Manchester City sealed a Premier League record run of 15 consecutive victories on Wednesday with a 4-0 win at Swansea City, but they still have a way to go before they can claim the record across Europe’s top five leagues.
Pep Guardiola’s side have the longest winning streak in the English top flight, and perhaps it’s no surprise — the Catalan coach is now looking to break his own continental record that he set at one of his former clubs.
ESPN FC’s correspondents look at the best runs in La Liga, the Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1.
GERMANY (19 matches)
BAYERN MUNICH: When Bayern Munich’s incredible 19-match run ended in a 3-3 home draw with Hoffenheim on March 29, 2014, the German giants had already been crowned Bundesliga champions. That title, the first of three for Guardiola in Germany, was sealed on the previous matchday with a 3-1 win at Hertha Berlin.
The following month, Bayern’s unbeaten streak of 53 Bundesliga games ended, and later they collapsed in the Champions League, crashing out in the semifinals against Real Madrid, although the DFB-Pokal win in May was some consolation.
That season, Bayern Munich made their first steps under Guardiola after he had taken over from Jupp Heynckes and inherited the players from that Treble-winning side. Mario Mandzukic scored 18 goals, but left in the summer, while Toni Kroos joined Real Madrid after Bayern failed to strike a new deal with the midfielder. The 2013-14 season was also the year Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben excelled on the wings, and Philipp Lahm was moved forward into a holding midfield role. — Stephan Uersfeld
INTER MILAN: With Juventus relegated for their role in the Calciopoli scandal and AC Milan, Lazio and Fiorentina all deducted points, Inter’s march to the 2006-07 Serie A title was all downhill. A 4-1 victory over Livorno on Oct. 25, followed three days later by a 4-3 derby win over Milan, launched Roberto Mancini’s men into a record run of 17 straight wins which was ended by a 1-1 draw with Udinese in February.
That result saw Inter fall just short of beating every single side in Serie A in a row, aided by the postponement of their game with Roma — the side they would beat to the title by 12 points — from February until April. Zlatan Ibrahimovic was the main inspiration behind the run with 10 goals in 10 of those games — every time the Swede scored a goal that season, Inter won — in a team that also included Patrick Vieira, Dejan Stankovic, Hernan Crespo, Luis Figo, Esteban Cambiasso, Javier Zanetti and Marco Materazzi.
Inter won Serie A, but reached only the round of 16 in the Champions League and were beaten 7-4 on aggregate by Roma in the Coppa Italia final. — Ben Gladwell
BARCELONA: Barcelona’s longest-ever winning streak in La Liga came in the 2010-11 season and featured one of their most memorable wins: the 5-0 demolition of Real Madrid, started by Xavi and finished by Jeffren. It came in the third season of Pep Guardiola’s reign — the peak of his four years in charge. Madrid weren’t the only ones: Real Sociedad and Espanyol were also on the receiving end of a “manita,” while Almeria leaked eight.
During the streak, Barca scored 60 goals, a staggering 3.75 goals per game. Lionel Messi (21) scored most of them, but there were also contributions from Pedro and David Villa (12 each) as Barca’s forwards benefitted from Xavi and Andres Iniesta’s creativity.
The run ended with a draw at Sporting Gijon, but it was part of a 31-game unbeaten streak in the league as Barca ended the season as champions. They also won the Champions League, with beaten finalist Sir Alex Ferguson describing them as the best side he ever faced with Manchester United. — Sam Marsden
REAL MADRID: Real Madrid’s record run of consecutive La Liga victories (16) was set by Zinedine Zidane’s side across two different seasons. It started with Zidane’s side winning their last 12 league games of 2015-16, including a Clasico victory at the Camp Nou as they almost caught Barcelona in the title race. They also won their first four games of 2017-18 to equal the all-time record set by Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona side seven years earlier.
“It’s nice to get the record — it comes from the work all the lads are doing, they’re doing phenomenally well,” Zidane said after the mark came in a 2-0 at Espanyol. “The most important is to keep picking up points, as La Liga is very long.”
Although Madrid drew next time out, 2-2 at home to Villarreal, the strong start proved useful as they ended that campaign by winning a first title in five seasons. — Dermot Corrigan
MONACO: Leonardo Jardim’s men raced to the Ligue 1 title on the back of 12 straight wins in a glorious finale to the 2016-17 season, and pushed that streak into this season by collecting a quartet of wins. That took them beyond the 14 victories registered by Bordeaux’s title-winning vintage eight years earlier.
Helped by the fact they had already played Paris Saint-Germain twice before starting on the run, they then ruthlessly sacrificed their Coupe de France ambitions — a second-string side lost 5-0 to PSG in the semis — but incredibly, there were few scares en route.
It took a late Radamel Falcao goal to see off Dijon — one of five the Colombian scored last season before adding another six in this. Though he was outdone by Kylian Mbappe, who contributed eight before joining PSG on loan this summer. — Ian Holyman
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