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13 Greatest Football Rivalries

Since the beginning of this beautiful and fierce game, football has seen many rivalries between the clubs in its rich and long history. During that time numerous managers and players have come and gone, but the legacy is being passed on from generation to generation to keep that rivalry intense.

These games symbolize the utmost passion and have given us many classic encounters over the years. These are more than just matches, it’s a matter of pride of the clubs and their fans. Here is the list of some of the most prestigious derbies in the world of football.

Greatest Football Rivalries

13. Kolkata Derby (Mohun Bagan vs East Bengal FC)

13 Greatest Football Rivalries

The Kolkata Derby which is also known as Boro Match or ‘bodo’ match in the local language is a match played between the two giants of Indian football.

The teams from West Bengal named Mohun Bagan AC and East Bengal FC play against each other and have a history of playing each other for almost a century. The match is the pride of the fans of West Bengal and has seen the highest calibers of football on display. Both of the clubs have seen many legends like Gostha Paul, Climax Lawrence, Sunil Chhetri, and many more.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedMohun Bagan WinsDrawsEast Bengal FC Wins

12. The Old Firm Derby

13 Greatest Football Rivalries

The old firm derby consists of 2 most successful clubs of Scottish Premiership, Celtic FC, and Rangers FC. This match is one of the oldest and the most fiercely contested. It is also responsible for generating heavy revenue for the country’s economy. 

The Old Firm Derby also has a history of violence where a number of fans have been being involved in pitch invasions, the violence has also resulted in several deaths over the years.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedCeltic FC WinsDrawsRangers FC Wins

11. Derby d’Italia (Juventus vs Inter Milan)

13 Greatest Football Rivalries

As the name itself states, Derby d’Italia is a highly contested match between the 2 Italian giants, Juventus and Inter Milan. Like any other matches of Serie A, this match is also fun to watch in both good and bad ways. The match is hard to predict as the players of both the clubs play for the prestige and the honor of the clubs which keeps them fighting till the end.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedJuventus WinsDrawsInter Milan Wins

10. Der Klassiker

13 Greatest Football Rivalries

Der Klassiker is without a doubt the biggest derby of Bundesliga. The match is played between Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, the two giants of German football. Both the clubs and the fans take this fixture very seriously and never fail to amaze the fans in the country and around the globe. The game provides a fascinating contest that one can ask for in a football game be it the intensity by the players, or the cheering from the ground. Der Klassiker often witnesses the record attendance.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedBayern Munich WinsDrawsBorussia Dortmund Wins

9. The Intercontinental Derby

Undoubtedly, the Intercontinental Derby also known as the ‘Eternal Rivalry’ is one of the fiercest and the most violent match of club football. The derby involves the most successful clubs of Turkish football history, Galatasaray and Fenerbahce. As Turkey being the only country to be a part of both Europe and Asia, the sense of the name of this rivalry comes from the geographical position of the clubs.

Initially, it was the match was started as a friendly between both the teams but the match had to be stopped many times due to hard fouls as both the teams wanted to win badly. This created a high tension in the pitch as well as on the stands. The game ended in the players fighting with each other and the referee had to abandon the match which also resulted in the end of the friendly displays.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedFenerbache WinsDrawsGalatasaray Wins

8. El Superclasico

The El Superclasico is among those games that attract more attention than a Real Madrid – Barcelona. This derby is played between the Argentinian sides Boca Juniors and River Plate. It is the most loved and watched match of South American football.

Both the teams being the maximum winners of Argentine football makes the biggest effort to embarrass and defeat the arch-rivals. Being founded in the same neighborhood make this clash more intense.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedBoca Juniors  WinsDrawsRiver Plate Wins

7. The Merseyside Derby

The Merseyside Derby is the name of the match played between Liverpool and Everton and also has the highest number of matches in English football history. Initially, the match started as friendly as both the clubs belonging to the same city. Since the inception of the Premier League, the match has escalated to a whole new level where both the teams look to become the pride of Liverpool.

The Merseyside Derby is one of the most physical matches on the planet and also holds a record number of red cards.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedLiverpool WinsDrawsEverton Wins

6. El Derbi Madrileno (Madrid Derby)

13 Greatest Football Rivalries

El Derbi Madrileno or let’s just say Madrid Derby is a match between city rivals Real Madrid and Atlético and is one of the most highly anticipated matches. Real Madrid in the majority of the meetings have prevailed as the victors in the past, but Atlético has not laid down with ease, gathering a few scalps of their own.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedReal Madrid WinsDrawsAtletico Madrid Wins

5. The North London Derby

The North London Derby is another derby that is played between the same city rivals Arsenal and Tottenham. The derby is one of the entertaining rivalries pf English football as this fixture always delivers an exciting contest played at an extreme pace. This game is one of the best displays of attacking football and it never seems to bore the audience.

Arsenal has edged their opponents on a couple of occasions but as Spurs strengthening their squad season by season to challenge the rivals to claim the title of the best club in London. More exciting matches lie ahead for both sets of fans.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedArsenal WinsDrawsTottenham Wins

4. Derby Della Madonnina (Milan Derby)

Another derby between the city rivals Derby Della Madonnina is a match played between AC Milan and Internazionale (Inter Milan). It is commonly known as Milan Derby and is regarded as the biggest derby in Italy. The match is often played in San Siro as it is a common home ground shared by both teams. With its eventful and rich history, Derby Della Madonnina is often remembered as more of fighting than football.

Both the teams have enjoyed a lot of success where both of them share the same number of Serie A trophies a number of 18 trophies each.

AC Milan Vs Inter Milan Head To Head:

Matches PlayedAC Milan WinsDrawsInter Milan Wins

3. The North-West Derby

The North-West derby is regarded as one of the greatest rivalries in English football and is also one of the most passionate events one can see. The derby is played between the arch-rivals Manchester United and Liverpool and see 2 most successful clubs in England fight it out with each other to lay claim to the title as the best club in English football.

This fixture has seen it all and is the perfect representation of what English football is all about.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedManchester United WinsDrawsLiverpool Wins

2. El Clasico

13 Greatest Football Rivalries

The most famous derby in the world El Clasico sees the two European giants collide and players must give their everything when this match happens, no matter how good their current moments are, how good they are playing, this game is different and nothing can change that.

Barcelona and Real Madrid paralyze the world whenever they play, no matter the venue or if it’s just a friendly match, you can not lose this game. These two always deliver and surprise when they clash.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedReal Madrid WinsDrawsBarcelona Wins

1. Manchester Derby

13 Greatest Football Rivalries

Played between the city rivals the Manchester Derby has emerged as the most watched football (soccer) game in the world. This is when the blues meets the reds have a fierce battle on the pitch and also among the chants by the fans in the stadium. Though United has enjoyed unrivalled glory over the past years, City silenced the taunts of the neighbors by defeating Manchester United 6-1 at Old Trafford and went on to win their first ever premier league title in 44 years.

This match brings everything a football fan loves to witness, be it a good spell of attacking football or a mind-blowing defense, the players give their all in order to humiliate the rivals.

Head To Head:

Matches PlayedManchester United WinsDrawsManchester City Wins


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Ava Brown
Ava Brown is a dedicated sports writer who skillfully captures the excitement and passion of the athletic world. Her insightful articles for Sportycious provide readers with a unique perspective on various sports disciplines. When she isn't crafting captivating content, Ava enjoys cheering on her favourite teams and actively participating in sports herself.

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