A midfielder is an association football position. Midfielders are positioned on the field between their team's defenders and forwards; some midfielders play a disciplined defensive role, breaking up attacks, are otherwise known as defensive midfielders. Others blur the boundaries, being more mobile and efficient in passing: they are referred to as deep-lying midfielders, play-makers, box-to-box, or holding midfielders; the number of midfielders on a team and their assigned roles depends on the team's formation. Most managers assign at least one midfielder to disrupt the opposing team's attacks, while others may be tasked with creating goals, or have equal responsibilities between attack and defence. Midfielders are the players who travel the greatest distance during a match; because midfielders arguably have the most possession during a game they are among the fittest players on the pitch. Central or centre midfielders are players whose role is divided equally between attack and defence and to dominate the play around the centre of the pitch.
These players will try to pass the ball to the team's attacking midfielders and forwards and may help their team's attacks by making runs into the opposition's penalty area and attempting shots on goal themselves. When the opposing team has the ball, a central midfielder may drop back to protect the goal or move forward and press the opposition ball-carrier to recover the ball. A centre midfielder defending their goal will move in front of their centre-backs in order to block long shots by the opposition and track opposition midfielders making runs towards the goal; the 4–3–3 and 4–5–1 formations each use three central midfielders. The 4−4−2 formation may use two central midfielders, in the 4–2–3–1 formation one of the two deeper midfielders may be a central midfielder; the term box-to-box midfielder refers to central midfielders who are hard-working and who have good all-round abilities, which makes them skilled at both defending and attacking. These players can therefore track back to their own box to make tackles and block shots and run to the opponents' box to try to score.
The change of trends and the deviation from the standard 4–4–2 formation to the 4–2–3–1 formation imposed restrictions on the typical box-to-box midfielders of the 80s, as teams' two midfield roles were now divided into "holders" or "creators". Notable examples of box-to-box midfielders are Bastian Schweinsteiger, Yaya Touré, Radja Nainggolan. Left and right midfielders have a role balanced between attack and defence, similar to that of central midfielders, but they are positioned closer to the touchlines of the pitch, they may be asked to cross the ball into the opponents' penalty area to make scoring chances for their teammates, when defending they may put pressure on opponents who are trying to cross. Common modern formations that include left and right midfielders are the 4−4−2, the 4−4−1−1, the 4–2–3–1 and the 4−5−1 formations. Jonathan Wilson describes the development of the 4−4−2 formation: "…the winger became a wide midfielder, a shuttler, somebody who might be expected to cross a ball but was meant to put in a defensive shift."
Notable examples of wide midfielders are Ryan Giggs. The historic position of wing-half was given to midfielders, it became obsolete as wide players with defensive duties have tended to become more a part of the defence as full-backs. Defensive midfielders are midfield players; these players may defend a zone in front of their team's defence, or man mark specific opposition attackers. Defensive midfielders may move to the full-back or centre-back positions if those players move forward to join in an attack. Sergio Busquets described his attitude: "The coach knows that I am an obedient player who likes to help out and if I have to run to the wing to cover someone's position, great." A good defensive midfielder needs good positional awareness, anticipation of opponent's play, tackling, interceptions and great stamina and strength. A holding or deep-lying midfielder stays close to their team's defence, while other midfielders may move forward to attack; the holding midfielder may have responsibilities when their team has the ball.
This player will make short and simple passes to more attacking members of their team but may try some more difficult passes depending on the team's strategy. Marcelo Bielsa is considered as a pioneer for the use of a holding midfielder in defence; this position may be seen in the 4 -- 2 -- 3 -- 4 -- 4 -- 2 diamond formations. A defensive midfielder, or "destroyer", a playmaker, or "creator", were fielded alongside each other as a team's two holding central midfielders; the destroyer was responsible for making tackles, regaining possession, distributing the ball to the creator, while the creator was responsible for retaining possession and keeping the ball moving with long passes out to the flanks, in the manner of a more old-fashioned deep-lying playmaker or "regista". Early examples of a destroyer are Nobby Stiles, Herbert Wimmer, Marco Tardelli, while examples include Claude Makélélé and Javier Mascherano, although several of these players possessed qualities of other types of midfielders, were therefore not confined to a single role.
Early examples of a creator would be Gérson, Glenn Hoddle, Sunday Oliseh, while more recent examples Xabi Alonso, Michael Carrick. The latest and third type of holding midfielder developed as a box-to-box midfielder, or "carrier", neither destructive nor creative, capable of winning b
The Merseyside derby is the name given to football matches between Everton and Liverpool, two major clubs from Liverpool, England. It is the longest running top-flight derby in England, having been played continuously since the 1962–63 season. Part of the rivalry is due to the proximity of the two clubs, whose home grounds are within eyesight of each other across Stanley Park, Everton at Goodison Park and Liverpool at Anfield. Traditionally, the Merseyside derby was referred to as the "friendly derby" because of the large number of families with both Liverpool and Everton supporters and was one of the few that did not enforce total fan segregation; the 1984 Football League Cup Final at Wembley saw all sections of the ground mixed and combined chants of "Merseyside, Merseyside" and "Are you watching Manchester?" Since the mid-1980s, the rivalry has intensified on and off the field, since the inception of the Premier League has had more red cards than any other game. Everton F. C. were founded in 1878 and from 1884 played their home matches at Anfield, owned by club chairman John Houlding.
Several board members of Everton were members of the Liberal Party who were associated with the National Temperance Federation whilst Houlding was a Conservative Party member and a brewer whose business interests were diametrically opposed to the temperance movement. Politics and disputes over money meant that Houlding was at odds with other members of the Everton board; the result was that in 1892 the Everton directors vacated Anfield and purchased a new ground at Goodison Park on the other side of Stanley Park. Houlding responded by founding a new club to use Anfield: Liverpool; the professional clubs of the 1890s attracted much interest on and off the field. The 1867 Reform Act had given what would become football attending masses the opportunity to vote in the local and national elections. Everton and Liverpool attendances would reach around 10–15,000 in a local authority ward with a population of 23,000. Local politicians saw involvement in the two football clubs as an opportunity to gain media exposure to the local electorate.
At Everton board level, the main friction that emerged was that between the retention of an autocratic ownership structure and the creation of a more democratic one which mapped the sociopolitical divide. Religion is sometimes put forward as a reason for the split, with Liverpool founder Houlding a prominent Orangeman and Everton's new chairman George Mahon a rival Liberal Home Rule-advocating MP. At the time of the split, James Clement Baxter was the only Catholic among the Everton committee members. There are a number of reasons for the "friendly derby" tag. Firstly the clubs are situated in the north of the city and close to each other, with only Stanley Park separating the two. Everton played at Anfield, now Liverpool's ground, before a rent dispute with the ground owners saw Everton relocate to Goodison Park and the formation of Liverpool F. C. From 1902 to 1932 the two clubs shared the same matchday programme. Today there are no evident geographical, social or religious divides as in other derbies, although for many years a sectarian divide did exist within the city.
It is unclear how this influenced the support bases of the two clubs and more recent research has indicated that it was more to have been a political allegiance that influenced support. During the 1950s and 1960s Everton became known as the Catholic club as a result of successful Irish players Tommy Eglington, Peter Farrell and Jimmy O'Neill as well as manager Johnny Carey; this in turn caused Liverpool to be thought of as Protestant club, not signing an Irish Catholic until Ronnie Whelan in 1979. However, it should be noted that this notional divide was never seen as a basis for supporting a certain side as is the case with Celtic and Rangers. In truth both teams have strong support from all denominations as well as many fans from Presbyterian North Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland. Most the actual clubs themselves did not act to strengthen sectarian divides and in fact both clubs stem from a Methodist origin. Unlike other local derbies, in Liverpool violence between Evertonians and Liverpudlians is a rarity.
In the fallout from the Heysel Stadium disaster, fan relationships became strained with Everton fans blaming Liverpool hooligans for their subsequent ban from European club competitions. Relations improved after the Hillsborough disaster when both sets of fans rallied together, with Evertonians joining in on the boycott of The Sun while Everton and Liverpool scarves were intertwined stretching across Stanley Park between Anfield and Goodison Park. After the murder of 11-year-old Evertonian Rhys Jones in a gun crime incident in 2007, Liverpool Football Club invited the victim's parents and older brother to Anfield for a Champions League match; the Z-Cars theme tune "Johnny Todd", the song to which Everton traditionally run out, was played for the first time at Anfield while the victim's family stood on the pitch wearing Everton shirts and scarves. A standing ovation was given. Upon the complete vindication of Liverpool fans at the Hillsborough disaster in August 2012 Everton entertained Newcastle United at Goodison Park.
The sides were led out by two children wearing Everton and Liverpool shirts with the number 9 and 6 on the back. An announcer read out the names of all the 96 victims while "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother" by The Hollies was played to a standing ovation; the city of Liverpool is statistically the most s
Royal Standard de Liège referred to as Standard Liège, is a Belgian football club from the city of Liège. They are one of the most successful clubs in Belgium, having won the Belgian league on ten occasions, most in 2007–08 and 2008–09, they have been in the top flight without interruption since 1921, longer than any other Belgian side. They have won eight Belgian Cups, in 1981–82 they reached the final of the European Cup Winners' Cup, which they lost 2–1 against Barcelona. Standard players are nicknamed the "Rouches" because of their red jerseys; the French word for red, when pronounced with a Liège accent, sounds like "rouche." On the first day of school in September 1898, the pupils of Collège Saint-Servais in Liège started a football club, which they called Standard of Liège in reference to Standard Athletic Club of Paris. Standard, whose official name is Royal Standard Club of Liège, was based in Cointe and Grivegnée before settling permanently in 1909 in Sclessin, an industrial neighbourhood in Liège.
Standard joined the Belgian First League in 1909 before returning to the lower leagues a few years later. The club gained promotion back to the top division in 1921 and has never been relegated since. Shortly after World War II, Roger Petit, a former player and team captain, became general secretary of the club. Petit worked alongside President Henrard Paul to establish Standard among the elite of Belgian football. In 1954, Standard won their first club trophy, the Belgian Cup, soon followed by a first national title in 1957–58. At European level, in the 1960s, the club reached the semi-finals of the European Cup in 1961–62, falling to beaten finalists Real Madrid 0–6 on aggregate, the same stage of the Cup Winners' Cup in the year 1966–67, losing to eventual champions Bayern Munich; the 1960s and early 1970s brought much success to the club, as Standard won six Belgian First Division titles, two Belgian Cups and a League Cup. Driven by the Austrian Ernst Happel, Standard won the Belgian Cup again in 1981.
The following year, Raymond Goethals took control of the team. Playing by the "Raymond Science" philosophy of football, the club was twice the champions of Belgium, twice winners of the Belgian Supercup and reached the final of the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1982. Standard played against Barcelona in the final at the Camp Nou on 12 May 1982, losing the match 1–2 to the Spaniards. In 1984, these exploits were tainted by the revelation of the Standard-Waterschei Affair. Just days before the match against Barcelona, to secure the championship of Belgium and guard against injuries last minute, Standard had approached Roland Janssen, the captain of Thor Waterschei, to ensure that Thor players' threw the final game of the season; this scandal involved several players, including Eric Gerets, coach Raymond Goethals, who fled to Portugal to escape suspension. In compensation the Standard players gave their game bonuses to the Waterschei players. Following the scandal, Standard was deprived of many of its playing staff due to long-term suspensions and it took the club several years to recover from the incident.
On 6 June 1993, Standard won the Belgian Cup for the fifth time in its history, defeating Robert Waseige's Charleroi at the Constant Vanden Stock Stadium in Brussels. This led to another appearance in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, ending in a record 10–0 aggregate defeat to Arsenal— having lost 3–0 at Highbury in London, Standard were humiliated 0–7 in the second leg at home. Following the scandal of 1982, it took 25 years before Standard won the Belgium Championship again, lifting the title on 20 April 2008; the club won the Belgian league again the following year, securing the club's tenth league title on 24 May 2009 after a home-and-away game against rivals Anderlecht. Standard won the national cup once more in 2011, defeating Westerlo 2–0 in the final at the King Baudouin Stadium on 21 May 2011; the club was bought by businessman Roland Duchatelet on 23 June 2011, who took over English club Charlton in December 2013, creating an affiliation between the two clubs. On 20 October 2014, Guy Luzon resigned as manager of Standard with the club sitting in 12th position in the Pro League standings and having taken only two points from three UEFA Europa League matches.
Luzon became head coach of Charlton. Assistant and former midfielder Ivan Vukomanović took over as caretaker-manager. 1898: Standard Football Club 1899: Standard FC Liégeois 1910: Standard Club Liégeois 1923: Royal Standard Club Liège 1952: Royal Standard Club Liégeois 1972: Royal Standard de Liège On nine occasions, Standard players have won the Belgian Golden Shoe as the best player in the domestic league. Jean Nicolay won the award in 1963, Wilfried Van Moer in 1969 and 1970, Christian Piot in 1972, Eric Gerets in 1982, Sérgio Conceição in 2005, Steven Defour in 2007, Axel Witsel in 2008 and Milan Jovanović in 2009. Belgian LeagueChampions: 1957–58, 1960–61, 1962–63, 1968–69, 1969–70, 1970–71, 1981–82, 1982–83, 2007–08, 2008–09 Runners-up: 1925–26, 1927–28, 1935–36, 1961–62, 1964–65, 1972–73, 1979–80, 1992–93, 1994–95, 2005–06, 2010–11, 2013–14, 2017–18Belgian CupChampions: 1953–54, 1965–66, 1966–67, 1980–81, 1992–93, 2010–11, 2015–16, 2017–18 Runners-up: 1964–65, 1971–72, 1972–73, 1983–84, 1987–88, 1988–89, 1998–99, 1999–00, 2006–07Belgian League CupChampions: 1975Belgian SupercupChampions 1981, 1983, 2008, 2009 Runners-up 1982, 1993, 2011, 2016, 2018 UEFA Cup Winners' CupRunners-up: 1981–82UEFA Intertoto CupRunners-up: 1996 Amsterdam Tournament:Runners-up: 1981 As of 3 Augus
Super League Greece
The Super League Greece or Super League Souroti for sponsorship reasons, is the highest professional football league in Greece. It was formed on 16 July 2006 and replaced Alpha Ethniki at the top of the Greek football league system; the league runs from August to May, with teams playing 30 games each. As of August 2017, Super League Greece is ranked 14th in the UEFA ranking of leagues, based on performances in European competitions over the last five years. Since the foundation of the first official Panhellenic Championship in 1927, only six clubs have won the title, with the "big three" of Greater Athens dominating and only Aris Thessaloniki, PAOK and AEL managing to break their dominance on few occasions; the current champions are AEK Athens, who have won a total of 12 titles and won the 2017–18 league title. Between 1905 and 1912, a Panhellenic Championship was organised by the Hellenic Association of Amateur Athletics; this championship was a local tournament among clubs from Athens and Piraeus.
After the Balkan Wars and World War I, two football associations were formed, one organising a football league in Athens and Piraeus, one doing the same in Thessaloniki. These were the Athens-Piraeus FCA and the Macedonia FCA. In 1923, a Panhellenic Champion was determined by a play-off game between the Athens-Piraeus and the Thessaloniki champions. Peiraikos Syndesmos won 3–1 against Aris Thessaloniki; this panhellenic final was not repeated the following year as the EPSAP was split into the Athens FCA and Piraeus FCA following a dispute. In 1927, a national championship was organised in the form of a round-robin tournament between the champions of the three governing bodies. Panathinaikos, Olympiacos and AEK refused to participate and Aris Thessaloniki won the first title, finishing ahead of Ethnikos Piraeus and Atromitos; this national championship was set up again in 1929, over the next years evolved into a tournament in which multiple teams took part. Still, these teams had to qualify for the national championship through their local football competitions.
In 1959 the Alpha Ethniki - the precursor of the current Super League - was set up as a national round-robin tournament. The 1959–60 championship was the first to be held in national form after several months of talks, it started on Sunday 25 October 1959 with the participation of 16 teams. The creation of a championship in the form of a single permanent national category rather than the way they have been held until with the participation of the teams selected by the local competitions was a requirement of both the State and UEFA; the first wished to establish a fixed number of matches every Sunday in Greece to stimulate interest in PRO-PO while UEFA wished to nominate national champions with strict criteria and through joint events for all states. The Hellenic Football Federation was obliged to proceed to the abolition of the competitions of the Football Clubs Associations of Greece as qualifying stages for the Pan-Hellenic Championship; the first place was taken by Alpha Ethniki, a single category with clubs from all over the Greek territory and a stable participation, with the exception of those who would be relegated at the end of the season.
The initial design provided for a number of teams well above the 10th of the 1958–59 Pan-Hellenic Championship and in particular 18 which, as the expanded category program would cover all the available dates of the year, would no longer participate in its local competitions their EPSs. Those would be the qualifier for the upcoming national category and not the participation in the final round of the current championship, so their significance was reduced. On Saturday, October 10, 1959 at the General Assembly of the HFF, ie with the participation of all the members of the Association of Football Associations and in the presence of the General Secretariat of Sports and representatives of the Karamanlis government, became the first national category of Greek football; the 1st game was set for 15 days. According to the general Assembly of HFF in 29 August 1959, it was decided that the newly created Alpha Ethniki would consist of 18 teams, with their determination being made in accordance with the positions in the local EPS competitions in the period 1958–59.
The HFF, at its decisive General Assembly on Saturday, October 10, decided to reduce the number of teams to 16 so that the racing program will not be extended in the summer. After the end of the first event in the summer of 1960, the teams did not increase despite HFF's initial intention, with the number 16 being considered the ideal for a championship in Greece and only 18 in 1967; the teams that participated in the first championship of the Alpha Ethniki were the following: The top four at the EPS Athens Championship: Panathinaikos, Panionios, AEK Athens and Apollon Smyrnis. The top four in the EPS Piraeus Championship: Olympiacos, Ethnikos Piraeus, AE Nikaia and Proodeftiki; the top four in the EPS Macedonia Championship: Aris Thessaloniki, PAOK, Apollon Kalamaria and Iraklis Thessaloniki. The top two in the North Group of the Regional Championship: Doxa Drama and Megas Alexandros Katerini; the first in the two Sub-Groups of the South Regional Championship: Pankorinthiakos and Panegialios.
On October 25, 1959, the Alpha Ethniki was launched. Panathinaikos won the first Alpha Ethniki's Championship, which became the champion of Greece for the fourth time in his history, he scored at 79 points with AEK Athens and beat 2–1 in the barrage, a match where he needed only a tie result in the neutral Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium. In such a case, after the half-hour extension, the competition announcement set the best goal difference. Throug
Olympiacos Football Club known as Olympiacos, Olympiacos Piraeus or with its full name as Olympiacos C. F. P. is a Greek professional football club based in Athens. Part of the major multi-sport club Olympiacos CFP, their name was inspired from the ancient Olympic Games and along with the club's emblem, the laurel-crowned Olympic athlete, symbolize the Olympic ideals of ancient Greece, their home ground is a 32,115-capacity stadium in Piraeus. Founded on 10 March 1925, Olympiacos is the most successful club in Greek football history, having won 44 League titles, 27 Cups and 4 Super Cups, all records. Τotalling 75 national trophies, Olympiacos is 9th in the world in total titles won by a football club. The club's dominating success can be further evidenced by the fact that all other Greek clubs have won a combined total of 38 League titles, while Olympiacos holds the record for the most consecutive Greek League titles won, with seven in a row in two occasions, breaking their own previous record of six consecutive wins in the 1950s, when Olympiacos was unequivocally nicknamed Thrylos.
Having won the 2014–15 league title, Olympiacos became the only football club in the world to have won a series of five or more consecutive championships for five times in their history, a record, praised by FIFA with a congratulatory letter of its president, Sepp Blatter. They are the only Greek club to have won five consecutive national Cups, as well as six League titles undefeated. Olympiacos are one of only three clubs to have never been relegated from the top flight of Greek football, by winning the 2012–13 title, their 40th in total, they added a fourth star above their crest, each one representing 10 League titles. In European competitions, Olympiacos best performances are their presence in the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals in 1998–99, losing the semi-final spot in the last minutes of their second leg match against Juventus, as well as in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup quarter-finals in 1992–93; the Red-Whites are the highest ranked Greek club in the UEFA rankings, occupying the 29th place in Europe as of 2018, one of the founding members of the European Club Association.
Olympiacos won the Balkans Cup in 1963, at a time when the competition was considered the second most important in the region after the European Cup, becoming the first Greek club to win an international competition. Olympiacos is the most supported football club in Greece being the most popular club in Athens, gathering strong support from Greek communities all over the world. With 83,000 registered members as of April 2006, the club was placed 9th in the 2006 list of football clubs with the most paying members in the world. Olympiacos share a long-standing rivalry with Panathinaikos, with whom they contest in the Derby of the eternal enemies, the most classic football derby in Greece and one of the most well known around the world. Olympiacos was founded on 10 March 1925, in the Athenian-port of Piraeus; the club's initial aim, as stated in the statutes, was the systematic cultivation and development of its athletes' possibilities for participation in athletic competitions, the spreading of the Olympic athletic ideal and the promotion of sportsmanship and fanship among the youth according to egalitarian principles, by stressing a healthy and social basis as its foundation.
Members of "Piraikos Podosfairikos Omilos FC" and "Piraeus Fans Club FC" decided, during a historical assembly, to dissolve the two clubs in order to establish a new unified one, which would bring this new vision and dynamic to the community. Notis Kamperos, a senior officer of the Hellenic Navy, proposed the name Olympiacos and the profile of a laurel-crowned Olympic winner as the emblem of the new club. Michalis Manouskos, a prominent Piraeus industrialist, expanded the name to its complete and current status, Olympiacos Syndesmos Filathlon Pireos. Besides Kamperos and Manouskos, among the most notable founding members were Stavros Maragoudakis, the post office director. Andrianopoulos, a family of well-established Piraeus merchants, played a pivotal role in the founding of Olympiacos; the five brothers, Dinos, Giorgos and Leonidas Andrianopoulos raised the reputation of the club and brought it to its current glory. Yiannis, Dinos and Vassilis were the first to play, while Leonidas, the youngest of the five, made his debut on and played for the club for eight years.
The club's offensive line, made up of the five brothers, became legendary, rising to a mythical status and soon Olympiacos gained enormous popularity and became the most successful and well-supported club in Greece. Back their fan base consisted of the working class, with the team's home ground at Neo Phaliron Velodrome, before moving to its current Karaiskakis Stadium, they became Piraeus Champions in 1925 and 1926. In 1926, the Hellenic Football Federation was founded and organized the Panhellenic Championship in the 1927–1928 season; this was the first national championship, where the regional champions from EPSA league, EPSP league and EPSM league
Association Sportive de Saint-Étienne Loire is a French association football club based in Saint-Étienne. The club was founded in 1919 and plays in Ligue 1, the top division of French football. Saint-Étienne plays; the team is managed by Jean-Louis Gasset and captained by Loïc Perrin, who started his career at the club in 1996. Saint-Étienne is known as Les Verts meaning "the Greens" due to its home colours. Saint-Étienne have won a record ten Ligue 1 titles, as well as six Coupe de France titles, a Coupe de la Ligue title and five Trophée des Champions. Saint-Étienne has won the Ligue 2 championship on three occasions; the club achieved most of its honours in the 1960s and 1970s when the club was led by managers Jean Snella, Albert Batteux, Robert Herbin. The club's primary rivals are Olympique Lyonnais, based in nearby Lyon, with whom they contest the Derby Rhône-Alpes. In 2009, the club added a female section. AS Saint-Étienne was founded in 1919 by employees of the Saint-Étienne-based grocery store chain Groupe Casino under the name Amicale des Employés de la Société des Magasins Casino.
The club adopted green as its primary color due to it being the principal colour of Groupe Casino. In 1920, due to the French Football Federation prohibiting the use of trademarks in sports club, the club dropped "Casino" from its name and changed its name to Amical Sporting Club to retain the ASC acronym. In 1927, Pierre Guichard took over as president of the club and, after merging with local club Stade Forézien Universitaire, changed its name to Association sportive Stéphanoise. In July 1930, the National Council of the FFF voted 128–20 in support of professionalism in French football. In 1933, Stéphanoise changed its name to its current version; the club was inserted into the second division and became inaugural members of the league after finishing runner-up in the South Group. Saint-Étienne remained in Division 2 for four more seasons before earning promotion to Division 1 for the 1938–39 season under the leadership of the Englishman Teddy Duckworth. However, the team's debut appearance in the first division was short-lived due to the onset of World War II.
Saint-Étienne returned to the first division after the war under the Austrian-born Frenchman Ignace Tax and surprised many by finishing runner-up to Lille in the first season after the war. The club failed to improve upon that finish in following seasons under Tax and, ahead of the 1950–51 season, Tax was let go and replaced by former Saint-Étienne player Jean Snella. Under Snella, Saint-Étienne achieved its first honour after winning the Coupe Charles Drago in 1955. Two seasons the club won its first domestic league title. Led by goalkeeper Claude Abbes, defender Robert Herbin, as well as midfielders René Ferrier and Kees Rijvers and striker Georges Peyroche, Saint-Étienne won the league by four points over Lens. In 1958, Saint-Étienne won the Coupe Drago for the second time. After the following season, in which the club finished sixth, Snella departed the club, he was replaced by René Vernier. In the team's first season under Vernier, Saint-Étienne finished 12th, the club's worst finish since finishing 11th eight seasons ago.
In the following season, François Wicart joined the coaching staff. In 1961, Roger Rocher became president of the club and became one of the club's chief investors. After two seasons under Wicart, Saint-Étienne were relegated after finishing 17th in the 1961–62 season. However, Wicart did lead the club to its first Coupe de France title in 1962, alongside co-manager Henri Guérin with the team defeating FC Nancy 1–0 in the final, he led the club back to Division 1 after one season in the second division, but after the season, Wicart was replaced by Snella, who returned as manager after a successful stint in Switzerland with Servette. In Snella's first season back, Saint-Étienne won its second league title and, three seasons captured its third. Snella's third and final title with the club coincided with the arrival of Georges Bereta, Bernard Bosquier, Gérard Farison and Hervé Revelli to the team. After the season, Snella returned to Servette and former Stade de Reims manager Albert Batteux replaced him.
In Batteux's first season in 1967–68, Saint-Étienne captured the double after winning the league and the Coupe de France. In the next season, Batteux won the league and, in the ensuing season, won the double again; the club's fast rise into French football led to a high-level of confidence from the club's ownership and supporters and, following two seasons without a trophy, Batteux was let go and replaced by former Saint-Étienne player Robert Herbin. In Herbin's first season in charge, Saint-Étienne finished fourth in the league and reached the semi-finals of the Coupe de France. In the next two seasons, the club won the double, its seventh and eighth career league title and its third and fourth Coupe de France title. In 1976, Saint-Étienne became the first French club since Reims in 1959 to reach the final of the European Cup. In the match, played at Hampden Park in Scotland, Saint-Étienne faced German club Bayern Munich, who were the reigning champions and arguably the world's best team at the time.
The match was hotly contested with Saint-Étienne failing to score after numerous chances by Jacques Santini, Dominique Bathenay and Osvaldo Piazza, among others. A single goal by Franz Roth decided the outcome and Saint-Étienne supporters departed Scotland in tears, not without nicknaming the goalposts "les poteaux carrés". Saint-Étienne did earn a consolation prize by winning
LOSC Lille is a French association football club based in Lille. The club was founded in 1944 as a result of a merger and play in Ligue 1, the first division of French football. Lille has played its home matches since 2012 at Stade Pierre-Mauroy in nearby Villeneuve d'Ascq, which replaced the club's previous home of Stade Lille-Metropole in the same community. Lille was founded as a result of a merger between SC Fives. Both clubs were founding members of the French Division 1 and Lillois was the league's inaugural champions. Under the Lille emblem, the club has won three league titles in 1946, 1954, 2011 and six Coupe de France titles, tied for fourth-best among clubs. Lille and Red Star F. C. are the only French clubs in the competition's history to win the Coupe de France in three consecutive seasons. Lille's most successful period was the decade from 1946 to 1956 when the team was led by managers George Berry and André Cheuva. Lille have a long-standing rivalry with its neighbours RC Lens; the two clubs contest the Derby du Nord.
Lille is owned and presided over by Gérard Lopez, an entrepreneur-investor and an active Luxembourgish-Spanish businessman who invests in the sports industry. Before the Second World War, the city of Lille had two clubs in Ligue 1. Weakened by the war, the two clubs decided to merge in the autumn of 1944, giving birth to Lille Olympique Sporting Club. Within its first decade of existence, the new club won two league titles and reached the second place for four consecutive seasons. In the Coupe de France the club accumulated five wins in seven finals, including five successive finals; the final of the Latin Cup was reached. Lille was relegated for the first time in 1956; the club became a mid-table side and in the late 1960s, after a long period of anonymity, weighed down by a lack of facilities and resources, Lille abandoned its professional status. It was feared. However, some young leaders, such as Max Pommerolle and gave new impetus to the club; the results remained erratic and the only titles that ignited the fans' passions were won in the Second Division.
In July 1980, Lille was the first French club to opt for the status of a Mixed Economy Company, of which the city of Lille became the majority shareholder. The team of presidents Amyot and Dewailly all struggled to compete with the top teams in the country. Jacques Amyot's resignation in 1990 led to three more difficult years for the club which compromised its existence, it took Bernard Lecomte's arrival in 1993 to set the club finances on the road to recovery. After a final relegation in 1997, the team trained by Bosnian coach Vahid Halilhodžić was soon promoted back to the elite, in the same year the French Football League was privatised. In just its first season back in the top flight 2000–01 French Division 1, Lille qualified for Europe for the first time in the club's history, booking its place in the 2000–01 Champions League. On the back of the club's new status, Lille entered into a decisive new era under the guidance of chairman and Chief executive officer Michel Seydoux and coach Claude Puel.
The club left the historical Stade Grimonprez-Jooris to join the Stadium Lille Métropole and became a regular on the European scene. Amongst its most emphatic results was the 1–0 victory over Manchester United at the Stade de France in 2005, the 2–0 triumph over Milan in San Siro in 2006 and the 1–0 home win over Liverpool in 2010. A steady development off the pitch, coupled with the sporting progression under the expert hand of coach Rudi Garcia, took Lille back to the summit of the French game with the League and Cup double in 2011. In 2012, LOSC confirmed its place at the top table of the domestic game with another qualification for Europe's most prestigious club competition, the Champions League in 2012–13. With the club finishing just outside the UCL places that season, Garcia left to join Roma, while former Montpellier coach René Girard was appointed the new Lille manager. After two years in charge of the club, Girard left his role as the head coach by mutual consent, he was joined by assistants Gerard Nicolas Girard in making the exit.
In May 2015, the Ivory Coast national team head coach Hervé Renard was appointed as the new manager. On 11 November 2015, Renard was replaced by Frederic Antonetti. On 23 November 2016 a year after being appointed, Lille terminated Antonetti's contract with the club lying second last in the table. In March 2017, Lille appointed Marcelo Bielsa as new manager of the club. In November 2017, Bielsa was suspended by Lille following an unauthorized trip to Chile with the club lying second from bottom on the table again and only managing 3 wins from the first 14 games of the season.. On December 23 2017, Bielsa was terminated by Lille and replaced with former Saint-Etienne manager Christophe Galtier. After a difficult 2017/2018 season, Lille managed to avoid relegation to Ligue 2 by defeating Toulouse 3-2 in the second last game of the campaign. Stade Pierre-Mauroy was inaugurated in 2012. Named the Centre Olympique de Lille Est, the club's sporting venue is spread over five hectares and features three natural grass football pitches and one synthetic pitch, as well as a number of buildings including a medical centre and gymnasium.
These attributes had seen the club house part of the LOSC Youth Academy here, before all the club's operations were moved to the Domaine de Luchin in Camphin-e