Professionals | 19/03/2020

4:0 win at Camp Nou

Blast from the past: FC fire four past Barcelona

1. FC Köln claimed a stunning 4:0 triumph over FC Barcelona at the Camp Nou on a wet Wednesday night. Gerd Strack, Stephan Engels, Pierre Littbarski and Dieter Müller scored on evening that will live long in the memory of many FC supporters.

Team news

FC Barcelona were hoping to continue from where they left off in the first leg. László Kubala opted for two changes to the line-up from the game two weeks prior. Manolo and Andrés Ramírez replaced Antonio Olmo and Hans Krankl.

Rinus Michels, looking to try get one over on his former club, made just one change from the side that lost the first leg in Müngersdorf. Roland Gerber was replaced by Holger Willmer.

Strack strikes at the right time

With conditions not helping the game from the start, FC were the better side in the opening few minutes. It was Michels’ men who had the first effort on goal, yet Pello Artola was equal to Gerd Strack’s stinging drive. That would be a sign of things to come. As was Toni Schumacher’s calming presence in the FC goal, as the backline remained strong against Quini and Allan Simonsen.

The game wasn’t a classic, at least not in the early stages, and a foul from Stephan Engels on Migueli quickly saw Patrick Partridge produce the yellow card. The FC midfielder was perhaps somewhat fortunate that the card wasn’t of another colour.

Nevertheless, as the half drew to a close, it would be the visitors who went ahead. After Strack tried to thread the ball in from out wide, the ball dropped to him 20 yards out, slightly to the left of the goal. The 25-year-old set his shot well outside the far post, only for it to bend back inside the upright and into the top corner. The Camp Nou was stunned and treated to a finish they were more used to seeing from their master technicians than a defender from Kerpen.

Second-half to savour

They say scoring just before half-time can be vital. It would certainly have changed Rinus Michels’ team talk, having levelled the tie. However, what followed immediately after the restart was something he could only have dreamed of.

A stunning counter involving Tony Woodcock, Rainer Bonhof and Pierre Littbarski saw the latter cross to Stephan Engels at the back post. His header found the back of the net just 38 seconds after Partridge had whistled to resume play.

FC were a step ahead in the tie for the first time, and also a step ahead in their thought process. The third goal followed 17 minutes later, as a training ground free-kick paid dividends. Bonhof spotted the run of Woodcock in the area, who backheeled for Littbarski to fire home. The talented attacker, who had came on for Dieter Prestin just before the break, was showing his worth on the big stage.

Barcelona were out on their feet, but FC wanted more. It wouldn’t have been right had a certain Dieter Müller not got on the scoresheet, and his fine volley from a knockdown header sealed an incredible turnaround and performance from Michels’ men.

There isn’t much time to celebrate, however, as FC play host to Bayer 05 Uerdingen at the weekend. Despite the quick turnaround, the fans can look forward to at least another two games on their European adventures as Michels’ first European tie as head coach leaves them dreaming.


FC Barcelona: Artola – Ramos, Migueli (Martinez 41’), Manolo, Alexanko, Tente Sánchez (Zuviria 13’), Simonsen, Canito, Quini, Asensi, Ramírez.

1. FC Köln: Schumacher – Prestin (Littbarski 41‘), Konopka, Strack, Willmer, Cullmann, Engels, Botteron, Müller, Bonhof, Woodcock.

Goals: 0:1, Strack 41’. 0:2, Engels 46’. 0:3, Littbarski 63’. 0:4, Müller 70’.

Referee: Patrick Partridge (ENG).

Bookings: Manolo (24’), Engels (34’), Bonhof (77’), Alexanco (87’). 

Attendance: 35,000.

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Total table
9TSG 1899 Hoffenheim35
101. FC Köln32
111. FC Union Berlin30