The UEFA Champion League (UCL) games will get heated up after the group stages. This is when the knockout stages will start, and the team will need to play home and away to determine which team will proceed to the next round. These knockout stages also will be the time when the away goal rule will come in the picture to determine the winner of the tie when the aggregate is tied. Since 2004, the knockout stages will start in the second round where before it, the knockout stages will start in the quarter-final stages. In the UCL knockout stages, the unexpected results can happen to any team and most of the time the unexpected results happen in the second leg of the tie whether in the home or away and below is some of the game where the result is quite unexpected.

Barcelona vs PSG 6-0 2017 Second Round Knockout Stages.

The all important 6th goal scored by Sergio Roberto

When PSG had won the first leg 4-0 against the might Barcelona which also the defending champion, they had been glorified by the media and Luis Enrique Barcelona manager during this time had told that this season will be the final season for him and to add more insult to injury the media had touted as the end of an era for Barcelona. To make a comeback after 4-0 is a mammoth task as they need to score 4 or more goals and at some time must stop PSG from scoring the crucial away goals. The miracle comeback looks like will happen when Barcelona had taken a 3-0 lead and they need 1 more goals to levelled the tie but Edinson Cavani had scored the crucial away goals to silenced the Nou Camp and dented Barcelona hope but in the final minutes of the second half and with Neymar inspired Barcelona had scored 3 goals including the crucial 6th goals in the final minutes and completed the miracle comeback. PSG had been given the heaviest defeat by Barcelona in UCL and become the first team to be knocked out after taking a 4-0 first-leg lead and Barcelona becomes the first team to overcome this scoreline.


AS Roma vs Barcelona 3-0 2018 Quarter Final Second Leg

AS Roma celebrating and Barcelona in utter disbelief. I

Barcelona is flying high in the La Liga and for now, they are still undefeated in the league. When they had been drawn together, it was taught as one of the easier draws for Barcelona as they had avoided Real Madrid, Liverpool, Manchester City, Bayern Munich, and Juventus. The first leg results in Nou Camp had Barcelona taking a comfortable 4-1 lead to Rome but in Rome Barcelona in for a shock. AS Roma had played a high pressing and long ball game to put Barcelona in the back foot and an early goals by Edlin Dzeko and a penalty converted by Daniele De Rossi in the second half had earned a 2-0 lead and they just need one more goal to progress to the semi-final and in the 86th minute a perfectly placed header by Kostas Manolas had given them a 3-0 lead and with their perfect tactical game in the second leg they had stopped Messi and co from scoring an away goal and in the end the favourites Barcelona had been knocked out in the quarter final stages.


Manchester United vs Sevilla 1-2 2018 Second Round Knockout Stages

United player Marcus Rashford unable to hide his disappointment  of bening knocked out in the second round

United had been in knockout stages of the UCL for the first time since Sir Alex Ferguson had retired in 2013. In the first leg, United had played defensively and if not for the brilliance of  David De Gea, United may have lost the first leg and in the end both team unable to score a goal and it had been 0-0 scoreline. United is still expected to win the second leg and progressed to the quarter-final but again United played too defensively and when Sevilla Wissam Ben Yoder had scored 2 goals in just 4 minutes late in the second half, United need to score 3 goals to progress to the quarter-final and they only managed to score 1 goals through Romelo Lukaku and they had been knocked out by Sevilla. Jose Mourinho had been vilified by the media, football pundit and ex-players due to his tactical choice in this game.


Liverpool vs Benfica 2006 Second Round Knockout Stages.

A great bicycle kick by Micolli handing Liverpool a 2-0 defeat in Anfield. Image credit Getty Image

Liverpool the defending champion is facing Benfica in the second-round knockout stages. Even though they had lost the first leg 1-0 in Portugal but Liverpool is expected to beat them in the return leg and progressing to the quarter-final but goals from Simao in the first half and Miceli in the late second half had condemned Liverpool to 2-0 defeat in Anfield and the defending champion had been knocked out in the second round.


Deportivo La Coruna vs AC Milan 4-0 2004 Quarter Final Stages.

Deportivo had made the most memorable comeback in UCL history

After successfully capturing their 6th European title in 2003 by beating Juventus via penalty shootout, AC Milan had been favourites to defend European title emulating Arrigo Sacchi AC Milan the last team whom had successfully defended the trophy in the following season  and they had proved it by putting a scintillating display in Italy against Deportivo La Coruna by beating them 4-1 and the second leg in Riazor it is expected to be just a formality but Deportivo does not give up and quite determined to be the first team to overcome a 4-1 defeat in the first leg. in the first half Milan had no answer for Deportivo fast pace and ferocious pressing game and stormed to 3-0 lead and added another 1 in the second half to humble the defending champion in a 4-0 win which knocked them out and Deportivo La Coruna had made history by becoming the first team to overcome a 4-1 first leg defeat.


AS Monaco vs Real Madrid 3-1 2004 Quarter Final Stages.

Morientes euphoric as he had knocked his former club Real Madrid from the competition

Real Madrid with their galacticos policies with had Luis Figo, Ronaldo, Raul, Zidane, Roberto Carlos, Iker Casillas and the new addition David Beckham. They had comprehensively beat AS Monaca 4-2 in the first leg in the Bernabeu and when they had taken the early lead via Raul, the game looked dead and buried and even when Ludovic Guily had scored a goal in the first half injury time, Real Madrid had been comfortable. Either Real  Madrid had been in an overconfident mood, take the foot off the pedal, or have a weak defense, in the second half AS Monaco had scored 2 more goals to give a 3-1 scoreline that will make them progressing to the semi-final via the away goal rule. Form looking comfortable to been knocked out, Real Madrid luck had just turned around by AS Monaco in just 45 minutes.


Bayern Munich vs Real Madrid 0-4 2014 Semi-Final Stages.

Sergio Ramos socred the opening goal via a header from set pieces

Bayern Munich had become the first German team to complete the treble and with Guardiola had been appointed as their new manager, they are favorites to become the first team to defend the title in the UCL era. They had been a runaway leader in Bundesliga and had wrapped up the title early in March and now fully concentrating on the UCL. Real Madrid had won the first leg 1-0 and the second leg is expected to be a tighter game, but Real Madrid with Carlo Ancelotti had played a brilliant set piece and counter-attack game to beat Bayern Munich 4-0 in Allianz Arena, the heaviest defeat for them in Allianz Arena and for Guardiola too. With this win, Real Madrid had progressed to the final and won the UCL for the 10th time but their display in the semi-final stages is one of the best game for Madrid in this season.

The unexpected results are what that added to thrill and beauty of the European premier club competition where most of best players in the world is playing in this competition.The stunning comeback, away goals rule, unexpected heavy defeat in the home or away, managerial tactical mistakes and some bad luck or bad referee is part of this competition especially in the knockout stages where even slight mistakes can knock a team out form the competition.


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: