For any club, winning the league is is the pinnacle of domestic club success and something to be hugely celebrated. However, some clubs defend their titles year after year, surely taking away quite how special each league title is. We decided to find out who are currently the most dominant clubs in Europe, based on consecutive titles won.
10 most dominant clubs in Europe
10. Shakhtar Donetsk – Ukraine (4 titles)
Shakhtar have long been one of the most dominant sides in Ukrainian football but some of their most recent successes have come without them playing a single home fixture.
Due to the political crisis that has engulfed their home region, Donetsk have not played a proper home game in nearly a decade having moved through several temporary ‘home’ cities such as Lviv, Kharkiv and Kiev. Despite all of the moving, it hasn’t stopped Shakhtar winning the past four Ukrainian Premier League titles and enjoying strong runs in European competition.
The club remain a lightning rod for Brazilian stars breaking into Europe too, with the likes of Bernard, Fred and Taison having all made the move despite the ongoing turmoil. With all of the disruption having a minimal impact on the pitch, it seems like nothing will deter Shakhtar from adding to their impressive title collection.
9. PSG – France (4 titles)
Before the Qatari takeover, PSG were a club in strife with relegation looking more likely than a league title. However, the money has flowed freely since the takeover and nobody in Ligue 1 has spending power who can match PSG. Les Parisiens now boast one of the most formidable strikeforces in world football with the likes of Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Edison Cavani causing havoc throughout the league.
The end result has been a non-stop run of titles in recent years, having won the title in seven of the eight previous Ligue 1 seasons. They would have been even higher up the list had Monaco not rudely halted PSG’s dominance in 2016-17. However, the Qatari-backed club have picked up where they left off, leaving many in France to wonder who can stop this moving juggernaut. Certainly one of the most dominant clubs in Europe domestically, PSG now need to convert that into Champions League success.
8. Sheriff Tiraspol – Moldova (5 titles)
Something of a big fish in a small pond, very few clubs have the means to match Sheriff in Moldova. The club are backed by some of the wealthiest figures in the country and their investments have been reflected with significant effects on the pitch. The club have won all but 2 seasons of the National Division this century with their latest setback coming in the 2014-15 season.
Despite being based in the disputed region of Transnistria, it has had little impact on Sheriff’s standing in European football as they have successfully featured in the main rounds of the Europa League several times, showcasing that there is some quality to be found within one of the lesser known parts of European football.
7. FC Astana – Kazakhstan (6 titles)
FC Astana were only founded in 2009 by Samruk-Kazyna, one of Kazakhstan’s wealthiest companies, who has built the club from scratch into Kazakhstan’s most dominant force. From attracting foreign talent to owning a world-class stadium, the owners of FC Astana have done everything in their power to win trophies. It has been extremely successful and they have won six straight Kazakhstan Premier League titles in the process. To cap it off, Astana’s success has translated onto the European scene where they have become the first Kazakhstani side to qualify for the Champions League and Europa League group stages.
6. Qarabag – Azerbaijan (7 titles)
Initially from a disputed region near the border with Armenia, Azerbaijan’s Qarabag have become the dominant force in the Azerbaijan Premier League. Backed by the wealthy Azersun Group, Qarabag have won the league title for the past seven straight years having found a solid base in the nation’s capital Baku.
Qarabag have enjoyed a wealth of overseas talent moving to the side with players from Turkey, Brazil and Spain joining their ranks and improving the side’s quality. This influx of talent has also made them a regular feature in continental competition, having reached the group stages of either the Europa League and the Champions League every year since 2015. This is a feat no other Azerbaijani side has yet to accomplish.
5. Red Bull Salzburg – Austria (7 titles)
Red Bull have become the most well-known football franchise in the world but it has been their original club, Red Bull Salzburg, who have enjoyed the most success in their domestic competition. Owned by the energy drink giant since 2005, Salzburg has enjoyed a wealth of success and proved to be the example for other Red Bull backed teams to follow.
Failing to finish outside of the top two of the Austrian Bundesliga since the takeover, no other side has been beaten Salzburg since the 2012-13 season underlining just how far they have come in the past 20 years. A run to the Europa League semi-finals in the 2017-18 season has shown how much quality the side has on a grander scale and strong links with partner clubs such as RB Leipzig and New York Red Bulls shows that Salzburg will continue to dominate for seasons to come.
4. Bayern Munich – Germany (8 titles)
Fourth on our list of the most dominant clubs in Europe, it’s no surprise to see Bayern Munich featuring high up. It’s hard to think of a time when Bayern weren’t a force to be reckoned with but their current run of dominance is one that matches the best of eras gone by.
Current stars such as Robert Lewandowski, Thomas Muller & Manuel Neuer are already considered legends alongside the likes of Lothar Matthaus, Gerd Muller & Franz Beckenbauer, thanks to winning eight consecutive Bundesliga titles. Their success has come at a time when other rivals such as Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig have pushed them to their limits.
Whilst they have failed to win the Champions League since 2013, Bayern still have the quality to be considered one of the best sides in the world today and will be hoping to correct that this season.
3. Ludogorets Razgrad – Bulgaria (9 titles)
Whilst the heyday of Bulgarian football has long since passed, Ludogorets Razgrad have proven that there is still some quality left in the country. Bought by billionaire Kiril Domuschiev in 2010, the minnows were plucked from obscurity and promoted to the A Group in 2011. What followed has been an unprecedented era of dominance where Ludogorets have been crowned champions every season since they were promoted to the top flight of Bulgarian football.
Whilst off field issues have hindered some of their rivals in recent years, Ludogorets have put together consistent performances year after year with a mix of homegrown and foreign talent contributing to the success. With little sight of anything changing within the near future, it’s hard to see how anyone can stop Ludogorets making it 10 in a row.
2. Celtic – Scotland (9 titles)
Scottish football never really recovered from Rangers going bankrupt in 2011-12, which left Celtic as the sole powerhouse in the Scottish Premier League. The Bhoys have controlled the league ever since, comfortably winning titles at a whim despite other clubs trying in vain to fill the void left by Celtic’s arch-rivals.
Even with the return of Rangers, Celtic have continued to dominate all facets of competition with their victory in the 2019-20 Scottish League Cup final becoming their tenth straight domestic trophy in a row. Although they have failed to make much impact on the European scene, it is still hard to see how any clubs in Scotland are going to contend with Celtic’s success and prevent them from winning more trophies in the near future.
1. Juventus – Italy (9 titles)
If you were to go back to 2007 when Juventus were still in Serie B and inform them of their upcoming dominance, many wouldn’t believe you. However, what has unfolded in the past decade has been one of the most dominant runs by a team in recent memory.
The “Old Lady” of Italian football have dominated Serie A, knocking back whoever challenged them with a squad that is brimming with talent. The likes of Gigi Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini and Andrea Pirlo formed the backbone of their early success whilst the recent addition of a certain Cristiano Ronaldo has only bolstered an already fearsome modern line up.
Juve’s success has seen off a host of different challenge with the likes of Napoli, Roma and Inter Milan all coming close to toppling the Bianconieri but not quite succeeding. They have completed four domestic doubles in this decade of dominance although European success has still somehow evaded their grasp. With their squad still stacked to the brim with world class talent, it surely won’t be long before Juventus finally carry over their success to the European scene which would truly justify their position at number one on our list of the most dominant clubs in Europe.
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