European Champions Cup

European Champions Cup. Two well known teams met at the final – the current Cup holder AC Milan and Benfica, which was hoping once again to restore the glory of the 1960s. Benfica reached the final after impressive run of 7 wins and only 1 lost match, but they had lucky draws too: Derry City (Ireland) 2-1 and 4-0, Honved (Hungary) 2-0 and 7-0, Dnepr (USSR) 1-0 and 3-0, and in the ½ finals Olympique Marseille (France) 1-2 and 1-0. Milan had it tougher: HJK Helsinki (Finland) 4-0 and 1-0, Real Madrid (Spain) 2-0 and 0-1, KV Mechelen (Belgium) 0-0 and 2-0 after extra time, and finally Bayern (West Germany) 1-0 and 1-2 after extra time. At the end, away goals brought both opponents to the big final in Vienna (Austria). Both teams in full strength and equally ambitious made for rather tough final in which Frank Rijkard shined.

He was everywhere
Defending, organizing, and attacking, outshining his equally famed teammates Gullit and van Basten.
And in the 68th minute Rijkard crowned his performance by scoring the goal, which happened to be the whole difference at the final whistle between winners and losers.
AC Milan (0) 1 SL Benfica (0) 0
68′ 1-0 M: Rijkaard

AC Milan (trainer Sacchi): G.Galli; Tassotti, Costacurta, Baresi, Maldini; Colombo (F.Galli 89),
Rijkaard, Ancelotti (Massaro 72), Evani; Gullit, Van Basten
SL Benfica (trainer Eriksson): Silvino; Jose Carlos, Aldair, Ricardo, Samuel; Vitor Paneira (Vata 76),
Valdo, Thern, Hernani; Magnusson, Pacheco (Brito 66)
Referee: Kohl (Austria)
Thanks to Rijkard, Franco Baresi received the European Champions Cup

One more triumph for the best team in the world.
European champions two years in a row!

One can be sorry for Benfica – once again they came close to triumph and once again they were beaten. Great coach – Sven Goran Eriksson (Sweden) – and impressive squad featuring along with Portuguese top players Brazilian stars Ricardo, Aldair, and Valdo, plus Swedish best Thern and Magnusson. Yet, Benfica permitted a goal in its net and failed to score… There was no consolation, only grieve and cursing the ‘Bela Gutmann curse’.
Hardly a need to introduce the winners – Arrigo Sacchi made excellent team, led by the great Dutch trio Gullit-van Basten-Rijkard. Compared to Benfica, Milan had more class and was a team at its peak. So much talent provided for different players taking a key role in particular games – this time, it was Frank Rijkard and Milan repeated its success of 1989. Not only that, but Milan climbed to number 2 most successful European club, collecting their 4th European Champions Cup. Now they shared second place with Liverpool, but looked like the Italians not only will come ahead of the English, but will challenge and perhaps overcome the great record of Real Madrid.