Dashed dreams of La Decima: Real Madrid's 11 years of hurt in Europe
2011/12 (Semi-finals vs Bayern Munich)
Score: Bayern Munich 2-1 Real Madrid; Real Madrid 2-1 Bayern Munich (3-3 on aggregate; Bayern Munich win 3-1 on penalties)
La Liga position: 1st
Any other business? A century of La Liga points, and a 32nd league win, cheered Real up no end. Ronaldo and Lionel Messi had virtually contested the title between then, scoring 46 and 50 respectively.
A penalty shootout is all that this list has been missing; when called upon to deliver, Real once more fluffed their lines. They conceded early to Franck Ribery in the Allianz Arena but recovered their composure to level in the second half through Mesut Ozil’s tap-in. It looked as if Real would return home with an away-goal advantage, but if you’ve got this far you’ll know that they’d long since perfected the art of shooting themselves in the foot; Mario Gomez arrived deep inside the six-yard box to jab in a 90th minute winner, and now Mourinho’s side would have to win at the Bernabeu.
That seemed a reasonable enough prospect when Real took another early home lead, Ronaldo scoring from the spot. He made it two before 14 minutes were up, and there seemed little way back for the Bavarians. The previous nine years, though, had shown that Real always give you a chance: Arjen Robben took his – just – in the 27th minute, Pepe having been the culprit again in conceding a penalty to Gomez, and surprisingly that was that for the next 93 minutes.
The game looked likely to be up as soon as Manuel Neuer dived to his right to save the usually unerring Ronaldo’s spot-kick, Real’s first of the shootout. He then made an even better save from Kaka. Incredibly, Real then seemed to pull it out of the fire, Xabi Alonso converting while Toni Kroos and Philipp Lahm missed. Then Sergio Ramos, stared down by Neuer, blasted over; Bastian Schweinsteiger scored, and it almost seemed a little bit cruel.