The history of UEFA Champions League

Picture of UEFAChampions League logo
ES
Ernest Sunday

The Champions League is a competitive football tournament that is played between top clubs in the European continent. The cup which formally known as European Champions Cup was found in 1955 and it is organized by the Union of European Football Association (UEFA).

The competition was formally played by 16 clubs which comprises clubs that reached from first to the fourth position in the different domestic leagues in Europe.

The numbers of the teams to qualify from different domestic leagues depends on the how strong the domestic league is, the major leagues in Europe such as the English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, Italian Serie A, and German Bundesliga have four clubs that qualify for the competition. In comparison, in some leagues only three clubs qualify, others two clubs or one club qualifies.

The competition later upgraded to 32 teams in which all teams are divided into eight groups in the group stage with four teams in each group.

The grouping is based on balloting where each clubs picks the teams they will face in the group stage. The draw of the group is held each year at any country the UEFA organizers decide to host it.

At the group stage match ( which comprises 32 teams), the teams in each group will play against its three different opponents two legs away from the homes and at their various home.

After the group stage, only two teams will qualify to the next round of the competition (known as the round of 16). In contrast, the team at the third place will play in the Europa League (the second competition next to the Champions League which is still organized by UEFA).

All teams in Round 16 of the Champions play against a team that they are drawn to play with two legs (home and away). Then after that comes the knockout stage followed by semi-final and final.

The first match of the Champions League took place in 1955 between Sporting CP and Partizan; the game ended in a 3-3 draw with the first goal of the competition coming from Sporting CP's João Baptista Martin.

The final of the tournament was played in France at Parc des Princes between Stade de Reims and Real Madrid with Madrid beating Stade de Reims 4-3. They became the first club to lift the trophy.

Real Madrid went ahead to defend the cup winning the trophy five consecutive times.

2. Real Madrid vs Fiorentina 2-0 Champions League final 1957

3. Real Madrid Vs A.C Milan 3-2 Champions League final 1958

4. Real Madrid vs Stade Reims 2-0 Champions League final 1959

5. Real Madrid vs Eintracht Frankfurt 7-3 at Hampden Park (Glasgow) 1960

At the sixth time of the tournament, the trophy slipped through the hands of the Spanish giant (Real Madrid) when Portuguese club SL Benfica played the final against Barcelona in a 3-2 win at Wankdorf Stadium in 1961.

Benfica went on to defend their trophy by winning it in a second consecutive time against Real Madrid a the final with 5-3 win in 1962.

SL Benfica Vs Barcelona UEFA Champions League final 1961

SL Benfica final champions Vs Real Madrid Champions League Final 1962

The first English team to win the trophy in the history of Champions League was Manchester United in 1967/1968 beating Benfica 4-1 in the final.

Manchester United Vs SL Benfica Champions League final 1967

In general, a number of 22 clubs has won Tue UEFA Champions League trophy with the highest winning coming from Spanish clubs (18) followed by English side (13), Italian side 12, Germany 7 and Netherland 6.

The UEFA Champions League title has been played and won 64 times with Real Madrid the highest to win the cup 13 followed by A.C Milan 7, Liverpool 6, Barcelona and Bayern 5, Ajax 4 and Manchester United 3.

The winner of Champions League in a particular season goes ahead to play UEFA Super Cup final with any team that wins the Europa League title. Currently, the Champions of the UEFA Champions League is Liverpool FC of England in a final played at Rostov Russia.

The match ended 1-0 with the only goal coming from a penalty awarded by the referee in the early minutes of the match. The Champions League has an anthem which was written by Tony Britten a graduate of the Royal College of Music, the title of the anthem being "Champions League ".

The chorus of the anthem contains three different languages English, German and French.

Champions League national anthem Lyrics

Ce sont les meilleures équipes
Es sind die allerbesten Mannschaften
The main event

Die Meister
Die Besten
Les grandes équipes
The champions

Une grande réunion
Eine grosse sportliche Veranstaltung
The main event

Die Meister
Die Besten
Les grandes équipes
The champions

Ils sont les meilleurs
Sie sind die Besten
These are the champions

Die Meister
Die Besten
Les grandes équipes
The champions

Champions League national anthem Lyrics in English

They are the best teams
They are the best teams
The main event
The master
The best
The great teams
The champions
A big meeting
A great sporting event
The main event

The master
The best
The great teams
The champions
They are the best
They are the best
These are the champions
The master
The best
The champions

Champions League anthem

Top five all-time highest scorers of the Champions League

There has been a lot of goals have been scored in the Champions League since its start in 1955. Let look at the top five all-time highest goal scorers of the league.

1. Cristiano Ronaldo 128 goals in 169 appearances

2. Lionel Messi 114 goals in 141 games

3. Raúl González Blanco 71 goals in 142 appearances

4. Roberto Lewandowski 64 goals in 86 appearances

5. Karim Benzima 64 in 119 appearances

Share With Friends