Win or lose against Liverpool in the final in Paris on Saturday, May 28, Real Madrid have already written one of the most beautiful pages in the history of the Champions League, a fascinating competition that maintains a special connection with Los Blancos, which is as difficult to explain as it is easy to perceive.
Win or lose against Liverpool, this will be remembered as the Champions League of incredible comebacks at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, a huge cauldron where three of the most powerful teams in European football succumbed before the delirium of an ecstatic crowd.
Anything that can be written to describe what happened on Wednesday night at the Bernabeu is condemned to fall short, because there are things that must be seen to be believed.
But above all, it is necessary to experience them. And this Real Madrid side in Europe are proof of that.
In the 89th minute they were on the verge of being eliminated, because they were 1-0 down and needed two goals to level the semi-final tie.
When Rodrygo Goes equalised from Karim Benzema’s pass, the scoreboard said they were still about to get eliminated, but that was a lie. Everyone knew Manchester City were not going to get out of there alive, even if they still had to score two goals.
They say that faith moves mountains – it also moves scores. It doesn’t matter that Toni Kroos, Casemiro and Luka Modric were not on the pitch. It doesn’t matter that Karim Benzema was also watching on from the sidelines after an underwhelming display. It doesn’t matter if Thibaut Courtois, Dani Carvajal, Nacho Fernandez, Jesus Vallejo, Ferland Mendy, Fede Valverde, Eduardo Camavinga, Dani Ceballos, Lucas Vazquez, Rodrygo and Marco Asensio were on the pitch. They wear white shirts and have a mission to accomplish.
Real Madrid have reached the final having led for only 113 of the 600 minutes in the three knockout rounds: 14 minutes in the last 16, 69 minutes in the quarter-finals and 30 minutes in the semi-finals.
Whatever. Nobody wants this Champions League more than they do. And nobody deserves it more than they do. Although it is true when they say that trophies are not deserved, they are earned. Nobody knows that better than Real Madrid.
Despite being down 1-0 against Manchester City and trailing 5-3 on aggregate with one minute to go, Real Madrid managed to complete another historic comeback as they clinched qualification to the Champions League final in Paris.
The win against Paris Saint-Germain and the comeback in the game against Chelsea might be inexplicable, but this one was Real Madrid’s best night of all time at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
Without forgetting the comebacks back in the 1980s or undermining the recent historic matches, the victory against Manchester City can’t be compared with any other.
When Rodrygo Goes equalised in the 89th minute, both the Sky Blues and Los Blancos felt that something was changing in the atmosphere, as the fans were pushing on Carlo Ancelotti’s side from the stands.
Real Madrid managed to make it to the Champions League final for the first time since 2018 and the fifth time in the last eight years.
Meanwhile, Fede Valverde was named in the starting line-up and featured for 123 minutes, while Jesus Vallejo had to come on in the second half of extra time to replace Eder Militao, who was dealing with some muscular issues.
All of this wouldn’t have been possible, however, without the help of the fans at the Bernabeu, which was buzzing on yet another Champions League night, as the home crowd believed in the comeback and helped the team exceed their limits.