18 years ago today: Werkself go through to UCL final

Barca and Juve beaten in the group stages and then via Liverpool and Manchester to Glasgow: The Werkself enjoyed a brilliant Champions League campaign in 2001/02. The second leg at the BayArena was played 18 years ago today; Manchester United and Bayer 04 had drawn 2-2 at the legendary Old Trafford stadium six days earlier.

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Head coach Klaus Toppmöller made one change to the side that drew 2-2 in Manchester the previous week: Oliver Neuville started up front in place of Dimitar Berbatov – a like-for-like change that was to pay off.

Roy Keane gave the Red Devils the lead on 28 minutes. Neuville levelled in added time in the first half with a wonderful chip from 16 yards out. The provider Yildiray Bastürk was happy to recall the move in a recent interview with “I played a short pass to him, Olli controlled the ball, turned and then hit his shot from a standing position under the bar. A really brilliant goal,” said Bastürk.

The match ended all square at 1-1 and Bayer 04 deservedly progressed to a Champions League final for the first time in the club’s history. Hampden Park in Glasgow was the venue for the showdown between the Werkself and Real Madrid that ended in a narrow 2-1 victory for Real. Bayer 04 TV recalls the semi-final in Leverkusen that today comes of age.

Match stats:

Bayer 04: Butt – Zivkovic, Lucio, Nowotny (Sebescen 10’), Placente – Ramelow, Ballack, Schneider, Bastürk (Vranjes 79’), Zé Roberto – Neuville (Berbatov 85’)

Manchester United: Barthez – Brown (Forlan 81’), Blanc, Johnsen (Irwin 60’), Silvestre – Roy Keane, Scholes, Butt (Solskjaer 61’), Veron, Giggs – van Nistelrooy

Goals: 0-1 Roy Keane (28’), 1-1 Neuville (45 +2’)

Referee: Kim Milton Nielsen (Denmark)

Booked: Zé Roberto – Butt, Scholes, Irwin

Attendance: 22,500 (sell out) at the BayArena


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