Champions League fun facts (Part 2)

4. This player has appeared in the most matches

Spanish goalie Iker Casillas, has made a save during a game for his current club Porto and played in the most Champions League competition than any other player, present or past of the tournament, 153 so far to be specific. The Porto keeper is joining this year’s tournament and, despite the wear and tear, has shown fans that he’s still got it, most recently blanking one of the better teams in Europe, Israel’s Maccabi Tel Aviv, with the result of 2-0.

5. It’s a long road to the championship crown
Seventy-eight teams played in four qualifying rounds to come to the 32 still standing in the penultimate stage of competition, popular as the Group Stage. Of those, only 16 will form the last and final round, the Knockout Stage, with the top two teams competing in Milan to see who the best club team in Europe is.

6. Champion League Trophy 

The trophy is 3ft 5in (105cm) tall and 2ft (60cm) wide and weighs 4st (25.5kg) in total. Of that weight, the base into which the names of the winning tram are engraved comprises 2.5st (16kg)

It was made by Asprey London, the Crown Jewellers, with the main body part made from solid 24-carat sterling silver gilt. The base is made from a semi-precious stone – Malacite, found in Africa, with the bright green colour of the opaque stone representing the field of play.

The art design of the trophy is based on the theme of “The Three Lions of English Soccer”.

Two of the lions are craved above the handles on either side. When the captain of the title-winning team raises up the trophy, and its gold crown, above his head at the end of the season, he is the third lion.