Argentina

Argentina

The Primera División (Spanish pronunciation: [pɾiˈmeɾa ðiβiˈsjon]; English: First Division) is a professional football league in Argentina. It is the country’s premier football division and is at the top of the Argentine football league system. Contested by thirty clubs, it operates on a system of promotion and relegation with the Primera B Nacional, with the two teams placed lowest at the end of the season being relegated. The season runs from February to December.

In 1891 the Association Argentine Football League was established by Alex Lamont of St. Andrew’s Scots School, being the first football league outside of the British Isles. The first Primera División matches were played on 12 April 1891: Buenos Aires FC vs. St. Andrew’s and Old Caledonians vs. Belgrano FC. The Primera División turned professional in 1931 when 18 clubs broke away from the amateur leagues to form a professional one. Since then, the season has been contested annually in four different formats and calendars. The league has been under its current format since the 1991–92 season.

Since the first championship held in 1891, 27 different clubs have been won the Primera División title at least once. The most successful club is River Plate, with 36 titles.

The Argentine championship was ranked in the top 10 as one of the strongest leagues in the world (for the 2001-2012 period) by the International Federation of Football History & Statistics (IFFHS). Argentina placed 7th after Premier League (England), La Liga (Spain), Serie A (Italy), Série A (Brazil), Bundesliga (Germany) and Ligue 1 (France).