Against all odds, Chelsea Football Club are champions of Europe.
It’s been one of those seasons where the cards have been stacked against Chelsea all season. No one expected them to beat Barcelona. Very few people expected them to win in Germany. Many of their senior players were on the verge of being sold in the summer. They still don’t have a permanent manager. The side today featured 22-year-old Ryan Bertrand who was making his Champions League debut. And, then, Chelsea was outplayed for the vast majority of the 90 minutes by a Bayern Munich side who created so many chances, but could only hold on to a 1-0 lead.
With Jupp Heynckes sensing victory, he decided to take off goalscorer Thomas Muller. And with two minutes to go in regular time, it appeared that the odds were stacked against Chelsea until Didier Drogba pulled out a sensational header to equalize. From then on, it was a 50-50 game with both sides creating chances. But when the match went to penalty kicks, the odds were again stacked against Chelsea. Facing dreaded penalty kicks in front of a wall of Bayern Munich fans, it couldn’t have gotten any worse after Juan Mata missed Chelsea’s first spot kick.
Against all odds, once again, Chelsea lifted themselves above the adversity and persevered on. This was a team that throughout the 90 minutes today, threw themselves at Bayern’s shots and tackles, never giving up.
It wasn’t pretty, but it was enough to secure a first-ever Champions League trophy for Chelsea, and to fly the flag for England and the Premier League around the world.
Without a doubt, hats off to the heroes of Chelsea Football Club today. The players were herculean. Everyone from the game-changers Didier Drogba and Petr Cech to the incredible performances by Cole, Cahill, Luiz, Mata, Torres, Bertrand, Malouda, Bosingwa, Mikel, Lampard, Kalou — and to interim-manager Roberto Di Matteo.
Congratulations on an incredible performance that will go into the history books and never be forgotten. Roman Abramovich finally got his Champions League trophy, while Chelsea veterans Drogba, Terry and Lampard struck gold. What an incredible night in Munich.