Aston Villa F.C.
Aston Villa Football Club is a professional association football club based in Aston, Birmingham, that plays in the Championship, the second level of English football. Founded in 1874, they have played at their current home ground, Villa Park, Aston Villa were one of the founder members of the Football League in 1888. They were also one of the members of the Premier League in 1992. Aston Villa are one of only five English clubs to be crowned champions of Europe and they have also won the First Division Championship seven times, the FA Cup seven times, the Football League Cup five times, and the UEFA Super Cup once. They have a local rivalry with Birmingham City and the Second City derby between the sides has been played since 1879. The clubs traditional kit colours are claret shirts with sky blue sleeves, white shorts and their traditional badge is of a rampant lion, which was introduced by the clubs Scottish chairman William McGregor in honour of the Royal Standard of Scotland. The club is owned by Recon Group Limited, a company chaired by Chinese businessman Tony Xia. Aston Villa Football Club were formed in March 1874, by members of the Villa Cross Wesleyan Chapel in Handsworth which is now part of Birmingham, the four founders of Aston Villa were Jack Hughes, Frederick Matthews, Walter Price and William Scattergood. Aston Villas first match was against the local Aston Brook St Marys Rugby team, as a condition of the match, the Villa side had to agree to play the first half under Rugby rules and the second half under Association rules. The club won their first FA Cup in 1887 with captain Archie Hunter becoming one of the games first household names. Aston Villa were one of the teams that competed in the inaugural Football League in 1888 with one of the clubs directors. Aston Villa emerged as the most successful English club of the Victorian era, winning no fewer than five League titles, in 1897, the year Villa won The Double, they moved into their present home, the Aston Lower Grounds. Supporters coined the name Villa Park, no official declaration listed the ground as Villa Park. This was largely the result of a defensive record, they conceded 110 goals in 42 games,7 of them coming from Arsenals Ted Drake in an infamous 1–7 defeat at Villa Park. Like all English clubs, Villa lost seven seasons to the Second World War, the team was rebuilt under the guidance of former player Alex Massie for the remainder of the 1940s. The team struggled in the league though and were relegated two seasons later, due in part to complacency. However, under the stewardship of manager Joe Mercer Villa returned to the top-flight in 1960 as Second Division Champions, the following season Aston Villa became the first team to win the Football League Cup. Mercers forced retirement from the club in 1964 signalled a period of deep turmoil, the most successful club in England was struggling to keep pace with changes in the modern game, with Villa being relegated for the third time, under manager Dick Taylor in 1967
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
Crystal Palace National Sports Centre
The National Sports Centre at Crystal Palace in south London, England is a large sports centre and athletics stadium. The sports centre building was designed by the LCC Architects Department under Sir Leslie Martin between 1953–54 and is a Grade II* listed building, the athletics stadium has a capacity of 15,500, which can be increased to 24,000 with temporary seating. The current 15,500 seater athletics stadium was built on the site of the ground by M J Gleeson. From 1999 to 2012 it hosted the London Grand Prix, the stadium can be expanded to 24,000 with temporary seating if required. With the opening of the London Olympic Stadium in 2012, its future as a stadium hosting athletics events is in doubt. Crystal Palace F. C. has submitted plans to rebuild the stadium as a 40,000 seater football stadium without a running track, but with a new indoor aquatic and sports centre as part of the complex. The current athletics stadium is on the land as a previous football ground. In 1905, the owners wanted their own club to play at the venue. They were forced to leave by the military, in 1915, the largest domestic attendance ever at the stadium was in the 1913 Cup final between Aston Villa and Sunderland, when 121,919 spectators squeezed into the stands. The previous world record had been the 1901 Cup Final, when 114,815 amassed to watch Tottenham Hotspur, Tottenham Hotspur F. C. However, Spurs plans were cancelled due to their failure to obtain the Olympic Stadium. AC London used the stadium during the 2015–16 season, four more teams won the FA Cup during this time, after replays at other grounds. All but two of the finalists from that era a century ago are still playing in either the Premier League or the Football League Championship, the exceptions being Bradford City, and Bury. Newcastle United appeared in the most finals at the ground, five, results of finals at Crystal Palace FA Cup Wins at Crystal Palace Crystal Palace FA Cup Final appearances Goals Scored in FA Cup Finals at Crystal Palace Goals Conceded in F. A. Cup Finals at Crystal Palace On 2 December 1905, the ground held the first England Rugby Union international match against New Zealand in England. On Wednesday 18 August 1965, the ground was the venue of the Rugby league match in which the Commonwealth XIII rugby league team were defeated 7–15 by New Zealand. It also played host to Fulham Rugby League in the mid-1980s for a couple of seasons, London County Cricket Club was a short-lived cricket club founded by the Crystal Palace Company. In 1898 they invited W. G. Grace to help form a first-class cricket club. Grace accepted the offer and became the secretary, manager
Referee (association football)
In association football, the referee is the person responsible for enforcing the Laws of the Game during the course of a match. At higher levels of play the referee may also be assisted by an official who supervises the teams technical areas. Referees remuneration for their services varies between leagues, Referees are licensed and trained by the same national organisations that are members of FIFA. Each national organisation recommends its top officials to FIFA to have the honour of being included on the FIFA International Referees List. International games between national teams require FIFA officials, otherwise, the local national organisation determines the manner of training, ranking and advancement of officials from the youngest youth games through professional matches. The referees powers and duties are described by Law 5 of the Laws of the Game, as per Law 9 of the game, if during the game the ball hits the referee there is no stoppage in play. However the officials would be expected to position themselves such that this would be unlikely to occur. Modern day referees and their assistants wear a uniform consisting of a jersey, badge, shorts and socks, since then, most referees have worn either yellow or black, but the colours and styles adopted by individual associations vary greatly. For international contests under the supervision of FIFA, Adidas uniforms are worn because Adidas is the current sponsor, FIFA allows referees to wear five colours, black, red, yellow, green and blue. Along with the jersey, referees are required to wear shorts, black socks. The badge, which displays the referees license level and year of validity, is affixed to the left chest pocket. All referees carry a whistle, a watch, penalty cards, a wallet with pen and paper. Most are encouraged to have more than one of each on them in case they drop a whistle or a pen runs out, often, referees utilize two watches so that they can use one to calculate time lost for stoppages for the purposes of added time. In matches with goal-line technology, the referee will have on their person a device to receive the systems alerts, Referees use a whistle to help in match control. The whistle is sometimes needed to stop, start or restart play but should not be used for all stoppages, fIFAs Laws of the Game document gives guidance as to when the whistle should and should not be used. Overuse of the whistle is discouraged since, as stated in the Laws, the whistle is an important tool for the referee along with verbal, body and eye communication. Before the introduction of the whistle, referees indicated their decisions by waving a white handkerchief, the whistles that were first adopted by referees were made by Joseph Hudson at Mills Munitions in Birmingham, England. The Acme Whistle Company first began to mass-produce pea whistles in the 1870s for the Metropolitan Police Force, Referees in football are first described by Richard Mulcaster in 1581
John Lewis (referee)
John Lewis was an English football player, administrator and referee. He was born at Market Drayton, Shropshire, but lived most of his life in Lancashire and was associated with Blackburn Rovers F. C. He was a referee from the earliest days of organised football. On 21 April 2008 it was announced that his grave at Blackburn Municipal Cemetery had been restored to its former glory and he also contributed to the foundation of the Lancashire FA in 1878, and later became a vice-president of the Football Association and the Football League. Lewis had established himself as a notable referee within the game in England. He was three times appointed the referee in the FA Cup Final and he refereed the 1898 FA Cup Semi-finals between Southampton and Nottingham Forest, the first match ended in a 1–1 draw. The replay at Crystal Palace was played in a blizzard, after a scoreless first half, in the second half the Saints were on top when, with ten minutes left to play, referee Lewis stopped the match for a time and the players left the pitch. No sooner had the game restarted than the weather worsened but Lewis decided that the match should continue, Southamptons goalkeeper George Clawley had his eyes choked with snow and conceded two goals in the final minutes of the game. Despite Southamptons protests the F. A. decided that the result should stand - this was not surprising as Lewis was by then an eminent member of the F. A. board. He was given charge of the 1908 Olympic final at White City, Lewis had already refereed the semi-final between the host nation Belgium and the Netherlands on the Thursday prior to the final on Saturday 2 September 1920. Lewis refereed the game magnificently on Thursday and yet Czechoslovakia are now disqualified, at the end of the game the crowd, led by Belgian soldiers, invaded the field. The Czech delegation made the statement in regard to their protest,2. The majority of the decisions of the referee Mr. Lewis were distorted, also both Belgian goals were the result of incorrect decisions of the referee and we seek a rigorous investigation on that point. They also complained about the inclusion and performance of an English linesman, silver and bronze medals now came to be competed for in a consolation tournament, the Czech side having been disqualified. If they had not the consolation tournament – organised prior to the tournament – would have resulted only in a Bronze medalist, Football at the 1920 Summer Olympics Notes
1896 FA Cup Final
The 1896 FA Cup Final was won by The Wednesday at the Crystal Palace, in a victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers. 210 teams entered, a high for the competition, beating the previous record by some 27 clubs. The qualifiers were whittled down to 32 clubs to participate in the competition proper, clubs competed for a new trophy, which remains the oldest surviving FA Cup trophy, although it was retired from use in 1910. Fred Spiksley became the star of the show in this Cup Final, within the first minute, a run by Harry Davis, the outside-right, set up Spiksley to slot home the first. David Black soon equalised for Wolves with a cunning hook close to the post, Spiksley however smashed a shot against the upright which bounced into the goal and then out again. The score stayed the same till the whistle to give Wednesday their first FA Cup win. At the end of the game, he walked up to Jack Earp and we won by two goals to one as you will see when we take the medals. But how. for only one shot passed me
Robert Chatt was an English footballer who was a member of the Aston Villa team which won the Football League championship three times in the 1890s. Chatt was credited with scoring the fastest goal in FA Cup Final history and this record stood for 114 years until Louis Saha of Everton scored after 25 seconds against Chelsea in the 2009 final. Chatt later won the FA Amateur Cup with Stockton and is the player to have winners medals for both the FA Cup and the FA Amateur Cup. Chatt was born in Barnard Castle and played football for Cleator Moor, in his first season with Aston Villa, he made seventeen appearances generally playing at left half, from where he scored five goals in league matches and four in the FA Cup. His goals included six scored in a run of two goals per match in three matches in March. At the end of the season, Villa claimed their first Football League title by a margin of six points over Sunderland, having scored 84 goals in 30 games, with only five defeats. Chatt became a member of the side in the 1894-95 season. Chatt only missed three games, scoring ten league goals, as Aston Villa finished the season in third place, eight points behind the champions. In the FA Cup, Villa defeated Nottingham Forest 6–2 in the round with two goals each from Chatt and Stephen Smith, to set up a semi-final against Sunderland. The final on 20 April 1895 was played for the first time at Crystal Palace, the weather for the final was described as a beautiful spring day, and consequently the crowd and press were still coming into the ground when the game kicked off. From the kick-off, John Devey, the Villa centre-forward, swung the ball out to his inside-left, Hodgetts long cross-pass found Charlie Athersmith on the right, and his centre fell to Chatt who sent the ball goalwards on a half volley. There are no accurate timings for the goal and different reports time it at between 30 and 39 seconds, at the time, many of the crowd and press missed the goal as they were still taking their seats, and the press reports indicated that Chatt had scored. Despite this claim, The Football Association still credit the goal to Chatt as having scored on thirty seconds. Chatts record stood for 114 years until beaten by Louis Sahas effort for Everton after 25 seconds in 2009, despite pressure from the Albion forwards, especially from Billy Bassett, Villa were able to hold on to their lead until half-time. In the second half, Villa began to forward again with Chatt. Neither side was able to add to the score and Villa won the cup for the second time, for the 1895–96 season, Chatt was moved back to centre-half to accommodate Johnny Campbell who had arrived from Celtic during the summer. The season started badly for Villa when they lost the FA Cup - literally, on 11 September the trophy was on display in a football outfitters window when the shop was broken into and the trophy, together with some cash, was taken. The trophy was never recovered and Villa were fined £25 by the Football Association, on the pitch, Chatt made 17 appearances in the league, as Villa took the title by four points over Derby County with Campbell top-scorer on 26 goals
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