in a complete performance tonight.
There’s a reason he is the jewel of the Old Lady’s attack and proved so in a classy display.
All statistics are compiled using whoscored.com