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Liga de Fútbol Profesional Boliviano
Countries  Bolivia
Confederation CONMEBOL
Founded August 23, 1977
Divisions 1st (La Liga)
2nd (Copa Simón Bolívar)
3rd (Regional Leagues)
Number of teams 12
Relegation to Regional Leagues
Levels on pyramid 1
Domestic cup(s) Aerosur Cup (2003- To Present)
Copa Bolivia (1997-2002)
International cup(s) Copa Libertadores
Copa Sudamericana
Current champions Blooming (Torneo Clausura 2009)
Most championships Bolívar (16 titles)
TV partners Unitel Bolivia
Activa Tv
Website www.lfpb.org
2010 Apertura

Liga de Fútbol Profesional Boliviano is the top-flight professional football (soccer) league in Bolivia. It started in 1977, though football had been played in Bolivia since the early 1900s, specifally in La Paz and Oruro.

An amateur league (which became semi-pro in 1950) started in La Paz in 1914, the LPFA (La Paz Football Association, which is currently called the Asociacion de Futbol de La Paz), the first association of soccer in Bolivia. The LPFA was considered for many years the top soccer tournament in the country.

Founded in 1925, the Federación Boliviana de Fútbol didn't organize a national championship until 1960. These championships included representatives of all regional associations, although the LPFA had also included representatives of Oruro and Cochabamba in its championships. Despite this cup being considered the top Bolivian football championship, the LPFA league was still considered the most competitive one.

The creation of the Liga de Fútbol Profesional Boliviano ended the distinction. It also resulted in the creation of three separate entities: the FBF's role was restricted to the international representation of Bolivia in the sport, the newly created LPFB became the organizer of the sole 1st Division tournament, and the LPFA, together with the rest of the regional associations, became the organizer of the Second (and lower) division regionalized tournaments.

It's the first and currently the only professional sports league in the country.

Contents

Overview

The championship format has changed over the years. Beginning in 1977, the league ran with sixteen clubs divided into two series, but switched to fourteen clubs in two series playing two tournaments each year beginning in the mid 80's and economical problems with some teams led to another cut in the number of participants to twelve in 1991. Another change came in 2005 when teams decided to adapt to the International FIFA calendar, meaning the season would be played from August to June rather than from February to December, in order to avoid problems defining which teams would qualify for international tournaments. The league played a short tournament from February to June in 2005, and the official 2005-06 season started in August. This led to yet another problem — second division teams weren't keen on the idea of putting off relegation until June 2006. After negotiations, the league determined that relegation of the lowest standing club would take place after the completion of the Apertura tournament, making the Bolivian league an odd tournament where teams were relegated in the middle of the season. But this decision was overturned in November 2006 and the league switched back to a calendar-year season in 2007 starting with the Apertura tournament in March 2007.

Historically, teams from La Paz, Cochabamba and Santa Cruz have dominated the league. Until 2007 only San José won the league in 1995, but since then teams from the "big three" have struggled to win the league again and 3 teams from smaller cities have won it (Real Potosí, San José and Universitario).

Four teams share the record of never been relegated to "La Simón Bolivar" (2nd division): Jorge Wilstermann, The Strongest, Oriente Petrolero and Bolívar (although they were relegated in 1969 before the LPFB era).

Current Competition System

For the 2008 season, and for the first time, three tournaments were played instead of the usual two. The Apertura tournament was played from March to July on a Round-Robin system; the Clausura tournament played from August to October where the teams were divided into two series of 6 teams each, Group A composed of all western teams (plus Universitario) and Group B composed of all eastern teams (plus Wilstermann and Aurora), the top two teams of each group advanced to the semifinals and the finals. The newly instated Play-off tournament consisted of home-away matches (and with away goals rule used for the first time).

An average points from the previous two seasons determines relegation, with the last placed teams being directly relegated to its regional division and replaced by the winner of the Simon Bolivar cup. With the 11th placed team playing a promotion play-off with the runner-up of the Simon Bolivar Cup

Current teams (2010 season)

List of champions

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Federación Boliviana de Fútbol Championships (Torneo Nacional)

Season Champion Runner-up Third Place
1958 Jorge Wilstermann Deportivo Municipal San José
1959 Jorge Wilstermann Always Ready Bolívar

Federación Boliviana de Fútbol Championships (Copa Simón Bolívar)

Season Champion Runner-up Third Place
1960 Jorge Wilstermann Aurora
1961 Deportivo Municipal Aurora
1962
(Not Held)
1963
(Not Held)
1964 The Strongest Aurora
1965 Deportivo Municipal Jorge Wilstermann Oriente Petrolero
1966 Bolívar 31 de Octubre Jorge Wilstermann
1967 Jorge Wilstermann Always Ready Blooming
1968 Bolívar Guabirá Litoral
1969 Universitario La Paz Bolívar Oriente Petrolero
1970 Chaco Petrolero The Strongest
1971 Oriente Petrolero Chaco Petrolero The Strongest
1972 Jorge Wilstermann Oriente Petrolero Petrolero Cochabamba
1973 Jorge Wilstermann Deportivo Municipal 31 de Octubre
1974 The Strongest Jorge Wilstermann
1975 Guabirá Bolívar Oriente Petrolero
1976 Bolívar Oriente Petrolero Guabirá

Liga de Fútbol Profesional Boliviano

Season Champion Runner-up Third Place
1977 The Strongest Oriente Petrolero Bolívar
1978 Bolívar Jorge Wilstermann Oriente Petrolero
1979 Oriente Petrolero The Strongest Blooming
Bolívar
1980 Jorge Wilstermann The Strongest Petrolero Cochabamba
1981 Jorge Wilstermann Blooming Guabirá
Deportivo Municipal
1982 Bolívar Jorge Wilstermann Blooming
Oriente Petrolero
1983 Bolívar Oriente Petrolero Blooming
The Strongest
1984 Blooming Bolívar Oriente Petrolero
The Strongest
1985 Bolívar Jorge Wilstermann
1986 The Strongest Oriente Petrolero
1987 Bolívar Oriente Petrolero
1988 Bolívar The Strongest
1989 The Strongest Oriente Petrolero
1990 Oriente Petrolero Bolívar
1991 Bolívar San José
1992 Bolívar San José
1993 The Strongest Bolívar
1994 Bolívar Jorge Wilstermann
1995 San José Guabirá
1996 Bolívar Oriente Petrolero
1997 Bolívar Oriente Petrolero
1998 Blooming Jorge Wilstermann
1999 Blooming The Strongest
2000 Jorge Wilstermann Oriente Petrolero
2001 Oriente Petrolero Bolívar
2002 Bolívar Oriente Petrolero
Season Apertura champion Runner-up Clausura champion Runner-up Play-off Winner Runner-up
2003 The Strongest Bolívar The Strongest Wilstermann
2004 Bolívar Aurora The Strongest [1] Real Potosí
2005 [AD] Bolívar The Strongest
2005–06 Blooming Bolívar Bolívar Real Potosí
2006 [ST] Wilstermann Real Potosí
2007 Real Potosí Bolívar[2] San José La Paz F.C.
2008 Universitario La Paz F.C. Aurora Blooming Real Potosí La Paz F.C.
2009 Bolívar Real Potosí Blooming Bolívar Real Potosí Bolívar
2010

Titles by team (professional era: 1977-present)

Club Nº of Titles Runners-Up
Bolívar
16
7
The Strongest
7
6
Blooming
5
3
Jorge Wilstermann
4
5
Oriente Petrolero
3
9
San José
2
2
Real Potosí
1
4
Aurora
1
1
Universitario
1
0
La Paz F.C.
0
2
Guabirá
1
1
TOTAL
41
40

Notes

  1. ^ The 2004 Clausura championship was won by The Strongest 1-1 (4-2 PK) on the final game against Oriente Petrolero. Three months later the Bolivian Football federation gave the title to Oriente Petrolero after they alleged doubts about the nationality of The Strongest's goalkeeper Marcelo Robledo, who had an Argentine passport but is of Bolivian ancestry. Since then Robledo has won a favorable verdict from the Constitutional Court (branch of the Bolivian Supreme Court), being recognized as being born a Bolivian Citizen. On July 15, 2009 The Bolivian Professional Soccer League (LPFB) reinstated the title to The Strongest. [1]
  2. ^ Oriente Petrolero was the runner-up but they lost 3 points in favour of Bolivar for using suspended players during the last round match against Bolívar which ended 3-1..

List of all-time topscorers

This is the list of the 15 all-time topscorer since the Bolivian league was established in 1977. Goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of February 2009.

# Name Nationality Career Goals
1. Víctor Hugo Antelo Bolivia 1983 - 2000 341
2. Juan Carlos Sánchez Argentina Bolivia 1979 - 1992 263
3. Luis Fernando Salinas Bolivia 1980 - 1993 201
4. Jesús Reynaldo Bolivia 1977 - 1993 196
5. Raúl Horacio Baldessari Argentina Bolivia 1977 - 1989 161
6. Limberg Gutiérrez Bolivia 1997 - present 149
7. Joaquín Botero Bolivia 1997 - present 144
8. Cristino Jara Paraguay 1998 - present 141
9. Silvio Edmundo Rojas Bolivia 1977 - 1992 140
10. Luis William Ramallo Bolivia 1982 - 1999 138
11. Juan Berthy Suárez Bolivia 1990 - 2000 135
12. Erwin Romero Bolivia 1977 - 1992 134
13. Carlos Fernando Borja Bolivia 1977 - 1995 129
= Arturo García Bolivia 1983 - 1999 129
15. Jorge Hirano Peru 1986 - 1992 124

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