In the 2011/12 season, Chelsea sacked then-manager Andre Villas Boas and appointed Roberto Di Matteo on a temporary basis with the club struggling in the league.
The Blues finished that Premier League season outside the top four, but still qualified for the Champions League as a result of miraculously holding off both Barcelona and Bayern Munich to lift the title.
Fast forward two years, and Manchester United – for Patrice Evra at least – are in a similar situation.
A disappointing Premier League campaign sees the Red Devils currently in sixth spot, a seemingly unbridgeable seven points behind Arsenal in fourth with just five games remaining.
Whilst Champions League qualification through the league appears a lost cause, David Moyes’ men still remain in Europe’s elite competition and a victory or high score-draw in Munich on Wednesday will see them progress to the semi-finals.
Despite playing poorly in the league, Europe has so far brought the best out of United and Patrice Evra offers an explanation.
“In the Champions League we have played good, we are confident and it looks like we are all up for it more than in the league and in the cup.” He said reported by The Mirror.
“I know it is not professional to say that but it is the truth. We look more like the Man United spirit when we play in the Champions League.”
The French international then drew parallels with Chelsea’s season in 2011/12 and believes his side can replicate the Blues’ heroics:
“It was funny because all season reminded me of the Chelsea season they won the Champions League when they were not playing well in the league.”
“I am not saying we are going to do the same but sometimes you have to be positive, so why not?”