FC Bayern München have achieved their dream of reaching the 2012 UEFA Champions League final on home soil, against Chelsea FC, after ousting Real Madrid CF on penalties following 210 minutes of an enthralling semi-final.
Bastian Schweinsteiger converted the decisive spot kick, though Manuel Neuer’s superb saves to deny Cristiano Ronaldo and Kakà were just as crucial. David Alaba and Mario Gomez converted for Bayern before Iker Casillas denied Toni Kroos and Philipp Lahm to drag Madrid back level. Yet when Sergio Ramos fired his penalty high over the bar, Schweinsteiger had the chance to seal it – he did not disappoint, giving his side an unassailable 3-1 lead.
Bayern’s 2-1 first-leg advantage had become a 3-2 deficit. Ronaldo scored twice, the second a penalty. Arjen Robben’s own spot kick before the half-hour ultimately set up the dramatic conclusion.
While the day before, ten-man Chelsea FC pulled off a remarkable action to reach the 2012 UEFA Champions League final. Having had their 1-0 first-leg lead wiped out by Sergio Busquets and captain John Terry was sent off, Ramires to return Chelsea to the box seat before half-time. With two Lionel Messi’s woodwork hit, once from a penalty, in the second period they held on until Torres confirmed the progress.
Last time they meet each other was in 2004/05 UEFA Champions League quarter-finals, where Chelsea triumphed 6-5 on aggregate to reach the semi-finals but they lost to Liverpool FC. In the first leg, Chelsea won 4-2 and Bayern won 3-2 in the second leg. Bastian Schweinsteiger, Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba, Petr Čech and John Terry are the only survivors from the squads now, all five playing both legs.