WATCH: Nine most dramatic European Championship comebacks

Date published: Friday 3rd June 2016 10:48

Alfonso Perez: Hero for Spain back in 2000

Liverpool may have competition for ‘Comeback of the Year’ if any Euro 2016 matches replicate some of these incredible fightbacks from past European Championships.  

The Reds produced an astonishing revival against Borussia Dortmund in the Europa League quarter-final as they fought back from 1-3 down to win 4-3 at Anfield.  

But while Liverpool, Fulham and Middlesbrough specialise in European rallies at club level, there are several examples of international sides doing the same.

Here are the nine most dramatic comebacks ever seen at the Euros… 

9. Portugal 3-2 England, Euro 2000 

England were cruising through early goals from Paul Scholes and Steve McManamon in their Euro 2000 Group A opener, until Portugal hit back with three of their own.

Luis Figo’s long-range effort broke the net, then Joao Pinto’s diving header levelled the scores before Nuno Gomes’ 59th-minute strike won it. 

8. Russia 3-3 Czech Republic, Euro 1996 

Leading 2-0 at half-time and one foot in the last eight, the Czech Republic did not anticipate a staggering second-half comeback from Russia to trail 2-3 with five minutes left.  

With qualification hanging in the balance, Vladimir Smicer came to the Czechs’ rescue late on to seal their Quarter-Final passage. 

7. Denmark 3-2 Belgium, Euro 1984 

Belgium looked set to take Denmark’s spot in the Euro 1984 Semi-Finals when they went 2-0 up before the Danes – who only needed a draw to go through – fought back!  

A Frank Arnesen penalty with goals from Kenneth Brylle and Preben Elkjaer set up a last four meeting with Spain.

6. Yugoslavia 3-3 Slovenia, Euro 2000 

Tournament new boys Slovenia were winning 3-0 against 10-man Yugoslavia, who had Sinsa Mihajlovic sent-off, with half an hour to go before Savo Milosevic was brought on… 

The former Aston Villa striker struck twice, either side of Ljubinko Drulovic’s goal, as Yugoslavia heroically over-turned a three-goal deficit inside six minutes! 

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5. Czech Republic 3-2 Netherlands, Euro 2004 

The Czechs came from behind to beat Euro 2004 Group D rivals Holland, who lead 2-0 after 20 minutes through Wilfred Bouma and Ruud van Nistelrooy. 

Jan Koller, Milan Baros and an 88th-minute Vladimir Smicer (Yes! Him Again!) goal turned an entralling contest on its head to secure the Czechs a Quarter-Final place. 

4. France 2-1 England, Euro 2004 

In a match reminisent of what happened Bayern Munich against Manchester United in the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final, England got sucker-punched by an injury-time brace from Zinedine Zidane! 

England led 1-0 through Frank Lampard and David Beckham missed a penalty before Zidane’s superb free-kick and penalty stole it. 

3. Turkey 3-2 Czech Republic, Euro 2008 

Petr Cech’s clanger was the turning point in a pulsating match where the Czech Republic led 2-0 on 75 minutes in this winner-takes-all group clash with Turkey.  

That was before goals from Barcelona’s Arda Turan and a late brace from Nihat Kahveci put the Turks through at the Czechs’ expense.  

2. Spain 4-3 Yugoslavia, Euro 2000 

Needing a win to reach the Euro 2000 Quarter-Finals, Spain were heading out of the competition as they trailed 2-3 before a phenomenal comeback deep into injury-time sent them through. 

Gaizka Mendieta converted a 94th-minute penalty to level before Alfonso Perez scored the winner moments later for a delirious Spain.   

1. Yugoslavia 5-4 France, Euro 1960 

In the first ever game at the Euros, Yugoslavia and hosts France played out a nine-goal thriller which to this day remains the highest-scoring match in the competition’s history.  

France threw away a 4-2 lead as two goals in a minute from striker Drazan Jerkovic won it for the Yugoslavs. 

By Aron Hegarty (@AronHegarty)

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