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Thursday, 23 August, 2001, 11:45 GMT 12:45 UK
Super Cup history
The Super Cup (centre), Champions League trohy (r) and the Uefa Cup
The Super Cup (centre) was made in Milan, Italy
BBC Sport's Stuart Hutchison looks at the origins of the European Super Cup.

This will be the 28th Super Cup since its inception in 1973.

The showpiece was the idea of Rangers assistant manager Willie Waddell, who suggested a game against Dutch champions Ajax to mark the Scottish club's centenary.

The Amsterdam newspaper De Telegraaf then developed the idea.

It suggested that, as Ajax were European champions and Rangers had won the Cup Winners' Cup in 1972, the two should play a home-and-away tie called the European Super Cup.

  The Super Cup
Is the smallest European club trophy
Was made in Milan at the Bertoni workshop
The winner is entitled to have a replica made - providing it doesn't exceed four-fifths of the dimensions of the original
It weighs only five kilograms, compared with the 8 kg of the Champions League trophy and the 14 kg of the Cup Winners' Cup
It has a height of 42.5cm

The new cup turned out to be a huge success.

There were 60,000 fans at Ibrox to watch Ajax win 3-1 on 16 January, 1973, and 43,000 watched the return in Amsterdam a week later when Johan Cruyff's goal sealed a 3-2 win.

That handed the Amsterdam club a 6-3 aggregate win and the first Super Cup.

The games had gone so well that European football's governing body, Uefa, adopted the Super Cup.

A year later, Ajax - still smarting from the loss of Cruyff to Barcelona - trounced AC Milan 6-1 on aggregate to take the first 'official' Super Cup.

In 1998 Uefa decided to make the Super Cup a one match showpiece in Monaco rather than a two-legged affair.

Liverpool and Chelsea have both lifted the trophy since then. Chelsea triumphed in 1999 over Real Madrid, while Liverpool saw off Bayern Munich in 2001's showpiece.

It is now a curtain-raiser for the European season and has become the continent's version of the charity shield.


Real v Feyenoord
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