West Bromwich Albion F.C.
The club was formed in 1878 and has played at its home ground, The Hawthorns, since 1900. Albion were one of the members of the Football League in 1888 and have spent the majority of their existence in the top tier of English football. They have been champions of England once, in 1919–20 and have been runners-up twice but they have had success in the FA Cup. The first came in 1888, the year the league was founded, and they also won the Football League Cup at the first attempt in 1966. The clubs longest consecutive period in the top division spanned twenty-four years between 1949 and 1973, and from 1986 to 2002 they spent their longest ever spell out of the top division and they currently play in the Premier League. The team has played in blue and white stripes for most of the clubs history. The club was founded as West Bromwich Strollers in 1878 by workers from George Salters Spring Works in West Bromwich, the club joined the Birmingham & District Football Association in 1881 and became eligible for their first competition, the Birmingham Cup. They reached the quarter-finals, beating several longer-established clubs on the way, in 1883, Albion won their first trophy, the Staffordshire Cup. Albion joined the Football Association in the year, this enabled them to enter the FA Cup for the first time in the 1883–84 season. In 1885 the club turned professional, and in 1886 they reached the FA Cup final for the first time and they reached the final again in 1887, but lost 2–0 to Aston Villa. In 1888 the team won the trophy for the first time, as FA Cup winners, they qualified to play in a Football World Championship game against Scottish Cup winners Renton, which ended in a 4–1 defeat. Thus when the Football League started later that year, Albion became one of the founder members. Albions second FA Cup success came in 1892, beating Aston Villa 3–0 and they met Villa again in the 1895 final, but lost 1–0. The team suffered relegation to Division Two in 1900–01, their first season at The Hawthorns and they were promoted as champions the following season but relegated again in 1903–04. The club won the Division Two championship once more in 1910–11, and the season reached another FA Cup Final. Albion won the Football League title in 1919–20 for the time in their history following the end of World War I. The team finished as Division One runners-up in 1924–25, narrowly losing out to Huddersfield Town, in 1930–31, they won promotion as well as the FA Cup, beating Birmingham 2–1 in the final. The Double of winning the FA Cup and promotion has not been achieved before or since, Albion reached the final again in 1935, losing to Sheffield Wednesday, but were relegated three years later
The FA Cup, known officially as The Football Association Challenge Cup, is an annual knockout association football competition in mens domestic English football. First played during the 1871–72 season, it is the oldest association football competition in the world and it is organised by and named after The Football Association. For sponsorship reasons, from 2015 through to 2018 it is known as The Emirates FA Cup. A concurrent womens tournament is held, the FA Womens Cup. A record 763 clubs competed in 2011–12, the tournament consists of 12 randomly drawn rounds followed by the semi-finals and the final. The last entrants are the Premier League and Championship clubs, into the draw for the Third Round Proper, in the modern era, only one non-league team has ever reached the quarter finals, and teams below Level 2 have never reached the final. As a result, as well as who wins, significant focus is given to those minnows who progress furthest, especially if they achieve an unlikely giant-killing victory. Winners receive the FA Cup trophy, of which there have two designs and five actual cups, the latest is a 2014 replica of the second design. Winners also qualify for European football and a place in the FA Community Shield match, in 1863, the newly founded Football Association published the Laws of the Game of Association Football, unifying the various different rules in use before then. On 20 July 1871, in the offices of The Sportsman newspaper, the inaugural FA Cup tournament kicked off in November 1871. After thirteen games in all, Wanderers were crowned the winners in the final, Wanderers retained the trophy the following year. The modern cup was beginning to be established by the 1888–89 season, following the 1914–15 edition, the competition was suspended due to the First World War, and did not resume until 1919–20. The 1922–23 competition saw the first final to be played in the newly opened Wembley Stadium, due to the outbreak of World War II, the competition was not played between the 1938–39 and 1945–46 editions. Having previously featured replays, the modern day practice of ensuring the semi-final and final matches finish on the day, was introduced from 2000 onwards. Redevelopment of Wembley saw the final played outside of England for the first time, the final returned to Wembley in 2007, followed by the semi-finals from 2008. The competition is open to any club down to Level 10 of the English football league system which meets the eligibility criteria, all clubs in the top four levels are automatically eligible. Clubs in the six levels are also eligible provided they have played in either the FA Cup. Newly formed clubs, such as F. C. United of Manchester in 2005–06 and also 2006–07, all clubs entering the competition must also have a suitable stadium
Birmingham Senior Cup
The Birmingham Senior Cup is a football competition for Birmingham County FA club teams, organised by the Birmingham County Football Association. It began in 1876 and is the oldest county cup competition still active, ^ The 1893–94 cup was shared following a 3–3 draw b. ^ In 1954–55 the trophy was shared after a replay c
Staffordshire Senior Cup
The Staffordshire Senior Challenge Cup is a football cup tournament based in the county of Staffordshire in England first competed for in 1877-78. Organised by the Staffordshire Football Association, it is competed for by a mix of clubs from Staffordshire, both professional and amateur clubs may enter. This has left the open for non-league sides to have more success in the cup as it is classed as a bigger achievement for them to win it. In recent years the entries from clubs from neighbouring counties have virtually been phased out. Most County FAs now have their own separate Senior Cup competitions and this has seen Market Drayton Town and Shifnal Town both enter since the turn of the millennium to make up the numbers, despite not being located in Staffordshire. From the 2008–09 season the Staffordshire FA introduced a cut off point whereby teams lower than level 9 in the English football league system can not compete in the Senior Cup. Teams below the level of the North West Counties League Premier Division, stoke City are the most successful sides in the competitions history with 18 wins. Historically the non-league side with the most wins is Stafford Rangers who have won the cup 11 times since the Second World War, the most successful side from outside what is traditionally classed as Staffordshire are Kidderminster Harriers from Worcestershire, who won the competition 4 times in the 1980s
Old Carthusians F.C.
Old Carthusians Football Club is an association football club whose players are former pupils of Charterhouse School in Godalming, Surrey, England. The club was established in 1876 and won the FA Cup in 1881, the club currently plays in the Arthurian League and won league and Arthur Dunn Cup doubles in 2006,2008,2009,2011,2013 and 2014. The club was formed from the pupils of Charterhouse School in Godalming, Surrey. Reports in the press of games taking place at the school had appeared since March 1853 and it was one of several clubs formed from the old boys of public schools in England during the 19th century. Other clubs formed in similar circumstances include Old Etonians and Old Westminsters, other former members of the school had previously founded Stoke-on-Trent F. C. in 1867, which would go on to be known as Stoke City. Old Carthusians entered the FA Cup for the first time in 1879–80, at the time of the founding of the Football League in 1888, Old Carthusians was the most southern team to be interested in joining the Northern dominated league, but were never added to the league. Old Carthusians became one of four clubs to win the FA Cup in the first eleven years it was awarded when they won the trophy in 1881. In comparison, while the Carthusians were made up of educated men, the professions of the players among the Olympic side included a dentist, the Athletic News promoted the game as patricians versus plebeians. Prior to the first final, where they defeated Casuals 2–1, an Old Carthusian spokesman said, Penalties are an unpleasant indication that our conduct and honesty are not all it should be. In 1894 they were invited to join the newly formed Southern League along with a number of team including fellow old boys club Old Westminsters, the old boys teams refused to join the new league and tried to convince the 2nd Scots Guards to leave the league as well. As of 2012, the continues to enter the Arthur Dunn Cup. This was a replay of the very first title in 1903, during 2008, the club took part in a tournament featuring several former winners of the FA Cup including Corinthian-Casuals, Royal Engineers and Old Etonians. Along with Wimbledon, and Royal Engineers the Old Carthusians are one of three teams to have ever won both the FA Cup and the FA Amateur Cup. In 2011 the Old Carthusians reached the final of the AFA Senior Cup, however, having been two goals up at half time, they went on to lose the game to the Old Salesians 3–2. Old Carthusians went on to win another two Arthurian League title and Arthur Dunn Cup doubles, the Treble-Double had only been achieved by one team before - Lancing Old Boys in the 1980s. Nine Old Carthusians were capped for England
Kit (association football)
In association football, kit is the standard equipment and attire worn by players. The sports Laws of the Game specify the minimum kit which a player must use, footballers generally wear identifying numbers on the backs of their shirts. Professional clubs also usually display players surnames or nicknames on their shirts, Football kit has evolved significantly since the early days of the sport when players typically wore thick cotton shirts, knickerbockers and heavy rigid leather boots. The Laws of the Game set out the equipment which must be worn by all players in Law 4. Five separate items are specified, shirt, shorts, socks, footwear, goalkeepers are allowed to wear tracksuit bottoms instead of shorts. While most players wear studded football boots, the Laws do not specify that these are required, shirts must have sleeves, and goalkeepers must wear shirts which are easily distinguishable from all other players and the match officials. Thermal undershorts may be worn, but must be the colour as the shorts themselves. Shin pads must be covered entirely by the stockings, be made of rubber, plastic or a similar material, and provide a reasonable degree of protection. The only other restriction on equipment defined in the Laws of the Game is the requirement that a player must not use equipment or wear anything that is dangerous to himself or another player. In the event of a match between teams who would wear identical or similar colours the away team must change to a different colour. The England national team plays in red shirts even when it is not required. Many professional clubs also have a kit, ostensibly to be used if both their first-choice and away colours are deemed too similar to those of an opponent. Most professional clubs have retained the basic colour scheme for several decades. Teams representing countries in international competition generally wear national colours in common with other sporting teams of the same nation, shirts are normally made of a polyester mesh, which does not trap the sweat and body heat in the same way as a shirt made of a natural fibre. Depending on local rules, there may be restrictions on how large these logos may be or on what logos may be displayed, competitions such as the Premier League may also require players to wear patches on their sleeves depicting the logo of the competition. The captain of team is usually required to wear an elasticated armband around the left sleeve to identify him as the captain to the referee. Most current players wear specialist football boots, which can be either of leather or a synthetic material. Modern boots are cut slightly below the ankles, as opposed to the high-ankled boots used in former times, studs may be either moulded directly to the sole or be detachable, normally by means of a screw thread
An exhibition game is a sporting event whose prize money and impact on the players or the teams rankings is either zero or otherwise greatly reduced. In team sports, matches of this type are used to help coaches and managers select. If the players play in different teams in other leagues. The games can be held between separate teams or between parts of the same team, international competitions like the Olympic Games may also hold exhibition games as part of a demonstration sport. In the early days of football, known simply as football or soccer. However, since the development of The Football League in England in 1888, league tournaments became established, in addition to lengthy derby, since the introduction of league football, most club sides play a number of friendlies before the start of each season. Friendly football matches are considered to be non-competitive and are used to warm up players for a new season/competitive match. There is generally nothing competitive at stake and some rules may be changed or experimented with, although these events may involve sponsorship deals and the awarding of a trophy and may even be broadcast on television, there is little prestige attached to them. Frequently such games take place between a club and small clubs that play nearby, such as those between Newcastle United and Gateshead. International teams also play friendlies, generally in preparation for the qualifying or final stages of major tournaments and this is essential, since national squads generally have much less time together in which to prepare. The biggest difference between friendlies at the club and international levels is that international friendlies mostly take place during club league seasons and this has on occasion led to disagreement between national associations and clubs as to the availability of players, who could become injured or fatigued in a friendly. Players can be booked in international friendlies, and can be suspended from international matches based on red cards or accumulated yellows in a specified period. Caps and goals scored also count towards a players career records, in the UK and Ireland, exhibition match and friendly match refer to two different types of matches. A bounce game is generally a non-competitive football match played between two sides usually as part of an exercise or to give players match practice. Managers may also use bounce games as an opportunity to observe a player in action before offering a contract, usually these games are played on a training ground rather than in a stadium with no spectators in attendance. Exhibition fights were common in boxing. Jack Dempsey fought many exhibition bouts after retiring, joe Louis fought a charity fight on his rematch with Buddy Baer, but this was not considered an exhibition as it was for Louis world Heavyweight title. Muhammad Ali fought many exhibitions, including one with Lyle Alzado, in more modern times, Mike Tyson, Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. and Jorge Castro have been involved in exhibition fights
Walsall Football Club is a professional association football club based in the town of Walsall, West Midlands, England. The team play in League One, the tier in the English football league system. The club was founded in 1888 as Walsall Town Swifts, an amalgamation of Walsall Town F. C. and their first match at Wembley Stadium was the 2015 Football League Trophy Final, which they lost to Bristol City. Walsall moved into their Bescot Stadium in 1990, having played at nearby Fellows Park for almost a century. The ground is known as Bankss Stadium for sponsorship purposes, the team play in a red and white kit and their club crest features a swift. The clubs nickname, The Saddlers, reflects Walsalls status as a centre for saddle manufacture. Walsall were formed as Walsall Town Swifts in 1888 when Walsall Town F. C. Walsall Town had been founded in 1877 and Walsall Swifts in 1879. Both clubs had played at the Chuckery, and the new club remained at the same ground, Walsall Town Swifts first match was a draw against Aston Villa. Two players from this early era received international caps, in 1882, Alf Jones won the first two of his three caps while with Walsall Swifts, and in 1889 Albert Aldridge received the second of his two caps while playing for Walsall Town Swifts. The club were first admitted to the Football League in 1892 and they moved to the West Bromwich Road ground in 1893. After finishing 14th out of 16 teams in 1894–95 the club failed to be re-elected to the Football League, at the start of the 1895 season the club moved to Hilary Street, later renamed Fellows Park. In 1896 they changed their name to Walsall F. C. a year later, they returned to the Second Division, three teams having failed re-election in 1896. The team finished in place in 1898–99, but once again failed re-election two years later, dropping back into the Midland League. A move to the Birmingham League followed in 1903, and in 1910, with the expansion of the Football League after World War I, Walsall became a founding member of the Third Division North in 1921. Walsalls highest home attendance was set in 1930, when played in of front of 74,600 fans against Aston Villa in the FA Cup Fourth Round. Although a home match for Walsall, the tie was played at their opponents Villa Park ground, in 1933, Walsall won 2–0 in the FA Cup against Arsenal at Fellows Park. Arsenal went on to win the First Division that season, in 1958, following a reorganisation of the Football League, Walsall became founder members of the Fourth Division. Players such as Bill Chopper Guttridge, Tony Richards and Colin Taylor were intrinsically important to the success of the side
Stoke City F.C.
Stoke City Football Club is a professional football club based in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England, that plays in the Premier League, the top flight of English football. Founded as Stoke Ramblers in 1863 the club changed its name to Stoke in 1878 and they are the second oldest professional football club in the world, after Notts County, and are one of the founding members of the Football League. Their first, and to date only major trophy, the League Cup was won in 1972, the clubs highest league finish in the top division is 4th, which was achieved in the 1935–36 and 1946–47 seasons. Stoke played in the FA Cup Final in 2011, finishing runners-up to Manchester City and have reached three FA Cup semi-finals, in 1899 then consecutively in 1971 and 1972. Stoke have competed in European football on three occasions, firstly in 1972–73 then in 1974–75 and most recently in 2011–12, the club has won the Football League Trophy twice, in 1992 and in 2000. Stokes home ground is the bet365 Stadium, a 28,116 all-seater stadium, before the stadium was opened in 1997, the club was based at the Victoria Ground, which had been their home ground since 1878. The clubs nickname is The Potters, named after the industry in Stoke-on-Trent and their traditional home kit is a red and white vertically striped shirt, white shorts. Stokes traditional rivals are Midlands clubs West Bromwich Albion and Wolverhampton Wanderers whilst their local rivals are Port Vale with whom they contest the Potteries derby, the clubs first documented match was in October 1868, against an EW May XV at the Victoria Cricket Club ground. Henry Almond, the founder, was also captain. During this period they played at the Victoria Cricket Ground, however, in 1878, the club merged with Stoke Victoria Cricket Club, and became Stoke Football Club. They moved from their previous ground, Sweetings Field, to the Athletic Club ground and it was around this time that the club adopted their traditional red-and-white striped kit. In August 1885, the club turned professional, Stoke were one of the twelve founding members of the Football League when it was introduced in 1888. The club struggled in their first two seasons, 1888–89 and 1889–90, finishing bottom on both occasions, in 1890 Stoke failed to be re-elected and joined the Football Alliance, which they won and thus were re-elected to the Football League. Stoke spent the next 15 seasons in the First Division and reached the FA Cup Semi-Final in the 1898–99 season before being relegated in 1907, Stoke went bankrupt and entered non-league football until 1914, when the First World War meant the Football League was suspended for four years. During the wartime period, Stoke entered the Lancashire Primary and Secondary leagues, when football recommenced in August 1919, Stoke re-joined the league. The club became owners of the Victoria Ground in 1919 and this was followed by the construction of the Butler Street stand, which increased the overall capacity of the ground to 50,000. In 1925, Stoke-on-Trent was granted city status and this led the club to change its name to Stoke City F. C, the 1930s saw the debut of clubs most celebrated player, Stanley Matthews. Matthews, who grew up in Hanley, was an apprentice at the club and made his first appearance in March 1932, against Bury, by end of the decade, Matthews had established himself as an England international and as one of the best footballers of his generation
FA Cup Final
The FA Cup Final, commonly referred to in England as just the Cup Final, is the last match in the Football Association Challenge Cup. With an official attendance of 89,826 at the 2007 FA Cup Final, it is the fourth best attended club championship event in the world. The latest FA Cup Final was the final of the 2015–16 competition, early FA Cup Finals were held mainly in London at venues including Kennington Oval between 1874 and 1892 and Crystal Palace between 1895 and 1914. In the period from 1923 until 2000, the final was held at Wembley Stadium, from 2001–2005, the final was moved to the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, due to the rebuilding of Wembley Stadium. The Millennium Stadium was used again in 2006 due to delays in opening the new Wembley Stadium. Until 1993, if the final could not be decided in a match, the match would be replayed. In 1993, the Football Association then decided that all future finals would be decided on the day, only two FA Cup Finals have been decided by a penalty shootout, those of 2005 and 2006. Also note that the Football League War Cup is not considered part of the official FA Cup competition, stan Mortensens hat-trick for Blackpool in 1953 remains the only hat trick ever scored at Wembley in the competitions final. Evertons Louis Saha scored a goal after 27.9 seconds in the 2009 FA Cup Final and it is currently the fastest goal in FA Cup Final history. Burys 6–0 victory over Derby County in the 1903 FA Cup Final is the largest winning margin, with his goal in the 2012 Final, Chelseas Didier Drogba became the first man to score a goal in four different Finals. The FA Cup Final is one of ten events reserved for live broadcast on UK terrestrial television under the Ofcom Code on Sports and Other Listed and Designated Events
The Midlands is a cultural and geographic area roughly spanning central England that broadly corresponds to the early medieval Kingdom of Mercia. It borders South East England, South West England, North West England, Yorkshire and Humber, East of England and its largest city is Birmingham, and it was an important location for the Industrial Revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries. The greater part of the area is formed of two English statistical regions, the West Midlands and East Midlands, the Midlands does not correspond to any current administrative area, and there is therefore no strict definition. With more restricted boundaries than the area known as the Midlands. These are also constituencies of the European Parliament, the East Midlands region comprises the shire counties of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire and Nottinghamshire and the unitary county of Rutland. The two regions have a population of 10,135,000, and an area of 11,053 sq mi. The largest Midlands conurbation, which includes the cities of Birmingham, various part of the Midlands are somewhat poetically referred to as the Heart of England, especially in tourist literature. The various areas of the Midlands have their own character, giving rise to a high number of local history. Nottingham played a part in the English Civil War, which is commemorated in a number of place names. Areas such as Derbyshires Amber Valley and Erewash combine attractive countryside with industrial heritage and are home to historic canals, the Black Country, broadly the boroughs of Dudley, Sandwell, Wolverhampton and Walsall, played an important part in the Industrial Revolution. The Midlands is predominantly low-lying and flat in character, although isolated hills such as Turners Hill have extensive views. Upland areas lie in the west and north of the region with the Shropshire Hills to the west, close to the Welsh border, the Shropshire Hills reach heights of over 500 m, including the Long Mynd, Clee Hills and Stiperstones ridge. Wenlock Edge, running through the middle of the Shropshire Hills AONB, is a long, low ridge, the Peak District reaches heights of between 300 m and 600 m with Kinder Scout being the highest point at 636 m. Further south, the Welsh border reaches over 700 m high, at Black Mountain, other small areas of lower hills in the Midlands include Cannock Chase in Staffordshire, Charnwood Forest in Leicestershire, and the Lincolnshire Wolds in Lincolnshire. The Cotswolds – designated an AONB in 1966, – extend for over 90 miles through six counties, but centred on Gloucestershire. They reach a highest point of 330 m at Cleeve Hill, the Malverns are formed of some of the oldest rock in England and extend for some 13 km through two West Midlands counties as well as northern Gloucestershire in the southwest. The highest point of the hills is the Worcestershire Beacon at 425 m above sea level, the Midlands has a temperate maritime climate. With cold, cloudy, wet winters and comfortable, mostly dry, the temperature usually ranges from −0.4 °C during winter nights to 24.1 °C during summer days
Blackburn Rovers F.C.
The club was established in 1875, becoming a founding member of The Football League in 1888. It is one of three clubs to have been both a founder member of the Football League and the Premier League. In 1890, Rovers moved to Ewood Park, Blackburn Rovers have been English champions three times, and have won six FA Cups and one Football League Cup. Blackburn are the only extant club to have won three consecutive FA Cups, the club has spent the majority of its existence in the top flight of English football. In 1992, Rovers gained promotion to the new Premier League a year after being taken over by local entrepreneur Jack Walker, in 1995, Rovers became Premier League champions. In the 1998–99 season, the club was relegated and it was promoted back to the Premier League two years later, in the 2000–01 season. It has qualified for the UEFA Cup four times, once as League Cup winners, twice as the Premier Leagues sixth-placed team, the 2011–12 season marked the clubs 72nd, non-consecutive, year in the top flight. Rovers are currently one of six clubs to have won the Premier League, along with Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester City. The clubs motto is Arte et Labore, By Skill and Hard Work in Latin, the club was founded following a meeting, at the Leger Hotel, Blackburn, on 5 November 1875. The meeting was organised by two men, namely John Lewis and Arthur Constantine. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the possibility of forming a club to play under Association rules. The first match played by Blackburn Rovers took place in Church, on 28 September 1878, Blackburn Rovers became one of 23 clubs to form the Lancashire Football Association. On 1 November 1879 the club played in the F. A, Cup for the first time, beating the Tyne Association Football Club 5–1. Rovers were eventually put out of the competition in the round after suffering a heavy 6–0 defeat by Nottingham Forest. On 25 March 1882 the club won through to the final of the F. A, Blackburn Rovers was the first provincial team to reach the final, but the result was a 1–0 defeat by the Old Etonians. Cup on 29 March 1884 with a 2–1 victory over the Scottish team Queens Park, the same teams played the F. A. Cup final again the season, with Blackburn Rovers again emerging victorious. Rovers repeated this success yet again the season, winning the final replay 2–0 against West Bromwich Albion
The Football Association
The Football Association, also known simply as the FA, is the governing body of association football in England, and the Crown dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey, and the Isle of Man. Formed in 1863, it is the oldest football association in the world and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the amateur, the FA sanctions all competitive football matches within its remit at national level, and indirectly at local level through the County Football Associations. It runs numerous competitions, the most famous of which is the FA Cup, the FA is a member of both UEFA and FIFA and holds a permanent seat on the International Football Association Board which is responsible for the laws of the game. As the first football association, it not use the national name English in its title. The FA is based at Wembley Stadium, London, the FA is a member of the British Olympic Association, meaning that the FA has control over the mens and womens Great Britain Olympic football team. All of Englands professional football teams are members of the Football Association, although it does not run the day-to-day operations of the Premier League, it has veto power over the appointment of the League Chairman and Chief Executive and over any changes to league rules. The English Football League, made up of the three professional divisions below the Premier League, is self-governing, subject to the FAs sanctions. Another set of rules, the Sheffield Rules, was used by a number of clubs in the North of England from the 1850s, eleven London football clubs and schools representatives met on 26 October 1863 to agree on common rules. The founding clubs present at the first meeting were Barnes, Civil Service, Crusaders, Forest of Leytonstone, many of these clubs are now defunct or play rugby union. Civil Service FC, who now plays in the Southern Amateur League, is the one of the original eleven football clubs still in existence. There are only three institutions which have been members of the F. A. since 1863, those being Civil Service, Forest School and Kings College. Central to the creation of the Football Association and modern football was Ebenezer Cobb Morley and he was a founding member of the Football Association in 1863. In 1862, as captain of Barnes, he wrote to Bells Life newspaper proposing a governing body for the sport led to the first meeting at The Freemasons Tavern that created the FA. He was the FAs first secretary and its president and drafted the Laws of the Game generally called the London Rules at his home in Barnes. As a player, he played in the first ever match in 1863, the first version of the rules for the modern game was drawn up over a series of six meetings held in The Freemasons Tavern from October till December. Of the clubs at the first meeting, Crusaders, Surbiton and Charterhouse did not attend the subsequent meetings, replaced instead by the Royal Navy School, Wimbledon School, at the final meeting, F. M. Other English rugby clubs followed this lead and did not join the FA, the term soccer dates back to this split to refer to football played under the association rules. The Richmond side were obviously unimpressed by the new rules in practice because they helped form the Rugby Football Union in 1871
Shilling (British coin)
The shilling was a coin worth one twentieth of a pound sterling, or twelve pence. It was first minted in the reign of Henry VII as the testoon, the word bob was sometimes used for a monetary value of several shillings, e. g. ten bob note. Following decimalisation in 1970 the coin had a value of five new pence and it was made from silver from its introduction in or around 1503 until 1947, and thereafter in cupronickel. Prior to Decimal Day in 1971 there were 240 pence in one pound sterling, twelve pence made a shilling, and twenty shillings made a pound. Values less than a pound were usually written in terms of shillings and pence, values of less than a shilling were simply written in terms of pence, e. g. eight pence would be 8d. Although the coin was not minted until the sixteenth century, the value of a shilling had been used for accounting purposes since the Anglo-Saxon period, originally, a shilling was deemed to be the value of a cow in Kent, or a sheep elsewhere. The value of one shilling equalling 12d was set by the Normans following the conquest, prior to this various Anglo-Saxon coins equalling 3,4, the first coins of the pound sterling with the value of 12d were minted in 1503 or 1504 and were known as testoons. Between 1544 and 1551 the coinage was debased repeatedly by the governments of Henry VIII and this debasement meant that coins produced in 1551 had one-fifth of the silver content of those minted in 1544, and consequently the value of new testoons fell from 12d to 6d. The reason the testoon decreased in value is that unlike today and this debasement was recognised as a mistake, and during Elizabeths reign newly minted coins, including the testoon, had a much higher silver content and regained their pre-debasement value. Shillings were minted during the reign of every British monarch following Edward VI, the Royal Mint undertook a massive recoinage programme in 1816, with large quantities of gold and silver coin being minted. Previous issues of silver coinage had been irregular, and the last issue, minted in 1787, new silver coinage was to be of.925 standard, with silver coins to be minted at 66 shillings to the troy pound. Hence, newly minted shillings weighed 87.273 grains or 5.655 grams, the Royal Mint debased the silver coinage in 1920 from 92. 5% silver to 50% silver. Shillings of both alloys were minted that year and this debasement was done because of the rising price of silver around the world, and followed the global trend of the elimination, or the reducing in purity, of the silver in coinage. The minting of coinage of the pound sterling ceased completely in 1946 for similar reasons. New silver coinage was minted in cupronickel, an alloy of copper. Beginning with Lord Wrottesleys proposals in the 1820s there were attempts to decimalise the pound sterling over the next century. These attempts came to nothing significant until the 1960s when the need for a currency more suited to simple monetary calculations became pressing, the decision to decimalise was announced in 1966, with the pound to be redivided into 100, rather than 240, pence. Decimal Day was set for 15 February 1971, and a range of new coins were introduced
Penny (British decimal coin)
The British decimal one penny coin, usually simply known as a penny, is a unit of currency equaling one one-hundredth of a pound sterling. Its obverse has featured the profile of Queen Elizabeth II since the introduction in 1971. Four different portraits of the Queen have been used on the coin, the second and current reverse, featuring a segment of the Royal Shield, was introduced in 2008. The correct plural form for multiple 1p coins is pennies, the correct term for monetary amounts of pennies greater than 1p is pence. The penny was minted from bronze, but since 1992 it has been minted in copper-plated steel due to the increasing price of metal. Soaring copper prices in the mid-2000s caused the value of the copper in the coins to exceed the coins face value. For example, in May 2006, the metal value of a pre-1992 1p coin was about 1.5 pence. During 2008, the value of copper fell dramatically from these peaks, as of 31 March 2014 there were an estimated 11,278 million 1p coins in circulation, with an estimated total face value of £112.787 million. The penny is the lowest value coin in circulation in the United Kingdom, to date, four different obverses have been used. In all cases, the inscription is ELIZABETH II D. G. REG. F. D,2013, where 2013 is replaced by the year of minting. In the original design both sides of the coin are encircled by dots, a feature on coins, known as beading. As with all new decimal currency, until 1984 the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II by Arnold Machin appeared on the obverse, in which the Queen wears the Girls of Great Britain, the words NEW PENNY were inscribed above the portcullis up until 1981. From 1982 the inscription changed to ONE PENNY, between 1985 and 1997 the portrait by Raphael Maklouf was used, in which the Queen wears the George IV State Diadem. In 1992 the metal used in minting this coin was switched from bronze to copper-plated steel, between 1998 and 2015 the portrait by Ian Rank-Broadley has been used, again featuring the tiara, with a signature-mark IRB below the portrait. As of June 2015, coins bearing the portrait by Jody Clark have been seen in circulation, in August 2005 the Royal Mint launched a competition to find new reverse designs for all circulating coins apart from the £2 coin. The winner, announced in April 2008, was Matthew Dent, the designs for the 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p, 20p and 50p coins depict sections of the Royal Shield that form the whole shield when placed together. The entire shield is featured on the £1 coin, the 1p coin depicts the left section between the first and third quarter of the shield, representing England and Northern Ireland. The coins obverse remains largely unchanged, but the beading, which no longer features on the reverse, has also been removed from the obverse
A pub, or public house, is an establishment licensed to sell alcoholic drinks, which traditionally include beer, ale and cider. It is a relaxed, social drinking establishment and a prominent part of British, Irish, New Zealand, Canadian, in many places, especially in villages, a pub is the focal point of the community. In his 17th century diary Samuel Pepys described the pub as the heart of England, Pubs can be traced back to Roman taverns, through the Anglo-Saxon alehouse to the development of the tied house system in the 19th century. In 1393, King Richard II of England introduced legislation that pubs had to display a sign outdoors to make them easily visible for passing ale tasters who would assess the quality of ale sold, most pubs focus on offering beers, ales and similar drinks. As well, pubs often sell wines, spirits, and soft drinks, meals, the owner, tenant or manager is known as the pub landlord or publican. The pub quiz was established in the UK in the 1970s and these alehouses quickly evolved into meeting houses for the folk to socially congregate, gossip and arrange mutual help within their communities. Herein lies the origin of the public house, or Pub as it is colloquially called in England. They rapidly spread across the Kingdom, becoming so commonplace that in 965 King Edgar decreed that there should be no more than one alehouse per village. A traveller in the early Middle Ages could obtain overnight accommodation in monasteries, the Hostellers of London were granted guild status in 1446 and in 1514 the guild became the Worshipful Company of Innholders. A survey in 1577 of drinking establishment in England and Wales for taxation purposes recorded 14,202 alehouses,1,631 inns, Inns are buildings where travellers can seek lodging and, usually, food and drink. They are typically located in the country or along a highway, in Europe, they possibly first sprang up when the Romans built a system of roads two millennia ago. Some inns in Europe are several centuries old, in addition to providing for the needs of travellers, inns traditionally acted as community gathering places. In Europe, it is the provision of accommodation, if anything, the latter tend to provide alcohol, but less commonly accommodation. Famous London inns include The George, Southwark and The Tabard, there is however no longer a formal distinction between an inn and other kinds of establishment. In North America, the aspect of the word inn lives on in hotel brand names like Holiday Inn. The Inns of Court and Inns of Chancery in London started as ordinary inns where barristers met to do business, traditional English ale was made solely from fermented malt. The practice of adding hops to produce beer was introduced from the Netherlands in the early 15th century, alehouses would each brew their own distinctive ale, but independent breweries began to appear in the late 17th century. By the end of the century almost all beer was brewed by commercial breweries, the 18th century saw a huge growth in the number of drinking establishments, primarily due to the introduction of gin
It is subdivided into 100 pence. A number of nations that do not use sterling also have called the pound. At various times, the sterling was commodity money or bank notes backed by silver or gold. The pound sterling is the worlds oldest currency still in use, the British Crown dependencies of Guernsey and Jersey produce their own local issues of sterling, the Guernsey pound and the Jersey pound. The pound sterling is also used in the Isle of Man, Gibraltar, the Bank of England is the central bank for the pound sterling, issuing its own coins and banknotes, and regulating issuance of banknotes by private banks in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Sterling is the fourth most-traded currency in the exchange market, after the United States dollar, the euro. Together with those three currencies it forms the basket of currencies which calculate the value of IMF special drawing rights, Sterling is also the third most-held reserve currency in global reserves. The full, official name, pound sterling, is used mainly in formal contexts, otherwise the term pound is normally used. The abbreviations ster. or stg. are sometimes used, the term British pound is commonly used in less formal contexts, although it is not an official name of the currency. The pound sterling is also referred to as cable amongst forex traders, the origins of this term are attributed to the fact that in the 1800s, the dollar/pound sterling exchange rate was transmitted via transatlantic cable. Forex brokers are sometimes referred to as cable dealers, as another established source notes, the compound expression was then derived, silver coins known as sterlings were issued in the Saxon kingdoms,240 of them being minted from a pound of silver. Hence, large payments came to be reckoned in pounds of sterlings, in 1260, Henry III granted them a charter of protection. And because the Leagues money was not frequently debased like that of England, English traders stipulated to be paid in pounds of the Easterlings, and land for their Kontor, the Steelyard of London, which by the 1340s was also called Easterlings Hall, or Esterlingeshalle. For further discussion of the etymology of sterling, see sterling silver, the currency sign for the pound sign is £, which is usually written with a single cross-bar, though a version with a double cross-bar is also sometimes seen. The ISO4217 currency code is GBP, occasionally, the abbreviation UKP is used but this is non-standard because the ISO3166 country code for the United Kingdom is GB. The Crown dependencies use their own codes, GGP, JEP, stocks are often traded in pence, so traders may refer to pence sterling, GBX, when listing stock prices. A common slang term for the pound sterling or pound is quid, since decimalisation in 1971, the pound has been divided into 100 pence. The symbol for the penny is p, hence an amount such as 50p properly pronounced fifty pence is more colloquially, quite often, pronounced fifty pee /fɪfti, pi and this also helped to distinguish between new and old pence amounts during the changeover to the decimal system
A funeral director, also known as an undertaker or mortician, is a professional involved in the business of funeral rites. These tasks often entail the embalming and burial or cremation of the dead, as well as the planning, funeral directors may at times be asked to perform tasks such as dressing, casketing, and cossetting. A funeral director may work at a home or be an independent employee. The term mortician is derived from the Latin word mort- + -ician, the term Mortician was the winning entry. As the societal need to account for the dead and their survivors is as ancient as civilization itself, ancient Egypt is a probable pioneer in supporting full-time morticians, intentional mummification began c.2600 BC, with the best-preserved mummies dating to c.1570 to 1075 BC. Specialized priests spent 70 full days on a single corpse, only royalty, nobility and wealthy commoners could afford the service, considered an essential part of accessing eternal life. Other paid actors would don the masks of ancestors and recreate their personalities and these purely ceremonial undertakers of the day nonetheless had great religious and societal impact, a larger number of actors indicated greater power and wealth for the deceased and their family. Modern ideas about proper preservation of the dead for the benefit of the living arose in the European Age of Enlightenment, dutch scientist Frederik Ruyschs work attracted the attention of royalty and legitimized postmortem anatomy. Most importantly, Ruysch developed injected substances and waxes that could penetrate the smallest vessels of the body, in the U. S. most modern day funeral homes are run as family businesses. The majority of work in small, independent family run funeral homes. The owner usually hires two or three other morticians to help them, often, this hired help is in the family, perpetuating the familys ownership. Most funeral homes have one or more viewing rooms, a room for embalming, a chapel. They usually have a hearse for transportation of bodies, a flower car and they also normally sell coffins and urns. In the United States, the states each have their own licensing regulations for funeral directors. Most require a combination of education, passage of a National Board Examination, passage of a state board examination. Mortuary science graduates may have to relocate to find jobs, in India, the Pariah caste function as traditional creamators. They also participate and specialize in funeral rites
World War I
World War I, also known as the First World War, the Great War, or the War to End All Wars, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. More than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, were mobilised in one of the largest wars in history and it was one of the deadliest conflicts in history, and paved the way for major political changes, including revolutions in many of the nations involved. The war drew in all the worlds great powers, assembled in two opposing alliances, the Allies versus the Central Powers of Germany and Austria-Hungary. These alliances were reorganised and expanded as more nations entered the war, Italy, Japan, the trigger for the war was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary, by Yugoslav nationalist Gavrilo Princip in Sarajevo on 28 June 1914. This set off a crisis when Austria-Hungary delivered an ultimatum to the Kingdom of Serbia. Within weeks, the powers were at war and the conflict soon spread around the world. On 25 July Russia began mobilisation and on 28 July, the Austro-Hungarians declared war on Serbia, Germany presented an ultimatum to Russia to demobilise, and when this was refused, declared war on Russia on 1 August. Germany then invaded neutral Belgium and Luxembourg before moving towards France, after the German march on Paris was halted, what became known as the Western Front settled into a battle of attrition, with a trench line that changed little until 1917. On the Eastern Front, the Russian army was successful against the Austro-Hungarians, in November 1914, the Ottoman Empire joined the Central Powers, opening fronts in the Caucasus, Mesopotamia and the Sinai. In 1915, Italy joined the Allies and Bulgaria joined the Central Powers, Romania joined the Allies in 1916, after a stunning German offensive along the Western Front in the spring of 1918, the Allies rallied and drove back the Germans in a series of successful offensives. By the end of the war or soon after, the German Empire, Russian Empire, Austro-Hungarian Empire, national borders were redrawn, with several independent nations restored or created, and Germanys colonies were parceled out among the victors. During the Paris Peace Conference of 1919, the Big Four imposed their terms in a series of treaties, the League of Nations was formed with the aim of preventing any repetition of such a conflict. This effort failed, and economic depression, renewed nationalism, weakened successor states, and feelings of humiliation eventually contributed to World War II. From the time of its start until the approach of World War II, at the time, it was also sometimes called the war to end war or the war to end all wars due to its then-unparalleled scale and devastation. In Canada, Macleans magazine in October 1914 wrote, Some wars name themselves, during the interwar period, the war was most often called the World War and the Great War in English-speaking countries. Will become the first world war in the sense of the word. These began in 1815, with the Holy Alliance between Prussia, Russia, and Austria, when Germany was united in 1871, Prussia became part of the new German nation. Soon after, in October 1873, German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck negotiated the League of the Three Emperors between the monarchs of Austria-Hungary, Russia and Germany
1886 FA Cup Final
The 1886 FA Cup Final was contested by Blackburn Rovers and West Bromwich Albion at the Kennington Oval. The match finished goalless, Albion wanted to play extra time but Blackburn Rovers declined, the replay was particularly noteworthy in that it took place at Derbyshire County Cricket Clubs Racecourse Ground, the first time an FA Cup Final was played outside London. The replay was won 2–0 by Blackburn Rovers, their third successive FA Cup Final victory, the goals came from James Brown and Joe Sowerbutts. Both games were refereed by Major Francis Marindin, in their third season in the FA Cup, West Bromwich Albion were drawn at home in every round prior to the semi-final. In the first two rounds, they defeated Aston Unity 4–1 and Wednesbury Old Athletic 3–2, the team then received a bye to the fourth round, where they beat Wolverhampton Wanderers by a 3–1 scoreline. Old Carthusians were defeated by a goal in the fifth round. The semi-final took place at Aston Lower Grounds and was against one of Albions local rivals, Albion won 4–0—Arthur Loach and George Woodhall each scoring twice—to become the first Midlands club to reach the FA Cup Final. After the game, Small Heath supporters invaded the pitch and then pelted missiles at vehicles bound for West Bromwich, the Essential History of West Bromwich Albion. A Complete Record of West Bromwich Albion 1879–1987, West Bromwich Albion, The Complete Record. 1885–86 Competition Results at rsssf. com FA Cup Final lineups Soccerbase summary – first match Soccerbase summary – replay Match report at www. fa-cupfinals. co. uk
Albert Edward James Matthias Jem Bayliss was an English football player who played for West Bromwich Albion, as well as the English national side. He captained the West Bromwich Albion side which won the 1888 FA Cup Final, West Bromwich Albion FA Cup winner,1888 FA Cup finalist,1886 and 1887 Player profile at EnglandStats. com Player profile at Spartcus Educational Matthews, Tony. West Bromwich Albion, The Complete Record
Wednesbury Old Athletic F.C.
Wednesbury Old Athletic was an English association football club based in Wednesbury, West Midlands. There were three clubs that had this name, the first began life as the Wednesbury Literary & Athletic Institute in October 1874, adopting the more familiar title of Wednesbury Old Athletic Club the following year. WOAC became a member of the Birmingham & District Football Association in December 1875 and won the inaugural Birmingham Cup competition. This success was repeated two years later, and in 1880, having joined the Staffordshire Football Association, the Old Athletic won the Staffs Cup, beating Aston Villa 2–1 in the Final. The club played in the FA Cup of 1881–82 and reached the quarter finals, but they lost 13–0 to Villa in the Cup on 30 October 1886 and would later be knocked out of the competition by Blackburn Rovers. Wednesbury Old Athletic played in the Birmingham & District League from 1890 to 1891, after narrowly missing out on the Midland League championship in 1892 the clubs fortunes declined. Wednesbury was unable to support a club and the Old Athletic disbanded in July 1893. The second club was formed from the ashes of the first, unable to obtain the use of a regular home ground, the club withdraw from the Walsall Junior League half way through the season and subsequently folded. The third club began life as Wednesbury Excelsior in around 1891 and it existed in local football, playing cup ties and friendlies, before joining the West Midlands Amateur League in 1896. Finishing as runners-up at the first attempt, the joined the Walsall & District League in 1897. WOAC spent 10 seasons in league, winning the title in 1900 &1905. The club dropped back down to the Birmingham Combination, but after collecting just a point from 12 fixtures the Old Athletic withdrew from the competition. The original club played at the Wells Field, through which Rooth Street now runs. It later played at the Athletic Ground, on the side of Wood Green Cemetery. Its best known home ground is listed as the Oval on St Pauls Road, Wood Green. It was also nearby Bescot Junction and Wood Green railway station and this is close to the site of present-day Wood Green High School, where a playing field known affectionately as Elwells existed until recently. The name Elwell refers to Edward Elwell, who owned a forge in Wednesbury that was previously situated at Wood Green. The later club played at different grounds, including The Press Ground in Wood Green, The Oval, The Central Grounds on Lloyd Street
Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C.
Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club /ˌwʊlvərˈhæmptən/ is a professional association football club based in the city of Wolverhampton, West Midlands. The club was known as St. Lukes FC and was founded in 1877. They compete in the Championship, the second highest tier of English football, the following season saw two further managers dismissed as the club then suffered a second relegation, ending up in League One. However, in the season they gained promotion back to the Championship where they currently reside. The clubs current head coach is Paul Lambert, who took charge in November 2016, having become professional, the club were nominated to become one of the twelve founder members of the Football League in 1888, in which they played the first Football League match ever staged. They ended the season in third place, as well as reaching their first FA Cup Final, losing 0–3 to the first Double winners. At the conclusion of the campaign the club relocated for a time when they moved to Molineux. Wolves lifted the FA Cup for the first time in 1893 when they beat Everton 1–0, and added a second triumph in 1908, two years after having dropped into the Second Division. After struggling for years to regain their place in the top division, the club suffered a further relegation in 1923, entering the Third Division. Eight years later Wolves regained their status after winning the Second Division title under Major Frank Buckley. This game had been the last in a Wolves shirt for Stan Cullis, the 1950s were by far the most successful period in the clubs history. Captained by Billy Wright, Wolves finally claimed the championship for the first time in 1953–54. This became the final spur for Gabriel Hanot, the editor of LÉquipe, to propose the creation of the European Cup, although the decade opened with a fourth FA Cup victory and almost the first double of the 20th century, the 1960s saw Wolves begin to decline. Cullis was sacked in September 1964 in a season that ended with relegation and this exile would last only two seasons though, as they were promoted in 1967 as runners-up. During the close season in 1967, Wolves played a season in North America as part of the fledgling United Soccer Association league which imported clubs from Europe. Playing as the Los Angeles Wolves, they won the Western Division, the clubs return to the English top flight heralded another period of relative success under Bill McGarry, with a fourth place in 1971 qualifying them for the newly created UEFA Cup. They lifted silverware though two later, when they won the League Cup for the first time by beating Manchester City 2–1 in the final. The club was saved from liquidation at the last minute when it was purchased by a consortium fronted by former player Derek Dougan
A hat-trick or hat trick in sports is the achievement of a positive feat three times in a game, or another achievement based on the number three in some sports. In association and rugby football, the scoring of two goals or tries by one individual in a match is referred to as a brace. The term first appeared in 1858 in cricket, to describe H. H. Stephensons taking three wickets with three consecutive deliveries, fans held a collection for Stephenson, and presented him with a hat bought with the proceeds. The term was used in print for the first time in 1865, the term was eventually adopted by many other sports including hockey, association football, water polo and team handball. A hat-trick occurs in association football when a player scores three goals in a game, whereas scoring two goals constitutes a brace. In common with other official record-keeping rules, goals in a penalty shootout are excluded from the tally, the extra time in a knockout cup match may also be calculated towards a players potential hat-trick. The fastest recorded time to score a hat-trick is 70 seconds, the previous Guinness world record of 90 seconds was held by Tommy Ross playing for Ross County against Nairn County on 28 November 1964. The first hat-trick in a game was by Scottish player John McDougall. American player Bert Patenaude scored the first hat-trick in the FIFA World Cup, two hat-tricks have been scored in a final, by Geoff Hurst for England in the 1966 final during extra time against West Germany, and Carli Lloyd against Japan in the 2015 Womens World Cup final. Football has also extended the term to include the phrase perfect hat-trick, achieved when a player scores one right-footed goal, one left-footed goal and one headed goal within one match. In Germany, the term Hattrick refers to when a player scores three goals in a row in one half without the break or a goal scored by another player interfering the performance. In recent years, hat trick has been often used to describe when a player hits three home runs in a game. This new usage appears be the transposition of the term, by Canadian baseball fans, from ice hockey. For example, on 29 August 2015, Toronto Blue Jays fans celebrated Edwin Encarnacións third home run of the game by throwing hats onto the field, a hat-trick occurs in cricket when a bowler dismisses three batsmen with consecutive deliveries. Only wickets attributed to the count towards a hat-trick, run outs do not count. Hat-tricks are rare, and as such are treasured by bowlers, in Test cricket history there have been just 42 hat-tricks, the first achieved by Fred Spofforth for Australia against England in 1879. In 1912, Australian Jimmy Matthews achieved the feat twice in one game against South Africa, lasith Malinga achieved a hat-trick while playing for Sri Lanka against Australia on 22 August 2011 in the last match of the five-ODI series in Colombo. He is the bowler to take three hat-tricks in any form of international cricket
Villa Park is a football stadium in Aston, Birmingham, England, with a seating capacity of 42,682. It has been the home of Aston Villa Football Club since 1897, the ground is less than a mile from both Witton and Aston railway stations and has hosted sixteen England internationals at senior level, the first in 1899 and the most recent in 2005. It was the first English ground to stage international football in three different centuries, Villa Park has hosted more FA Cup semi-finals than any other stadium, having hosted 55 matches in total. In 1897, Aston Villa moved into the Aston Lower Grounds, a ground in a Victorian amusement park in the former grounds of Aston Hall. The stadium has gone through stages of renovation and development, resulting in the current stand configuration of the Holte End, Trinity Road Stand, North Stand. The club has planning permission to redevelop the North Stand. Before 1914, a track ran around the perimeter of the pitch where regular cycling meetings were hosted as well as athletic events. Aside from football-related uses, the stadium has seen various concerts staged along with sporting events including boxing matches and international rugby league. In 1999, the last ever final of the UEFA Cup Winners Cup took place at Villa Park, Villa Park also hosted the 2012 FA Community Shield, as Wembley Stadium was unavailable due to it staging the final of the Olympic football tournament. The Aston Lower Grounds, later renamed Villa Park, was not the first home of Aston Villa F. C and their previous venue, Wellington Road faced increasing problems including an uneven pitch, poor spectator facilities, a lack of access and exorbitant rents. As a result, in 1894, Villas committee began negotiations with the owners of the Aston Lower Grounds, situated in the former grounds of Aston Hall, a Jacobean stately home, the Lower Grounds had seen varied uses over the years. The current pitch stands on the site of the Dovehouse Pool, the committee immediately engaged an architect who began preparing plans for the site, which included construction of a new 440 yards cement cycle track to replace the existing cinder one. The main stand was to be built to the east on the Witton Lane side, with the track, construction of the final phase of the stadium began in the winter of 1896 following negotiations with contractors over the price. Several months behind schedule, the stadium finally opened on 17 April 1897. The process of fixing issues with the work would continue for a number of months thereafter. As built, the stadium could house 40,000 spectators, the first match at the ground, a friendly against Blackburn Rovers, took place on 17 April 1897, one week after Aston Villa had completed the League and FA Cup Double. After winning the championship in 1899, Villas record-breaking average crowd of 21,000 allowed the club to invest in a two-stage ground improvement programme. In 1911, Villa bought the freehold of the ground for £8,250, the buildings in the old aquarium and car park area for £1,500
Birmingham City F.C.
Birmingham City Football Club is a professional association football club based in the city of Birmingham, England. Formed in 1875 as Small Heath Alliance, they became Small Heath in 1888, then Birmingham in 1905, the team compete in the EFL Championship, the second tier of the English football league system. As Small Heath, they played in the Football Alliance before becoming founder members, the most successful period in their history was in the 1950s and early 1960s. They won the competition for the second time in 2011. St Andrews has been their ground since 1906. They have a long-standing and fierce rivalry with Aston Villa, their nearest neighbours, the clubs nickname is Blues, due to the colour of their kit, and their fans are known as Bluenoses. Birmingham City were founded as Small Heath Alliance in 1875, the club turned professional in 1885, and three years later became the first football club to become a limited company with a board of directors, under the name of Small Heath F. C. Ltd. From the 1889–90 season they played in the Football Alliance, which ran alongside the Football League, in 1892, Small Heath, along with the other Alliance teams, were invited to join the newly formed Football League Second Division. The club adopted the name Birmingham Football Club in 1905, and moved into their new home, St Andrews Ground, matters on the field failed to live up to their surroundings. Birmingham were relegated in 1908, obliged to apply for two years later, and remained in the Second Division until after the First World War. Frank Womacks captaincy and the creativity of Scottish international playmaker Johnny Crosbie contributed much to Birmingham winning their second Division Two title in 1920–21, Womack went on to make 515 appearances, a club record for an outfielder, over a twenty-year career. 1920 also saw the debut of the 19-year-old Joe Bradford, who went on to score a club record 267 goals in 445 games, and won 12 caps for England. In 1931, manager Leslie Knighton led the club to their first FA Cup Final and they were finally relegated in 1939, the last full season before the Football League was abandoned for the duration of the Second World War. The name Birmingham City F. C. was adopted in 1943, under Harry Storer, appointed manager in 1945, the club won the Football League South wartime league and reached the semifinal of the first post-war FA Cup. Two years later won their third Second Division title, conceding only 24 goals in the 42-game season. Storers successor Bob Brocklebank, though unable to stave off relegation in 1950, when Arthur Turner took over as manager in November 1954, he made them play closer to their potential, and a 5–1 win on the last day of the 1954–55 season confirmed them as champions. In their first season back in the First Division, Birmingham achieved their highest league finish of sixth place. They also reached the FA Cup final, losing 3–1 to Manchester City in the game notable for Citys goalkeeper Bert Trautmann playing the last 20 minutes with a bone in his neck
The Oval, currently known for sponsorship reasons as the Kia Oval, is an international cricket ground in Kennington, in the London Borough of Lambeth, South London. The Oval has been the ground of Surrey County Cricket Club since it was opened in 1845. It was the first ground in England to host international Test cricket in September 1880, the final Test match of the English season is traditionally played there. In addition to cricket, The Oval has hosted a number of historically significant sporting events. In 1870, it staged Englands first international match, versus Scotland. It hosted the first FA Cup final in 1872, as well as those between 1874 and 1892, in 1876, it held both the England v Wales and England v Scotland rugby international matches, and in 1877, rugbys first Varsity match. The Oval is built on part of the former Kennington Common, Cricket matches were played on the common throughout the early 18th century. The earliest recorded match was the London v Dartford match on 18 June 1724. However, as the common was used regularly for public executions of those convicted at the Surrey Assizes. Kennington Common was eventually enclosed in the mid 19th century under a scheme sponsored by the Royal Family, in 1844, the site of the Kennington Oval was a market garden owned by the Duchy of Cornwall. Hence, Surrey County Cricket Club was established in 1845, the popularity of the ground was immediate and the strength of the SCCC grew. On 3 May 1875 the club acquired the remainder of the leasehold for a term of 31 years from the Otter Trustees for the sum of £2,800. In 1868,20,000 spectators gathered at The Oval for the first game of the 1868 Aboriginal cricket tour of England, the first tour of England by any foreign side. Thanks to C. W. Alcock, the Secretary of Surrey from 1872 to 1907, the Oval, thereby, became the second ground to stage a Test, after Melbourne Cricket Ground. In 1882, Australia won the Test by seven runs within two days, the Sporting Times printed a mocking obituary notice for English cricket, which led to the creation of the Ashes trophy, which is still contested whenever England plays Australia. The first Test double century was scored at The Oval in 1884 by Australias Billy Murdoch, surreys ground is noted as having the first artificial lighting at a sports arena, in the form of gas-lamps, dating to 1889. The current pavilion was completed in time for the 1898 season, in 1907, South Africa became the 2nd visiting Test team to play a Test match at the ground. In 1928, the West Indies played its first Test match at The Oval, in 1936, India became the fifth foreign visiting Test side to play at The Oval, followed by Pakistan in 1954 and Sri Lanka in 1998
County Cricket Ground, Derby
The County Cricket Ground is a cricket ground in Derby, England. It has been the home of Derbyshire County Cricket Club since 1871, the ground was first used by South Derbyshire Cricket Club in 1863 and was initially located within Derby Racecourse, although racing ceased after 1939. The ground has staged two One Day Internationals, New Zealand against Sri Lanka during the 1983 World Cup and New Zealand against Pakistan during the 1999 World Cup and it will be one of the venues for the 2017 Womens Cricket World Cup. The ground was formerly used for football, and was the home of Derby County F. C. between 1884 and 1895. It staged the first ever FA Cup Final match played outside London, a replay of the 1886 Final, the ground was first used by South Derbyshire Cricket Club in 1863 and was initially located within Derby Racecourse, although racing ceased after 1939. It also held the games of Derby County Football Club until their move to the Baseball Ground in 1895, the first FA Cup final outside London was held at the ground in 1886 when Blackburn Rovers beat West Bromwich Albion 2-0 in a replay. England played one football international here, beating Ireland 9-0 in the British Home Championship on 9 March 1895, the playing area used to feature pitches laid on an east–west axis. Most first-class grounds feature pitches laid north–south to avoid problems with the light from the setting sun, Derbyshire re-laid the pitch on a north–south axis over the 2009/10 winter at a cost of £100,000, ready for the 2010 season. This involved moving some of the floodlights and the scoreboard to suit the new alignment. In early 2010 a large 1800 seat stand was erected at the North end of the ground. This stand was taken down in late 2015 in order to make way for a new £2.2 million 4 storey media centre, which was completed and officially opened in September 2016. Some 1100 seats were immediately reinstated at the end of the ground. In February 2017 Derby Civic Society awarded a commendation in the category of Best New Build of 2016 to Derbyshire County Cricket Club for the new media centre. A new marquee was built in 2010, next to the media centre which is used for private functions. In 2014 Derbyshire County Cricket Club signed a agreement with Derbyshire-based apprenticeship training business Aspire Achieve Advance Ltd. This deal resulted in the County Ground being renamed The 3aaa County Ground for the three years. When spoken this is pronounced three-a, in February 2016, it was announced that the County Ground would be one of the host venues for the 2017 Womens Cricket World Cup in England. Along with Bristol, Derby will host one of the finals of the tournament
Port Vale F.C.
Port Vale Football Club is a professional association football club based in Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent, England. The team compete in League One, the tier of the English football league system. Port Vale is one of the few English league clubs not to be named after a location, their name being a reference to the valley of ports on the Trent. They were founder members of the Second Division in 1892 and of the Fourth Division in 1958 and they have never played top-flight football, and hold the record for the most seasons in the English Football League without reaching the top tier. After playing at the Athletic Ground in Cobridge and The Old Recreation Ground in Hanley, outside the ground is a statue to Roy Sproson, who played 842 competitive games for the club. John Rudge was manager from 1983 to 1999, under his leadership the club lifted the Football League Trophy in 1993, since his reign the club have declined, slipping into the fourth tier whilst entering twice administration in 2003 and 2012. The decline was arrested when Norman Smurthwaite brought the club out of administration in 2012, the clubs traditional rivals are Stoke City, and games between the two are known as the Potteries derby. However, the story given on the club website is that Port Vale F. C. was formed in 1876, following a meeting at Port Vale House. They played their football at Limekiln Lane, Longport and from 1880 at Westport, the club moved to Burslem in 1884, changing its name to Burslem Port Vale in the process, they played at Moorland Road before moving into the Athletic Ground in 1885. In 1892 the club were members of the Football League Second Division. The club dropped Burslem from their name in 1907 – a dark time of financial difficulties where the club were forced to resign from the league, the club were relegated for the first time during the 1928–29 season, going from the Second Division to the Third Division North. They came up the season as champions. In the 1930–31 season they placed fifth in the tier of English football. After this peak, the club were again relegated in the 1935–36 season. In 1950, Vale Park was completed, the fifth ground. Steele quickly established himself at the club, masterminding the celebrated Iron Curtain defence, three years later, the club were once again relegated, and once again became founder members of a league – this time the Football League Fourth Division. In their first season in new division the club took the title with a club record 110 goals. During the 1960s, the Vale fans witnessed numerous good cup runs, in 1967, Stanley Matthews took over, his reign ended in tears in 1968 as Vale were expelled from the Football League over seemingly illegal payments made to players