Juan Mata and Fernando Torres added their names to the history books as they both scored in the Euro 2012 final to secure an incredible double, becoming champions of Europe with club and country in the space of six unbelievable weeks.

No Chelsea supporter will need reminding why 2012 was a special year in our history. The club’s first-ever Champions League triumph in Munich meant seven of our players then travelled to Poland and Ukraine with the chance to achieve something which had only happened twice before anywhere – being crowned a European champion at club and international level in the same year.

That number was originally supposed to be nine, due to our heavy contingent in the England squad, only for Frank Lampard and Gary Cahill to both be forced to withdraw after picking up injuries in the build-up to the tournament.

Blues at Euro 2012

Czech Republic
Petr Cech

Ashley Cole
John Terry

Florent Malouda

Raul Meireles

Juan Mata
Fernando Torres

There were still plenty of Blues dreaming of a place in history, though, hoping to replicate the feat of Luis Suarez (Inter Milan and Spain) in 1964 and the Netherlands’ PSV quarter in 1988. Nobody had won the Euros and the Champions League since the latter was reformed in 1992. Could a Chelsea player be the first?

Of course they could, or more accurately, two of them! While Chelsea’s Champions League triumph surprised some, the Spain side featuring Fernando Torres and Juan Mata were heavy favourites, going into Euro 2012 as the defending European and world champions. By winning again they also made another piece of history, as the first team ever to win three consecutive major tournaments, including a World Cup.

The Spaniards were strong favourites heading into the tournament and underlined why in the second game, as Torres took his tally for his country to 30 goals by netting a brace in a 4-0 thrashing of the Republic of Ireland, as Spain subsequently cruised into the knockout rounds.

In fact, every Chelsea player at the tournament successfully navigated the group stage and five of the seven did so as group winners. That was all the more impressive given our English and French players were in the same group, while Raul Meireles’ Portugal came second in the now obligatory 'group of death', where all four sides were in the top 10 of the FIFA world rankings.

The luck of the draw soon began to whittle down our numbers at the tournament as the Blues’ representatives repeatedly knocked each other out. Of the seven players from Chelsea in Poland and Ukraine, the only ones to be eliminated by a side which did not include a Chelsea team-mate were England duo Ashley Cole and John Terry, following their shoot-out defeat to Italy.

That started in the quarter-finals, when a brilliant performance from Petr Cech wasn’t enough to prevent the Czech Republic’s 1-0 defeat to Portugal, before Spain continued their march to the final with a 2-0 win over Florent Malouda’s France.

Next was a rare test of Spain’s credentials, as Meireles and Portugal held them to a goalless draw over 120 minutes of semi-final action in Donetsk, but the holders were not to be denied and held their nerve from the penalty spot to book their place in yet another final, this time against Italy.

The two sides had drawn 1-1 in their opening group game of the tournament, but Spain faced no such difficulty this time around. They were already 2-0 up on the Italians when their pair of Chelsea players were given a chance to make an impact off the bench, and they didn’t disappoint.

First Torres calmly slotted Xavi’s through-ball past Gianluigi Buffon to become the first person score in two European Championship finals, having also got the only goal when Spain beat Germany 1-0 four years earlier in Vienna.

That pulled the Chelsea striker level in an unlikely six-way tie at the top of scoring charts in the race for the tournament’s Golden Boot, with only Torres and Italy’s Mario Balotelli able to add to their tallies in what remained of the final.

That fact made what happened next all the more impressive. When Torres was played in a second time, it presented him with a great chance to go clear at the top of the charts. Instead, having spotted the supporting run of his good friend and Blues team-mate Mata, he cleverly laid the ball off for Juan to get a goal of his own in the Euro 2012 final.

As it turned out, Torres still ended up with the Golden Ball under his arm, in addition to a winner’s medal around his neck, even though it took four months for him to actually receive the trophy.

Balotelli was unable to score a consolation as Spain triumphed 4-0, and the UEFA statisticians eventually deemed the award should go to Fernando due to having played less minutes than Mario Gomez, the only other of the top scorers to have also registered an assist.

For Torres and Mata, victory in Kyiv capped an incredible six months, during which the Blues had come back from a shaky first half of the season to win the Champions League in dramatic circumstances under the guidance of then-interim head coach Roberto Di Matteo.

Everyone remembers Torres’ goal at Barcelona in the semi-finals, and he was the one who chased a lost cause to win the corner for our equaliser against Bayern Munich in the final.

Mata played an important role in our European triumph himself, with a crucial away goal against Napoli and his assist for that same equaliser in Munich, his contribution highlighted by being named Chelsea’s 2012 Player of the Year.

We'll give the last word to Mata, who looking back on the glorious conclusion of his first season with the Blues over a decade later, still seemed to be pinching himself.

‘Fernando was in the same situation as me,’ said Juan. ‘It was an incredible time and we felt so lucky in 2012 to have been able to win the FA Cup, then the Champions League, then the Euros with Spain, with both of us scoring in the final.

‘It was an incredible two or three months. Probably it was the best summer of my life. To keep winning again and again is the hardest thing. With time you get to realise how difficult it is to do something like that in a playing career.

‘If you win one of those trophies it is already a lot, so having the chance to win those trophies all together, it’s like a dream. We were riding a wave – of positivity, of good football and especially of good results. It was incredible.’