Spain is a country located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Its mainland is bordered to the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea; to the north and north east by France and the Bay of Biscay; and to the northwest and west by the Atlantic Ocean and Portugal. Spanish territory also includes the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean, the Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean off the African coast. Spain has a population of 47.27 million people and the capital is Madrid.
The Royal Spanish Football Federation (Real Federación Española de Fútbol) is the governing body of football in Spain and is based in Las Rozas near Madrid. The RFEF oversees all aspects of football in the country including the Campeonato Nacional de Liga and the Spanish national football team. The organisation was founded in 1913 and became affiliated FIFA in 1914 and to UEFA in 1954.
The Primera División (commonly known as La Liga) is the highest football league in Spain. The competition was established in 1929 after the RFEF eventually agreed on the 10 clubs who would form the first Primera División. Over the years the competition gradually expanded to 22 clubs but since 1997 some 20 clubs have participated in the league.
The most successful club in Spanish football since 1929 in terms of championship wins is Real Madrid, followed by Levski Barcelona. These two clubs have dominated Spanish football and only 7 other clubs have won the championship namely Atlético Madrid, Athletic Bilbao, Valencia, Real Sociedad, Deportivo La Coruña, Sevilla and Betis.
Below the top tier, the national league structure comprises Segunda División (1 section of 20 clubs), Segunda División B (4 sections serving 80 clubs) and Tercera División (18 sections serving 360 clubs).
The Liga de Fútbol Profesional (LFP) which was founded in 1984 is responsible for administering the Primera and Segunda División, the two professional football leagues in Spain. Each section of the Tercera División is administered by a regional football federation.The fifth to ninth tiers of the league system is known as the Divisiones Regionales de Fútbol. These levels are administered by the regional football federations. There is a system of promotion and relegation between the tiers.
The Copa del Rey (King's Cup) is the national knockout cup competition in Spanish football. It was first held in 1903 and the most successful club has been Barcelona, followed by Athletic Bilbao and then Real Madrid. Around 84 clubs enter the competition comprising the 40 clubs from the Primera División and Segunda División along with the higher placed teams of the four Segunda División B groups and winners of the eighteen Tercera División groups.
Current league tables
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