Football in England
Today Englands top domestic league, the Premier League, is one of the most popular and richest sports leagues in the world, with six of the ten richest football clubs in the world. The England national football team is one of only 8 teams to win the World Cup, a total of five English club teams have won the UEFA Champions League. Football was played in England as far back as medieval times, kicking ball games are described in England from 1280. An account of an exclusively kicking game from Nottinghamshire in the fifteenth century bears similarity to association football. By the 16th centuries references to organised teams and goals had appeared, there is evidence for refereed, team football games being played in English schools since at least 1581. The eighteenth-century Gymnastic Society of London is, arguably, the worlds first football club, the Cambridge rules, first drawn up at Cambridge University in 1848, were particularly influential in the development of subsequent codes, including association football. The Cambridge Rules were written at Trinity College, Cambridge, at a meeting attended by representatives from Eton, Harrow, Rugby, Winchester, during the 1850s, many clubs unconnected to schools or universities were formed throughout the English-speaking world, to play various forms of football. In 1862, John Charles Thring of Uppingham School also devised a set of rules. These ongoing efforts contributed to the formation of The Football Association in 1863, the Sheffield FA played by its own rules until the 1870s with the FA absorbing some of its rules until there was little difference between the games. A match between Sheffield and Hallam F. C. on 29 December 1862 was one of the first matches to be recorded in a newspaper, on 8 March 1873, the England national teams 4–2 win over Scotland at the Oval was the first ever victory in international football. The late nineteenth century was dominated by the split between the amateur and professional teams, which was roughly aligned along a North-South divide. Northern clubs were keen to adopt professionalism as workers could not afford to play on an amateur basis, preston North End were inaugural winners in 1888–89, and were also the first club to complete the double of both winning the league and the FA Cup. Aston Villa repeated the feat in 1896–97 and it remained at 40 until the league was suspended after the 1914–15 season with the outbreak of World War I. Other clubs to win titles in this period include Sheffield United, Manchester United. During the war, competitive football was suspended, however, an unofficial Wartime Football league was played from 1915–16 to 1918–19, although the FA Cup was suspended until after the war. The next season the league was expanded with the Third Division divided into North and South sections. In the 1923–24 season the Third Division North was expanded to 22 clubs, Bolton Wanderers defeated West Ham United to win this landmark game. Bolton Wanderers would win the FA Cup on three occasions during the 1920s, by the turn of the 1930s, the national side regularly played against other national teams from outside the British Isles
Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland, and third largest in the United Kingdom. Historically part of Lanarkshire, it is now one of the 32 council areas of Scotland and it is situated on the River Clyde in the countrys West Central Lowlands. Inhabitants of the city are referred to as Glaswegians, Glasgow grew from a small rural settlement on the River Clyde to become the largest seaport in Britain. From the 18th century the city grew as one of Great Britains main hubs of transatlantic trade with North America. Glasgow was the Second City of the British Empire for much of the Victorian era and Edwardian period, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries Glasgow grew in population, reaching a peak of 1,128,473 in 1939. The entire region surrounding the conurbation covers about 2.3 million people, at the 2011 census, Glasgow had a population density of 8, 790/sq mi, the highest of any Scottish city. Glasgow hosted the 2014 Commonwealth Games and is well known in the sporting world for the football rivalry of the Old Firm between Celtic and Rangers. Glasgow is also known for Glasgow patter, a dialect that is noted for being difficult to understand by those from outside the city. Glasgow is the form of the ancient Cumbric name Glas Cau. Possibly referring to the area of Molendinar Burn where Glasgow Cathedral now stands, the later Gaelic name Baile Glas Chu, town of the grey dog, is purely a folk-etymology. The present site of Glasgow has been settled since prehistoric times, it is for settlement, being the furthest downstream fording point of the River Clyde, the origins of Glasgow as an established city derive ultimately from its medieval position as Scotlands second largest bishopric. Glasgow increased in importance during the 10th and 11th centuries as the site of this bishopric, reorganised by King David I of Scotland and John, there had been an earlier religious site established by Saint Mungo in the 6th century. The bishopric became one of the largest and wealthiest in the Kingdom of Scotland, bringing wealth, sometime between 1189 and 1195 this status was supplemented by an annual fair, which survives as the Glasgow Fair. Glasgow grew over the following centuries, the first bridge over the River Clyde at Glasgow was recorded from around 1285, giving its name to the Briggait area of the city, forming the main North-South route over the river via Glasgow Cross. The founding of the University of Glasgow in 1451 and elevation of the bishopric to become the Archdiocese of Glasgow in 1492 increased the towns religious and educational status and landed wealth. Its early trade was in agriculture, brewing and fishing, with cured salmon and herring being exported to Europe, Glasgow was subsequently raised to the status of Royal Burgh in 1611. The citys Tobacco Lords created a water port at Port Glasgow on the Firth of Clyde. By the late 18th century more than half of the British tobacco trade was concentrated on Glasgows River Clyde, at the time, Glasgow held a commercial importance as the city participated in the trade of sugar, tobacco and later cotton
Scotland national football team
The Scotland national football team represents Scotland in international football and is controlled by the Scottish Football Association. It competes in the two professional tournaments, the FIFA World Cup and the UEFA European Championship. Scotland, as a constituent country of the United Kingdom, is not a member of the International Olympic Committee, the majority of Scotlands home matches are played at the national stadium, Hampden Park. Scotland is the joint oldest national team in the world, alongside England. Scotland has a rivalry with England, whom they played annually from 1872 until 1989. The teams have met six times since then, most recently in November 2016. Scotland have qualified for the FIFA World Cup on eight occasions and the UEFA European Championship twice, the team have achieved some noteworthy results, such as beating the 1966 FIFA World Cup winners England 3–2 at Wembley Stadium in 1967. Archie Gemmill scored what has been described as one of the greatest World Cup goals ever in a 3–2 win during the 1978 World Cup against the Netherlands, in their qualifying group for UEFA Euro 2008, Scotland defeated 2006 World Cup runners-up France 1–0 in both fixtures. Scotland supporters are known as the Tartan Army. The Scottish Football Association operates a roll of honour for every player who has more than 50 appearances for Scotland. Kenny Dalglish holds the record for Scotland appearances, having played 102 times between 1971 and 1986, Dalglish scored 30 goals for Scotland and shares the record for most goals scored with Denis Law. Scotland and England are the oldest national teams in the world. Teams representing the two sides first competed at the Oval in five matches between 1870 and 1872, the two countries contested the first official international football match, at Hamilton Crescent in Partick, Scotland, on 30 November 1872. The match ended in a goalless draw, all eleven players who represented Scotland that day played for Glasgow amateur club Queens Park. Over the next forty years, Scotland played matches exclusively against the other three Home Nations—England, Wales and Ireland, the British Home Championship began in 1883, making these games competitive. The encounters against England were particularly fierce and a rivalry quickly developed, Scotland lost just two of their first 43 international matches. It was not until a 2–0 home defeat by Ireland in 1903 that Scotland lost a match to an other than England. This run of success meant that Scotland would have topped the Elo ratings
William Mosforth was an English football player who played either as an inside or outside left. Born in Sheffield he played for several Sheffield clubs but the majority of his career was spent at The Wednesday and he later joined Sheffield United, playing in their first season in existence before retiring in 1890. He won nine caps for England between 1877 and 1882, which was a record at the time, scoring three goals for his country. Playing in his town of Sheffield for his entire career Mosforth was known as the Little Wonder or The Sheffield Dodger due to his small stature. He was often considered the best local player during his era with outstanding ball control, crossing ability and long dribbles, sometimes taking it the entire length of the pitch. He was also an exponent of the screw shot that allowed him to bend the ball in the air. Mosforth began his career at Sheffield Albion and made his debut at 14 but was famous for swapping sides and profiteering from his play. As an amateur player he was allowed to play for more than one club under FA rules at that time, although like many players Mosforth probably received some sort of payment for his services. One anecdotal story says that when he ran onto the pitch in Hallam colours someone in the crowd shouted 10 bob and free drinks, Billy and he promptly ran back to the dressing room and returned in a Sheffield Wednesday shirt. Despite this he was selected to play for the Sheffield Football Association in 1876 at the age of 18, in 1879 he played for The Zulus a touring side created to aid families of casualties of the Zulu War. The side became embroiled in controversy when it was revealed that the players were to make money themselves, like many of the Wednesday players who were involved in the Zulu team, Mosforth was also one of the players who pushed them into becoming professional team. He played for the team that intended to become Sheffields first professional side. After leaving The Wednesday he was amongst the first players to answer the advertisement asking for players to form the new Sheffield United team that were placed in the local press, Mosforth made his debut for England in March 1877, appearing in a friendly against Scotland. He went on to nine times for his country and scored three goals. Billy Mosforth holds a number of records in the game, these are as follows, First player to score for both Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United. Scored the first goal at Sheffield Uniteds ground Bramall Lane, First Sheffield United player to be substituted. Record England Cap holder at the time, played in the first professional game to be played under floodlights. After he retired from playing Mosforth became a licensee in Sheffield
Sheffield Wednesday F.C.
Sheffield Wednesday Football Club is a professional association football club based in Sheffield, England. The team competes in the Championship, the tier of the English football league system. Formed as an offshoot of The Wednesday Cricket Club in 1867, in 1868 they won the Cromwell Cup, only the second tournament of its kind, and in 1877 they won the inaugural Sheffield Challenge Cup, the oldest county cup in England. They were founding members and inaugural champions of the Football Alliance in 1889, in 1992 they became founder members of the Premier League. The club has spent most of its history in English footballs top flight. The Owls, as they are nicknamed, have won four league titles, Wednesday have also competed in UEFA cup competitions on four occasions, reaching the quarter-finals of the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup in 1963. Since 1899 the club has played its matches at Hillsborough stadium. Although no contemporary evidence has found to support the claim. Nevertheless, an 1842 article in Bells Life magazine states the club was founded as far back as 1816, the club was so named because it was on Wednesdays that the founding members had their day off work. They were initially based at the New Ground in Darnall, and often went by the name of Darnall Wednesday, in 1855 they were one of six clubs that helped build Bramall Lane, and held a wicket there for many years. The proposal proved very popular, with over 60 members signing up for the new team on the first night and they played their first match against The Mechanics on 19 October the same year, winning by three goals and four rouges to nil. On 1 February 1868, Wednesday played their first competitive match as they entered the Cromwell Cup. A week after their semi-final, they went on to win the cup, beating the Garrick club in the final after extra time, a key figure during the formative years of the football club was Charles Clegg, who joined the Wednesday in 1867. His relationship with the club lasted for the rest of his life and he also became president and chairman of the Football Association, and was known as the Napoleon of Football. In 1876 Wednesday acquired Scot James Lang, although he was not employed by the club, he was given a job by a member of the Sheffield Wednesday board that had no formal duties. He is now acknowledged as the first professional player in England. With Lang in their team the club became one of the strongest in the region. In 1880 the club entered the FA Cup for the first time, but although they had had Lang on their books a decade earlier, the club officially remained staunchly amateur, and this stance almost cost the club its very existence
Clapham Rovers F.C.
Clapham Rovers was from its foundation in 1869 a leading English sports organisation in the two dominant codes of football, association football and rugby union. It was a prominent club in the late 19th century but is now defunct, the club played variously on Clapham Common, Tooting Bec Common and Wandsworth Common and wore a cerise and French-grey kit. The club was formed on 10 August 1869 by a meeting arranged by W. E. Rawlinson, at this very first meeting it was agreed to play under both codes, with Association rules to be played one week, and Rugby the other. This peculiar feature in the constitution of the club obtained for the club the sobriquet of the Hybrid Club, the first match was played on 25 September 1869, against the Wanderers, at that time arguably the strongest Association club. Despite the prowess of their opponents The Rovers won by one goal to nil, at the close of the 1870 season only two matches had been lost, one under each rules, and in both instances the return match was won. Clapham Rovers were one of the fifteen teams to play in the very first edition of the FA Cup, the first ever FA Cup goal was scored by Clapham Rovers Jarvis Kenrick, in a 3–0 victory over Upton Park on 11 November 1871. Rovers greatest achievement was winning the FA Cup in 1879–80 with a 1–0 win over Oxford University at The Kennington Oval, the previous year, Clapham Rovers had also reached the final, but lost 1–0 to Old Etonians. Clapham Rovers were also one of ten members of the Surrey County Football Association. The clubs strength in rugby was borne out by their record, from 1870 to 1881 the club played 151 Rugby games, winning 80, losing 30, and drawing 41. During the 1870s they fielded a team that had four internationals, R. H. Birkett was captain, his brother, L. Birkett, and the Bryden brothers. Additionally Crampton, and Walker were well regarded forwards and Clapham was known to have the strongest combination of the time behind the scrummage. On 26 January 1871,32 members representing twenty-one London and suburban football clubs that followed Rugby School rules assembled at the Pall Mall Restaurant in Regent Street, E. C. Holmes, captain of the Richmond Club assumed the presidency. It was resolved unanimously that the formation of a Rugby Football Society was desirable and thus the Rugby Football Union was formed. A president, a secretary and treasurer, and a committee of thirteen were elected, R. H. Birkett represented The Rovers and was one of the thirteen original committee members. The first international match was played between Scotland and England in 1871 and The Rovers provided R. H. Birkett. In this match he scored Englands first ever try, when the club played one of the strongest and most well established clubs, Richmond, for the first time on 21 October 1871, they won the match by 1 goal and 2 tries. The date of the dissolution is unclear, although the last time they competed in the FA Cup was in the 1885–86 season. Their most successful player, Norman Bailey, was described as a Clapham Rovers player when he made the last of his 19 England appearances on 19 March 1887
The Racecourse Ground is a stadium located in Wrexham, North Wales. It is the home of Wrexham AFC, as of August 2016, the stadium has been known as My Racecourse. The record attendance at the ground was set in 1957, when Wrexham hosted a match against Manchester United in front of 34,445 spectators, the Racecourse Ground is the largest stadium in North Wales and the fifth largest in Wales. The ground is used by the FAW for Wales home international games. The ground has also used by North Wales Crusaders rugby league club, Scarlets rugby union club. In the early days, the ground was used for cricket, music concerts returned to the Racecourse in 2016 when the Stereophonics performed. Wrexham Football Club have played at the Racecourse Ground since being formed in the local Turf Hotel public house in October 1864, before the club was formed the ground was mainly used for cricket and occasionally, horse racing. 1952 saw the laying down of concrete terracing on the ever-popular Kop end, five years later was to see the largest ever attendance at the Racecourse when 34,445 people gathered to witness an FA Cup fourth round tie against Manchester United. On 30 September 1959 the Racecourse saw the switching on of the newly installed floodlights, after promotion to the old Second Division in 1978 the Border Stand was built, taking its name from the Border Breweries which owned the ground. This part of the ground is now known as the Eric Roberts Builders Stand, the impressive new structure was originally named the Pryce Griffiths Stand after the then chairman has a capacity of 3,500 and also contains hospitality and conferencing facilities. In 2002 then Wrexham F. C. chairman William Pryce Griffiths secured a 125-year lease on the Racecourse with Wolverhampton Dudley Breweries for £750,000, the club hosted TNS vs Liverpool in a UEFA Champions League qualifier in 2005. On 26 June 2002 the freehold to the Racecourse Ground was acquired by Wrexham A. F. C. from Wolverhampton Dudley Breweries for the sum of £300,000. On the same day the ownership of the freehold was transferred by the chairman, Alex Hamilton, from Wrexham A. F. C. to another of his companies, Damens Ltd, for a nominal fee. After this controversial change in ownership the 125-year lease on the Racecourse held by Wrexham F. C. was renegotiated. The new lease stated that Damens Ltd could evict Wrexham F. C. from the Racecourse Ground upon 12 months notice, the new lease also saw the clubs annual rent increase from £1 to £30,000. On 19 May 2014, work commenced at the Racecourse, this included, the medical and treatment facilities will also be upgraded, together with improved seating for disabled supporters, better floodlighting and removal of cambers at the ‘Kop’ end of the ground. The results mean the stadium has been reclassified to Category 3 level, with the clubs emergence from Administration in May 2006, ownership of the ground passed new company, Wrexham Football Club Ltd, owned by Geoff Moss and Ian Roberts. Thus the new company had two tenants for the stadium, the £40 million project would be developed in conjunction with Glyndŵr University to house over 800 students, and take place in two phases
Wrexham is the largest town in north Wales and an administrative, commercial, retail and educational centre. Wrexham is situated between the Welsh mountains and the lower Dee Valley alongside the border with England, historically part of Denbighshire, the town became part of Clwyd in 1974 and since 1996 has been the centre of the Wrexham County Borough. At the 2011 Census, Wrexham had a population of 61,603, human activity in the Wrexham area dates back to the Mesolithic period. By the early Middle Bronze Age the area had developed into a centre for an innovative metalworking industry, a Roman civilian settlement was located in the Plas Coch area of Wrexham and excavations have revealed evidence of agriculture and trade with the wider Roman world. By the end of the 6th century AD, the area was being contested between the Celtic-speaking inhabitants and the English-speaking invaders advancing from the east, the origins of the name Wrexham may possibly be traced back to this period. Renewed Welsh and Viking attacks led to a reduction in Anglo-Saxon power in north Wales from the early 10th century, following the Welsh reconquest of the area during the 11th century, Wrexham formed part of the native Welsh lordship of Maelor. During the 12th century the lordship was disputed between the Welsh and the English. The first recorded reference to the town in 1161 is to a Norman motte and bailey castle at Wristlesham which was founded in the Erddig area around 1150 by Hugh de Avranches. However, by the early 13th century Wrexham was undisputedly in the hands of the Welsh house of Powys Fadog, stability under the princes of Powys enabled Wrexham to develop as a trading town and administrative centre of one of the two commotes making up the Lordship. Following the loss of Welsh independence on the death of Llywelyn ap Gruffudd in 1282, Wrexham became part of the semi-independent Marcher lordship of Bromfield and Yale. From 1327 onwards, the town is referred to as a villa mercatoria and by 1391 Wrexham was wealthy enough for a bard, jester, juggler, dancer and goldsmith to earn their living there. At the beginning of the 15th century, the local gentry, local poet Glyn Gutor Glyn wrote of Sion ap Madog, the great-nephew of Owain Glyndŵr, as Alecsander i Wrecsam. In the mid 15th century, the church was gutted by fire. The main part of the current church was built in the late 15th, the Acts of Union passed during the reign of Henry VIII brought the lordship into the full system of English administration and law. It became part of the new shire of Denbighshire in 1536, the economic character remained predominantly agricultural into the 17th century but there were workshops of weavers, smiths, nailers as well as dye houses. A grammar school was established in 1603 by Alderman Valentine Broughton of Chester, during the English Civil War, Wrexham was on the side of the Royalists, as most Welsh gentry supported the King, but local landowner Sir Thomas Myddelton, owner of Chirk Castle, supported Parliament. The Industrial Revolution began in Wrexham in 1762 when the entrepreneur John Wilkinson, known as Iron Mad Wilkinson, wilkinsons steam engines enabled a peak of production at Minera Lead Mines on the outskirts of Wrexham. Wrexham was also known for its industry, by the 18th century there were a number of skinners and tanners in the town
Wales national football team
The Wales national football team represents Wales in international football. It is controlled by the Football Association of Wales, the body for football in Wales. During their history, Wales have qualified for two international tournaments. They reached the quarter-finals of the 1958 FIFA World Cup and they reached the semi-finals of UEFA Euro 2016 after beating Belgium in the quarter-final match on 1 July 2016. This was, therefore, the first time that Wales had reached the semi-final of a major tournament, Wales also progressed through UEFA Euro 1976 qualifying to the quarter-final, which was played on a home and away leg basis but they did not feature in the finals tournament. At all levels including the teams the Welsh national team draws players primarily from clubs in the English football league system. The main professional Welsh clubs play in the English leagues, with some full-time and part-time professional clubs playing in the Welsh football league system. Wales played its first competitive match on 25 March 1876 against Scotland in Glasgow, Scotland took the spoils winning 2–0. Wales first match against England came in 1879 – a 2–1 defeat at the Kennington Oval, London and in 1882 Wales faced Ireland for the first time, the associations of the four Home Nations met in Manchester on 6 December 1882 to set down a set of worldwide rules. This meeting saw the establishment of the International Football Association Board to approve changes to the rules, the 1883–84 season saw the formation of the British Home Championship, a tournament which was played annually between England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales, until 1983–84. Wales were champions on 12 occasions, winning seven times whilst sharing the title five times. As a result, Wales did not enter the first three World Cups, in 1932 Wales played host to the Republic of Ireland, the first time they played against a side from outside the four home nations. A year later, Wales played a match outside the United Kingdom for the first time when they travelled to Paris to take on France in a match which was drawn 1–1. The top two teams were to qualify for the finals in Brazil, but Wales finished bottom of the group. The 1950s were an age for Welsh football with stars such as Ivor Allchurch, Cliff Jones, Alf Sherwood, Jack Kelsey, Trevor Ford, Ronnie Burgess, Terry Medwin. Wales made its only World Cup finals tournament appearance in the 1958 FIFA World Cup in Sweden, however, their path to qualification was unusual. In the Asian/African qualifying zone Egypt and Sudan had refused to play against Israel following the Suez crisis, as a result, FIFA proclaimed Israel winners of their respective group. However, FIFA did not want a team to qualify for the World Cup finals without actually playing a match and so lots were drawn of all the second placed teams in UEFA
1880 FA Cup Final
The 1880 FA Cup Final was contested by Clapham Rovers and Oxford University at the Kennington Oval. Clapham Rovers won 1–0, the goal being scored by Clopton Lloyd-Jones. The ball hit the Oxford crossbar with a shot from Edward Ram, in the second half, six minutes before the close of time, the deadlock was broken when Francis Sparks conducted the ball to within about six yards of the University goal. Although Oxfords Charles King attempted to stop the ball with a weak mis-kick, Lloyd-Jones and this feat quite brought down the house. According to The Field magazines report, there was vociferous cheering, throwing up of hats, at the games end, Lloyd-Jones, and his team captain Robert Ogilvie, were specially cheered by the crowd. At 21 years and 150 days Lloyd-Jones was the baby of his team, at the start of the match, a strong and cold north-easterly wind blew into the faces of the Oxford team and the wind neutralised many of their kicks but it eased considerably after half-time. The anecdotes are purely comedy fiction, wilde was known for a disdain of manly sports