To continue the expansion on an International scale and to differentiate themselves from the competition in Georgia the WWF would put together a tournament to crown the first European champion. The finals of the tournament would be held on a very special edition of Raw in Berlin Germany where The British Bulldog defeated Owen Hart in the finals of the tournament to become the first European Champion. At first the title gained importance and meaning over time, but as time went on slowly but surely the title began to mean less and less.
On the April 26, 2001 edition of Smackdown Matt Hardy would win the European title from Eddie Guerrero and would go on to become the longest reigning American born European champion in the five year history of the championship. Even though at this point the title didn't really mean anything as far as meaning or importance but it did mean something for Matt Hardy because that would be his first singles title in the WWE at the time. Around this time the WWF split the Hardy's for a short time attempting to push them in singles competition as Jeff Hardy also won the Intercontinental from Triple H for a short time around this time as well.
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