Write an Article

Top 5 greatest UEFA Champions League giant-killing runs


Every season’s UEFA Champions League campaign has a overflowing list of star names, as the continent’s biggest sides take on each other to compete for the world’s biggest club competition.

However, over the years we have seen a number of upsets and giant-killing runs, as minnows and lesser names have got the better of their more established counterparts, making a name for themselves on the international scene. Here is a list of the five best runs made by minnows of the competition, who reached the latter stages of the Champions League.

A few noteworthy runs that missed out on the list of final 5 were Villarreal (2005-06), Dynamo Kyiv (1998-99), APOEL (2011-12), Schalke (2010-11).

5. Bayer Leverkusen (2001-02 season)


Bayer Leverkusen were celebrating their entry into the Champions League after beating 5th placed Hertha Berlin by just 1 point in the 2000-01 season. However, after coming 4th, they had to play a qualifying round against Red Star Belgrade, which they won 3-0.

In the first group stage of the main draw, they were pitted against Barcelona, Lyon and Fenerbahce, and were able to come second behind the La Liga giants to enter the second round of group stages.

There, they faced Arsenal, Juventus and Deportivo, and amazingly were able to top the group, in turn setting up a quarterfinal against Liverpool. After losing the first leg 1-0, Leverkusen were up against it, but were able to bounce back with a thrilling 4-2 win in the second leg to make the semis against another English club in Manchester United.

A see-saw 2-2 draw at Old Trafford, followed by a 1-1 draw at the BayArena helped the Germans beat United by the away goals rule, setting up a final with Real Madrid. In the end, Zinedine Zidane’s memorable volley turned out to be the winner for Los Blancos, as they beat Bayer 2-1, but the Bundesliga outfit consisting of the likes of Michael Ballack, Ze Roberto, Lucio and Dimitar Berbatov were the talk of the town for their giant-killing run to the finals.

Page 1 of 5 Next

Live Transfer Blog: EPL, La Liga and Rest of Europe [August 26th 2016] Follow all the transfer news and rumours LIVE!
Top 5 PSG signings of all time PSG have had some incredible players play for them over the years
Manchester City's Joe Hart has sly dig at new manager Pep Guardiola who wants him out Joe Hart is to be replaced by Claudio Bravo at Manchester City.
Can Fabregas be the next Pirlo at Chelsea? Fabregas has the passing and vision to emulate Pirlo's role at Juventus and the Italian national team.
Cristiano Ronaldo subtly hits back at Gerard Pique's "easy" comment Real Madrid star gives the perfect response to Pique's controversial comment.
Denis Suarez - Heir apparent to Andres Iniesta? Having been at Sevilla and Villareal over the last 2 seasons, he is back at the Camp Nou and is making the right moves at the club.
James Rodriguez searching for house in Turin, confirms real estate agent James Rodriguez has found playing time limited and is increasingly frustrated with his situation
Barca-esque jersey leading poll in Adidas' contest for new Real Madrid kit Barcelona fans troll their arch rivals yet again.
Indian U-16 girls land in Wei Fang for AFC U-16 qualifiers The girls are drawing inspiration from the Medal winning performances of Indian women Athletes at the Rio Olympics.
ISL 2016-17: Mumbai Football Arena at Andheri Sports Complex to be home stadium for Mumbai City FC Mumbai have not been able to qualify for the semis of the tournament since its inception.
Marcus Rashford demoted to England U-21 squad because of lack of playing time at Manchester United Sam Allardyce wants Rashford to get some regular playing time
Why have football clubs failed in the stock exchange? At one point in time, making football clubs public was considered to be the next big step in the evolution of the game.
EPL team of the decade - 2010s Who makes the cut in this XI?
UCL 2016-17: Analysing the draw and each group matchup Let's cast our eye over the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League draw.
UEFA announce changes to Champions League from 2018/19
A look back at how Antonio Conte made Juventus great again Antonio Conte turned Juventus around as the manager and led them to three Serie A titles.
Bayern Munich fixture analysis for the 2016-17 season Bayern Munich will be gunning for their 5th consecutive league title this season.
Why Arsenal fans aren't justified in the way they treat the team Arsenal fans should show their displeasure at the board and the manager, not the team.
Arsenal on the verge of signing Deportivo's Lucas Perez and Valencia's Shkodran Mustafi The Gunners are spending upwards of 50 million on the two of them.
Bundesliga Preview 2016/17 Bundesliga is set to start this weekend, with Bayern Munich coming in as the favorites.
Fetching more content...
Related articles