• Matt Daley

TREAT: TOP 5 SURPRISING GAMES EVER


Germany 7-1 Brazil 2014 World Cup Semi-Final

Without a doubt the most eye-opening, jaw-dropping and quite simply the most unbelievable result in football history. I’m struggling to think of the words now, six years on from that absolute mauling, it was that shocking.

Favorites to win their sixth world title, Brazil, unsurprisingly laid out their samba-style free-flowing skillful to their own party in 2014.

Many people thought little about any name besides Brazil on the trophy, as the Neymar led side continued the host nation trend in World Cups reaching the Semi-Finals.

Germany- who struggled to beat Algeria and France in the earlier knockout rounds- stood in the way of the South Americans and another final.

Brazil however learnt that a false sense of entitlement and security, joined with the embarrassing mourning of the injured Neymar as well as missing captain Thiago Silva, concluded in a mauling that will live long in the memory of football fans.

The self-entitled side found themselves 5-0 down before the 30-minute mark, defending both their goal and national pride cataclysmically.

Lessons have been learned since that night in Belo Horizonte, but the wounds of the mauling still remain.

AC Milan 3-3 Liverpool

2005 Champions League

This is the greatest Champions League final in the history of the tournament; no matter what context you want to put on it.

I don't even want to hear Manchester United fans attempt to debate this fact with their win in 1999.

Even for a final, expectations for Liverpool coming into the final were low, and how can you blame anyone for that?

The Milan side was a ‘who’s who’ of the greatest players from that generation. Maldini, Nesta, Cafu, Pirlo, Gattuso, I could go on, so I will, Jaap Stam, Kaka, Shevchenko, Crespo, Rui Costa Dida all in the same side - an invincible team to many.

The game was going as everyone thought and by half time the Italians were 3-0 up, with the Liverpool side hosting the sames of Djimi Traore, Milan Baros and Jerzy Dudek dead and buried.

The second-half comeback has been told thousands of times, in thousand different ways, but the scenes of Steven Gerrard celebrating his ‘consolation goal’ like he scored a winner followed by the famous commentary line from Clive Tyldsley “Hello hello, here we go”, was a precursor to something only out of fairytales.

Vladimir Smicer and Xabi Alonso pulled the game level, Traore, cleared a certain goal off the line, and Jerzy Dudek first saving from Shevchenko in extra time and then twice in the shootout, pulled the reds from the dead to win their fifth European Cup.

Milan did have their revenge two years later in Athens however, but the story of Istanbul will be told for generations to come.

Bayern Munich 8-2 Barcelona

2020 Champions League Quarter Final

In a year that saw football put on pause for months, Liverpool won their first league title in 30 years and both the European Championships and the Olympics postponed until next year, it's no surprise something out of the ordinary would have happened when the sport returned.

In a revised set up for both European competitions with one-legged knockouts, hosted in one country, Barcelona suffered what is seen to be their most embarrassing defeat in their history.

It is far from a steady boat at the moment with the Catalan side. There is so much pressure from fans and media to perform to the high standards they are used to, and it seems the pressure is making them crumble.

The President's job is a poison chalice, Eric Abidal was sacked as Chief Executive, La Masia academy is not producing players like it used to and Lionel Messi wants to leave. What could be worse?

How about losing 8-2 in a Champions League Quarter-final where your own player scores twice against you. That would be worse.

It was almost a sad end to some of the Barca players who have been stalwarts in football’s best side for more than a decade. Gerard Pique and Sergio Busquests looked way off pace, Arturo Vidal looked a shadow of what he once was and sadly Lionel Messi did not even look bothered to try.

With Quique Setien only making two out of five available substitutions, this game and its aftermath was a clear viewing to how the great Barcelona are falling.

Denmark 2-0 Germany

1992 European Championships

Considering Denmark did not even qualify for the 1992 European Championships, nobody thought that the Scandinavian nation would be contesting in the final that year.

Only making it into the competition as Yugoslavia were forced to pull out due to the start of the Bulkan Wars.

The Danes, who were missing starman Micheal Laudrup from their side, were seen by many as just making up the numbers in Sweden.

After qualifying from the group stage, knocking out France and England at the first stage, Denmark knocked out The Netherlands- who boasted Ruud Gullit, Marco Van Basten and Ronald Koeman- with a win on penalties to advance to the final.

After playing a traditional 4-4-2 in the tournament, Dane Manager Richard Moller Nielsen changed the side to a 5 at the back system to match the German side they faced.

After taking the lead through John Jensen after 20 minutes, the Danes were steadfast at the back, with Peter Schmeichel keeping his third clean sheet in the five matches.

Kim Vilfort scored the second goal with just over 10 minutes left of the game to give Denmark their first and to date only international trophy.

Manchester City 1-3 Leicester City

2016 Premier League

In the most spectacular Premier League season there has ever been, not even the most optimistic Foxes fan would have thought their trip away to the Etihad Stadium would have been a watch between first and second.

It was impossible to say what the match of the season was, as the home side, battling to regain the title from Chelsea, barely even showed up.

In a fairytale season for the Foxes, that saw them win the league and forward Jamie Vardy score in 11 consecutive games, it would be a player who helped them stay up the season before - in almost spectacular fashion.

German centre-back Robert Huth opened the scoring after three minutes, which was followed by a constant surge on Joe Hart's goal.

Player of the season Riyad Mahrez made the City defence look stupid with the second goal, before Huth added his second and Leicester’s third on the hour, finding the top corner from another free header.

This result only extended the Foxes lead at the top of the table to five points, and well, we all know the rest.

From 5000/1 to win the title, Claudio Ranieri and his side won the most surprising title Europe has seen in generations.