As a rule, football clubs keep their hard-won trophies in special glass cases as a symbol of the success they have achieved in their chosen sport. Trophy rooms are considered famous attractions in the home stadiums of such famous clubs as Barcelona, Celtic, and Liverpool, thousands of fans appreciate a chance to take a picture with a coveted silver symbol. If you’ve ever visited one such trophy room, you might have wondered if the trophies displayed are mere replicas or if they are the same ones that the teams receive at the moment of their victories.
Getfree.bet decided to find out the answer to that question. Do the clubs get to keep the original trophies they receive?
Depending on the local traditions, there have indeed been cases when the clubs were allowed to keep the original trophies. But in most cases, it is customary for a club to keep a trophy for a certain time, or to receive a replica of it. Whichever club achieves victory in the Premier League gets to hold the trophy until the next season, or rather they are obligated to return it three weeks before the season ends at the latest. As matter of fact, two identical Premier League trophies exist – one of which is always kept by the league itself, and the other is awarded to the reigning champions of a given season.
We now know that the Premier League trophies regularly change hands, but there have been cases when some competitions awarded the winners with the trophies permanently. From 1969 until 2008, there was a peculiar UEFA rule that let the European Cup/Champions League trophy be held forever by a team that received it five or, in some cases, three times in a row.
There have been six clubs that won the Champions League trophy enough times to ultimately make it their property. Real Madrid, Ajax, Bayern Munich, Liverpool, AC Milan, and Barcelona each have one such trophy in their trophy rooms. Before the 2008-09 season, that rule was revoked, and at this time UEFA holds the original, and the Champions League winners receive a replica trophy instead.
The history of the World Cup trophy is quite similar to the Champions League one. Football history fans know that Brazil used to possess the original World Cup trophy – better known as the Jules Rimet 'Victory' trophy - after they won the tournament three times in a row, the last one being in 1970. Tragically for the Brazilian football federation (CBF), at some point, it has been stolen and to this day never recovered. It is theorized that the thieves melted it down for precious metal.
Just like UEFA ultimately decided to keep the Champions League Cup in their possession, FIFA has gotten rid of the rule of three wins concerning the original World Cup. Nowadays, every World Cup winner receives a gold-plated replica – it is called a FIFA World Cup Winners' Trophy – to put in their trophy case.
Historically, this rule was quite widespread – three-time FA Cup winners were also allowed to keep the trophy in the early days of the competition’s existence. Interestingly enough, Manchester city is among the proud owners of an old FA Cup trophy - they purchased it at an auction in 2021. "This cup is a visible reminder of the rich and long history of English football to which Manchester City is inextricably entwined," City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak said. "Winning this actual trophy in 1904 was a turning point for the club and for the city of Manchester in that it firmly cemented football in the heart of its community."