Liverpool is an interesting case.
Still the most successful English side in European football historically, and dominators of top flight English football in the 70s and 80s, they are now seen as bit of an underdog domestically.
While playing underdog typically means you are winning less hardware, having the odds against you sets the stage for unforgettable upsets and comebacks that few can predict. This is similar as to how in sports betting nailing a surprise underdog pick can be much more memorable and exciting than betting on a favorite that leads the entire match, win or not. Sports betting can be quite risky if you don’t know what you’re doing – this sports betting guide will give you all the tips you need before placing a bet.
Over the past several decades, Liverpool has had many of these dramatic comeback instances. Below are five of our favorites.
April 3, 1996: Liverpool 4, Newcastle 3 (English Premier League)
The high hopes Kop supporters had for the 95-96 Premier League season weren’t seen through to fruition in the form of a Premier League title. However, the season instead gave us one of the most memorable comebacks in the club’s history, and what the Premier League officially named as the Match of the Decade,
Robbie Fowler would get on the scoreboard early for the Reds, but in the next 12 minutes Liverpool would surrender two goals, and then trade goals with Newcastle in the second half to put the score at 3-2 Magpies in the 57th. In the 65th, the score was leveled once more and then in extra time, a series of give and gos opened up a clear shot just outside the 6-yard box for Stan Collymore, who rocketed it past the keeper to take the lead, the match, and keep the Reds in the title race.
May 12, 2001: Liverpool 2, Arsenal 1 (FA Cup Final)
AKA the Michael Owen Final. Arsenal dictated the flow and rhythm of much of the match, but were denied on several chances until Freddie Ljungberg scored for the Gunners on a perfectly-timed throughball in the 72nd.
After surviving several more Arsenal attacks, Liverpool countered and equalized in the 83rd when Michael Owen tucked home a volley 6 yards out. Just five minutes later, the hero again would be Owen. Receiving a long clearance pass on the run from Patrick Berger, Owen chase down the ball, outpace two Gunner defenders, and use his left foot to slot the ball past David Seaman to complete the comeback. The Cup was Liverpool’s sixth all-time and also part of a unique treble for the club, as they also lifted the Football League Cup and the UEFA Cup that same season.
May 13, 2006: Liverpool 3, West Ham 3 (FA Cup Final)
Winning a second FA Cup in six years appeared to be a lost cause for Liverpool in the 2006 Final against West Ham. The first half hour of the match started out about as poor as possible with the Reds surrendering two goals in eight minutes to the Hammers. But hope sprung the match alive just a few minutes later when a long, floating pass from captain Gerrard into the middle of the box connected beautifully with the right foot of a sliding Djibril Cissé, making the match 2-1. All would then be even again midway through the second half when Stevie G would score on a rocket of his own in the 54th, but a fluke Paul Konchesky goal 10 minutes later would the Hammers up once more, 3-2.
The Reds’ title hopes looked grim again as the Hammer defence held strong, but just as the PA announcer was announcing four minutes of extra time, Captain Fantastic would unleash a 35-yard volley that instantly became one of the greatest goals ever scored in the prestigious tournament’s championship match. After scoreless extra time, three Pepe Reina saves during penalties would see Liverpool win their seventh FA Cup.
December 8, 2004: Liverpool 3, Olympiacos 1 (UEFA Champions League Group Stage)
It’s easy to remember only one particular match from Liverpool’s 2004-05 Champions League campaign, but it’s important to remember that the legendary final game (that we’ll get to in a bit) wouldn’t have been possible without several other amazing matches, including an improbable comeback against Olympiacos in Athens.
Needing a win by two goals in order to advance to the knockout stages, a 27th minute free kick goal from Rivaldo made that task even more difficult for the Reds. They would get one back shortly after play resumed in the second half, but remained in need of two more goals for most of the remaining time. But then, a knockout round berth still looked to be possible when sub Neil Mellor would score on a goal box scramble in the 80th. And then, as Liverpool supporters were so accustomed to seeing over the course of his career, it was yet again Stevie G on a 30-yard half volley that would allow Liverpool to live and see another Champion’s League day, and eventually one of the greatest football matches ever played.
May 25, 2005 Liverpool 3, AC Milan 3 (UEFA Champions League Final)
A match that undoubtedly needs no introduction to Liverpool supporters, and probably not even the most casual of footy fans. It took fifty seconds for things to go pear-shaped for Liverpool in their first CL final appearance in twenty years thanks to a free kick goal from Milan captain Paolo Maldini. Things went from bad to full on catastrophic during the rest of the half as two Hernan Crespo goals surely locked up Milan their sixth European championship before the halftime whistle had a chance to blow.
But a seemingly different Liverpool side took the pitch in the second half, and the underdog Reds made it 3-1 thanks to a Gerrard (who else?) header. Match on. Just two minutes later, Vladimir Šmicer would score on a laser-guided blast from outside the box. 3-2. With momentum overwhelmingly in Liverpool’s direction, just minutes later a streaking Gerrard was taken down in the box and awarded a penalty, which Xabi Alonso would capitalize on. Improbably, in a matter of seven minutes, the score was 3-3.
Both sides failed to score for the rest of regulation and also in extra time, meaning the Final was going to penalties in Istanbul. Milan missed their first two attempts while Liverpool made theirs. After two Milan makes and a John Arne Riise miss, Liverpool held a 3-2 advantage as Ukrainian legend Andriy Shevchenko walked to the spot. Trying to sneak one down the middle, the shot was blocked by the outstretched arm of Jerzy Dudek. The Miracle of Istanbul was complete, Liverpool were the Champions of Europe for the fifth time.