Chelsea FC Throwback: When the Blues won the Champions League in 2012
(Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Chelsea FC Throwback: When the Blues won the Champions League in 2012

Chelsea won their first ever Champions League title in 2012, but it was a rocky road to success for the Blues that year.

dannyboyk2000
Danyal Khan

Chelsea won their first ever Champions League title in 2012, under Roberto Di Matteo.

They started off the campaign with Andre Villas-Boas, but here's how it all panned out as Chelsea eventually won their first ever Champions League title in the Roman Abramovich era.

Group Stages

Chelsea were placed in Group E with Bayer Leverkusen, Valencia (who they face on Tuesday in their first Group H game) and Genk.

On paper that looked like an easy group  for Chelsea, but at this time the Blues were struggling under Andre Villas-Boas in the Premier League, and furthermore it proved not to be easy.

Matchday 1: Chelsea 2-0 Bayer Leverkusen

The group stages started off so well for Chelsea.

Misfiring £50million pound striker Fernando Torres was given another chance to rectify his poor form at the time.

But David Luiz stole the show on this occasion, scoring a screamer midway through the second half to give Chelsea the lead.

And Juan Mata wrapped things up in stoppage time to give Villas-Boas' side a crucial three points in matchday one of the UEFA Champions League.

At this time, you would think from now on, it would have been a cakewalk for the Blues. But that wasn't the case.

Matchday 2: Valencia 1-1 Chelsea

The big story coming into this match was whether or not Villas-Boas would recall Frank Lampard to the starting line up.

He did and his decision paid off as Lampard looked like he had scored the winner at the Mestalla for the Blues.

However Villas-Boas' decision to sub him off for Solomon Kalou backfired with seven minutes to go, as the Ivorian conceded a penalty which Roberto Soldado scored to condemn the Blues to dropping two points.

Matchday 3: Chelsea 5-0 Genk

This game was the Torres game.

The Spaniard doubled his goal tally for the season by scoring two goals which helped Chelsea thrash the Belgian Champions.

Raul Meireles, Branislav Ivanovic and Kalou were the other goalscorers on the night, as Chelsea ran out convincing winners.

At this point, Chelsea had seven points from three games. You would think that would mean that Chelsea were certain to go through at this point, but that was not the case...

Matchday 4: Genk 1-1 Chelsea

Chelsea failed to put one foot in the knockout stages by failing to pick up a vital three points in Group E.

This match, however, was overshadowed by a racism storm among the travelling Chelsea fans.

On the pitch, the Blues were at fault here for not killing off the group.

They went 1-0 up through Ramires, and had a chance to go 2-0 up through a penalty, but Luiz missed it.

They were made to pay as Jelle Vossen equalised for the hosts.

Matchday 5: Bayer Leverkusen 2-1 Chelsea

Chelsea crashed to a defeat in Germany, a defeat which put Champions League qualification in real danger.

It started off so well in this game, with Didier Drogba giving the Blues the lead.

However they threw away the victory in the second half with Eren Derdiyok equalising for the hosts before Manuel Friedrich completed the comeback for the German side.

This loss really pilled the pressure on Chelsea boss at the time Villas-Boas.

Matchday 6: Chelsea 3-0 Valencia

Drogba inspired Chelsea to a win in this game, a win which meant that the Blues just about progressed to the round of 16.

The Ivorian broke the deadlock with a low pile driver early on in the match, before Ramires scored a second and the Brazilian secured victory after flicking home a Mata through ball in the second half.

Round of 16 first leg: Napoli 3-1 Chelsea

The Blues again threw away the lead, but this time in a knockout game.

They took the lead through Mata but then produced a horrible defensive display, meaning that Ezequiel Lavezzi's brace and Edinson Cavani's late goal condemned Villas-Boas' side to a heavy defeat in Naples.

Ashely Cole's goal-line clearance was one of the biggest moments in Chelsea's Champions League campaign that year, because if that would have gone in, the Blues surely had no chance of turning round a 4-1 deficit at Stamford Bridge. It would have been too big of a task.

They looked down and out, but this wasn't the case in the second leg...

It was for Villas-Boas however as he was sacked after this game - the culmination of a run of bad results in the Premier League and Champions League.

He was replaced by Di Matteo, who was appointed initially on an interim basis.

Round of 16 second leg: Chelsea 4-1 Napoli

Interim boss Di Matteo helped Chelsea beat the odds to progress to the quarter-finals.

The West Londoners took a first-half lead through Drogba and doubled their advantage two minutes into the second period thanks to a John Terry header.

At 3-3 aggregate score, the tie was heading to extra time, but the tie turned back Napoli's way after Gokhan Inler netted eight minutes after Terry's header.

However Lampard struck from the spot to force extra time, and Ivanovic hit a 105th-minute winner to send the Blues through to the quarterfinals.

Quarter-final first leg: Benfica 0-1 Chelsea

This game was a cagey affair, and was separated by a Kalou goal in the 75th minute which gave Chelsea one foot into the semi-finals.

Di Matteo's team selection seemed strange, resting six first team players who many Chelsea fans expected to all play, but that brave decision paid off spectacularly in what was mostly an inspired game.

Quarter-final second leg: Chelsea 2-1 Benfica

Lampard, making his 550th Chelsea appearance, marked the occasion by scoring a penalty midway through the first half.

Maxi Pereira was sent off for picking up two yellow cards for the visitors in the first half.

However despite having 10 men, the Portuguese side made it a nervy ending for the Blues after Javi Garcia nodded home from close range.

Ultimately, ex-Liverpool midfielder Meireles scored in stoppage time to ensure Chelsea's safe passage to the semi-final, where they met Barcelona.

Semi-final first leg: Chelsea 1-0 Barcelona

This nervy and cagey first leg was separated by Drogba's first-half striker against the run of play.

Ramires dribbled through most of the Barcelona midfield, and played a diagonal pass which found Drogba unmarked in the box, and he slotted under Victor Valdes at his near post to give Chelsea a valuable lead.

Alexis Sanchez hit the bar and missed a sitter, and Cesc Fabregas had a shot cleared off the line as Chelsea took a battering in the second half of the first leg, but somehow they managed to hold on and take a 1-0 advantage to the Nou Camp.

Semifinal second leg: Barcelona 2-2 Chelsea

The Catalan side deservedly took the lead through Sergio Busquets and things got worse for the Blues less than two minutes later when John Terry was sent off for kneeing Sanchez from behind.

Barcelona then  went 2-0 ahead through Andres Iniesta, although Ramires clawed a goal back in first half stoppage time.

Lionel Messi hit the bar with a penalty and later a post, but Chelsea somehow held out and Torres came off the bench to score late on and cap a memorable night at the Nou Camp

Final: Bayern Munich 1-1 Chelsea (3-4 on penalties)

This was and still is the biggest night in the history of Chelsea football club.

The odds were stacked against the Blues, as they had their captain John Terry ruled out of the game for picking up a red card against Barcelona in the semi-final.

The first half was mostly dominated by the German side, but Chelsea had their half chances as well. The Blues defended so well as a unit without their captain in that first half.

But as the second half progressed, and Bayern's attacks continued, you knew something had to give.

And it did in the 83rd minute when an unmarked Thomas Muller headed in a Toni Kroos cross.

Di Matteo then decided to throw on Torres and that decision paid off, as he earned the corner in the 88th minute which led to the equaliser.

Mata's inswinging corner was then headed powerfully into the roof of the net by Didier Drogba and he was Chelsea's saviour on the night.

However in extra time the Ivorian became the villain, as he conceded a penalty. The penalty however was saved by Cech who bailed Drogba out.

So the final went to penalties, and the Blues started the shootout in the worst possible way with Mata's penalty being saved by Manuel Neuer

Luckily for Chelsea, Cech managed to save Ivica Olic's penalty, before Bastian Schweinsteiger hit the post. This left Drogba to take the fifth and final penalty for Chelsea, and he scored...

It will be interesting to see whether this new, youthful and exciting Chelsea side under manager Frank Lampard can replicate the success of 2012 and win the club their second ever Champions League title.

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