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Real Madrid's greatest European Cup games

As ten-time winners Real Madrid celebrate 60 years of playing in the European Cup, UEFA.com recalls the club's five finest performances in the competition.

Alfredo Di Stéfano opens the scoring in the 1960 European Cup final
Alfredo Di Stéfano opens the scoring in the 1960 European Cup final ©Popperfoto/Getty Images

On 8 September 1955, Real Madrid played their first ever game in the European Cup, a 2-0 win away to Swiss side Servette that set them on the path to glory.

It is a road they have seldom deviated from since. Over the subsequent six decades the Merengues have contested the trophy 45 times, reaching 13 finals and winning it on an unprecedented ten occasions.

To commemorate this special 60-year anniversary, we select five of Madrid's best performances in Europe's elite competition from their 384 games.

13/06/56: Madrid crowned first winners

Real Madrid 4-3 Stade de Reims, 13/06/1956 
Madrid started building their legend in this, the first European Cup final. They were 2-0 down after ten minutes in Paris, but quickly pulled level through Alfredo Di Stéfano and Héctor Rial. Reims restored their lead on the hour, but Marquitos equalised and Rial hit the winner with 11 minutes left. "Lifting the European Cup after so many games gave us immense joy," said winger Paco Gento. The start of a beautiful relationship.

Real Madrid 3-2 AC Milan, 28/05/1958 
After a goalless first half, the Italian side led 1-0 and 2-1, but Rial came to Madrid's rescue once again to send the final into extra time and Gento sealed it in the 107th minute. "It was the most difficult game I played in the competition," Gento recalled. "My team-mates said to me, 'Paco, you are the only one who can win this game', because I was playing very well. Luckily enough I netted the decisive goal."

18/05/60: Hampden’s goal rush

Real Madrid 7-3 Eintracht Frankfurt, 18/05/1960 
Widely regarded as the competition's greatest final. Eintracht demolished Rangers to reach their first decider, but were given a heavy dose of their own medicine at Hampden Park. Ferenc Puskás scored four goals and Di Stéfano got the other three as Madrid stormed to victory, leaving the 127,000 spectators in a trance. One member of crowd was certainly hooked: a 19-year-old by the name of Alex Ferguson.

Real Madrid 3-0 Valencia, 24/05/2000 
There have not been many occasions when Madrid have been second favourites, but this was certainly one of them after only finishing fifth in the Liga. Vicente del Bosque tore up the form book, with Fernando Morientes, Steve McManaman and Raúl González all on target. Success, it seems, really does breed success, with captain Fernando Hierro citing Madrid's 1998 triumph as the foundation for victory.

©AFP/Getty Images

Bayern München 0-4 Real Madrid, 29/04/2014 
After 11 finals without Madrid, the Merengues brought memories of past dominance flooding back with a majestic semi-final performance against the holders in Germany. Leading 1-0 after the first leg, two Sergio Ramos headers and Cristiano Ronaldo's 15th and 16th goals of the UEFA Champions League season settled matters. "This was a magnificent performance," said Ramos. There were not many disagreeing with him.