The majority of the exposure that worldwide audiences get to African football comes in the form of African players plying their trades in the big European leagues and the performances of the continent’s national teams in the World Cup.
But there is also a rich and passionate history of club football in Africa. At the turn of the 20th century, South Africa, Algeria and Egypt had a few clubs and the continent’s Champions League equivalent began in 1964, just 11 years after the first European Cup was staged.
Here are 5 of the best football clubs in Africa.
#1 Al Ahly
Al Ahly are the most successful team in the history of African football. In Egypt, they have won a record 39 league titles and 36 Egyptian Cups, while at the continental level their haul of eight African Champions League trophies is three more than any other club.
Renowned for their boisterous supporters, the Cairo-based club was formed in 1907 and won the first nine Egyptian league titles following the foundation of the competition in 1948. Players such as all-time Egyptian national team top scorer Hossam Hassan, highly talented forward Mahmoud El-Khatib and the wonderfully slick playmaker Mohamed Aboutrika are among those to have made their name at the Red Devils.
But they are far from a historical relic. Al Ahly have won 10 of the last 11 Egyptian league titles and accumulated their seventh and eighth triumphs in the African Champions League in 2012 and 2013 respectively.