No accident: How Real Madrid became the first super club

1956-european-cup-final-alfredo-di-stefano-for-real-madrid-v-reims

AS THE UEFA Champions League marks the 60th anniversary of its first final, Game of the People looks at how the competition proved to be the catalyst for the creation of Europe’s first super club.

Real Madrid and the UEFA Champions League are indelibly linked and always will be. Ten times winners of the competition – in its various guises – Real will, for the time being at least, hold a trump card over their national and international rivals, Barcelona.

The fact that half of those 10 victories were achieved before Barcelona had not allowed regional priorities to cloud their judgement says plenty about the determination of Real to become Europe’s first dominant force. It has as much to do with politics as it has with the game itself.

Doing the continental

The idea of a pan-European competition had first been mooted in the 1920s, but the lack of the…

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