Surely everyone can remember football games when you thought it’s all over for one of the teams. There is no way to turn around the result now. And then some kind of miracle happened, and they managed to revive and win the game. We took a look and made a list of the biggest comebacks in football.
In football, generally, the bigger and more famous teams won the games. Even if we check the top European leagues, the Champions League or the international tournaments like the Euros or the World Cup. Very rarely though surprise results can happen when the underdogs manage to defeat their opponents. Or great teams find some extra power to come over big deficits.
Biggest comebacks in football happened in Champions League finals
One of the most memorable comebacks was produced in the 1999 Champions League final in Barcelona. It was a perfect duel between a German and English team, Bayern Munich against Manchester United. Bayern was leading 1-0 until the 90th minute, when the two United substitutes. Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer managed to score in the injury time. Manchester won the game with the final result being 2-1. It was unbelievable, to come back in the game at the very end, especially against a German team. Now Solksjaer is trying to lead United as its manager, with less luck so far. The team is the only 5th in the Premier League, you can make a bet on them once the league continues on Unibet.
Another Champions League had a similarly dramatic end but in different circumstances. In 2005, in Istanbul Liverpool and AC Milan were facing each other. The Italians were dominating the first half and leading 3-0 at half time. Probably even the biggest Liverpool fans thought that the game was over, but not the Reds. The team produced an amazing comeback, scoring 3 goals in 15 minutes. No goal was scored in the extra time, so the teams went to the penalties. And it was won by Liverpool 3-2 at the end. Online sportsbooks in the UK were hoping for another Champions League title this season, but they went out against Atletico Madrid in the last 16, which was a big surprise as well.
A great comeback in the FA Cup
Staying in England, Manchester City showed one of the biggest comebacks in football during an FA Cup game against Tottenham in 2004. The city was down to 3-0 in the first half and to 10 men after Joey Barton received a red card. But City didn’t give up and scored four goals in the second half, winning the game. Unfortunately, they couldn’t produce the same miracle in the next round, where they faced local rival Manchester United and lost against them.
Tottenham has produced great comebacks as well, we just need to go back to last season’s Champions League. The biggest one was their game against Ajax in the semi-final, where they had to overcome a 2-0 deficit in Amsterdam, 3-0 on aggregate. But luckily they had a player like Lucas Moira, who scored a hat-trick in the best time, helping his team to reach the final. The Brazil player can be a great asset for his national team in the next world cup in 2022, odds are already available for the winner.
Ups and downs of Barcelona
FC Barcelona has produced magical comebacks itself, but also suffered from them in some cases. In the UCL quarter-finals in 2000, they suffered a 3-1 defeat against a much weaker Chelsea on the first leg, but at home, they were leading 3-0 when the Blues scored again. It’s very difficult to play against Barca at Camp Nou though, which was true again. They scored two more goals and won the game 5-1, it was 6-4 to Barca on aggregate.
Barcelona managed to do an even bigger comeback against Paris Saint-Germain in 2017. They lost 4-0 at the home of PSG, truly seemed that the duel was over. At home Barca produced a heroic performance, scoring three goals by the 50th minute. But after Cavani scored for the guests, they needed another three goals to go through. And that’s exactly what they did, with Neymar’s free-kick and penalty and Sergio Roberto’s goal in the 95th minute.
Last season though the Catalans had to witness their opponent’s great comeback. After Barca won 3-0 at home against Liverpool in the first leg of the semi-final, the odds were not in the Reds favor even on online gambling sites in the UK. But they didn’t care about their chances and won the game 4-0 at the end. The rest is history as Liverpool defeated Tottenham in the final and became champions. At the moment there is no Champions League, but you can still find some friendly football games to bet on at Unibet.
Biggest comebacks in the World Cup
Unexpected results can happen even in the biggest tournaments, like in the last world cup in Russia. In the knockout phase, Japan was leading 2-0 against Belgium. A two-goal deficit is usually too much to overcome in a World Cup game, but not in this case. The Belgians first managed to equalize and when everyone was preparing for extra time, Nacer Chadli scored the winner in the 94th minute.
A few decades earlier Portugal showed an even bigger comeback in the 1966 World Cup. North Korea was leading against them 3-0 in the quarter-finals, but luckily the Portuguese had a player called Eusebio. The Ballon d’Or winner scored four goals in the game, which the Lusitanians won 5-3 at the end.
One of the most memorable and biggest comebacks in football was produced by West Germany in the 1954 World Cup final in Bern. They played against the Hungarian team which was unbeatable at the time. In the so-called Golden Team, there were players like Puskas, Hidegkuti, Czibor, Kocsis, and Grosics who beat the same West German team 8-3 in the group stage. In the final, Hungary was leading 2-0 after 8 minutes, but the Germans equalized quickly after. And in the 84th minute, Helmut Rahn got the third German goal and decided the game in their favor. It was one of the most unexpected games, which got the name of the Miracle of Bern in football’s history.