Real Madrid have won 40 per cent of Liga titles in Spain & are joint sixth overall in Europe

ANALYSIS
By Alberto Pinero

So Real Madrid are champions of Spain once more. At times, it seemed unlikely and even impossible that this team could catch Barcelona, but Jose Mourinho's men managed it. They have had to be at their very best to overhaul the Catalan club, but the reward is a significant one: they have regained their place among Europe's elite.

And not only that: in the 81 editions of La Liga, Real Madrid occupy first place with 32 titles - a massive 40 per cent of the total - and the capital club have now historically claimed over 100 points more than Barca (having played the same amount of games). Compared with the Catalans, Madrid have won almost 60 more matches and scored roughly 60 more goals.

Valencia are third on the historic list, with 800 points fewer than Madrid, although with less games played in the Primera Division. Athletic Bilbao are the only other side to have participated in every Liga campaign, and the Basque outfit are in fourth place, also some 800 points behind Madrid.

LA LIGA'S BIGGEST WINNERS
1st
2nd
3rd
4th
5th
6th
Real Madrid Barcelona Atletico Athletic Valencia R. Sociedad
32 titles 21 9 8 6 2

So it's no surprise that, with those numbers, Madrid are out on their own in Spain. But the capital club are also now one of the most successful sides in the history of European football.

With this latest title, Madrid are now up to joint sixth in the list of European league winners. Glasgow Rangers lead the classification with 54 titles, followed by Northern Irish outfit Linfield (50), Celtic (43), Olympiakos (39) and Rapid Vienna (33). Real, with 32, join Portuguese giants Benfica and Czech side Sparta Prague.

On a worldwide level, Madrid would occupy 12th spot in this particular list. In it would be Uruguayans Penarol (with 48 titles) and Nacional (43), Hong Kong outfit South China (41), Paraguayans Olimpia (39), Egyptians Al-Ahly (36) and Argentines River Plate (34).

In the biggest European leagues, however, no team can catch Madrid. In Italy, Juventus have claimed 27 official titles (although Juve fans say 29), while Bayern Munich have won the Bundesliga on 22 occasions, and Manchester United boast 19 Premier League crowns in England. All far from the mark reached by Real on Wednesday.

EUROPE'S TOP TITLE WINNERS
1st
2nd
3rd
4th
5th
6th
Rangers (SCO) Linfield (NIRL) Celtic (SCO) Olympiakos (GRE) Rapid Viena (AUS) Real Madrid (SPA)
Benfica (POR)
Sparta Prague (CZE)
54 50 43 39 33 32

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