They promised that the atmosphere would be a special one, and they certainly lived up to that promise.
Anfield was rocking for the visit of Manchester City in Wednesday night’s Champions League quarter-finals, and Liverpool’s players responded with a stunning display that featured three goals in the opening 31 minutes to blow away the soon to be Premier League champions 3-0 in the first leg tie.
For many, the display rekindled memories of of previous Anfield European nights when giants were put to the sword by the men in red.
But what have been Liverpool’s best home European nights of the modern era?
Taking just Champions League (so post-1993, and no UEFA Cup/Europa League games) into account, here’s our top 10.
10. Liverpool 0-1 Barcelona, 6 March 2007
A defeat on the night but a victory on away goals, the Reds protected their 2-1 advantage from the first leg at the Nou Camp (staring Craig Bellamy, John Arne Riise and a golf club) against a Barca side featuring Ronaldinho, Samuel Eto’o and a young Lionel Messi.
Eidur Gudjohnson climbed off the bench to give Barca hope, but Liverpool held out.
9. Liverpool 2-0 Inter Milan, 19 February 2008
A star-studded Inter team were reduced to 10 men when Marco Materazzi – previously of Everton – was sent off in the first half, but the Italians held out until just six minutes from time.
It was then that Liverpool, who had been to two of the previous three Champions League finals, took control of this second round, first leg tie, with Dirk Kuyt firing in and then Steven Gerrard angling in a drive from the edge of the box.
8. Liverpool 2-0 Roma, 19 March 2002
Five months after life-saving heart surgery and going against doctor’s advice, Gerard Houllier appeared on the touchline at Anfield on an evening when Liverpool had to beat Fabio Capello’s Roma by two goals to progress from the second group stage.
An early Jari Litmanen penalty set them on their way, with Emile Heskey’s towering header in the second half clinching progress.
7. Liverpool 3-0 Manchester City, 4 April 2018
It might be one that ends up moving a little higher depending on Champions League progress, but City were utterly blown away at Anfield.
Mohamed Salah, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Sadio Mane all struck as the Reds took complete control of the quarter-final tie.
6. Liverpool 4-2 Arsenal, 8 April 2008
A topsy-turvy quarter-final saw Sami Hyypia equalise Abou Diaby’s goal to make it 2-2 on aggregate, and then, after a Fernando Tores goal, Emmanuel Adebayor looked as though he was taking the Gunners through on away goals after a brilliant Theo Walcott run.
But, seconds later, Kolo Toure felled Ryan Babel and Steven Gerrard scored from the spot, before Babel raced clear in stoppage time to seal a breathless win.
5. Liverpool 2-1 Juventus, 5 April 2005
A Liverpool squad featuring Scott Carson, Djimi Traore, Igor Biscan, Antonio Nunez and Anthony Le Tallec weren’t exactly fancied to beat a star-studded Juventus, but beat them they did.
Goals in the first 25 minutes from Sami Hyypia and Luis Garcia – the latter a brilliant volley which arced over a stranded Gianluigi Buffon – did the trick, although Fabio Cannavaro did grab an away goal.
4. Liverpool 4-0 Real Madrid, 10 March 2009
European royalty Real were blown away by a ruthless Liverpool, who followed up a 1-0 first leg win at Bernabeu by dominating this second leg.
Fernando Torres got the first, Steven Gerrard struck either side of half-time and then Andrea Dossena – yep, Andrea Dossena – bagged the fourth.
3. Liverpool 1-0 Chelsea – Liverpool win 4-1 on penalties, 1 May 2007
Daniel Agger’s first-half goal levelled the semi-final after Joe Cole’s strike at Stamford Bridge, before Pepe Reina saved penalties from Arjen Robben and Geremi in the resulting shootout.
Dirk Kuyt slotted the winning kick after Bolo Zenden, Xabi Alonso and Steven Gerrard had also netted, and Liverpool were off to the Athens final.
2. Liverpool 3-1 Olympiakos, 8 December 2004
By half-time of this group stage clash Liverpool were looking at a place in the UEFA Cup, but then Florent Sinama-Pongolle and Neil Mellor got going.
The pair of substitute strikers both scored but then, most famously and with Liverpool needing to win by two, up stepped Gerrard at the Kop end.
1. Liverpool 1-0 Chelsea, 3 May 2005
Liverpool’s incredible run to the 2005 Champions League final culminated in this raucous Anfield occasion, when Luis Garcia struck in just the fourth minute as he pounced on uncertainty following Petr Cech’s trip on Milan Baros.
The debate over whether or not the ball crossed the line still rages today, but Liverpool have the Champions League trophy to prove it did.
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