Paris Saint-Germain was born on 12 August 1970 and the fusion of Paris FC – created a year earlier to fill the void of having no top-flight club in the capital – and Stade Sangermanois, founded in 1904 in Saint-Germain-en-Laye, the birth town of Louis XIV.
Thanks to the support of the capital’s media and 20,000 subscribers, ‘socios’ from the very beginning, Paris finally had a football team that took flight in 1973, when fashion designer Daniel Hechter took over the club and designed its classic jersey. Coached by French football legend Just Fontaine, Paris Saint-Germain won promotion to the first division a year later and slowly began attracting the first stars of Les Rouge et Bleu such as Mustapha Dahleb and Carlos Bianchi.
In 1978, Daniel Hechter handed control of the club to Francis Borelli, under whose guidance Les Rouge et Bleu won their first silverware: the Coupe de France in 1982 and 1983 and the league in 1986, during a decade marked by players such as Safet Susic, Luis Fernandez and Dominique Rocheteau.
Canal+ took over the club in 1991, and propelled Paris Saint-Germain to the forefront of the European game. Between 1993 and 1997, the club from the French capital made five European semi-finals in a row. Led by football icons David Ginola, George Weah and Valdo, amongst others, Paris Saint-Germain won a second league title in 1994, two years before lifting the UEFA Cup Winners Cup.
The European trophy was the crowning moment of this generation, and the emblematic Rai, Bernard Lama, Alain Roche, Paul Le Guen, Daniel Bravo, Vincent Guérin, Youri Djorkaeff and Bruno Ngotty, the goal scorer in the final against Rapid Vienna, in Brussels.
At the start of the 21st century, there were new stars… but despite the magic of Ronaldinho and the goals of Pedro Pauleta (109 goals), Paris Saint-Germain struggled to rescale the heights. Before changing stratosphere in 2011, and under new ownership, they established an extremely ambitious project, incarnated by Zlatan Ibrahimovic, the club’s all-time leading goal scorer (156 goals between 2012 and 2016) and today, by Edinson Cavani, Neymar and Kylian Mbappé; a project that has one aim: to take Paris Saint-Germain to the summits of the European game, having already transformed Les Rouge et Bleu into the most successful French club in history, with 32 trophies.