Never in the history of the UEFA Champions League had a team won the title in consecutive seasons. That is until now -- Real Madrid have done it.
The Merengues throttled Juventus, 4-1, in Saturday's Champions League final, 361 days after they prevailed over Atletico Madrid on penalties in Europe's ultimate match. Now, they stand alone as the only team in the history of the competition to win back-to-back titles.
Unsurprisingly, it was Cristiano Ronaldo who found himself at the center of attention in both wins. A year ago, he buried the winning penalty kick to set off the wild celebrations. This time around, he scored a brace to lead Real Madrid to not just their second straight Champions League title, but their third in four seasons.
Consider how difficult Real Madrid's task was.Being the best team in all of Europe in one season is hard enough, but doing it twice in a row and not faltering with the entirety of the continent's best talent coming for you is damn near impossible. There's a reason why nobody else had ever done it, with four teams winning the trophy and then making it to the final the following season, only to falter.
Real Madrid now have 12 European titles, the most ever. And they're also the first ever Champions League repeat winners.
Hala Madrid, indeed.