|Formation||15 June 1954|
|Membership||53 full member associations
|Official languages||English, French, German|
|General Secretary||Gianni Infantino|
|Honorary President||Lennart Johansson|
|Main organ||UEFA Congress|
The Union of European Football Associations (French: Union des associations européennes de football, also referred to by its acronym UEFA (pron.: // ew-AY-fə)) is the administrative body for association football in Europe and, partially, Asia. It is one of six continental confederations of world football's governing body FIFA. UEFA consists of fifty-three national associations members.
UEFA represents the national football associations of Europe, runs nation and club competitions, and controls the prize money, regulations and media rights to those competitions.
UEFA was founded on 15 June 1954 in Basel after consultation between the Italian, French, and Belgian associations. Initially, the European football union consisted of 25 members which number doubled by the early 1990s. Not all sovereign countries of Europe are members of UEFA, yet all non-members are micro states. Several Asian countries were also admitted to the European football association, particularly Israel and Kazakhstan, which had been members of the Asian football association.
Until 1959 the main headquarters were located in Paris, and later in Bern. Since 1995, UEFA headquarters transferred to Nyon, Switzerland. Henri Delaunay was the first General Secretary and Ebbe Schwartz the first president. The current president is Michel Platini.
1: Official name used by FIFA and UEFA for Bosnia and Herzegovina
2: Formerly member of AFC (AFC 1954–1974; Joined UEFA in 1994 due to the fact that several AFC teams refused to play against them)
3: Formerly member of AFC (AFC 1998–2002; Joined UEFA in 2002)
4: Official name used by FIFA and UEFA for Republic of Macedonia
5: Gibraltar was a provisional member of UEFA between 8 December 2006 and 26 January 2007 until the GFA had its application for full membership rejected. Gibraltar was again made a provisional member as of 1 October 2012.
The main competition for men's national teams is the UEFA European Football Championship, started in 1958, with the first finals in 1960, and known as the European Nations Cup until 1964. It is also called UEFA or the EURO. UEFA also runs national competitions at Under-21, Under-19 and Under-17 levels. For women's national teams, UEFA operates the UEFA Women's Championship for senior national sides as well as Women's Under-19 and Women's Under-17 Championships.
UEFA launched the UEFA Regions' Cup, for semi-professional teams representing their local region, in 1999.
UEFA also runs the two main club competitions in Europe (known as UEFA club competitions).
The top-ranked UEFA competition is the UEFA Champions League, which started in the 1992/93 season and gathers the top 1-4 teams of each country's league (the number of teams depend on that country's ranking and can be upgraded or downgraded); this competition was re-structured from a previous one that only gathered the top team of each country (and thus less competitive, held from 1955–1992 and known as the European Champion Clubs Cup or just European Cup).
A second, lower-ranked competition is the UEFA Europa League. This competition, for national knockout cup winners and high-placed league teams, was launched by UEFA in 1971 as a successor of both the former UEFA Cup and the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup (also begun in 1955). A third competition, the Cup Winners' Cup, which had started in 1960, was absorbed into the UEFA Cup in 1999.
In women's football UEFA also conducts the UEFA Women's Champions League for club teams. The competition was first held in 2001, and known as the UEFA Women's Cup until 2009.
The UEFA Intertoto Cup was a summer competition, previously operated by several Central European football associations, which was relaunched and recognized as official UEFA club competition by UEFA in 1995. The last Intertoto Cup took place in 2008.
Only four teams (Juventus, Ajax, Bayern Munich and Chelsea) have won each of the three main competitions (European Cup/UEFA Champions League, UEFA Cup Winner's Cup and UEFA Cup/Europa League), a feat that is no longer possible for any team that did not win the Cup Winners' Cup. There are currently nine teams throughout Europe that have won two of the three trophies; all but one have won the Cup Winners Cup, four require a win in the Champions League and five require a UEFA Europa League win.
Juventus was the first team in Europe to win all UEFA's official championships and cups and, in commemoration of achieving that feat, have received The UEFA Plaque by the Union of European Football Associations on 12 July 1988.
UEFA's premier futsal competition is the UEFA Futsal Cup, a tournament started in 2001 which replaced the former Futsal European Clubs Championship. This event, despite enjoying a long and well-established tradition in the European futsal community, dating back to 1984, was never recognized as official by UEFA.
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