This week, Barcelona came up with what some have argued to be the greatest comeback ever to knockout Paris Saint-Germain.
The Catalan club hammered the Parisians 6-1 at Nou Camp to overturn a first leg 4-0 deficit to move on to the quarter-finals of Europe’s elite club tournament.
With the excitement having simmered down a bit and everybody regaining their breath from the thrilling football match, the question to be answered now would be, is the Barcelona – Paris Saint-Germain game the greatest comeback ever in football history?
Greatest Comeback Ever
The old football adage which says players should keep going until the final whistle makes sense in theory but is hard to act out especially when the lead looks insurmountable and the opposition is very strong.
One adage that, however, helps the cause of the players fighting for a comeback is the one that says it only takes a second to score a goal.
We at BuzzKenya have picked out 6 of the greatest ever comebacks in football history.
6. Newcastle vs Arsenal (2011)
This Premier League fixture saw Newcastle produce a stunning comeback from 4-0 down to level matters against title hopefuls Arsenal.
Arsene Wenger’s side looked to have taken all three points from the game before they lost Abou Diaby to a red card for reacting angrily to a poor tackle by Joey Barton.
The Magpies came storming back with two Barton penalties on either side of a Leon Best strike before Cheick Tiote capped off an outstanding and surely the greatest ever comeback in Newcastle history with a 25-yard volley that went straight into the back of the net.
5. Reading vs Arsenal (2012)
Arsenal makes another appearance on the list but this time, they were the ones who fought back when they looked down and out. The Gunners came back from 4-0 down after 37 minutes to beat Reading 7-5 in extra-time to advance to the quarter-finals of the Capital One Cup.
A Jason Roberts volley, Laurent Koscielny own goal, Mikele Leigertwood strike and a Noel Hunt header looked to have condemned Arsenal at the Madejski Stadium until goals from Theo Walcott including a final second strike in injury time, Olivier Giroud and Koscielny took the game to extra time.
Marouane Chamakh and Pavel Pogrebnyak swapped goals in extra-time as penalties looked certain until Walcott completed his hattrick in the 120th minute before Chamakh cemented the job with a cute lob in injury-time of extra-time.
This captivating game was the Capital One Cup’s greatest ever comeback.
4. Man United vs Bayern Munich (1999)
”This is the greatest moment of my life,” said Sir Alex Ferguson as his side beat Bayern with two injury-time goals from Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjær to complete this famous comeback in the Champions League final.
Man United fell behind after six minutes into the match from a Mario Basler free kick. Both teams went on to trade punches although Bayern players were superior and unlucky to not have increased their advantage.
Ferguson went on to introduce the two goalscorers as the Red Devils pushed to get back into the game. The ”it only takes a second to score a goal” saying was given life in this game as United scored from a corner and looked to have forced extra time.
Less than 30 seconds after the subsequent kick-off, United forced another corner and scored from it sending the Bayern Munich players to the ground.
Rumour has it that Bayern Munich ribbons were already placed on the trophy as it seemed the German side would have won the game three minutes earlier.
3. Deportivo La Coruna vs AC Milan (2004)
Deportivo La Coruna performed what seemed at the time to be the greatest ever comeback in football and Champions League history by demolishing Milan, the then defending champions and favourites, 4-0 after trailing 4-1 from the first leg of their quarter-finals match.
A smart shot from Walter Pandiani, a Juan Carlos Valeron header and a fierce shot from Albert Luque put Deportivo ahead on away goals by half-time.
Club captain Fran Gonzalez, who played for the team in the second division in the late 80s and is till-date, their record appearance holder, scored the fourth to make sure of their passage to the semis.
2. Barcelona vs PSG (2017)
Coming in as the second greatest comeback ever in football is Barcelona.
No side had ever overturned a four-goal first-leg deficit before and with two minutes of normal time remaining and three goals needed, Barcelona surely produced something we might not get to witness again.
Two quickfire Neymar goals levelled the aggregate scoreline at 5-5 although the Parisians were going to advance on away goals rule until the fifth minute of stoppage time when Sergi Roberto beat the offside trap to create a piece of history.
1. Liverpool vs AC Milan (2005)
Dubbed the miracle of Istanbul and arguably the greatest comeback ever, Liverpool fought back from the graves of defeat in the second half to force extra time before beating AC Milan on penalties in the 2005 Champions League final.
Paolo Maldini and a Hernan Crespo brace gave the Serie A side 3-0 advantage by halftime only for Liverpool to level matters with goals from Steven Gerrard, Vladimir Smicer and Xabi Alonso.
The game dragged on into extra time and then penalties with Liverpool holding their nerves as Jerzy Dudek saved both Andrea Pirlo and Andriy Shevchenko’s spot-kicks after Serginho blazed the first kick over the bar to lift their fifth European title.