Milan held a star-studded reunion this evening to mark 10 years since they beat Liverpool in the Champions League Final.
The 2-1 triumph in Athens on May 23, 2007 was remembered at the Magna Pars hotel in Milan tonight, where most of that squad got together for a special dinner.
Among the participants were Paolo Maldini, Pippo Inzaghi, Clarence Seedorf, Cristian Brocchi, Gennaro Gattuso, Massimo Ambrosini, Massimo Oddo, Alessandro Costacurta, Marco Storari, Marek Jankulovski, Serginho, Nelson Dida, Valerio Fiori, Dario Simic, Giuseppe Favalli and Daniele Tognaccini.
“I was in bad shape going into that Final and probably didn’t deserve to play. I had half a thigh strain,” Inzaghi told Milan TV.
“I don’t know how I managed to play. It was agonising for me to be in that Final and not be at 100 per cent, but I managed to score two goals. Without doubt it was the most wonderful moment of my career.”
Former CEO Adriano Galliani was also present, while Ricky Kaka managed to participate from Orlando via Facetime.
“We often meet up, but to have everyone all together is a real pleasure. I am seeing my friends again,” Seedorf told Milan TV.
“I don’t remember just one moment of that Final, but the whole season. Great success doesn’t arrive from one day to the next, as we were real men to unite after initial difficulties to reach the Final. We created a winning group.”
This was the third Champions League lifted by captain Maldini.
“Perhaps that was the most unexpected victory, as until that moment the season wasn’t exactly brilliant,” said the legend.
“Nobody believed in us around January. I started to spread the hope, as I knew it would be my last chance. We hit form at the right time, in the Round of 16, and from there it was a march on to Liverpool, as we never did swallow that defeat two years earlier.
“I generally don’t like to dwell on the past, but it’s great to see so many friends and go over our times together, both on the field and off it.”
Serginho pointed out the importance of the same squad beating Liverpool two years after the shock defeat in Istanbul, where they fumbled a 3-0 lead and lost on penalties.
“The world of football gave us the chance to make up for it against Liverpool. That Final in Istanbul couldn’t be our last. It was a game we had in our pockets and somehow lost.”
“It was the greatest moment of my career,” Jankulovski told Milan TV. “It was unique for a kid from the Czech Republic to arrive at Milan, play a Champions League Final and win it. That stays with you for life. It felt like a family there.”
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