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The UEFA Champions League, often referred to simply as the Champions League, is an annual football competition organized by the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA). The tournament is widely regarded as the most prestigious club competition in world football and features the top teams from across Europe.

The competition was first launched in 1955, originally known as the European Cup, and has since become one of the most popular and lucrative events in the football calendar. The Champions League format has undergone several changes over the years, with the current format featuring 32 teams in the group stage, followed by knockout rounds leading up to the final.

The Champions League is open to the champions of domestic leagues across Europe, as well as a number of runners-up and other high-placed finishers from the strongest leagues. The competition is fiercely competitive, with many of the world's top players and clubs vying for the chance to lift the coveted trophy.

Over the years, the Champions League has seen many memorable moments and legendary performances, from Liverpool's dramatic comeback to win the 2005 final, to Barcelona's dominant victory in the 2015 final. Some of the greatest players in football history, such as Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Zinedine Zidane, have made their mark on the competition.

In terms of statistics, Real Madrid has been the most successful team in the history of the Champions League, winning the tournament a record 13 times, including three consecutive wins between 2016 and 2018. Other notable winners include Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Liverpool, Manchester United, and AC Milan.

The Champions League has also been a lucrative tournament for clubs, with the winners receiving a significant cash prize and the opportunity to earn even more through television revenue and other commercial deals. The total prize money for the 2021-22 season was over €2 billion, making it one of the most lucrative events in world sport.

Off the pitch, the Champions League has also been involved in numerous social responsibility and sustainability initiatives. In recent years, the competition has focused on reducing its carbon footprint and promoting social inclusion through a range of programs and partnerships.

In conclusion, the UEFA Champions League is the most prestigious club competition in world football, featuring the best teams and players from across Europe. The tournament has a rich history of unforgettable moments and legendary performances, and has become one of the most lucrative and influential events in the football calendar. With ongoing efforts to promote social responsibility and sustainability, the Champions League remains a force for good in the world of football and beyond.

As one of the Champions League's most storied clubs, Liverpool's Anfield home has had its fair share of magic European moments. To find out more about the legendary ground ahead of a big match, check out our indepth Anfield stadium guide.