UCL FINAL

Video: 5 Best Champions League Final Goals of All-time

Watch sublime goals scored in past Champions League finals from the likes of Zinedine Zidane, Lionel Messi, and Gareth Bale

5 Best Champions League Final Goals of All-time

Real Madrid and Liverpool will slug it out in the final of the 2021/22 UEFA Champions League final at the Stade de France on Saturday, May 28.

Liverpool are six-time winners of Europe's premier club competition and have picked up the runner-up medal four (4) other times, making it 10 times they have appeared in the final of the competition.

Real Madrid's history in the competition is vaunted. The Spanish giants are record winners of the UEFA Champions League with 13 titles. Los Blancos also hold the record for the most final appearances in the competition with 16.

The UEFA Champions League final is one of the most popular sporting events in the world and players are wont to attempt to produce a moment of magic in a bid to clinch the title for their clubs.

Many have failed but a few have succeeded and attained legendary status. Thus, we will take a trip down a nostalgic memory lane to relive five (5) of the best goals to have been scored in the finals of the UEFA Champions League. P.S. Only finals in the Champions League era (1992 till date) have been considered for this shortlist.

Ivorian legend Didier Drogba came into the 2012 final with the burden of penance, having got sent off in the Moscow final four years earlier (2007/08).

Playing against Bayern Munich in front of the German side's home crowd at the Allianz Arena, 2012 final was dubbed 'Our City, Our Stadium, Our Cup' by the Bayern supporters. And so it seemed until Drogba happened.

The Chelsea forward scored an 88th-minute glancing header to cancel out Thomas Muller's opener five minutes earlier and send the tie into extra time.

In a twist of fate, Drogba conceded a penalty in extra time though Petr Cech saved Argen Robben's effort. It came full circle for Drogba when the Ivorian scored the final spot-kick in the penalty shootout that handed Chelsea their first Champions League trophy.

The only entrant on this list that ended up on the losing side in the Champions League final but a worthy entrant.

Mario Mandzukic scored Juventus' customary one goal in the 2017 Champions League final. The Old Lady have never scored more than one goal in a Champions League final match.

However, Mandzukic's effort was top drawer, chesting Gonzalo Higuain's hooked pass and striking an overhead half-volley past Keylor Navas in the Madrid goal.

It is only right that any list of the best in world football contains the Argentine maestro Lionel Messi.

His goal for Barcelona in the 2009 final at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome sealed the title for the Blaugrana after Samuel Eto'o opened the scoring in the 10th minute.

What was most impressive about this goal was the leap and technique (back-leaning mid-air suspension) from the 5ft 7in forward to meet Xavi's right-wing cross.

For context, Messi leapt higher than a 6ft 2in tall Rio Ferdinand to meet the ball and his header looped over a 6ft 6in tall Edwin van der Sar in the United goal. Not bad for one of the shortest players on the pitch.

The year was 2002 and French midfielder Zinedine Zidane had just joined Real Madrid on a world-record deal from Juventus just at the beginning of that season.

A left-wing cross from Roberto Carlos set Zidane up to take a first-time volley with his supposedly weaker left foot. The ball nestled in the top left corner of Hans-Jörg Butt's goalpost.

As reported by the official champions League website, Zidane said of that goal: "I tried to score the same way again later, even during shooting an advert. But it never happened again. Never. I tried in training, but it never happened. It was perfect the day it happened."

For all of his troubles at Real Madrid, Gareth Bale scored one of the most iconic goals in Real Madrid history during the 2017/18 Champions League final at the Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine.

The Welshman came on as a 61st-minute substitute with the score at 1-1. Three minutes later, he scored an audacious overhead bicycle kick from Marcelo's left-wing cross to put Real Madrid in front.

For good measure, Bale also scored another contender for this list in the 83rd minute. Well, partly aided by Loris Karius' unforgettable night of infamy. Nonetheless, the thought and execution on Bale's part were top-notch.

Needless to say, Bale was awarded the Man of the Match for the 2018 Champions League final despite playing only 30 minutes of the match. Well deserved also.

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