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Monday, December 04, 2006

Top 10 European Football Clubs

Europe is the place for football. It’s not that Europeans are the most passionate supporters of football or even they do not produce the greatest players but they have the richest clubs. So, they naturally get the best players from around the world to play for them. Actually, world football is dominated with some 20-25 European clubs. You can see matches of English Premier League and Spanish league live in over 100 countries of the world.
Here, I have made a list of the top ten European Football clubs. If you do not agree with my list, you can always leave a comment.

Real Madrid

Real Madrid is the Spain based European club which has the best record in the history of club football in Europe. The club was named as the 20th century’s best club according to Fifa. With record 9 time European title, the club also won the country’s La Liga title for 29 times. The club was founded in 1902. The first initiative of founding a football club in Madrid was taken by the professors and students of the Institución Libre de Enseñanza. Some Oxbridge Graduates also contributed with them to build a football club in Madrid. A club named Football Sky was founded in 1895 but just after 5 years of founding, the club was divided into two new clubs- New Foot-Ball de Madrid and Español de Madrid. Later on, in 1902 the Español de Madrid was also divided into two more new clubs and Sociedad Madrid FC was of the tow. This Sociedad Madrid FC is now known as Real Madrid FC.

Real Madrid got its major successes under the presidency of Santiago Bernabéu Yeste, who was also the first-team captain and club maintenance, first-team manager and director. After becoming President in 1945, he developed in every sector of the administration of the club which gave the first idea of today’s modern club. He is also dubbed as one of the first torch bearers of today’s UEFA Champions’ league, the highest competition of European club football. After constricting the administration of the club, he went for recruiting some popular and talented players from abroad. It is also said that he could first present a true multinational team in the international football with the inclusion of some legendary figure of Real Madrid such as Alfredo Di Stéfano, Francisco Gento, Luis Molowny, Miguel Muñoz, Raymond Kopa, Héctor Rial, Ferenc Puskás, Amancio, Santillana, Juanito, Uli Stielike, Vicente Del Bosque, José Antonio Camacho. He was the club’s president for 35 years. The home stadium of Real Madrid is named Santiago Bernabéu stadium.
The club got different nick names in different times. Earlier, the club was known as los merengues and then los blancos, which indicated the clubs traditional all white strip and very recently the club is known as los galácticos because of the club’s strategy of including star players. Presently, some famous names playing for the club are Ronaldo, David Beckham, Roberto Carlos, Robinho, Cannavaro, Raul, Iker Casillas etc.

AC Milan

Ac Milan is another successful European club in its history. This Italian club has many successful and notable records and titles in both domestic and European club football. AC Milan won 6 UEFA Champions League titles, only second to Real Madrid. With its 17 Serie A titles, the club holds the second position in terms of Domestic league title. The club also grabbed 5 Copa Italia (Italian Cup). The club was founded by a British, Alfred Edwards, in 1899. Milan’s traditional jersey was made off with red and black vertical stripe and the away jersey is fully white jersey. The clubs home stadium is San Siro which is also used by Inter Minal, another leading football club in Italy based in Milan. The club is preparing to make their new stadium with all modern systems. The Milan derby played between Inter Milan and AC Milan get the most competitive derby in Europe. Maldini, Kafu, Dida, Kaka, Filippo Inzaghi etc are some of the club’s present stars in the world football. Among the previous stars of the club Gunnar Nordahl, Andrei Shevchenko, Paolo Rossi, Roberto Ayala etc. are very famous in the history of the club.

Liverpool FC

Liverpool FC is the five time winner of the UEFA Champions league which is highest for any English club. The club is based on Liverpool, England. The club has achieved many successes in both domestic as well as European league. Liverpool is considered as the most successful English club with its 7 FA Cup and Seven League cup titles. The club was founded by John Houlding in 1892. The club has seen some of the legendary figures in the club’s century-long history. Among the former players Ephraim Longworth, Elisha Scott, Gordon Hodgson, Ron Yeats, Roger Hunt, Alan Hansen, Kenny Dalglish, Ian Rush, Steve McManaman, Robbie Fowler and Michael Owen etc. The club is preparing to build its new stadium. Steven Gerrard is the present captain of the team. "You'll Never Walk Alone" is the popular song among the club fans.

Manchester United

Manchester United is another famous and traditional football club based on Manchester, England. The club has won 2 UEFA Champions League titles and Premier league for 15 times as well as FA Cup for 11 times which made the club one of the most successful and famous clubs in the history of English Football. Initially the club was founded as Newton Heath F.C. in 1878 and in 1902, the club was taken by J H Davies while the Newton Health F.C. was at the verge of being bankrupts. Mr. Davies changed the name into Manchester United. The club found it smost successful season in 1998-99 when they won all the three prestigious tournaments including Premier League, FA Cup and UEFA Champions League. The clubs most famous and notable players are Bobby Charlton, David Beckham, John Aston etc.

FC Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich is the most famous and successful German club in the history of German football. The club could win 4 UEFA Champions league, 20 national championships and 13 German Cups. The club also won 2 Intercontinental cups. Munich based this club has a long tradition of football. Allianz Arena is the home stadium of the Bayern Munich. This stadium is one of the renowned stadiums of present time. The club was founded by the members of the Munich Gymnastics club in 1900. Some of its big figures who also played for German teams are Franz Beckenbauer, Gerd Müller, Sepp Maier ect. Roy Makaay, Oliver Kahn, Likas Podoloski are famous players presently playing for the club.

F.C. Internazionale Milano

Internazionale Milano is well known as Inter Milan, one of the successful and famous clubs in Italian Serie A league. The club won 2 UEFA Champions League titles. A group of Italian and Swiss founded this club in 1908. The club has a strong rivalry with A.C. Milan and the derby between the two clubs is one of the greatest attractions of European football. Roberto Baggio is one of the most famous legendary figures of the club. Francesco Toldo, Luis Figo are some of the present stars of the club

FC Barcelona

Barcelona is the current champion of the Spanish La Liga and UEFA Champions league. No doubt, they are the leading club in the Europe at present. The club has a good tradition too. It won 3 UEFA Champions League titles. The clubs home stadium is known as Camp Nou at Barcelona. This Spanish club was founded by Joan Gamper in 1899. Barcelona won 18 La Liga titles and 4 UEFA Cup titles. Some promising and talented players like Ronaldinho, Messi, Eto made the club top among the other European teams at present. Johan Cruyff is considered as the most talented and greatest figure ever played for the club.

Chelsea F.C.

Chelsea is another leading European club at present. This English club has got some outstanding titles over the last two years. They are the Champion of English Premier League for the last two years. The club was founded in 1905. After the Russian millionaire Roman Abramovich bought the most of the club share and invested a huge amount of money for recruiting some famous and star players of present time, the club has started going up word. Ashley Cole, Frank Lampard are now playing for Chelsea.

Arsenal F.C:
Arsenal is a top English Club. It is very successful in home but has not seen decent amount level of success in European competition. For the last 18 seasons, Arsenal has perhaps the best consistent performance in English Premier League and FA Cup. The current squad of the club has a healthy combination of youth and experience. Captain
Thierry Henry is surely one of the top 5 footballers in the world and he was the highest scorer in English Premier League for Arsenal during 2001-02, 2003-04, 2004-05, 2005-06 seasons.
In English Premier League, it holds a lot of records. I am quoting from the Wikipedia article on the club:
“Arsenal have also set records in English football, most notably the most consecutive seasons spent in the top flight (80 as of 2006-07) and the longest run of unbeaten League matches (49 between May 2003 and October 2004). This included all 38 matches of the 2003–04 season, making Arsenal only the second club ever to finish a top-flight campaign unbeaten, after Preston North End (who played only 22 matches) in 1888–89.

Arsenal also set a UEFA Champions League record during the 2005-06 season by going ten matches without conceding a goal, beating the previous best of seven set by A.C. Milan. They went a record total stretch of 995 minutes without letting an opponent score; the streak finally ended in the final against Barcelona, when Samuel Eto'o scored Barcelona's equaliser in the 76th minute.”

It was famous for being a boring but successful club because of its defensive style of playing. However, under the current manager, Arsène Wenger, Arsenal has transformed into one of the attractive clubs in Europe.

PSV Eindhoven

PSV Eindhoven is a very famous and successful club in Holland. It has won the Dutch League for 19 seasons and also Dutch Cup 8 times. It also won European Cup and UEFA Cup one time each. In UEFA Champions League tournament, it is considered to be a good performing team. Many famous world class players have played in this team in the past. According to the Wikipedia article on this club:
“PSV garnered many honours in the football arena and has been credited as the club where many successful players such as Ruud Gullit, Ronald Koeman, Mateja Kežman, Romário, Ronaldo, Luc Nilis, Philip Cocu, Erik Gerets, Jaap Stam, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Arjen Robben plied their trade and talents. Its success was built on the foundations laid down by other famous players like Willy van der Kuijlen, Jan van Beveren, Jan Poortvliet, the Van de Kerkhof brothers who also played for the Dutch national team and Huub Stevens in the 1970s where the club won the UEFA Cup in 1978, defeating Bastia 3-0 in the final.”

Well, the sad part is that many players take the club as a stop gap. They first come to the club and shine and then go into another richer club in Europe.


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  3. Anonymous5:48 AM

    Should there be a Salary Cap in Football?
    Personally I think there should be! It’s just getting to be stupid money in football at the top of the premiership!
    It’s always the same teams at the top proving that football success is based purely on money which ruins the idea of it being a sport! They’ve done it in rugby, basketball, hockey and American football and it makes the sports more competitive and better to watch!
    I do a little Spread Betting from time to time and most matches don’t hold much surprise who is going to win, its boring! I want to see a team at the bottom pulling off an amazing season beating last seasons winners in a close fought battle!
    Make things fair! It shouldn’t be about money!
    All there is all that money in the premiership and barely any of it stays in the UK so it’s not even helping the economy!
    From my Spread Betting, if I ever win big (which is never, I’m unlucky) it’s still nothing compared to the average premiership players weekly wage!
    This Rant was brought to you by Spread Betting Spike. 

  4. Anonymous1:05 AM

    Top Ten Historical Euprean Football Clubs?
    1-Manchester United
    2-FC Barcelona
    9-Sporting Lisbon

  5. Anonymous7:46 AM

    3-Manchester Utd
    8-Man city
    9-Hannover 99
    10-Schakle 04


  6. Anonymous8:09 PM

    BARCELONA #1 (by FAR) and the rest ...

    Real,Man U, Chelsea, Arsinal, Liverpool, Juventus,Ac and inter milan, and if only value history ; Nottingham Forest

  7. Anonymous7:37 PM

    1.AC Milan
    2.Real Madrid
    5.Manchester United
    7.Inter Milan

  8. Anonymous5:42 AM

    Where is Ajax?