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Remembering The Chaotic Real Madrid-Bayern Munich Penalty Shootout Of 2012

Remembering The Chaotic Real Madrid-Bayern Munich Penalty Shootout Of 2012
By Jonathan Byrne Updated

As the anticipation builds for this week's Champions League semi-finals, we are reminded of an infamous night at the Bernabeu ten years to the day.

Never has a Champions League semi-final been decided on penalties since. Real Madrid and Bayern Munich stood at 3 goals a piece after two legs and extra time.

It came a few years before the Spaniards dominated in the competition between 2013 and 2018, and a season before the Germans won their first title in over a decade.

Up until that point, both teams had enjoyed comfortable routes to the final four of the competition, scoring 24 goals between them in the knockout stages.

Bayern held an advantage with a 2-1 win at the Allianz Arena in the first leg. Real turned the tide at home with a 2-1 win, thanks to two goals from Cristiano Ronaldo.

But nothing could separate the sides after 210 minutes of play. It was to be decided by penalties, and two of the best goalkeepers in the world at the time had their say.

The Background

Manuel Neuer had just made the move to Bayern from Schalke that season and broke a club record for the most clean sheets in a row, going over 1,000 minutes without conceding.

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Iker Casillas was fresh off winning the IFFHS Best Goalkeeper award for the fourth season running. He was made club captain a year prior.

Both teams sported a who's who of names. Real Madrid were led by the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, Sergio Ramos, and Karim Benzema to name a few.

Jose Mourinho was in his second season in charge at the Bernabeu and had only won a Copa Del Rey up until this point, so he was hungry for European success.

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Bayern were enjoying the prime years of the likes of Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery, Philipp Lahm, Bastian Schweinsteiger, and Mario Gomez.

While their domestic dominance had been well established at that point, they were looking to break a duck of over a decade of a Champions League triumph.

A Crazy Champions League Shootout

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The penalties were set and David Alaba coolly slotted home the first spot-kick of the night. Then Manuel Neuer went on to make two near-identical saves.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka were two of the most expensive players at the time. Neuer palmed penalties from both men to the side as Mario Gomez scored for Bayern.

With a 2-0 advantage after two penalties taken each, Toni Kroos, who'd go on to join Real a few seasons later, had his penalty saved by Iker Casillas.

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Xabi Alonso, who went the opposite direction a few years later, scored Real's first penalty. But Iker Casillas managed to keep Phillip Lahm's effort out.

It stood at 2-1 to Bayern going into the fourth penalty from either team. Jose Mourinho was on his knees at the touchline, looking like he was searching for some sort of interference from god.

His kneeling did no good. Sergio Ramos skyrocketed Real's fourth spot-kick and it left Bastian Schweinsteiger with a chance to put the game to bed.

Schweinsteiger didn't cave under the pressure and converted his penalty to send Bayern through to the finals. It so awful it was one of the first penalties in football history to be memed.

It was the epitome of a chaotic penalty shootout.

Bayern would amazingly go on to lose a penalty shootout in the final to Chelsea. They won their first Champions League trophy under the guidance of Roberto Di Matteo.

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See Also: Liverpool Fans Couldn't Get Enough Of Alisson Taking The Piss Out Of Jordan Pickford

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