Its format has been considerablyexpanded since then and it now regarded as the premier club footballcompetition in the world.
The tournament began in 1955 as areaction to claims in the British press that Wolverhamptom Wanderswere the 'Champions of the World' after a successful run of wins infriendlies against European competition in the early fifties. Aformal competition began in the season 1955 -56 with teams playingtwo matches Cheap Jeremy Kerley Jersey , home and away to progress to the the next knockoutstage.
Real Madrid soon dispelled Wolves'claim, winning the trophy for the first five years on the trot andReal have since won it nine times in total http://www.sandiegochargersteamonline.com/uchenna-nwosu-jersey , the current record. ButEnglish clubs did come to dominate the competition in the 1970s andearly 1980s when Liverpool won it four times and Nottingham Foresttwice.
A controversial five year ban forEnglish clubs following the Heysel disaster in 1985 ended thatdominance and it was not until Manchester United won the competitionin 1999 for the second time that English clubs would again come outon top.
Overall, Italian clubs have the bestrecord with 12 wins and 14 runners-up http://www.indianapoliscoltsteamonline.com/braden-smith-jersey , Spain are next with 12 winsand 9 runners-up, whilst English clubs have 11 winners. Germany andHolland share six winners each.
Nowadays Cheap Harold Landry Jersey , the format of the tournamenthas greatly expanded such that the strongest European Leagues provideas many as four entrants.
There are several preliminary roundsprior to the round robin group stages with the top teams in eachgroup progressing to a two leg knockout stage progressing to theshowcase final. Italy's Internazional are the current UEFAChampions League holders having beaten Germany's Bayern Munich 2 聳0 in the 2010 final.