Fan Power: How Fans Helped Teams Win Football Matches

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Whether you've felt that surge of excitement live in a stadium or through a screen, you've tasted the magic that makes football more than just a game: the fans.

In truth, football isn't just a sport; it's like a global party where over 3.5 billion people show up regularly! That's more than half the world cheering for goals in many language translations, celebrating victories, and sharing in the joy of the beautiful game. The noise in South American stadiums, the catchy chants in Europe's finest arenas, the fans are every bit as important to winning a football game as any other factor.

From jaw-dropping comebacks to thrilling victories, we're about to uncover the stories behind how fans can change the game. In this article, we dive into how football fans have helped their teams to win football matches, even against unfavorable odds. 

The Twelfth Man Effect

Football fans are the secret sauce that makes our beloved sport so unique. Their presence is transformative, so much that it can turn a regular stadium into a fortress. When you walk into some of the most iconic stadiums in the world, like the Camp Nou in Barcelona or the San Siro in Milan, the sea of colors, waving flags, and thunderous echoes, are an intimidating force that always sets the stage for memorable encounters.

In the stadium, fans aren't passive observers; they're active participants, and they contribute immensely to the game's energy. For instance, when fans of a home team unite, waving their team's colors and chanting anthems in unison, their collective passion can create an electric atmosphere that can boost the morale of their players and intimidate the opponent.

The fans' ability to impact the outcome of a football match shows one thing: football isn't just a physical contest; it has a psychological side to it. With each football team fielding 11 players each, fans often serve as the twelfth man on the field of play, influencing the outcomes of football matches.

Fan engagement cannot be overlooked when predicting the football outcomes. Even the best football tipsters take fan atmosphere into consideration when making predictions. You can find here well-analyzed tips curated by experts at

List Of Football Matches Where Fans Helped Win

Football has witnessed the power of the twelfth man on many occassions. We've seen underdogs come up with wins in the oddest of circumstances, thanks to ravaging support from the fans. Dramatic twists and turns, late game winners, and total dominance from start to finish, here are some of the most memorable soccer matches where fans played a pivotal role in their team's success.

Liverpool vs. Barcelona (2019 UEFA Champions League 2nd Leg Semifinal)

In a defining moment of football folklore, Liverpool's second leg clash against Barcelona in the 2019 UCL semi final wasn't just one of the most memorable football fixtures; it was a tale of resilience and fan-driven ecstasy. You just had to be at Anfield to witness this one!

The first leg in Barcelona had seen the home team secure a commanding 3-0 lead. Lionel Messi's masterclass, including a stunning freekick goal from 35 yards out left Liverpool seemingly on the brink of elimination. The odds were stacked against a Liverpool side who were to be without two of their most important stars, Mohammed Salah and Roberto Fermino. The bookmakers had Barcelona as the heavy favorites to advance to the UEFA Champions League Finals.

Returning to Anfield, Liverpool faced a huge task to see off an in-form Barça team. However, the night unfolded with an aura of destiny. Divock Origi, stepped into the spotlight and etched his name into football history, first with a crucial early goal that set the tone for what turned out to be a football match for the ages. Origi's goal sparked life at Anfield and the cheers from the home crowd were deafening.

Georginio Wijnaldum added to the drama with a quickfire brace early on in the second half, leveling the aggregate score. Then came the moment that would echo through time – Trent Alexander-Arnold's audacious quick corner that caught Barcelona's defense off guard. Origi again capitalized, scoring Liverpool's fourth goal. The final whistle blew with Anfield erupting in sheer jubilation.

The miracle at Anfield was complete, and Liverpool advanced to the final with a 4-0 victory in the second leg, overcoming a 3-0 deficit. The odds, once against them, were conquered by a combination of extraordinary performances and the unwavering belief radiating from the stands.

Dortmund vs. Malaga (2013 UEFA Champions League)

The UEFA Champions League is no stranger to football drama, and the 2013 quarter final fixture between Borussia Dortmund and Malaga was yet again another page in the history books of the football tournament.

The first leg in Spain had seen Malaga secure a 0-0 draw, setting the stage for a decisive clash at Signal Iduna Park. The odds slightly favored Dortmund, given their home advantage, but the script that unfolded was beyond anyone's imagination.

As the match progressed, Malaga's Joaquin and Eliseu stunned the Dortmund faithful with goals, putting the visitors ahead 2-1. Dortmund, fueled by the impassioned roars of their fans, pressed for a comeback. Marco Reus scored in the 91st minute, offering a glimmer of hope. However, when Eliseu netted in the 92nd minute, it seemed Malaga had sealed their place in the semi-finals.

Yet, the football gods had one more interesting twist in store. In a frenzied finale, Dortmund produced a miraculous turnaround. First, Reus scored again in the 93rd minute. Then, in stoppage time, Felipe Santana bundled the ball over the line amid chaotic scenes, securing a 3-2 victory for Dortmund.

The Signal Iduna Park erupted in euphoria, and the aggregate score ended 3-2 in Dortmund's favor.

Iceland vs. England (Euro 2016)

Iceland's clash against England in the UEFA Euro 2016 Round of 16 remains one of the most memorable football fixtures in the country's history.  The odds were heavily stacked against Iceland as they faced England, a footballing heavyweight, in a knockout encounter. 

The stage was set in Nice, France. Thunderous Viking claps echoed through the stadium as Iceland fans showered unwavering support to their countrymen on the pitch. England took the lead with a penalty in the 4th minute, but the early setback did not deter the Icelanders in the stands. Their cheers paid off as Iceland responded swiftly with an equalizer from Ragnar Sigurdsson in the 6th minute. 

In the 18th minute, Kolbeinn Sigthorsson's found his shot at the back of the net to put Iceland ahead, with echoes erupting from Iceland fans. That goal was enough to seal the deal; the underdogs had triumphed 2-1, sending shockwaves through the footballing world. The smallest country in Europe with little to no pro footballing history had just defeated one of the beautiful game's big powerhouses, thanks in large part to the twelfth man effect.

West Ham vs. Manchester United (2016 English Premier League)

West Ham United bid adieu to Upton Park in 2016 with a clash against Manchester United, and the match is one every fan in the stadium that day would remember for life. Dubbed the "Farewell at Upton Park," this match wasn't just about the pursuit of points; it was rooted in deep sentiment. West Ham fans, known for their passionate support, gathered to bid farewell to their beloved home ground in an atmosphere charged with nostalgia and emotion.

As the referee blew the whistle for kickoff, the fans erupted with loud chants. West Ham wasted no time rewarding their supporters through an early Diafra Sakho goal. The already loud echoes grew louder. Manchester United, who on the other hand were fighting for a top-four finish, responded early in the second half with a goal from Anthony Martial. The French man found himself on the scoresheet yet again to give the visitors the lead.

West Ham fans knew what they had to do; jeer the players on. The last memory of their beloved stadium couldn't be a loss. Four minutes after Martial's brace, Michail Antonio drew the visitors level, and set the stage for a wild ending. 

The match reached its climax in the 80th minute when local hero Winston Reid scored the decisive goal. Upton Park erupted in jubilation, and the collective roar of West Ham fans in the stadium echoed an emotional goodbye.

Leicester City's Title Triumph (2015-2016 English Premier League)

No one in their right mind would have predicted Leicester City to finish at the top of the standings at the start of the 2015-16 EPL season. The Foxes were so far from the best teams in the league, and considered relegation candidates to begin the campaign with a 5000-1 odds of winning arguably the most competitive soccer tournament in the world. But the King Power Stadium proved to be the ground of many lasting memories in Leicester City football. 

The Foxes, backed by a home crowd that dared to believe the impossible, racked up famous wins throughout the season, such as 2-1 win against the defending champions Chelsea and a late winner against Norwich City, inspired by fans at the King Power Stadium.

Credit where credit is due, Leicester City's coach inspired belief in the team, Jamie Vardy went on an historic scoring run, including an eleven-game scoring streak, the likes of N'Golo Kante, Riyahd Mahrez, Harry Maguire, Danny Drinkwater, and Shinji Okazaki all played their hearts out. But the fans were the catalyst that inspired one of the most unprecedented league title runs in football history. 


Even in 2023, the twelfth man effect is evident in football, and continues to contribute to the outcome of a football game. Some fans have built a reputation for their chants and uproars in their home arena, creating a sense of hostility toward opposing teams. Others have simply risen to the occasion to influence the final scoreline. One thing we cannot deny; the support of the fans is pivotal to the success of a football team.