When the champions of Europe’s premier competition plays the winner of its inferior, there can surely only be one outcome.
But Atletico Madrid humbled Chelsea in a night to forget, as 14,312 watched Falcao demolish the Blues to become the fourth Spanish side in a row to lift the trophy.
John Terry missed the match through suspension after his sending off in the Champions League semi-final of last year against Barcelona, and how Chelsea were made to pay.
David Luiz and Gary Cahill made errors of their own, which gifted Atletico Madrid the game before the whistle had even blown to end the first half.
Chelsea target Radamel Falcao showed his £50 million-worth where Chelsea talisman Fernando Torres could not, scoring the first goal in the sixth minute after beautifully chipping the ball past Petr Cech.
The early warning signs had been there from the off as Falcao had hit the bar just minutes earlier, but the early pressure told and Atletico deservedly led, despite the best goal-line efforts from David Luiz.
Former Atletico Madrid man Torres himself had said he would not celebrate if he scored against his old club, but the 28-year-old looked well short compared to his counterpart, who doubled his — and his side’s — tally for the evening just over ten minutes later, with an audacious left-foot curler.
His brace were from outstanding, accomplished finishing, but Chelsea’s defending was far from water-tight, with a lack of communication between the defence and Petr Cech being caught too far off his line.
Chelsea already had a mountain to climb and it looked to get even worse, only for Falcao to be denied his hat-trick goal by the base of the post.
But he did with a minute remaining of the half. Chelsea attacked and the slow legs of Ashley Cole and anchorman Frank Lampard failed to stop Arda Turan advance and Falcao finishing off.
Atletico had pressed remarkably well and despite large shares of the ball, Eden Hazard and Juan Mata’s trickery were few and far between.
Ramires’ deficiencies as a right-winger were further scrutinised and Roberto Di Matteo spared him the blushed by only taking him off at half-time.
His replacement, Oscar, failed to rev up Chelsea’s performance, however, as Atletico opted to contain and defend.
As Chelsea desperately needed a goal to start some momentum, Atletico showed all their set-piece prowess, as three became four when Miranda poked the ball home from a free-kick with Chelsea failed to deal with properly.
Chelsea looked far from the side which prevailed against Barcelona and Bayern Munich; it was a Chelsea performance similar to ones seen under the hapless Andre Villas-Boas, and his successor looked stunned.
Some pride was still there for Gary Cahill, who rifled home what proved to be a consolation for the Blues to stop it becoming one of the heaviest Chelsea defeats for over a decade.
The frame of the goal was to be hit once more, but the woodwork spared a few blushes as Chelsea — who started the campaign in the mix for seven trophies — will look to regroup after the international break.