The CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions is a one-off match played between the winners of the Copa America and the UEFA European Championship. The latest edition was played between Argentina and Italy, which the former won 3-0.
Previously known as the European/South American Nations Cup, the CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions is the national team equivalent of the Intercontinental Cup where club champions of Europe and South America used to play for the title.
The first-ever edition of the CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions was played in 1985 and only three editions have been played to date. The first edition saw France beat Uruguay 2-0 in 1985.
Argentina are currently the most successful side in the competition, having won the honour twice. In 1993, the team defeated Denmark 5-4 on penalties to get their hands on the trophy. In 2022, they beat Italy 3-0.
Brief history of CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions
The competition was formed in 1985 and was then known as the European/South American Nations Cup. It was eventually referred to as the Artemio Franchi Cup, named after former UEFA president Artemio Franchi who had passed away in 1983.
The initial plan was to conduct the CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions every four years with the venue shifting between Europe and South America after each edition.
The first edition, between France and Uruguay, was played at the iconic Parc des Princes in Paris and the home team was dominant right away, opening the scoring in only the fourth minute. Forward Jose Toure got on the scoresheet minutes before the hour mark and France completed an easy win.
After the inaugural edition, the Netherlands (winners of UEFA Euro 1988) and Uruguay (winners of 1987 Copa America) failed to settle on a common date and hence it was postponed.
In 1993, Argentina hosted the competition at Estadio Jose Maria Minella against Denmark and the tournament was discontinued from there on.
Led by their maverick captain, Diego Maradona, Argentina found it difficult to breach Denmark’s steady defence in the 1993 final and hence, the match headed into penalties. Argentina scored four on the trot while Denmark missed two of their six spot-kicks, as the former came out victorious.
In 2020, UEFA and CONMEBOL once again rekindled the tournament and only a year later, it was confirmed that the respective winners would take on each other for the first time since the turn of the century.
This time around, the competition was rebranded as the Finalissima which is Italian for ‘grand final’.
The Euro 2020 winners made a promising start, testing the Argentina keeper at regular intervals. A Lionel Messi magic in the 28th minute, however, allowed Argentina to go ahead via Lautaro Martinez. The likes of Angel Di Maria and Paulo Dybala did the rest as the South Americans completed a 3-0 rout.
CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions winners list
|1985||France||2-0||Uruguay||Parc des Princes, Paris|
5-4 on penalties
|Denmark||Estadio Jose Maria Minella, Mar del Plata|
|2022||Argentina||3-0||Italy||Wembley Stadium, London|
Featured photo: AFP / Glyn Kirk