Real Madrid’s first big historical comeback was against Derby County in the last-16 of the 1975/76 European Cup. Madrid won the return leg in the Bernabéu 5-1, ensuring they would progress, something which looked highly unlikely after they had lost the first leg 4-1.
Derby County-Real Madrid. Last-16 of the European Cup (1975/1976)
In the first leg, played on 22 October 1975 at Derby’s Baseball Ground, the performance of the home team’s forwards George, with three goals, and Nish, with another, made it hard for Madrid to progress as they went into the second leg 4-1 behind. Pirri scored the Madrid goal which kept their hopes alive for the match in the Santiago Bernabéu.
4- Derby County: Boulton, Todd, Thomas, Mc Farland, Nish, Newton, Rioch, Gemmill, Hector (Bourne, 79'), Lee y George (Davies, 79').
1 -Real Madrid: Miguel Ángel, Sol, Camacho, Rubiñán, Pirri, Velázquez, Amancio, Breitner, Del Bosque, Netzer y Roberto Martínez.
1-0 (min. 10): George.
2-0 (min. 15): George.
2-1 (min. 25): Pirri.
3-1 (min. 43): Nish.
4-1 (min. 76): George.
The return leg took place on 5 November of the same year. Real Madrid managed the impossible in the Santiago Bernabéu, beating the English team 5-1 in extra time. A spectacular come-back to reach the quarter finals of the European Cup. At half time Madrid were just in front after a second-minute goal by Roberto Martínez. In an incredible start to the second half, Madrid scored two more goals. Roberto Martínez, again, in the 50th minute and Santillana in the 54th made it 3-0. However, George made it 3-1 six minutes later (60’), forcing the home team to score at least one goal to level the contest. With five minutes left, Pirri scored Real Madrid’s fourth, putting the match into extra time. In extra time, Santillana put Madrid through in the 100’.
5- Real Madrid: Miguel Ángel, Sol, Camacho, Benito, Pirri, Del Bosque, Netzer, Breitner, Amancio (Rubiñán, 95'), Santillana, Roberto Martínez.
1- Derby County: Boulton, Thomas, Nish, Mc Farland, Powell, Todd, Gemmill, Héctor (Bourne, 78') (Hinton, 102'), Newton, Davies, George.
1-0 (min. 2): R. Martínez.
2-0 (min. 50): R. Martínez.
3-0 (min. 54): Santillana.
3-1 (min. 60): George.
4-1 (min. 85): Pirri.
5-1 (min. 100): Santillana.