The Ten Most Decorated Football Clubs to Ever Exist

Most Decorated Football Clubs

Just last week, a group of Europe’s so called ‘biggest clubs’ joined forces to create the European Super League. Whilst they may on paper be the best teams in world football over the past decade or so, that doesn’t necessarily mean they are the most decorated football clubs to ever exist. There are plenty of teams who have won many more trophies than the ESL crowd.

Ten Most Decorated Football Clubs in History

10. Porto – 77

Porto were founded in 1893 and won their first Primeira Liga title 41 years later. They had only won five league titles until 1977, since enjoying a period of dominance in Portugal, boasting a grand total of 29 first division titles. They even went invincible twice, in the 2010/11 and 2012/13 seasons.

Porto have also won a whole host of cup competitions, including 21 domestic cups, and 22 Portuguese Super Cups. They have also won two Europa Leagues (back in the UEFA cup days) as well as two Champions Leagues, the second of which was won by a young Jose Mourinho.

Porto caused a shock when they knocked out Juventus in this season’s Champions League, before being undone by Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea. They will need a miracle if they are going to win a 30th league title this season, as Sporting Lisbon lie six points clear with just five games remaining.

9. Olympiacos – 78

Olympiacos are undoubtedly the kings of Greek football. They have won a record 46 league titles, nearly half of the total titles. Their first came in the 1930/31 season, just six years after being founded, and have only failed to win four of the previous 25 league titles. The Piraeus-based club have also won 32 national cups, another record.

Perhaps surprisingly, given their trophy-laden history, Olympiacos have never enjoyed success in Europe. Their best finish in the Champions League came in the 1998/99 season when they reached the quarter-final stage.

With four games left, Olympiacos have already claimed the 2020/21 Super League Greece title. They have a chance to add even more silverware when they play in the Greek Cup Final in May.

8.Benfica – 83

Benfica just edge the battle of Portugal’s most successful clubs, with six more trophies to their name over rivals Porto. Their honours include a record 37 Primeira Liga titles. The first of these came in 1936, and 14 of them came across the 60s and 70s. Perhaps a coincidence that Eusebio played for them during this time?

Benfica have also won two European Cups, in 1961 and 1962. They were the team to knock Real Madrid, who had won all of the first five editions, off of their perch. However, they have lost all eight of the European finals they have played in since.

This season’s Primeira Liga is all but over for Benfica, who are now focusing on Champions League qualification. Benfica take on Braga in the Taca de Portugal final in May, hoping to win their 84th trophy.

7. Real Madrid – 91

At last, one of the 12 best teams in the world make it onto the list. Los Blancos were founded in 1902, and won their first La Liga title in 1934. They also added a record 34th league title last season. Real Madrid have also won 19 Copa del Reys, and have 11 Spanish Super Cups to their name.

Everyone knows about Madrid’s unmatched European success. No one has won the Champions League more than the 13 times the famous white shirts have lifted it. Not only did they complete a hat-trick under Zidane, but they also won each of the first five editions of the competition.

Madrid are involved in an intense four-way battle for this season’s La Liga title. Just four points separate first and fourth currently. In addition, there is all to play for in their Champions League semi-final second leg against Chelsea, with the home leg finishing 1-1.

6. Barcelona – 92

With their recent Copa del Rey win over Athletic Bilbao, Barcelona have now overtaken their rivals and top Spain’s ranking of successful football clubs. That win marked their 31st Copa del Rey since they were founded in 1899. Barca have also lifted La Liga 26 times. The first came in 1929, whilst 16 of those League titles have come since 1990.

Their European collection doesn’t quite compare to their competitive rivals. They still boast an impressive five Champions Leagues, winning their first in 1992. Pep Guardiola guided them to two Champions Leagues, in 2009 and 2011, under the famous brand of tiki-taka football.

Barcelona’s current season may well be Lionel Messi’s last at the Nou Camp. Messi’s contract expires this summer, but before then, he will hope to lead his side to La Liga glory once more, with Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, and Sevilla providing stiff competition.

5. Penarol – 108

Of course, football clubs do exist outside of Europe, some of which have been extremely successful. Based in Montevideo in Uruguay, Penarol are one of five teams to have won a century of trophies. In fact, they are so successful, that in 2009 they were voted the South American Club of the Century.

Penarol have had their name engraved on the Primera Division title just the 52 times throughout their history. They are also the third most successful side in Copa Libertadores history. They have won the esteemed competition five times, most recently in 1987.

Penarol finished third in the 2020 division, with their most recent title coming in 2018. The next season starts on 8th May, and Penarol will be hoping to add a 53rd title to their name.

4. Celtic – 111

The famed green-and-white hoops of Celtic have a proud history since the club was formed in 1887. Their first Scottish League title came all the way back in 1892, and they now have a total of 51 to their name. They have enjoyed a period of dominance over rivals Rangers this century, winning 15 of a potential 21 titles.

Celtic have also won 40 Scottish Cups, and a further 19 League Cups. In addition, they lifted the European Cup in 1967, in a season in which they won every competition they entered. In doing so, they became the first British club to win the Champions League.

This season has been one to forget for Celtic. They will end the season trophy-less, and have been overshadowed by their Old Firm rivals.

3. Nacional – 114

Somehow, despite their 108 trophies, Penarol are not the most successful side in Uruguay. Or even in Montevideo! That record goes to their city rivals Nacional, who boast just six more pieces of silverware. Their first Primera Division title came in 1902, and last season they added their 48th.

Nacional do not have the bragging rights over Penarol when it comes to the Copa Libertadores; they have won the competition three times. Their overall lead over Penarol comes thanks to success in various cup competitions.

Nacional start their title defence in May and hope to make it a hat-trick of Primera Division titles. Penarol will look to stop them in their tracks, in a bid to make up ground in their fierce personal rivalry.

2. Rangers – 116

Look away now Celtic fans; Rangers still hold the lead over their city rivals, despite going ten years without any silverware after going into liquidation in 2012. Before then, Rangers had won 54 Scottish league titles, the first coming in 1891.

The Gers have also won a combined 60 Scottish Cups and Scottish League Cups. Unlike Celtic, they have no Champions League or even Europa Leagues to their name. They did however win the 1971/72 European Cup Winner’s Cup.

Steven Gerrard has written himself into the history books by guiding Rangers to their 55th league title this season. Just three games remain this season; avoid defeats and Rangers will secure a historic invincible season.

1. Al Ahly -119

Taking the crown as the most successful football club in the world is Egypt’s Al-Ahly. Based in Cairo, they have won 42 of a possible 61 Egyptian Premier League titles. Al-Ahly have also lifted 37 Egypt Cups in their 114-year history, as well as 11 Super Cups.

Al-Ahly are also the most decorated side in the history of the CAF Champions League. They have won the competition nine times, most recently in 2020.

Al-Ahly are on an impressive run of five consecutive league titles. Midway through the current season though, they are in a two-way battle with rivals Zamalek. It will be interesting to see how long they can keep the top spot in the most successful football clubs.

 

Main Photo

Embed from Getty Images