History Heaven: European Champions 1980-81

Posted by
Champions of Europe

I’m going to write some feel good stories about the past of the football club for the next few weeks as I think it will remind the older fans and to also teach some younger fans some history about the club, so I’m starting with Liverpool’s European Cup win in the 1980-81 season.

Firstly lets discuss the squad of the 1980-81 season, This was a top quality team with the likes of Bruce Grobbelaar , Kenny Daglish, Ian Rush, Ray Clemence and many more legends, with these type of players you were always in contention to win cups and we did just that. We kicked off the winning season on the 17th September 1980 when we played the first round and first leg against Oulu Palloseura, McDermott struck on the 15th minute to gives us the away goal we needed after drawing 1-1 at full time. We then had the return leg in which we sore two hat-tricks, Souness and McDermott would score them hat-tricks in a 10-1 victory for the Reds, also Lee, Kennedy and Fairclough all got on the score sheet, this game will always be remembered due to the quality and ofcourse one of the biggest victories for the club in Europe.

There wasn’t any group stages back in 1980-81, this is when it was proper European football, you lose your out and you win your through, so as you can imagine there was much more pressure to win back then. On the 22nd October 1980 we welcomed 2 legs against a tough side in Aberdeen, McDermott scored the only goal in the game as the Reds won the first leg 1-0, and this was also McDermott’s third goal in three European games; showing just how prolific he could be. 5th November 1980 It was time to play the 2nd leg against Aberdeen and didn’t we play well winning 4-0 in the process, Getting on the scoresheet where Miller (og 37), Neal (43), Dalglish (58), Hansen (71), Daglish finally scored in this seasons competition. We then had a big wait to play in the 3rd round known as the quarter finals these days, we were drawn to play CSKA Sofia who on our day we should beat. 4th March 1981 Souness scored his second hat-trick in this year’s competition in the first leg in which Liverpool won comfortably at Anfield by 5-1, Lee and McDermott where the nights other scorers. Liverpool then had the return leg at Vassil Levski, Sofia with a huge crowd of 60,000 to contend with, so this game was always going to be tough but the Reds had the perfect start when Johnson struck after 10 minutes to make in 6-1 on aggregate, the Reds went on to win 1-0 during that game.

The semi-finals were always going to be tough, we already knew we’d face Real Madrid, Bayern Munich or Inter Milan so we knew it would be difficult. The draw for the semi-finals where made and we were handed and huge tie against Bayern Munich with the first leg at Anfield being the only advantage. The first leg was a hit or miss type of game with both teams failing to score, the second leg looked to be going the same way as the first but then Kennedy bagged a goal for the Reds with just 7 minutes remaining, Liverpool fans urging that final whistle but Rummenigge scored with just 2 minutes to keep the Reds nervy in the final few minutes, the full time whistle blown and Liverpool fans everywhere went crazy as Liverpool advanced to the European Cup Final where they would play Real Madrid. The question now was could Bob Paisley take the European cup home and back to Anfield. The Reds dominated the first few minutes with the first real chance coming after 11 minutes when Kennedy’s 30 yard hit was saved.  McDermott and Daglish then had chances but were unable to take them, Real Madrid then started to influence the game with many chances and at Half Time is was 0-0. Kennedy was able to dribble into Real Madrid’s box and slot home after 82 minutes of a tactical battle, The match stayed at 1–0 and Liverpool won their third European Cup, the first British club to do this.Liverpool’s victory meant that Bob Paisley became the first manager to win the European Cup three times, a record which still stands today.


Written by Alex Sales  @MegaGamingElite

YouTube: MegaGamingElite