Thomas Muller looked to have sealed the trophy for a largely dominant Bayern when his header put the Bundesliga outfit ahead in the 84th minute.
But Didier Drogba hauled the Blues back into the game when he emphatically headed home Juan Mata’s corner in the 89th minute to send the final into extra-time.
Former Chelsea winger Arjen Robben missed a penalty in the first half of extra-time before Drogba stroked home the winning spot-kick in the shootout to seal a 4-3 win on penalties and hand the Blues their first European crown.
“Football, and life, is sometimes unpredictable and crazy,” said a jubilant Di Matteo.
“I don’t think anyone could have predicted this. We’ve had a difficult season and to finish off like this is incredible.
“I’m very happy for the players, they’ve worked so hard for this for so long.”
Di Matteo heaped praise on Drogba, who netted Chelsea’s equaliser in normal time, before the 34-year-old scored the decisive spot-kick in the shoot-out.
“[Drogba] has been a fantastic servant for this club over eight years and brought a lot of success but we focus on the group and it was a great effort from all the players”, added Di Matteo.
“Ashley Cole was immense, also Frank Lampard and Petr Cech – to be able to pull off this victory took a big team effort.”
The 41-year-old’s future at Chelsea is still uncertain, but the interim manager admitted his delight at creating history with the Blues and helping to make up for the heartache of losing to Manchester United in the final four years ago.
“I don’t know what the future holds but we are very happy to have made history for the club,” Di Matteo said.
“It’s the first time we’ve won this competition and it’s been very difficult. The club was very close four years ago and I think the players thought they would reach the final again.
“It’s a difficult competition to win and you have to take your chances when they come along.
“This makes a huge difference for the future of our club. We always said it was crucial to be involved
in the Champions League.
“Winning tonight qualifies us for next season’s competition so it’s a double whammy in a positive sense.”
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