2004/05 (Round of 16 vs Juventus)
Score: Real Madrid 1-0 Juventus; Juventus 2-0 Real Madrid (Juventus win 2-1 on aggregate)
La Liga position: 2nd
Any other business? Real came second to Barcelona’s first title win of the decade – which was, of course, followed by plenty more.
Real were getting through managers at breakneck speed by now. Queiroz was long gone by the time Juventus arrived for a rematch in February 2005 – but so too, incredibly, were Jose Antonio Camacho and Mariano Garcia Remon. Vanderlei Luxemburgo had not long since begun his own short-lived crack at things when the Beckham-Helguera combination came good again and gave Real a handy 1-0 first-leg lead – one that would have been added to if Raul, looking for his 50th Champions League goal, had been wearing his shooting boots.
Hearteningly, Luxemburgo was still in charge when the second leg came around two weeks later. Things were fine for 75 minutes at the Stadio Delle Alpi, Iker Casillas saving brilliantly from Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Ronaldo missing a couple of chances to close things out on the counter. Trezeguet’s hooked finish – near-identical to the one that had opened the scoring two years previously – altered the complexion, with Ronaldo’s extra-time dismissal putting Real firmly on the ropes. Two minutes after his dismissal, Marcelo Zalayeta lashed in a winner to which Real, with Michael Owen introduced from the bench, had no time for a response. It was enough to persuade Fabio Capello, now in charge at Juve, to let his hair down. "Beating Real caused me a special emotion," he purred. "I think it is the first time I have celebrated like that but now I've done it, I'd like to try it again."