The 2008 Champions League final took place exactly 12 years ago today

Manchester United v Chelsea - UEFA Champions League Final

The 2008 Champions League final took place exactly 12 years ago today.

Chelsea and Manchester United contested the first all-English climax in the competition's history, looking to extend the battle they'd fought across the Premier League season in the heavy rain of Moscow.

What happened all those years ago has become the stuff of legend and it only makes sense to look back on those memories with either joy or dismay as another anniversary rolls around.

United were entering the final with a second consecutive Premier League trophy in their pocket, while Chelsea were finishing a season without Jose Mourinho for the first time since 2003/04.

Avram Grant was at the reins at Stamford Bridge and the final in Moscow represented his last chance to secure silverware in the role after finishing second in the league and League Cup.

2008 Champions League final

But things didn't exactly start well for the west London club as they found themselves 1-0 down after 26 minutes with Cristiano Ronaldo converting a trademark header from Wes Brown's cross.

The mercurial Portuguese was on his way to a maiden Ballon d'Or trophy and had broken the Premier League record for most goals in a 20-club season with 31 strikes to his name.

However, Chelsea weren't just going to fold after the opening goal and Frank Lampard popped up with an opportunistic strike mere seconds before half-time to level the scores at 1-1.

Manchester United v Chelsea - UEFA Champions League Final

John Terry slips at the crucial moment

And that was how the scores remained through regulation time, extra time and all the way to penalties with Didier Drogba's red card proving the only major detail in between.

Both teams converted their first two penalties in the shootout, but the drama was ramped up to 11 when Ronaldo, of all people, saw his effort from 12 years beaten away by Petr Cech.

United managed to score their next two spot kicks, but so did Chelsea, meaning that skipper John Terry had the opportunity to bag the Blues' first ever Champions League crown.

Yeh, you know the rest of the story...  

Terry's dramatic slip meant that the shootout trundled on to sudden death and Edwin van der Sar eventually plucked victory from the jaws of defeat for United by saving Nicolas Anelka's effort.

It was, by all accounts, one of the craziest finals in modern football history and one that secured the Red Devils their second Champions League trophy under the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson.

Chelsea, on the other hand, were forced to wait a further four years before they got their hands on 'Big Ears', defeating Bayern Munich in a shootout from which Terry was absent.

Chelsea's British defender John Terry  h

So, both teams got their way eventually in some respects, but one thing is for certain: nobody is going to forget where they were when Chelsea and United slugged it out in the Moscow rain.

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