Giovane Élber kissing his knee in Madrid

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Exactly 20 years ago FC Bayern won 1-0 away to Real Madrid, achieving a very promising position on their way to the Champions League final, in no small part due to Giovane Élber's knee. *fcbayern.com*looks back.

One chance, expertly dispatched by Élber

Giovane Élber called it a "miracle." Almost nobody had expected the Brazilian to feature in the crucial semi-final first leg away to Real Madrid only 12 days after his knee surgery. But the forward returned just in time and was the Man of the Match. Élber scored the only goal when he netted after half-time. The knee had not caused him problems, Élber kissing it as a reward.

Bayern were forced onto the back foot at Éstadio Santiago Bernabéu, Oliver Kahn making a number of fine saves, with Élber lurking up front. "Before kick-off we said we'd have one chance, maybe two, and that we'd have to make the most of it," the forward revealed.

Casillas surprised

Élber later admitted he "didn't know exactly where the goal was" when he spun and fired from 25 yards. Real keeper Iker Casillas, only 20 back then, was a bit too far from his goal and surprised by Élber's shot. The ball hit the net, Bayern taking a giant stride toward the Champions League final in Milan, in no small part due to Élber's knee.

FC Bayern went on to win the Champions League in 2001, a milestone in the club's 120-year history:


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