Who tops the all-time European Cup rankings?

Who are the best teams in the history of Europe's top club competition? Who has won the most games and scored the most goals in the European Cup and UEFA Champions League? Find out here.

Real Madrid have won the UEFA Champions League three times in the past four seasons
Real Madrid have won the UEFA Champions League three times in the past four seasons ©AFP/Getty Images

When it comes to Europe's top club competition, Real Madrid are some way out in front: as well as having won the most trophies, they have played, won, drawn and lost more games than any other side, as well as scoring and conceding more goals.

They have played in 48 editions of the European Cup and UEFA Champions League in total – 11 more than their closest rivals Benfica – and their total of 416 games in the elite competition is fully 89 more than the second-ranked team, Bayern, who have played 327.

Top 30 clubs (1955-2017)

Club Part Titles Pld W D L F A
1. Real Madrid (ESP) 48 12 416 249 73 94 926 449
2. Bayern (GER) 34 5 327 188 67 72 652 328
3. Barcelona (ESP) 28 5 294 173 66 55 586 283
4. Man Utd (ENG) 27 3 267 150 64 53 495 251
5. Juventus (ITA) 32 2 257 128 66 63 406 248
6. AC Milan (ITA) 28 7 249 125 64 60 416 231
7. Benfica (POR) 37 2 242 108 55 79 393 274
8. Porto (POR) 32 2 231 103 55 73 341 253
9. Liverpool (ENG) 22 5 189 105 44 40 351 162
10. Arsenal (ENG) 21 0 201 101 43 57 332 218
11. Dynamo Kyiv (UKR) 34 0 227 96 49 82 326 275
12. Ajax (NED) 34 4 199 87 53 59 302 224
13. Celtic (SCO) 32 1 200 93 33 74 297 239
14. Inter Milan (ITA) 19 3 166 82 44 40 239 161
15. Chelsea (ENG) 15 1 158 80 45 33 273 138
16. Anderlecht (BEL) 34 0 200 70 44 86 282 320
17. Rangers (SCO) 30 0 161 62 40 59 232 218
18. PSV (NED) 26 1 167 61 39 67 215 205
19. Atlético (ESP) 13 0 119 60 32 27 181 104
20. Galatasaray (TUR) 24 0 163 56 40 67 207 250
21. Dortmund (GER) 16 1 130 62 26 42 227 166
22. Lyon (FRA) 16 0 130 60 29 41 205 148
23. FCSB (ROU) 26 1 145 52 41 52 203 204
24. Panathinaikos (GRE) 28 0 157 49 45 63 182 214
25. Olympiacos (GRE) 31 0 160 56 30 74 191 250
26. Sparta Praha (CZE) 27 0 142 53 30 59 186 196
27. Valencia (ESP) 11 0 114 52 31 31 172 109
28. Crvena zvezda (SRB) 23 1 112 57 20 35 223 144
29. Rosenborg (NOR) 23 0 140 52 29 59 204 220
30. Paris Saint-Germain (FRA) 11 0 94 51 19 24 183 107

In the course of all those matches, Madrid have averaged 2.23 goals per game – none of the other sides in the top 30 have averaged more than two. However, their impressive average of 1.08 goals conceded per game is not a record: of the top ten sides, Barcelona (0.96), Juventus (0.96) and Man. United (0.94) have all conceded at a lower rate, while Liverpool (0.86) have the best defensive record of all of the highest fliers.

Tenth-ranked Arsenal, meanwhile, hold the unusual distinction of being the highest-ranked side never to have laid hands on the European Cup, while Dynamo Kyiv (11th) are the highest-positioned side never to have played in a European Cup or UEFA Champions League final.

1980 final highlights: Nottingham Forest 1-0 Hamburg
1980 final highlights: Nottingham Forest 1-0 Hamburg

Madrid have averaged a trophy for every 34.67 games they play – a better record than any side in the top 30, but not as good as those of 1982 winners Aston Villa (one trophy in 15 games) or Nottingham Forest (two trophies in 20 games – one every ten European Cup matches). Since teams must now play at least 13 games to win a the UEFA Champions League trophy, Forest's record is effectively unbeatable – provided they never qualify for Europe again and snarl up their average.

Upcoming milestones

By the end of the season we could see:
• Madrid's 250th win in Europe's top club competition (currently on 249)
• Barcelona's 300th European Cup/#UCL game (current total: 294), and Paris's 100th (current total: 94) – the second leg of the semi-final if they reach it.
• United's 500th European Cup/#UCL goal (current total: 495)

Last 16 standing

The top five in our list are all in this season's UEFA Champions League round of 16, but only four more sides from the top 30 have made it to the knockout phase: Porto, Liverpool, Chelsea and Paris. Shakhtar (31), Basel (33) and Roma (40) are also in the top 50, with Beşiktaş (51), Manchester City (58) and Sevilla (67) not far off. Tottenham (83) are thus the lowest-ranked side in this season's last 16.

Legend

Pos: position; Part: number of UCL seasons; Pld: played; W: wins; D: draws; L: losses; F: goals for; A: goals against

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