On This Day in Football History – April 12: Ronaldo Makes History, Kylian Mbappé Arrives & More

​Happy Easter to one and all! 

If you’re not currently in the process of peeling potatoes or preparing all the trimmings for what is surely set to be a monstrous Easter dinner, then why not delve into the football history books for a short while?

As we’ve already seen with these daily dives into football folklore, plenty of iconic moments have taken place on certain days in the calendar, and 12 April is no different.

Here’s your daily dose.

Cristiano Ronaldo Nets 100th Goal in European Competitions

With a title that reads ‘Ronaldo Makes History’, you’re not to be blamed for pondering which particular record it is he’d broken, simply because he’s broken a tonne of them. 

This particular one, however, was him becoming the first player in history to score 100 goals in European competitions. This utterly stupendous feat was achieved in one of football’s most daunting environments too, the Allianz Arena, back in 2017.

Arturo Vidal’s 25th-minute opener had Bayern Munich leading during the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final clash with Real Madrid, but ​Cristiano Ronaldo turned the tie on its head with a second-half brace. The goals brought him up to 97 Champions League strikes, but 100 overall.

​Real would famously go on to lift the trophy that season, but what is most surprising of all, is that those two goals ended an 11-hour personal drought in the competition.

Milan vs Inter Abandoned Due to Crowd Trouble

A firebrigader collects fireworks as Int

And not just any Milan derby, but a ​Champions League quarter-final second leg in 2005. ​AC Milan had been leading the tie 1-0 from the first leg, and while also leading 1-0 in the second, the game was brought to an abrupt end after 73 minutes.

​Inter fans threw flares and bottles, one striking the Milan goalkeeper Dida, prompting referee Markus Merk to stop the game just one minute after it had been restarted when Inter fans continued to throw flares into the Milan penalty area.

Crowd trouble had begun after 70 minutes when the German official disallowed a goal by Esteban Cambiasso for one of the soppiest calls you’ll ever see in the competition. Firefighters were called to the scene due to the sheer volume of flares, with a ten-minute stoppage taking place while Dida received treatment. He was replaced by Christian Abbiati, but with persistent trouble, Merk brought the game to a halt.

As a result, Milan were handed a 3-0 win for the match and progressed to the next round.

First FA Cup Semi-Final Played on Sunday

Yes, believe it or not, that wasn’t actually a thing before 1987.

The first such event took place 33 years ago today, when Leeds took on Coventry at Hillsborough. It was a humdinger of a game too, with the Sky Blues edging past their Yorkshire opponents 3-2 after extra time.

David Rennie opened the scoring for Leeds only for Micky Gynn to level matters. Leeds then went back in front through Keith Edwards’ strike, but goals from Keith Houchen and David Bennett settled the affair on a famous day in the competition. 

Don’t you miss neutral venues for FA Cup semi-finals? I sure do.

Yeovil Town Promoted to Football League

Many teams have achieved promotion to the Football League over the years, but when it’s the first time in your club’s history to do so, the feeling is extra special.

Just ask supporters of Yeovil Town, who secured their place in the fourth tier of English football on the day they beat Doncaster Rovers 4-0 in 2003.

That season was their 107th in existence, and while their promotion was already confirmed before kick-off after Chester’s draw in the afternoon, it was nevertheless a special occasion and one that the club and town will cherish forever.

Manchester City Reach UCL Semi-Finals

It may have been ​Kevin De Bruyne’s fine curling strike that won them the tie, but there were no doubts over who was the man of the match at the Etihad four years ago. With the tie level at 2-2 from the first leg of ​City’s Champions League quarter-final clash with Paris Saint-Germain, Joe Hart produced a string of fine saves to keep the score at 0-0, with the Belgian midfielder going on to do the business at the other end of the pitch.

​Sergio Aguero had missed a first-half penalty to crank up the nerves on the night, but a sumptuous 76th minute strike from De Bruyne left PSG needing to score twice in order to progress.

It was an engrossing clash, but in the end, it was Manuel Pellegrini’s side who emerged victorious, booking their spot in the semi-finals for the first time in the club’s history.

A narrow defeat to eventual winners Madrid would follow in the next round.

Arsenal Edge Past Wigan in FA Cup Semi-Final

Chasing their first piece of silverware in nine years, ​Arsenal scraped past Wigan in their FA Cup semi-final via a nervy penalty shootout. Jordi Gomez’s spot kick had put the Lancashire side on course to reach successive FA Cup finals, but a late Per Mertesacker equaliser took the match to extra time.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain had hit the woodwork in the added 30 minutes, Yaya Sanogoals….*cough*, sorry, Yaya Sanogo had two efforts saved, but the sides could not be separated as penalties would decide the tie.

Lukasz Fabianski was the hero for Arsenal, denying Gary Caldwell and Jack Collison from Wigan’s first two strikes. After the Gunners scored their first three, it was left to Santi Cazorla to score the winner and send one half of Wembley into delirium.

Kylian Mbappé Announces Himself to the World

While everyone was fairly well aware of just how good ​​Kylian Mbappé was back in 2017, he truly announced himself on the European stage during Monaco’s run to the Champions League semi-finals in 2017.

However, just before that, Mbappé scored twice during the first leg of their tie with ​Borussia Dortmund to become the second youngest player in Champions League history to score in a quarter-final – aged 18 years, three months and 23 days. Who is the youngest? Bojan Krkic, of course. But you already knew that.

He also bagged another in the second leg and remains the teenager with the most goals scored during the Champions League knockout stages.

For more from Ross Kennerley, follow him on Twitter! 


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