On This Day 15 Years Ago One Of The Milan Derbies Most Iconic Moments Happened
The AC Milan team of 2005 was a thing of beauty and it required a magic night and a footballing miracle by Liverpool to stop them winning the Champions League.
Milan were something special though and the names of their squad speak for themselves; Cafu, Paolo Maldini, Alessandro Nesta, Jaap Stam, Massimo Ambrosini, Gennaro Gattuso, Kaka. Andrea Pirlo, Clarence Seedorf, Hernan Crespo, Filippo Inzaghi, Andriy Shevchenko and Rui Costa.
In charge of class talent, was Carlo Ancelotti, who'd managed the Rossoneri to a Champions League title in 2003, beating rivals Juventus in the final.
Two years later and they would again challenge Europe's elite with a run to the final.
On their way to Istanbul they came up against another rival, this time in the form of Inter.. The two Milan sides had actually met in AC's title win two years earlier in the semi-final, where Milan won on away goals even though both games were of course at the San Siro.
In the first leg in 2005 Milan, as home team, won 2-0 with goals from Stam and Shevchenko. Inter had it all to do in the second leg but a club with the likes of Javier Zanetti, Esteban Cambiasso, Juan Sebastian Veron and Adriano were capable of pulling the two goals back.
However, Shevchenko put Milan 1-0 up on the 30 minute mark in the 'return' leg to all but guarantee their passage into a second final in three years but the drama wasn't to end there.
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Cambiasso thought he'd given his side a chance in the 72nd minute with a headed goal but it was disallowed for a push and after showing dissent to the referee he was booked.
That moment sparked angry Inter fans to set off flares and them, along with plastic bottles and even umbrellas onto the pitch behind Dida's goal.
As chaos rained down from the stands ref Markus Merk delayed play for 20 minutes. The delay birthed one of the most infamous pictures in football as Rui Costa and Marco Materazzi stood, the defender leaning on his opponents shoulder, watching the mayhem.
After 20 minutes the match seemed set to go ahead and Merk allowed the game to restart only for a firework to be thrown on the pitch moments later and hit Dida on the shoulder.
At that point the referee had no choice but to abandon the game and send the players back to the changing rooms with the stadium no longer a safe place for the 'away' team.
Ancelotti's team were awarded the game meaning they won the second leg 3-0 and the tie 5-0!
Inter were made to play their next four home European fixtures behind closed doors as punishment for failing to control their fans.
Milan went onto play Liverpool in the final, after beating PSV in the semi final, and that match went on without too much drama...
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