The 20 “Most Important” Football Clubs In The World


Ian began writing Twohundredpercent in May 2006. He lives in Brighton. He has also written for, amongst others, Pitch Invasion, FC Business Magazine, The Score, When Saturday Comes, Stand Against Modern Football and The Football Supporter. Ian was the first winner of the Socrates Award For Not Being Dead Yet at the 2010 NOPA awards for football bloggers.

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120 Responses

  1. Michael says:

    As important as a fourth division Italian club is that hasn’t won a title in 95 years (despite their importance of being Italy’s first club) and the bicycle kick is to the game, I would argue for another club as its replacement: Liverpool FC.

    Qualifications (good and bad)
    England’s most successful football club and most trophies in English football (5 European Cup titles, 3 UEFA Cup titles, 18 league titles, 7 FA Cup titles)
    5 league tiles in 7 years (1940-1947) and 4 European cups in 8 years (1977-1984)
    5 year ban of English clubs from UEFA competition due to involvement in Heysel Stadium disaster, one of the worst cases of hooliganism in world football
    Hillsborough Stadium Disaster, whose 96 deaths led to the removal of standing terraces and stand barriers from English football stadiums

  2. Michael Wood says:

    I cannot believe you missed Melchester Rovers off the list.

  3. Paul Grech says:

    In reality, it is all a bit academical: for each one of us the most important club is the one that he or she follows.

  4. Darwen FC: the two players were signed from Partick FC not Partick Thistle FC.

  5. Chris Taylor says:

    I would arguely that FC United’s NWCL win (and beyond) was more important than any pan-Continental, Penarol, trophy win.

    Wrongly, like. But I’d still argue it.

    The real top twenty:

    1. My lot.
    2. Kris Stewart’s lot.
    3. Your lot.
    4. Let them eat cake.

  6. Dave says:

    What about Blackburn Olympic? They won the 1883 FA Cup and so ended the dominance of the public schools; from then on, the latter were in decline and the force in the land was the northern industrial teams who would buy and pay players and play a passing game influenced by the Scots.

    You’re right that Darwen were a bigger team (indeed, Olympic also won the East Lancashire Cup against Darwen the same year and considered that result a far better and more important one (as did the punters – the attendance was greater) but the version of football represented by them triumphed when Olympic won the Cup.

    Olympic represented the artisans of the town, and after one more hurrah the following year, soon collapsed; Rovers represented the middle classes and professionals and could pay more, and the club’s best players were poached.

  7. Linda says:

    Nice to see Darwen FC there after all their problems. We are the town’s online news source and we have followed every step of their troubles. Happy to report following all publicity that crowd numbers are up after dwindling to just a handful over the years.

  8. Martin Drake says:

    I’d have Brian Lomax’s Northampton Town instead of the Enfield Town quitters myself ;o)

  9. Jon Bon Blade says:

    What about Sheffield United..? I know they’re rubbish, they always have been rubbish and, more than likely, they always will be rubbish, but they are the team I support. I can only speak for myself, so any list of ‘most important’ teams will always have The Blades at number one..!

  10. Rusty Blade - Rotherham says:

    I think they missed “United” from between Sheffield and FC for number 1.

  11. Ron Merlin says:

    Great to see Enfield Town there rather than the new Wombles. Excellent!

  12. Tim Standbrook says:

    Great to hear the boys are back home in (near?) Southbury Road.

    Back to the glory days before the club was trashed, I have a photo of my brother and me holding the FA Amateur Trophy that Enfield won in 1967 against Skelmersdale. The boys shared an evening at the Cambridge pub, Edmonton (on the Great Cambridge Roundabout, North Circular Rd – sadly now an underpass), with one of the best Tottenham sides there ever was that won the FA Cup in May 1967, and we had the two cups in the same bar. May the glory days return! OK – maybe next season.

    Incidentally – how about Tottenham – the only ever non-league side to win the FA Cup – 1901 (and the first side to win the double – 1961)? Bring on 2011.

  13. admin says:

    Tim: Enfield Town have entered (or are entering) into an agreement with the local council to redevelop the QE2 Athletics Stadium, on the other side of the playing fields to the old Southbury Road site. I wasn’t born until several years after 1967, so I can’t claim to remember that – I was at the 1982 and 1988 FA Trophy finals, though.

  14. Dan Clough says:

    Great tp see some recognition for Darwen FC here in a good article. It’s been tough for them recently, having only just avoided liquidation. It’s nice to see someone looking back to the days when football was made, up north where it all matters ;-p

    To add to Dave’s point – Rovers almost folded when Olympic won the 1883 FA Cup. They went on to win it three times in a row, however, and the rest is history. SUPER ROVERS!

  15. CTT says:

    Wot no West Auckland Town?

    And us instead of bloody Exeter, surely?

  16. Iain Waugh says:

    What about the might Aston Villa? Our Director William McGregor founded the English Football League in 1888, have won it along with the FA Cup 7 times, and of course are one of the few to have won a European Cup.

    Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, Arsenal and Chelsea fans.

  17. Peter Taylor says:

    I would imagine that Preston North End(1889) & Aston Villa(1895)followers would be fairly upset at the suggestion that Spurs were the first tean to achieve the “double”.

  18. john hunter says:

    manchester united are obviously the most important club, anybody who thinks differently is in denial

  19. Breno says:

    Damm man..this list sucks. ok. sheffield can be the most but..flamengo an basket case?? come on.ask liverpool about it….the team with more supporters in the whole world..and you forgot Santos FC.. this team has won everything when Pelé played there

  20. AC says:

    Obviously every list has arguable ins and outs and different favourites or bias but how on earth did Marseille get in there? Each of the rest at least gets a line or two to justify it but Marseille appear ot have 50,000 fans and used to have CHris Waddle on the teamsheet!

  21. Jai says:

    Mohan Bagan—-definitely dis team is missing here….

  22. Mark says:

    Rangers FC – the world’s most successful club.

  23. Jack says:

    Celtic were crowned European champions after a heroic 2-1 win over Inter Milan, when a team managed by Jock Stein, all born within 30 miles of Glasgow. Although other teams may have won the European cup, no other have done it with a fully home grown team. Worth a mention. Glasgow is the real home of football!

  24. Goose says:

    What about Rangers ? Surely being Scottish champions a world record 52 times deserves to be mentioned ?
    I agree also with Jack’s comment that Glasgow is the TRUE home of football !!!

  25. Justin says:

    Interesting list. But Boca Juniors didn’t really give el Diego to the world. Argentinos Juniors produced him, and he played 5 full years there before going to Boca for one solitary season.

  26. ecky says:


  27. WOLVES FAN says:

    wot aload of tosh the only club on that list that didn’t buy manipulate or cheat anybody was the Mighty Wolves!!1

  28. Mark says:

    What about Sheffield Wednesday for being a laughing stock TEE HEE

  29. Dan Airey says:


    Founder members of the Football League in 1888

    Founder members of the FA Premier League in 1992

    First club to be presented with the League Championship trophy

    First club to present medals for winning the Championship

    First club to play officially in Blue and White (1901)

    First club to stage an FA Cup final 1894, Notts County v Bolton Wanderers

    First club on Merseyside to win the FA Cup 1906

    First club to go on an overseas football tour

    First club to construct a purpose built football stadium

    First club to have a four-sided stadium with two tier stands

    First club to have a stadium with a three tier stand

    First club to issue a regular match programme for home fixtures

    First club to have a player (William Ralph Dean) score 60 league goals

    First club to wear numbered shirts from 1-11 (1933 FA Cup final)

    First club to have a church attached to its stadium

    First club to install dugouts

    First club to install undersoil heating

    First club to win a penalty shootout in the European Cup 1970 v Borussia Moenchengladbach

    First club to play 4000 top-flight games

    First club to amass 5000 League points

    First club to play 100 seasons in the top-flight

    First club to stage a World Cup semi-final in Britain

    First club to have the youngest Premiership goalscorer in two consecutive seasons with two different players

    First club to pay a £100,000 transfer fee when Alan Ball moved from Blackpool in 1966.

    First club to be featured in a TV game in August 1936 v Arsenal. Not live (pre-recorded).

    First club to have scoreboard half time/full time facility

    First club to have its own podcast

    First club to have its own online social networking site.

    First club to sell tickets via text message.

    First club to use nets

  30. David says:

    Where Are Celtic Fc? First British Team To Win The European Cup.

  31. bluebells lanzarote says:

    Glasgow Rangers are officially the most successful club side in world football. First club to reach over 100 major honors.
    This is surely worth a mention. W.A.T.P

  32. scottandbryanreadinpish says:

    First (AND ONLY) club in the WORLD to win 52 League Titles!!! EVER!!! Glasgow Rangers – WATP!!

  33. doing the bouncy stevie fae oz says:

    the figures don’t lie,man who? liverpool,chelsea,arsenalmbarca real madrid the list goes on with brilliant clubs even that other mob but we all know that GLASGOW RANGERS ARE SIMPLY THE BEST , you all just got to deal with it ,and we also have the best old firm derby in the world no questions about it,glasgow is the home of football.

  34. doing the bouncy stevie fae oz says:


  35. doing the bouncy stevie fae oz says:

    the figures don’t lie,man who? liverpool,chelsea,arsenal,barca real madrid the list goes on with brilliant clubs even that other mob but we all know that GLASGOW RANGERS ARE SIMPLY THE BEST , you all just got to deal with it ,and we also have the best old firm derby in the world no questions about it,glasgow is the home of football.

  36. Andrew says:

    AEK ATHENS BY FAR…WHY? For 3 reasons (the 3rd one is the real important one

    1) It’s the Big Club of the Greek Refugees of Constantinopole (istanbul) along with paok…The badge of the team is the two headed eagle symbol of the Byzantine Empire…so you have the symbol (it’s not a random badge with a ball and a crown for example)

    2) It’s a Club that has won 12 HEROIC Greek Championships against the dictatoric duo of Panathinaikos and Olympiacos (they control almost everything in Greek sports)

    3)7/4/1999 Serbia , NATO’s bombing, one club breaking into the bombings and playing a friendly match against Partizan

    Thank you

  37. Andrew says:

    Football is not only contracts – signings – money – sponsors

    On that Last Video Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople
    (he is like the Pope of the Orthodox World) says AEK is mostly an idea and ideas never die…

    If you have the mood and the patience check out these videos..
    (oh and just for the record..even though panathinaikos is the most “succesfull” greek club in europe, AEK Athens is the only Greek club to have participated in the quarter-final round of all three European competitions at least once,AEK Athens is the only Greek club to have reached the semi-final of the UEFA Cup (1976-77).
    AEK Athens is the only Greek club to have participated in the Champions League without losing a single game (2002-03).

    Thanks for the hospitality of this site

  38. Dylan Brown says:

    Rangers FC, Most successful club in the world, 111 major trophy wins

  39. jay says:


  40. tombo says:

    Are there any site rules?

    The only thing that we ask is that you keep the comments decent and that you disagree with us (which you are more than welcome to do), you keep your criticism constructive. Abusive messages will be deleted without appearing on the site and this extract from the site FAQ will appear in place of them, so you may as well not bother.

  41. rangers founded 1872 won 53 league titles world record also counting all major trophies 113 the only team in the world to do so i rest my case people who open sites like this should tell the truth,we are the peole,127 years of magic

  42. Alan says:

    Rangers might have won the most titles, but it’s in the SPL. That needs to be taken into consideration. Half their amount of titles in England, Spain or Italy is worth far more.

  43. Dick Trombone says:

    Crikey these Rangers fans are thick. (Celtic ones are too mind you). Neither of the clubs should be in the most important 20 football clubs because they are not important.

  44. bob says:

    sport club not is a big club in brasil
    they selected “club dos 13″ club of 13
    palmeiras(champion century in brazil)
    sao paulo
    i belive palmeiras the best club in brazil
    So many times champion

  45. jonny taylor says:

    watp fuckin english cunts tell me the last time any club takes a quater of a million people 2 a euro final

  46. John G says:

    well said jonny taylor by the way rangers – first british club to reach a european final – 53 league titles – WORLD RECORD !!! – 113 overall . how the fuck were not on this list is madness man. WATP

  47. Ali says:

    how the hell can someone miss United from this list…they are truely the worlds best and the most succesful club!!

  48. Johnny says:

    Aston Villa founded the football league (with 2 other teams) and founded the Premiership. Pretty important to football id say.

  49. Johnny says:

    And Totenham were not the first team to do the ‘double’ it was blackburn and then Villa

  50. BigBluenose says:

    Without a doubt has to be Glasgow Rangers as the most important club and have to give Glasgow Celtic their fair share of credit also. I hate all these people saying “yea but its the SPL”. Before 1992 when Sky started throwing money at the PL, Rangers or Celtic would have easily gave any of the top teams a run for their money. So for Alan up above, those league titles are just as important as any other. WATP, Glasgow, TRUE home of football.

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