Every unbeaten season in Europe's top five leagues - Arsenal Invincibles Thierry Henry Robert Pires
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Every unbeaten season in Europe’s top five leagues

Only a select few teams have ever earned Invincible status in Europe’s top five leagues, completing an entire league campaign unbeaten.

Bayer Leverkusen are heading towards a historic Bundesliga crown this season with Xabi Alonso’s men top of the table and unbeaten as we approach the run-in. Leverkusen have never before been crowned champions in Germany but could end the current campaign as the league’s first-ever undefeated winners.

Just eight games stand between Leverkusen and immortality, as the Germans look to join this list of unbeatable champions.

Every unbeaten season in Europe’s top five leagues:

Preston North End – 1888/89 (England)

Preston North End concluded the inaugural Football League season as champions and did so without losing a game during the 1888/89 season. One of the founding members of England’s top division, the first campaign saw Preston win 18 and draw four of their 22 league games.

Preston ended the campaign 11 points clear of runners-up Aston Villa and also claimed FA Cup success, beating Wolves in the final, to claim a domestic double. It took 115 years before their achievement was matched in England’s top flight.

Athletic Bilbao – 1929/30 (Spain)

Athletic Bilbao became the first Spanish team to complete a top-tier season undefeated after winning La Liga in 1929/30.

It was a first-ever league title for the Basque outfit who finished ahead of Barcelona in the title race, with leading scorer Guillermo Gorostiza winning the Pichichi Trophy. Athletic scored the most goals, conceded the least, and failed to lose in their 18 league games.

Real Madrid – 1931/32 (Spain)

Two seasons later, Spain had a second Invincible side as Real Madrid won their maiden top-flight title.

The decorated history of Spain’s most successful side began with their 1931/32 league season, a campaign that saw Los Blancos beat defending champions Athletic Bilbao to the title.

Perugia – 1978/79 (Italy)

Perugia’s unbeaten 1978/79 campaign is the stuff of legend and pub trivia, as the Italian outfit went unbeaten all season – and still did not win the league.

I Grifoni ended the campaign as runners-up to AC Milan despite not losing any of their 30 league games, with a whopping 19 draws leaving Perugia three points behind the eventual champions.

It remains the highest league finish in the club’s history, with times significantly tougher at present after relegation to Serie C last season.

AC Milan – 1991/92 (Italy)

AC Milan went all 34 league games without defeat during the 1991/92 season as the club’s iconic team of the early nineties claimed the Scudetto.

It was the first of three consecutive titles for the Rossoneri, with Marco van Basten the leading scorer in Serie A with 25 goals. Milan lost just one game all season in all competitions, a 1-0 Coppa Italia semi-final loss to Juventus.

Fabio Capello’s charges extended their unbeaten league run well into the next season, totalling an Italian record of 58 Serie A matches without defeat between 1991 and 1993.

Arsenal – 2003/04 (England)

Arsenal became the first English team in over a century to end a top-flight league season without defeat in 2003/04, as Arsene Wenger’s side became Premier League Invincibles.

The appointment of Wenger in north London had transformed Arsenal into one of the most formidable – and watchable – teams in Europe, with their undefeated campaign the peak of his successful side.

Thierry Henry claimed the PFA Players’ Player of the Year and FWA Footballer of the Year after scoring 39 goals in all competitions for the Gunners. Their unbeaten run stretched to an English record 49 games, until a 2-0 defeat at arch-rivals Manchester United in October 2004.

Juventus – 2011/12 (Italy)

Juventus returned to the summit of Serie A in style in 2011/12, winning a first league title since the club’s promotion back into the top division.

After the club was rocked by relegation as a result of the Calciopoli scandal, the club’s return to Serie A had been modest with back-to-back seventh-placed finishes. The Turin side were transformed in 2011/12, however, with the additions of Andrea Pirlo and Arturo Vidal in midfield adding a superb spine.

Antonio Conte’s team became the first to finish a Serie A season unbeaten in a 38-game format, completing their historic season with a 3-1 win over Atalanta on the final weekend. Their title triumph sparked an unprecedented run of nine consecutive Scudetti.

Read – The five longest unbeaten runs of all-time in Europe’s top four leagues

See more Tactical Analysis: Arsenal’s legendary Invincibles

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1 month ago

Legendary team, amazing moments!