The Champions League is one of the most anticipated tournaments in the football calendar. Alongside the United States Super Bowl, the UEFA Champions League Final is one of the most watched games in worldwide sport.

 

The 2014 league final in Lisbon, Portugal, between Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid was watched by an estimated 380 million viewers worldwide. The league attracts more spectators each season and with the group stage increasing from 32 teams to 36 in 2024, we can expect this trend to continue. 

 

Many fans of the game enjoy placing wagers on the team they expect to win, there is now a huge amount of options for champions league betting online. Betting adds a certain level of excitement and anticipation to the match like other sports such as golf

 

Throughout the history of the league, there have been a few finals that have stood out as being the most memorable. Here are the top five Champions League final of all time:

 

Real Madrid 4-1 Atletico Madrid (2014)

 

The Real and Atletico Madrid derby match is still remembered and spoken about eight years later. Just days before this final in Lisbon, Atletico won the league title at Camp Nou. 

 

Atletico took the lead at the beginning but at half time things began to take a dramatic turn. 

 

Diego Godin first scored when he took advantage of an error made by Real’s goalkeeper keeper Iker Casillas. They held onto this lead until Sergio Ramos headed the ball into Luka Modric’s corner.

 

Goals from Marcelo and Cristiano Ronaldo changed the direction of the game. With 11 minute left to go, Welsh player Gareth Bale headed the ball in and it became clear that Real had effectively won the game and the title. 

 

In the 93rd minute of the match Sergio Ramos forced the game to continue into extra time with a dramatic header. This left Real to be crowned league champions and they became the very first club in the league to claim the trophy 10 times, this is an achievement that is known as “La Decima” by fans.

 

Chelsea 1-1 (4-3P) Bayern Munich (2012)

 

In 2012, English club Chelsea surprised German side Bayern Munich with a dramatic win via penalty shootout at the Allianz Arena. This was the first time that Chelsea had won the champions league title.

 

Thomas Mueller’s header put Bayern Munich on the path to victory at first, but Didier Drogba levelled things off later in the game, taking the match on to penalties. 

 

The penalties in this match were a reminder for Chelsea of four years earlier, when they lost out on the title to Manchester United in Moscow in a shootout. In the 2012 final, Juan Mata missed the team’s first penalty but was saved by David Luiz, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole, who each scored.

For Munich, the goalkeeper denied Ivica Olic his and player Bastian Schweinsteiger went on to hit the post. Drogba then scored and sealed the deal for Chelsea.

 

Manchester United 1-1 (6-5P) Chelsea (2008)

 

The 2008 Champions League final took place at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, with British teams Manchester United and Chelsea going head to head. This was the first all British final in the history of the competition. 

 

Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo was first to score in the 26th minute but before the first half whistle, Frank Lampard managed to equalise. Things got particularly tense just before the end of normal time when Chelsea player Didier Drogba was sent off the pitch for slapping Nemanja Vidić.

 

The penalty shootout was just as tense with both sides missing shots, however Edwin van der Sar’s save meant that Manchester were able to secure their third European Cup title.

 

Milan 4-0 Barcelona (1994)

 

Despite missing a number of their key players, Milan beat the Spaniards 4-0 in a game that is said to have defined modern football. Barcelona had won the league just two years earlier and were three time La Liga winners, meaning that they were the favourites to take home the trophy.

 

Milan’s Daniele Massaro was the first to score, then twenty minutes later he scored again, slamming the ball into the far corner. Following a defensive mistake from Barcelona, Savicevic was able to score in the second half before Desailly capped it off with a final goal in the 59th minute.

 

Milan 3-3 (2-3P) Liverpool (2005)

 

The most memorable game out of any league final has to be the Milan – Liverpool match in 2005. Milan got off to the best possible start with Paolo Maldini’s first-minute goal followed by goals from Hernan Crespo, before Steven Gerrard retaliated.

 

Liverpool’s comeback was incredible to watch with further goals scored by Vladimir Smicer and Xabi Alonso. The game then reached penalties and Liverpool took home their fifth European title.