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Redknapp: Chelsea Have Equalled Historic Liverpool Side

International Business Times UK

Liverpool legend Jamie Redknapp has praised Chelsea's remarkable backs-to-the-wall achievement in overcoming Barcelona to reach the Champions League final.

The Blues played for just under an hour with 10 men after John Terry was sent off but battled to a 2-2 draw in the Nou Camp to claim a remarkable 3-2 win.

Chelsea manager Roberto di Matteo said his side's victory over Barcelona was an "incredible achievement" and Sky Sports pundit Redknapp believes Tuesday's result surpasses Liverpool's 2005 Champions League comeback against AC Milan.

"Chelsea's effort deserves comparison... Liverpool won a trophy for their comeback, Chelsea won a place in the final," Redknapp told the Daily Mail

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"But they had 10 men and were playing Barcelona at their place. Chelsea had four shots on target in the two ties and scored three times. 

"Like Liverpool, they seemingly had no chance, but they still triumphed. It was one of the most remarkable games I have seen."

Leading 1-0 from the first leg, Chelsea's hopes looked in serious trouble after goals from Sergio Busquets and Andres Iniesta put Barca ahead either side of Terry's dismissal for violent conduct.

However, Ramires's delightful chip made it 2-2 in the tie - and gave the Blues the lead on away goals - just before half-time and Lionel Messi's penalty miss early in the second half handed the visitors the advantage.

Substitute Fernando Torres ensured Chelsea's place in the final next month with a solo effort in injury time.

"After the Brazilian scored, it gave Chelsea a platform and it offered them hope. Even with 10 men. Even against Lionel Messi and Barcelona," added Redknapp.

"Sometimes as a team the feeling grows that 'it is just our day'. Like Liverpool, who recovered from 3-0 down against AC Milan to win the Champions League in 2005. Who would have thought that possible?"

Meanwhile, Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho has backed Chelsea to beat Bayern Munich in the final after his side lost to the German club on penalties.

Bayern will be aiming for a fifth victory in the competition when the two sides meet at Munich's Allianz Arena on 19 May.

"I obviously want Chelsea to win. They were heroes to beat Barcelona with 10 men," Mourinho told BBC Sport.

"I'm proud of my players and we have to be strong but we were lacking freshness in an enormous game."

Chelsea will make their second appearance in the Champions League final in four years as Roman Abramovich's quest for the trophy continues. Caretaker manager Di Matteo has led an extraordinary turnaround in fortunes since Andre Villas-Boas was sacked by the club at the beginning of March.

The Italian has played down talk he could assume the role on a full-time basis should Chelsea win the Champions League but former boss Avram Grant believes the caretaker manager deserves to stay in charge past the end of the season.

Grant, who was sacked despite taking Chelsea to the 2008 final, said it was hard to forecast Abramovich's decision making process.

"I think Roberto deserves one more year at least but Abramovich sometimes thinks differently," Grant told the BBC.

"He has sacked many managers but until now the football was on the way down and the team was on the way down.

"I think in his eyes the team is on the way up and Di Matteo has a chance to continue."

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