• May 19, 2024
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Longest unbeaten runs in European Football History

Longest unbeaten runs in European Football History

Sunday, 12 May, 2024
McCreadie Andias

Bayer Luverkusen’s 2-2 draw against Roma in the Europa League on Thursday night means the German side have gone 49 games unbeaten and broken the record for the longest streak without losing to a European club since the introduction of UEFA club competitions in 1955.

Leverkusen were leading their tie against Roma by two goals following the opening clash, but looked set to lose their first game of the season after two penalties from Leandro Paredes had put the Italian club ahead.

An own goal from Gianluca Mancini in the 82nd minute, however, and a 97th-minute equaliser from Josip Stanisic ensured Leverkusen progressed to the Europa League final following a 4-2 aggregate victory.

Stanisic’s goal, meanwhile, was Leverkusen’s 17th scored in stoppage time this season.

Leverkusen midfielder Granit Xhaka said to TNT Sports: “This is football. It is the nice part of football. For the mentality we showed again today against a big team to come back like this and go through to the final. We are more than happy today.

“You see the desire from the team, we didn’t want to slow down. We wanted to score the next goal to keep going unbeaten, 49 times now. We are proud of it.”

Leverkusen made it through to the Europa League final on Thursday night.

The unbeaten run, which is across all competitions and started with an 8-0 victory over FC Teutonia Ottensen in the German Cup on August 12, has surpassed Portuguese club Benfica’s mark of 48 consecutive games without losing from December 1963 to February 1965.

That Benfica team was spearheaded by Eusebio and they won the Portuguese league and cup over the course of their unbeaten run.

Xabi Alonso’s Leverkusen side have avoided defeat in 32 Bundesliga games, five German Cup matches and 12 Europa League games. They have won 40 of these matches.

Unsurprisingly, this has left them on the brink of a treble. They have already won the Bundesliga — ending Bayern Munich’s 11-season dominance as a result — face second-tier Kaiserslautern in the German Cup final on May 25 and Atalanta in the Europa League final on May 22.

If Leverkusen also avoid defeat in their final two league games they will become the first side in Bundesliga history to go a whole season unbeaten.

The five longest unbeaten runs by a European club since 1955 is not led by Bayer Leverkusen of Germany with 49 games unbeaten under the current 2023-2024 season.

Benfica of Portugal went unbeaten for 48 games during the 1963-1965 while Dinamo Zagreb of Croatia went 45 games unbeaten during their 2014-2015 impressive season.

Another Croatian team Rijeka went unbeaten for 45 games during the 2016-2017 while Scotland’s Glasgow Rangers went unbeaten for 44 during the
1992-1993 season.

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