Real Madrid had become the first team in the UEFA Champion League (UCL) era to retain the title emulating the last team that ever did it the great AC Milan team under Arrigo Sacchi. They also had left other club trailing in the European Trophy medal count as now Real Madrid had 12 European titles under their name. The second most successful team AC Milan has only 7 European titles. But the question how does Real Madrid achievement ranks in term of other clubs achievement in the world. Here is the list of the great achievement by other clubs and where do Real Madrid ranks in this list. In this list, the achievement of this club will take a long time to broken as all the team in this list had made a nearly impossible achievement.
Steaua Bucharest unbeaten run.
Under the leadership of Emerich Jenei and Anghel Iordănescu, Steaua had become the first Eastern European team that had won the UEFA European club when they had defeated Barcelona in 1986 final via a penalty shootout where the Hero of Seville their goalkeeper Helmuth Robert Duckadam had made an impressive 3 saves in the penalty shootout against Barcelona. They also had added the European Super Cup and had reached the semi-final in 1987 competition and reached the final again in 1989 but were trashed by AC Milan side in the final. But they had achieved an unbeaten streak that still stands until today. They were unbeaten in 104 games spanning from t from June 1986 until September 1989. A quite impressive unbeaten record that still stands until present and maybe will be unbeaten for a long time.
Barcelona winning 6 trophies in 2009.
Barcelona under their former player and former Barcelona B Coach Pep Guardiola had been appointed as Barcelona manager replacing Frank Rijkaard. His first mission he removed all the primadonna player like Ronaldinho, Deco, Rafael Marquez and much more and had recalled Gerrard Pique, promote Sergio Busquets, bought Dani Alves from Sevilla, had made Thierry Henry and Samuel Eto’o to stay and finally he had made Messi become the world best player by changing his training style. The results Barcelona had introduced the tiki-taka style and with a combination of pressuring Barcelona had won all the Primera Liga, Copa Del Rey, and the UCL in this year and become the first Spanish team to achieve the treble. They are more to come as they had won the Spanish Super Cup, UEFA Super Cup and finally the FIFA Club World Cup and become the first team to win 6 trophies in a single year and won all the competition that they had entered.
Bayern Munich winning 3 in a row.
Since Eintracht Frankfurt had been trashed mercilessly by Real Madrid in the 1960 final no German team had reached the final of the UCL again until Bayern Munich did it in 1974. With the player like Franz Beckenbauer, Gerd Muller, Sepp Maier, and much more they had achieved an impressive feat by winning the title 3 years in a row from 1974 until 1976 and they had become the last team to achieve this feat in UCL.
Liverpool Domination Domestic and Europe in 70’s and 80’s
Rarely that we have a team in the world club football history that had dominated in the domestic and European competition and Liverpool just did that in their golden days in 70’s and 80’s. Under the foundation set by Bill Shankly, Bob Paisley had made Liverpool one of the best team in England and in Europe. During this period, they had won 2 UEFA Cup and 4 European titles with the 2 consecutive times in 1977 and 1978 becoming the first English team to did so and at the one stage, they are the second most successful team in term of European trophy after Real Madrid before it was overtaken by AC Milan. During this period, too they had won a staggering 11 League title and 3 FA Cup winners medal before they went on a downward spiral since the last title in 1990.
Nottingham Forest winning 2 in a row.
Under Brian Clough, Nottingham Forest was a second division team in 1975 but he did a great transformation for the team where in 1977 they were promoted to the first division of the English football and in 1978 become the first division champion breaking Liverpool dominance and in 1979 and 1980 they had become the European champion. Quite a special achievement as until now, Nottingham Forest is the only team that had more European medal than the domestic title. From second division to 2 times European Champion in the span of 4 years is an achievement that will take a great manager to achieve it.
The Lisbon Lion become the first British team to win UCL
Tottenham Hotspur becomes the first British team to win a UEFA club competition when they had won the UEFA Cup Winners Cup in 1963 and the feat had emulated by West Ham United when they had won the title in 1965 but the British club is still finding for their first winners in holy grail the UCL. Celtic under Jock Stein had done that when they had won the UCL in 1967 and become the first British team to win and until now they are the only Scottish club to had won the title. This achievement had impressed Bill Shankly and he had said that “Jock you are immortal now”. But not only that they also had become the first team to win 5 trophies by winning the Scottish League, Scottish Cup, Scottish League Cup and the UCL. Jock had done it with playing a beautiful attacking football and with all Scottish player in this team.
Independiente Incredible Record in Copa Libertadores.
The only South America club in the list Independiente had made an incredible achievement in the Copa Libertadores. Until now they are the only team that had won the Copa Libertadores 4 in a row from 1972 to 1975 and in 1973 they also had won the Intercontinental Cup. Until now they are only 2 teams in Copa Libertadores who had kept the trophy permanently as the other team is Estudiantes. For Copa Libertadores, a team must win the trophy 3 consecutive times in order to keep the trophy permanently. Independiente also has another record they had reached the final 7 times and winning all of them.
Manchester United knocked out Liverpool as the most successful team in England.
When Sir Alex Ferguson had been appointed as Manchester United manager they are far behind in the league title as Manchester United only had 7 and Liverpool had 18 but with the mixture of youth, winning mentality of Sir Alex Ferguson, changing the team at the right time and buying the right player, Manchester United had stormed back to replace Liverpool by winning 13 titles and totally knocked out Liverpool with 20 titles. Not only that he had achieved something that Liverpool had not done during their glory day as he had won the league title 3 consecutive time twice in 1999 to 2001 and also 2006 to 2009, become the first English team to win the treble, become the first English team to win the Intercontinental Cup and also FIFA Club World Cup, and were undefeated in UCL for 2 seasons.
Real Madrid conquering Europe.
Real Madrid and UCL is like inseparable. First, they had won the UCL for 5 consecutive times from 1955 to 1960 and had won the cup again in 1966 making it 6 times. They are the only team in Europe that had fulfilled 2 criteria of keeping the trophy permanently as they had won 3 consecutive times and 5 times making them keep 2 old original trophies with them. In the late 90’s they had won the trophy 3 times in 5 years in 1998, 2000 and 2002 and winning 3 trophies in 4 years in 2014, 2016 and 2017. They also the first team to retain the title in UCL era. Real Madrid is truly a legendary club that had become a dream for every player and managers.
Ajax Amsterdam introduced Total Football.
Although Real Madrid had conquered Europe, they did not dominate in the domestic like Liverpool in 70’s and 80’s. They had bought the best player and do not have youth player or all Spanish in their team like the Celtic Lisbon Lion and, they didn’t innovate or introduced to the world any football style. The team that had done all of this is the Ajax Amsterdam team in 70’s which also had introduced the famous Total Football style. They had produced an attacking football, swagger, arrogance, outrageous offside trap, flexibility and positional interchange of each player to the world. No European team had done that since. With this style, they had won the Eredivisie title in 1970, 1972, and 1973 scoring 100 and more goals each time and in Europe, they won the title 3 consecutive time from 1971 to 1973. In the final of 1972 and 1973, they had beaten the Italian team Internazionale and Juventus with attacking style that had described by the Italian media as the death for catenaccio. They also had become the first European to win the treble in 1972 by winning the European Cup, Eredivisie, and KNVB Cup. They also had won the Intercontinental Cup in 1972 making it 4 trophies. They had nearly won the treble again in 1973 but were beaten in the KNVB final.
Real Madrid may have won more European title but the style, swagger, attacking style and total domination done by Ajax in Europe and the domestic front was the greatest feat by a football club team all the time. They had won with most of the players comes from Ajax youth system, a style that is still talked until today and an attacking style that had become the inspiration for most of the current player and the current manager. Ajax truly had the greatest achievement in the world football and it will take a special team to emulate this feat.