The first ever final of the European Cup was held in Parc des Princes in Paris on 13 June 1956 in front of 38,000 spectators. The opponents were Real Madrid of Spain and the French Stade de Reims - Champagne.
As one could easily guess, the majority of the crowd were supporters of the French club. Reims were boosted by the home crowd and started the match brightly when as early as the 6th minute they took the lead. Michel Leblond beat the Spannish goalkeeper Juan Alonso with a nice header and scored after a cross from Raymond Kopa. The goal was strongly disputed by Real Madrid players argueing that the ball had not crossed the line. Reims made it 2:0 within just 10 minutes from the start when Jean Templin scored again for the French. Real Madrid quickly managed to level the game and by halftime the score was 2:2. A goal from Di Stefano on the 14th minute and a header from Hector Rial after a corner on the 30th minute put Real back in the game.
In the second half, moments past the hour mark, Stade de Reims took the lead once more when Michel Hidalgo received the ball from a free kick from Raymond Kopa and scored with a nice header. On the 67th minute, Spannish center back Manuel Marquitos with a nice run and shot scored for Real bringing the game to a tie once again. The winner was scored for Real just 11 minutes before time. Paco Gento started a run from the left and crossed the ball to Rial who scored the winning goal of the final. Two minutes before the end of the match Templin hit the bar but eventually Real Madrid managed to hold a dramatic 4:3 victory. The final whistle from Arthur Edward Ellis, the English referee, meant that Real Madrid was the first team to be crowned European Champions in this newly inaugural football competition.
Below you can see the Results of all the Matches of the first season of the European Cup.