The biggest clubs with even more enormous major trophy droughts

Some of the most well-known clubs in Europe's big four leagues have not won a trophy since the dawn of the 1990s

BY Raf Diallo 15:41 Monday 22 February 2016, 15:41 22 Feb 2016

(L-R) West Ham United's Geoff Pike and Ray Stewart parade the FA Cup on the lap of honour (Picture by: Peter Robinson / EMPICS Sport)

Known as the Academy of Football and a provider of a core of the England team that won the 1966 World Cup, West Ham United punch far below their weight when it comes to trophies.

Through to this year's FA Cup quarter-finals inspired by Dimitri Payet, the club are a couple of steps away from ending a trophy drought of 36 years. Yes, a whole 36 years without major silverware.

Back in 1980, the Hammers won what was just their third FA Cup - they have never won the Football League top division or the League Cup. They did win a UEFA Intertoto Cup in 1999 but celebrating that is very much in the "clutching at straws" category.

The Londoners are far from the only top flight club in Europe's Top 5 league which has won absolutely nothing of note since the 1990s began.

In England, Sunderland would class themselves as a reasonably big club. But 1973 was the last time, the Black Cats got their claws on a major trophy, while neighbours Newcastle have to go further back to 1969 when they won the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup.

Newcastle United manager Joe Harvey with the Inter Cities Fairs Cup after his side beat Ujpest Dozsa (Picture by: Peter Robinson / EMPICS Sport)

Southampton have barely won a trophy of note in a history which has seen them spend much time in the top division. But they'll thank their lucky stars that they were able to shock Manchester United in the 1976 FA Cup final.

Stoke City are in the same boat with a solitary League Cup title in 1972.

Over in Italy, Udinese would be reasonably well known here for being a perennial presence in Serie A and an occasional interloper into the European spots. But it is a presence totally devoid of major trophies and that is taking the Zebrette's entire history into account. They also won an Intertoto Cup in 2000 and a few other titles of little consequence, but otherwise no Serie A titles, no Coppa Italias and zilch in Europe.

Bologna, where Roberto Baggio resurrected his career in 1997-98, have a large haul of seven Italian titles and two Coppa Italias. But the last time they won either was way back in 1974, when they won the cup.

They have also won an Intertoto Cup since then, but as noted earlier, t'is only clutching at straws so it is.

While 1990 might be the cut-off points we're using, Torino and their extraordinary history, has not seen another trophy added since they won the cup in 1993. 

At least that is shorter than the only club in Spain other than Barcelona and Real Madrid which has never been relegated from La Liga.

Athletic Bilbao's fans celebrate in front of San Mames stadium their team's victory against FC Barcelona at their Spanish Super Cup soccer match second leg, in Bilbao, northern Spain, Monday, Aug. 17, 2015. Athletic Bilbao won the Spanish Super Cup, and this is their first soccer trophy since 1984. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)

Athletic Bilbao have not suffered greatly by sticking to their Basque-only policy and have reached Copa del Rey and Europa League finals in recent years.

But they lost all those finals and have not won a trophy since the league and cup double in 1984. Technically, they did beat Barcelona in the 2015 Spanish Super Cup, but that is not really a major trophy when it comes to leagues, domestic cups, league cups and continental awards.

Their Basque rivals Real Sociedad have also been waiting for a league or Copa del Rey title since way back in 1988.

Unlike neighbours Deportivo de la Coruna, La Liga side Celta Vigo have never won a major trophy which is a sentiment felt by the Yellow Submarines of Villarreal who often feature in the Champions League without ever lifting anything. Malaga are in the same boat, although they have won six of the last 11 Trofeos Costa del Sol which is of less consequence than an Intertoto Cup.

Over in Germany, only one club has never missed a Bundesliga season and it's not Bayern Munich. 

That distinction goes to SV Hamburg, who won the European Cup in 1983. They have not actually won anything since 1987 and other than this season, The Dinosaurs have spent many recent campaigns trying to avoid going into the extinction of relegation.

At least they have trophies which is something peculiar about Berlin clubs. Hertha Berlin is the biggest club in Germany's capital but have not a trophy in the post-1963 Bundesliga era.

They did win two German League Cups in the 2000s but that competition no longer exists and their two German Championships date back to the early 1930s.

FC Koln have plenty of history as a big club domestically in the 1960s and '70s but although they finished second in the Bundesliga back in 1990, they've been waiting for a decent trophy since 1983.

Yet all those clubs still have big fanbases which suggests that the chase is (almost) better than the catch to quote Motörhead. Still a bit of silverware in the cabinet wouldn't go amiss, eh! 

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