Five greatest European Cup/Champions League final goals

24 May 2013 08:53

Players from Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich will hope to etch their names in European football history on Saturday when the two German sides clash in the final of the Champions League at Wembley.

Ahead of the game, AFP Sports looks back at some of the most memorable goals to have graced the 57 previous European Cup and Champions League finals:

Alfredo Di Stefano, for Real Madrid v Eintracht Frankfurt (Glasgow, 1960)

The crowning glory of the great Real Madrid team of the 1950s was their sensational 7-3 demolition of Eintracht Frankfurt in front of 127,000 people at Hampden Park, which secured their fifth consecutive European Cup. Their talisman Di Stefano scored the game's best-remembered goal in the 73rd minute. Frankfurt had just reduced the deficit to 6-2 when Di Stefano received the ball from kick-off, surged forward, and beat goalkeeper Egon Loy with a crisp low strike to complete his hat-trick.

Dejan Savicevic, for AC Milan v Barcelona (Athens, 1994)

Johan Cruyff's Barcelona 'Dream Team' entered the 1994 final in Athens as favourites against a Milan side depleted by injury and suspension, only for Fabio Capello's team to prevail 4-0 in one of the great European final displays. Yugoslav midfielder Savicevic put the Italians 3-0 ahead two minutes into the second half with an outrageous lob from the right-hand apex of the penalty area after charging down defender Miguel Angel Nadal's attempted clearance.

Lars Ricken, for Borussia Dortmund v Juventus (Munich, 1997)

Dortmund's last appearance in the Champions League final, at Munich's Olympiastadion, saw them produce a stunning upset by overcoming Italian giants Juventus 3-1. Ricken, a 20-year-old Dortmund native, scored his side's decisive third goal just seconds after coming on as a second-half substitute, racing on to a through ball and deftly chipping Angelo Peruzzi from 25 yards.

Zinedine Zidane, for Real Madrid v Bayer Leverkusen (Glasgow, 2002)

Perhaps the greatest Champions League final goal sprang from the left foot of French midfield maestro Zidane in his side's 2-1 defeat of Bayer Leverkusen at Hampden Park. With the score 1-1, Roberto Carlos chased a pass from Santiago Solari down the Madrid left and hooked a high ball to the edge of the penalty area. The stadium held its breath as Zidane adjusted himself and then met the ball with a hip-high volley that flew into Hans-Joerg Butt's top-right corner to give Madrid their ninth European crown.

Hernan Crespo, for AC Milan v Liverpool (Istanbul, 2005)

The 2005 final in Istanbul ended in heartbreak for Milan, who let a 3-0 lead slip before losing on penalties to Rafael Benitez's Liverpool, but defeat seemed unthinkable when Argentine striker Crespo put Milan three goals in front on the cusp of half-time. Kaka was the architect, dispatching a sumptuous pass from just inside his own half that arced around the sprawling Jamie Carragher, before Crespo used the outside of his right foot to stab a first-time finish over goalkeeper Jerzy Dudek and into the net.

Source: AFP