Ranked! Every team to have won the Champions League from the worst to the very best
First, a Champions League-size caveat: any team to have won this competition is, clearly, pretty damn good. You don't get to the position of competing for, let alone winning, the big-eared trophy without being a fine football side.
However not all winners are made equal. So Michael Yokhin has set out to rate and rank the cream of European club football since 1992. Factored in is the quality of the team, performances throughout the tournament (not just in the final), the entertainment they offered - and how memorable their achievement was.
It still didn't make the process much easier. Although selecting the side in last place was a simple choice...
24. Marseille (1993)
Marseille were a magnificent team, with Didier Deschamps leading by example in midfield, Abedi Pele adding improvisation, while German veteran Rudi Voller starred alongside the young Croat Alen Boksic in attack. Their 1-0 win over heavy favourites Milan in the first ever Champions League final was richly deserved, Basile Boli scoring with a glorious header – but they still were not rightful winners.
This team was born in sin. The infamous Valenciennes affair eventually stripped Marseille of their French league title of 1992/93, as owner Bernard Tapie had gone to great lengths to try to fix a match so his side could wrap up the league early, avoid injury and have plenty of rest before the Champions League final. Marseille should have been stripped of this title too, and they don't really belong on this list at all.
23. Chelsea (2012)
Chelsea were one of the most surprising winners, and neutral fans usually love such scenarios, but the Blues weren't overly popular. Their style was too defensive, and some might say that they were lucky under Roberto Di Matteo. The Italian managed to outfox a dominant Barcelona in the semi-finals, then proceeded to frustrate Bayern Munich in the final at their own Allianz Arena.
A patched-up Chelsea were out-gunned 35-9 on shots attempts, but managed to draw 1-1 thanks to Didier Drogba's late equaliser. Arjen Robben could have won it in extra time with a penalty, but it was saved and the Blues won the eventual shoot-out.
Petr Cech deserves a statue for his heroics, but the irony is that Chelsea had far stronger teams which narrowly failed to win this trophy - only to win it at last in one of their weakest seasons.
22. Milan (2003)
With Andrea Pirlo, Clarence Seedorf, Rui Costa, Filippo Inzaghi and Andriy Shevchenko in their ranks, it is especially disappointing that this Milan side played such boring football at times. They are partly responsible for the only goalless draw in the history of Champions League finals so far, after a drab affair against a Pavel Nedved-less Juventus at Old Trafford.
Overall, Milan scored only four goals across five knockout matches, having bagged just five in six at the second group stage. Carlo Ancelotti was delighted to win the first title in his coaching career, but more impressive triumphs were to follow - for coach and club.
21. Porto (2004)
This remarkable success turned Jose Mourinho into the Special One, but Porto rode their luck on the way to lifting the trophy. The last-minute equaliser by Costinha at Old Trafford in the second leg of the last 16 was preceded by Paul Scholes wrongly having a goal disallowed. In the semi-finals, Deportivo La Coruna were superior to the Portuguese side but couldn't find the net over the 180 minutes and lost 1-0.
Eventually, Mourinho’s side faced equally inexperienced Monaco in the final, and won 3-0 thanks to a brilliant exhibition of counter-attacking football. Deco and Maniche were masterful in midfield, but overall Porto were one of the less attractive and entertaining winners.