As Bayern Munich prepare for the mammoth task of overturning Manchester City’s 3-0 first-leg lead in their Champions League quarter-final clash, we cast our minds back to 2014 when the Rekordmeister produced a stunning second-leg display to peg back Porto and surge into the semi-finals.
When Pep Guardiola and his Bayern Munich side flew to Portugal in April 2015 it was as favourites to progress to the quarter-final stage of the Champions League. The Bavarians had won the competition two years previously in London and had their eyes set on the final to be held in Berlin. They had cruised through their group (only losing to Manchester City in a late 3-2 thriller) and had thrashed Shakhtar Donetsk 7-0 in the round of 16 clash at the Allianz Arena after a goalless draw in Ukraine.
The Estádio do Dragão however was to be a chastening experience as the Portuguese side ran out 3-1 winners in a night to forget for Bayern. A Ricardo Quaresma penalty in the third minute was added to just seven minutes later when the same player fired home. Midfielder Thiago pulled one back on the half-hour mark, but a second half goal from Jackson Martinez capitalising on a Jerome Boateng error put the home side in the driving seat and sent the German champions packing with a lot to think about ahead of the second-leg.
A sold-out Allianz Arena greeted the players as they emerged from the changing rooms to face the famous Champions League anthem and the huge choreo behind the goal said it all: ‘Niemals aufgeben’ (never give up).
There was little chance of that happening and Bayern didn’t just turn the game around and eliminate Porto’s advantage, they smashed the Iberian visitors with a typically masterful display.
Five goals in the opening 40 minutes blew any hope Porto had off the pitch and the second period was a case of damage limitation from Julen Lopetegui’s side. Bayern pressed hard from the start and it was surprising that it took as long as fifteen minutes for the first goal to arrive. Juan Bernat’s left-wing cross was headed home excellently by compatriot Thiago.
The floodgates then opened with Jerome Boateng nodding home a header on 22 minutes to atone for his errors in Portugal. A hattrick of headed goals was completed on 27 minutes when Robert Lewandowski powered home Thomas Müller’s ball. Porto’s first-leg lead had been obliterated in the first half hour, but there was worse to come as Bayern didn’t let up.
Martins Indi deflected a Müller shot to make it 4-0 before Lewandowski added his second on the game drilling home after being given too much room inside the box. Jackson Martinez did pull back a consolation in the 73rd minute but then a red card to defender Marcano ended his torrid night early.
Two minutes from the end Xabi Alonso curled home an exquisite free-kick to make it 6-1 and power Bayern into the semis and taking merciless revenge for Porto’s first-leg win.
Bayern Munich: Neuer, Boateng, Badstuber, Rafinha (Rode 72), Juan Bernat, Xabi Alonso, Thiago (Dante 90), Lahm, Götze (Weiser 86), Müller, Lewandowski
FC Porto: Fabiano Freitas, Reyes (Ricardo Pereira 33), Maicon, Marcano, Martins Indi, Casemiro, Herrera, Oliver, Quaresma (Ruben Neves 46), Brahimi (Evandro 67), Jackson
1-0 Thiago (14)
2-0 Boateng (22)
3-0 Lewandowski (27)
4-0 Müller (36)
5-0 Lewandowski (40)
5-1 Jackson (73)
6-1 Xabi Alonso (88)
A step too far
Sadly for Bayern they were to come up against a rampant Barcelona in the semi-finals and succumbed to a 3-0 defeat at the Camp Nou in the first leg, while a 3-2 home win in the reverse fixture just wasn’t enough to see them recover.