The Week of Champions League Comebacks

This week saw the conclusion of the Uefa Champions League Semi Finals, which now means we know who will be facing off in the Final on June 1.

Before we get to that part lets remember where each team was at heading into the second leg of their showdowns:

➜ Barcelona, who travel to Liverpool, lead the Reds 3-0 thanks to a Lionel Messi double and one by former Red Luis Suarez.

➜ Ajax, who host Tottenham, lead 1-0 after a Donny van de Beek goal in North London last week

 

On to this week’s games.

 

Tuesday

Screen Shot 2019-05-07 at 10.38.16.png

Liverpool v Barcelona

4-0 (4-3 agg)

Liverpool are through to their second consecutive Champions league final after stunning Barcelona on an epic night at Anfield.

Cheered on relentlessly by their supporters, the Reds produced an impeccable all-action display to ultimately overturn their 3-0 first leg deficit with an unanswered four-goal slaughtering of the La Liga giants.

It’s the first time since 1986 – when Barca knocked out Gothenburg in the old European Cup – that a team has recovered from a three-goal first leg deficit to win a semi-final in the competition.

Divock Origi and Georginio Wijnaldum both scored twice, the first tapping home from close range after seven minutes and then again in the 79th, the latter scored his within the space of 122 seconds after the break, truly swinging the affair in Liverpool’s favor.

Barcelona looked rattled and even Lionel Messi was unable to steady the ship before Origi‘s second, which was set up nicely by Trent Alexander-Arnold, who caught the visiting defense sleeping.

Anfield was rocking and the home fans stayed on their feet to cheer their side to victory in the closing minutes, with a shell-shocked Barca unable to fashion any serious response. Had the Spanish giants scored one goal they would have gone through on the away goal rule, but it just wasn’t their night.

The final whistle drew delirious celebrations on the pitch and in the stands, where the Reds faithful had played their part in an unforgettable night on Merseyside.

The only night that comes close to this one in the minds of Liverpool fans is that night in Istanbul in 2005, when they fought back to win their fifth European trophy.

They will go for a sixth in Madrid on June 1, where they’ll meet **** in the final.

 

Up Next:

Champions League

Liverpool – Face Spurs in Final – Saturday June, 1(3pm)

Barca – Eliminated

Premier League

Liverpool v Wolves – Sunday, May 12 (10am)

La Liga

Barca v Getafe – Sunday, May 12 (12:30pm)

 

Wednesday

Screen Shot 2019-05-07 at 10.37.56

Ajax v Tottenham Hotspur

2-3 (3-3 aggregate – Spurs advance on away goal rule)

Lucas Moura scored a dramatic 96th-minute winner to cap an astonishing Spurs comeback, setting up an all-English Champions League final against Liverpool.

It will be the second all-English Champions League final; Manchester United beat Chelsea on penalties in Moscow in 2008.

Tottenham, who trailed 1-0 from the first leg, had the worst possible start in Amsterdam when a towering fifth-minute header by Ajax’s 19-year-old captain Matthijs de Ligt doubled the Eredivisie side’s lead.

The visitors hit the post through Son Heung-min before Hakim Ziyech doubled Ajax’s lead on the night with a sweeping finish after an assist from former Southampton winger Dusan Tadic.

The goal left Spurs chasing a 3-0 aggregate deficit, but, in another pulsating semi-final, Mauricio Pochettino‘s side scored twice within five second half minutes to bring the deficit to one goal.

Moura started the infamous comeback with a composed finish before the Brazilian’s shot on the turn, after keeper Andre Onana had denied substitute Fernando Llorente, leveled the score on the night, leaving Spurs requiring one goal to reach the final.

In a frantic finish, Jan Vertonghen headed against the bar from close range, before Moura completed his hat trick with a left-footed shot from 16 yards deep into stoppage time on a night that’ll go down in Tottenham Hotspur history.

The Premier League side’s advancement sees them reach their first ever Champions League final. They did reach and win the final of the old Uefa Cup, now known as the Europa League, in 1984.

 

Up Next:

Champions League

Ajax – Eliminated

Spurs – Face Liverpool in Final – Saturday, June 1 (3pm)

Eredivisie

Ajax v FC Utrecht – Sunday, May 12 (8:30am)

Premier League

Spurs v Everton – Sunday, May 12 (10am)

 

That means your finalists are Liverpool and Tottenham. The Final will take place on June 1 at 3pm ET.

 

ALL TIMES U.S. EASTERN

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