What happened the last time Leicester met Atletico Madrid in Europe

Published Add your comment

Football News

The draw for the Champions League quarter-final took place earlier on Friday, and saw Leicester City – the Premier League's only remaining representative – paired with Spanish giants Atletico Madrid.

It'll be a difficult tie for the defending champions, but it could have been much worse with the likes of Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Juventus still in the tournament.

However, this won't be the first time the Foxes have come up against Atleti, though it will be the first time they've face each other in 20 years.

Back in 1997 Leicester were the defending League Cup champions and establishing themselves as a tricky side to beat under Martin O'Neill and making their first foray into Europe in a long time, they were paired against Atleti in the first round of the UEFA Cup.

Atletico were no slouches at the time either, having finished fifth in La Liga and winning the Copa Del Rey the year before. Owner Jesus Gil had put together a squad worth £51million in order to challenge the likes of Barca and Real Madrid.

That sum may not sound like much now, but 20 years ago it was a hell of a lot of money. For contrast, Leicester's cost just £7.5m to put together.

During the first leg, Leicester took an early lead thanks to a goal from journeyman striker Ian Marshall, sending the 3,000 travelling fans into raptures with a close range finish.

The Foxes held out for an hour, but a deflected effort from former Middlesbrough playmaker Juninho was followed by a controversial penalty from Christian Vieri just two minutes later. See the highlights below...

The away goal had given Leicester a chance of overturning the Spaniards back at Filbert Street, but tempers were flaring in the first half of the second leg.

Juan Lopez earned himself a red card in the second half for a cynical foul on Emile Heskey, but instead of capitalising on the man advantage Leicester soon found themselves with 10 men, too, as Gary Parker was given his marching orders for taking a free kick too quickly.

Martin O'Neill's men held on for another five minutes before Juninho popped up with his second goal of the tie and Jose Mari put it to bed at the end with Atleti's second of the night.

The Leicester boss had some strong words for the referee, who he believed bottled a decision to award the hosts a penalty for a foul on midfielder Muzzy Izzet, but it wasn't to be, as you can see in the video below.

Atletico went on to remain in the competition until the semi-final, where they eventually lost to Italian giants Lazio, though they managed to dump out Aston Villa along the way.

Both sides were full of familiar faces, with Atletico housing the likes of Juninho, Christian Vieri and Kiko.

Leicester had a young Emile Heskey in their ranks, who lined up alongside the likes of Steve Claridge and Robbie Savage.

Win, lose or draw, we'll be hoping for another tie like this when the sides meet again.

Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE:

La Liga
Europa League
Emile Heskey
UEFA Champions League

Article Comments

Read more

Report author of article

Please let us know if you believe this article is in violation of our editorial policy, please only report articles for one of the following reasons.

Report author


This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Want more content like this?

Like our GiveMeSport Facebook Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to Facebook, don't ask me again

Follow GiveMeSport on Twitter and you will get this directly to you.

Already Following, don't ask me again

Like our GiveMeSport Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to G+, don't ask me again