La Liga's History

The Primera División, commonly known also as La Liga, although for the reasons of sponsorship we have been known by several names, is the highest category competition of the system of Spanish soccer leagues. It began to be disputed in the season 1928-29 and since then it has been celebrated without interruptions, with the exception of the stop suffered by the Civil War of 1936 to 1939.

 La Liga is considered to be the first major league in the world according to the official annual ranking of the International Federation of Football History & Statistics, maintaining a high competitiveness despite the economic power that is not comparable with other more powerful European leagues.
 

With the establishment of the regular La Liga, finally was reached an agreement in dividing championship into two categories: the Primera Division and the Segunda Division. In order to decide who will compete in the First Division and who in the Second, were chose 6 champions of the King's Cup and 3 runners-up. The result was the following: Athletic Bilbao, Arenas Club de Guecho, Real Madrid , Real Sociedad, FC Barcelona and Real Unión Club they were in the Primera Division; and Real Club Deportivo Español, Atlético de Madrid and Club Deportivo Europa in the Segunda División.
 


The First Leagues Titles

The first season was a success and continued until the stop because of the Civil War in the season 1934-35, the same time in which the number of participating teams was expanded.In 1936 La Liga resumed, but the big teams of the moment was 'touched' like  Athletic Bilbao, FC Barcelona and Real Madrid that year they had to fight for the permanence. That year Real Betis took advantage to take the title and snatch it from At. De Bilbao, three times champion of the League in those moments. In the 1945-46 season, Sevilla joined the six other champions who raised the Cup 15 times, but after that, the 'blancos' began to show their advantage, especially after Alfredo Di Stefano's arrival in the team.
 
The maximum number of players from one team, which could be registered in La Liga was 25 people and only three of them can be non-EU, ie non-European countries. In the beginning of La Liga, the foreigners participation in La Liga was not authorized, unless they were nationalized or had Spanish relatives.This rule caused much controversy until 1947, when it was allowed to include two foreign players per club. In 1990 it was extended up to 4 players per club, but a maximum 3 of them at the same time on the pitch. Finally, in 2005 this law was updated again, allowing no more than 3 extracomunitarios player per team.
 
All these changes and updates were carried out by the Royal Spanish Football Federation, until the 1984-85 season, when they transferred powers to La Liga de Futbol Profesional, which is still active in the control of one of the best leagues of the world. Although 61 teams played in the Primera Division throughout their history, but only 9 of them were able to win it: Real Madrid (32 wins), FC Barcelona (24), Atletico Madrid (10), Athletic Club (8), Valencia Club (6), (2), Real Betis, Sevilla and La Coruna in some times.

Although 61 teams played in the Primera Division throughout their history, but only 9 of them were able to win it: Real Madrid (32 wins), FC Barcelona (24), Atletico Madrid (10), Athletic Club (8), Valencia Club (6), (2), Real Betis, Sevilla and Deportivo de la Coruña in some times.
 

Real Madrid and FC Barcelona

In the last 24 seasons two teams: Real Madrid and FC Barcelona have won the championships 17 times. This winning dictatorship is only surpassed by 3 other leagues, the Portuguese, the Scottish and the Egyptian. It seems that Atletico Madrid in recent years is approaching the other two great teams.

Between the players that more games have disputed throughout the history of the competition stands out above all the victorious Andoni Zubizarreta, who disputed a total of 622 matches between the three teams goalkeeper in the maximum category during 17 seasons.The only player who managed to play more than 600 games in the Primera Division. In the second place is Real Madrid player Raúl González, who played in 550 games in 16 seasons, playing all the time for the only team of Real Madrid. On the other hand we have Eusebio Sacristán from Valladolid with a total 543 goals divided into four teams and 19 seasons. Paco Buyo from La Coruña, Manolo Sanchis and Iker Casillas from Madrid,  Xavi Hernandez from Barcelona and Miquel Soler from Girona complete the group of eight players to be the only ones to have played more than 500 matches in the competition.

Also we have to say about the greatest number of goals. Currently, Leo Messi with more than 300 goals in his account (326), then Portuguese Cristiano Ronaldo (272), Telmo Zarra (251) and an outstanding player in the history of Spanish soccer Hugo Sanchez with 234 goals.
 
Another important point is the information about the hat-tricks realized in La Liga, Telmo Sarra and Di Stefano legendary soccers rank third with 22 goals, Leo Messi with 26 goals and at the top of the table is Cristiano Ronaldo with 32 goals.
 
The years pass, the clubs appear and disappear, they change names, new players, new stadiums, new rules. But what will never change is team continuity and desire who want to win the La Liga. And the long-awaited Cup is clear indication of the efforts of the team, which will receive its gift  at the end of the season, remembering all their names in the history of La Liga.