Serie A, also called Serie A TIM due to sponsorship by TIM, is a professional league competition for football clubs located at the top of the Italian football league system and the winner is awarded the Coppa Campioni d’Italia. It has been operating for over eighty years since the 1929–30 season. It had been organized by Lega Calcio until 2010, when the Lega Serie A was created for the 2010–11 season.
Serie A is regarded as one of the best football leagues in the world and it is often depicted as the most tactical national league. Serie A is the world’s second-strongest national league according to IFFHS and has produced the highest number of European Cup finalists: Italian clubs have reached the final of the competition on a record 27 different occasions, winning the title 12 times. Serie A is ranked third among European leagues according to UEFA’s league coefficient, behind La Liga, the Premier League and ahead of the Bundesliga and the Ligue 1, which is based on the performance of Italian clubs in the Champions League and the Europa League during the last five years. Serie A led the UEFA ranking from 1986 to 1988 and from 1990 to 1999.
In its current format, the Italian Football Championship was revised from having regional and interregional rounds, to a single-tier league from the 1929–30 season onwards. The championship titles won prior to 1929 are officially recognised by FIGC with the same weighting as titles that were subsequently awarded. However, the 1945–46 season, when the league was played over two geographical groups due to the ravages of WWII, is not statistically considered, even if its title is fully official. All the winning teams are recognised with the title of Campione d’Italia (“Champion of Italy”), which is ratified by the Lega Serie A before the start of the next edition of the championship.
The league hosts three of the world’s most famous clubs as Juventus, Milan and Internazionale, all founding members of the G-14, a group which represented the largest and most prestigious European football clubs since 2000 to 2008, being the first two cited also founding members of its successive organisation, European Club Association (ECA). More players have won the coveted Ballon d’Or award while playing at a Serie A club than any other league in the world – although Spain’s La Liga has the highest total number of Ballon d’Or winners including the FIFA Ballon d’Or. Juventus, Italy’s most successful club of the 20th century and the most successful Italian team, is tied for fourth in Europe and eighth in the world with the most official international titles. The club is also the only one in the world to have won all possible official confederation competitions. Milan is joint third club for official international titles won in the world, with 18. Internazionale, following their achievements in the 2009–10 season, became the first Italian team to have achieved a treble. Juventus, Milan and Inter, along with Roma, Fiorentina, Lazio and Napoli, are known as the Seven Sisters of Italian football.
Serie A is one of the most storied leagues in the history of football. Of the 100 greatest footballers in history chosen by FourFourTwo magazine in 2017, 42 players have played in Serie A, more than any other league in the world.