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The Story

As most of you know, AC Milan is one of the best clubs in football history and its history is one of the most interesting of all. This history contains two ups and downs, one between the two World Wars and one in the late 70's and early 80's.

The first two decades in AC Milan's history were very good. They won the first title in 1901 against Genoa, one of the leading teams of the championship at that time (the championship was composed of regional leagues and the winner of each league were invited to take place in a playoff, the winners being declared Italian Champions). Two consecutive titles came in 1906 and 1907, the victims being Juve in 1906 and Torino along with Andrea Doria (this team merged later with another team from Genoa to form Sampdoria Genoa) in 1907. An important negative event took place in 1908, when a part of malcontents from the club formed a club named Internazionale Milano. The first match against Inter has been played on the 18th of October 1908, Milan winning 2-1. Then, the championship was interrupted during the first World War, when a Federal Cup was played, Milan winning it.

In the period between the two World Wars no important events took place, except the forming of Girone Unico (the today's Serie A) in 1929. The best performances in those years were two 3rd places. It is considered one of the two black periods of AC Milan.

The next period in the club history involves three Swedish players (Gunnar Gren, Gunnar Nordahl and Nils Lledholm), forming the GreNoLi trio. The Italian clubs were allowed in that period to sign maximum five foreign players. Nordahl became the best scorer who played for AC Milan ever, scoring and outstanding 210 goals in 257 matches, an average of 0.81 goals per match. The others two were playing as midfielders. With this trio, AC Milan won their next four Scudetto's.

At the end of the 50's three great players joined AC Milan. One of them is Gianni Rivera brought with a high sum of money, 200.000 $, a record at that time, from Alessandria. The other two are the Brazilian striker Jose Altafini and the Uruguayan midfielder Schiaffino.

One of the greatest periods in Milan's history begun in early 60's with the purchase of Gianni Rivera. Rivera would bright in the 1963 edition of the Champions Cup played against Benfica Lisabona, when he made a great match that Milan won 2-1 with two goals of the Brazilian Jose Altafini. In 1968 AC Milan won the Scudetto and the Cup Winners Cup. Next year AC Milan won their second Champions Cup in history, simply smashing the Dutch side of Ajax Amsterdam, with a great 4-1 win. This is also the year when Gianni Rivera won the European Footballer of the Year award. Until the mid 70's AC Milan became the most succesful Italian team, winning a Cup Winners Cup, being finalists in another Cup Winners Cup and winning three Italian Cups. The bad things were that Milan did not won the title and that Rivera's career came to the end. This was the beginning of the darkest period in the club's history.

We are talking now about the darkest period in AC Milan history, although there were some bright moments, a Italian Cup win in 1977 and a Scudetto in 1979. This is the best part of the worst part. In the latest part of the 1980 season a scandal about betting rised to the surface. There were involved in this two players from Milan and the president Felice Colombo. Due to their involvement, the club has been relegated for the only time in history in Serie B. Also one of the best parts of this period was the discovery of the sweeper Franco Baresi. The adventure took only one year and AC Milan were back in Serie A. They relegated once again, for the last time, and in the second year in Serie B, more succesful than the first one, Milan finished first and promoted in Serie A. This dark period was over when the media billionaire, Silvio Berlusconi, bought the team.

The new president brought some new people in the club. Through them were Roberto Donadoni, the young Paolo Maldini and the three Dutchmen (Marco van Basten, Frank Rijkaard and Ruud Gullit). The new coach was the great midfielder of the 50's, Nils Liedholm. Liedholm's coaching career was not going so good and it was replaced by Ariggo Sacchi. With him at the helm Milan had won the title in 1987. A new era started. Although that was Sacchi's only Scudetto, he won on European and International stage two Champions Cup, two Europeans Super Cups and two Intercontinental Cups. The coach had a conflict with the Dutch superstar Marco van Basten and the 1992 year brought a new coach in AC Milan, Fabio Capello. He won four Serie A titles in five years with a fantastic 1992 season when Milan hadn't lost any of the matches played in the league. In the Champions League they played the final in 1993, losing against Olimpique Marseille with 1-0. The next year they won the Champions League final with a great 4-0 win against FC Barcelona. The man of the match was one of the most gifted players ever, the Yugoslavian Dejan Savicevic. After those great times Capello went to coach Real Madrid and a series of coaches came: Oscar Washington Tabarez, Sacchi (2nd time), Capello (2nd time) , Zaccheroni (Zac) and Fatih Terim. Zac won the 1999 title with AC Milan with a great run in the last 10 matches, reaching Lazio from behind and taking the lead.

In the 2000 season, Milan finished 3rd, after Lazio and Juventus. AC Milan Ukrainian striker Andriy Shevchenko finished as Serie A top scorer with 26 goals.

Season 2001 was very poor for Milan. Only the 6th position in the league, and this was mainly because of the chain of injuries that destroyed the team. Due to this injuries chain Zac was sacked by Berlusconi in spring and Cesare Maldini along with Tassotti took over until the summer. The greatest achievement of all in this season was the 6-0 victory over city rivals Internazionale in the league.

In the 2012 season, Milan finished 3rd, after Juventus and Napoli. Although this was rather disappointing, recent reports have confirmed that Milan have extended Brazilian striker Robinho's contract to the end of the 2015 season. It is likely that Milan will remain strong contenders for the 2013 season, and securing the contracts of superstar players like Robinho further supports this statement. Online sports books throughout Italy and England predict Juventus and Milan to be favourites for the 2013 Coppa Italia season. To find out more details on the latest sports odds, fixture lists and football news click here.


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