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UEFA Champions League 2017-18: Most decorated European teams


UEFA Champions League logoUEFA Champions League was originally called European Cup and was established in 1955. This is not to say that this was the first time European clubs competed against their counter-parts from other countries. It is actually possible to trace international competitions back to 1897 when the Challenge Cup was founded. From there on there had been several attempts to making an international club tournament, but because of the unsteady political climate in Europe at the time, which led to two wars, all these attempts were unsuccessful. That was until 1955. Now let us look at the most successful sides ever since.
 
1. Real Madrid

Having won a total of 12 titles, the Spanish club is by far the most decorated one in Europe. They are also the only team to have won a European trophy more than ten times. They started out by winning the European Cup five times in a row, from 1955 to 1960. The team was led by stars like Ferenc Puskas and Alfredo Di Stefano, who at the time were quite superior to the rest of Europe. The team then won again in 1966, before having a 32-year-long dry spell, until finally winning the trophy again in 1998. From there on they won the trophy in 2000, 2002, 2014, 2016 and 2017. Last year they became the first team to win the tournament back to back, since its switch from European Cup to Champions League.
 
2. AC Milan

AC Milan is the second most decorated football club in international club competi-tions, having won the most prestigious European cup a total of 7 times and being runners-up 4 times. Their most recent trophy came back in 2007 and their first in-ternational trophy was secured in 1963. Despite being second on the list and the fact that they have been a powerhouse for many years in European football, the Italian club has recently been on decline, having trouble qualifying for European football in recent years.
 
3. FC Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich comes in on a strong third place, edging out by Barcelona by the number of times they have been runners-up. Both Bayern and Barcelona have won the cup 5 times, but Bayern have been in the finals a total of ten times, whereas Bar-celona “only” participated in eight finals.  Bayern won their first European Cup in 1974 and then completed a hat-trick by winning it in 1975 and 1976. The mid 1970s team was led by a number of stars. Many will remember names like Gerd Müller, Franz Beckenbauer and Sepp Maier. Furthermore, Uli Hoeness, the sitting president of the club, was also a part of this team. The team then won again in 2001 and in 2013, which is also their most recent win.
 
4. FC Barcelona

As mentioned earlier, Barcelona have won a total of five titles in what is Champions League these days. Surprisingly for some, Barcelona did not win a European cham-pionship until 1992. It also meant that they became the last team to win the cup known as European Cup. They beat out Sampdoria in the final under the leadership of Johan Cruyff, which also made Cruyff one of three to win the cup both as a player and a coach. Since then, they have won 4 titles in 2006, 2009, 2011 and 2015. Which in large part is due to Lionel Messi, who has been a massive factor in recent years.
 
5. Liverpool FC

The first English team on the list is Liverpool FC. This is in large part to the late 1970 and early 1980s team. They won a total of four titles during a span of seven years. Quite impressive. In general this was a strong English period, where teams like Not-tingham Forest and Aston Villa won the title, too. Their most recent win came in 2005, in a legendary final against AC Milan, where Liverpool managed to win, despite being down three goals after the first half.
 
This marks the end of the list: a list highly dominated by history. In total, Spain has been the most winning nation with a total of 17 titles, all between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona. England and Italy both have a total of 12 wins and Germany have sev-en wins in total. 


2018-05-01


Physical attributes

acceleration
agility
balance
jumping
pace
reactions
stamina
strength
reflexes

Technical attributes

ball control
corners
crossing
dribbling
finishing
free kicks
heading
long throws
marking
penalties
shooting accuracy
shooting power
slide tackle
stand tackle
technique
volleys
aerial control
diving
handling
kicking
one on ones
off the area
penalty saving

Mental attributes

adaptability
anticipation
aggression
composure
concentration
consistency
creativity
decisions
determination
leadership
positioning
vision
tactical awareness
teamwork
work rate
communication
eccentricity
positioning in the line
punching
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