The Premier League is an English professional league for mens association football clubs. At the top of the English football league system, it is the primary football competition. Contested by 20 clubs, it operates on a system of promotion and relegation with the English Football League, Welsh clubs that compete in the English football league system can also qualify. The Premier League is a corporation in which the 20 member clubs act as shareholders, seasons run from August to May. Teams play 38 matches each, totalling 380 matches in the season, most games are played on Saturday and Sunday afternoons, others during weekday evenings. It is colloquially known as the Premiership and outside the UK it is referred to as the English Premier League. The deal was worth £1 billion a year domestically as of 2013–14, with BSkyB, the league generates €2.2 billion per year in domestic and international television rights. In 2014/15, teams were apportioned revenues of £1.6 billion, the Premier League is the most-watched sports league in the world, broadcast in 212 territories to 643 million homes and a potential TV audience of 4.7 billion people. In the 2014–15 season, the average Premier League match attendance exceeded 36,000, most stadium occupancies are near capacity. The Premier League ranks third in the UEFA coefficients of leagues based on performances in European competitions over the past five seasons. While 47 clubs have competed since the inception of the Premier League in 1992, only six have won the title, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester City, Blackburn Rovers, the current champions are Leicester City, who won the title in 2015–16. Despite significant European success in the 1970s and early 1980s, the late 80s marked a low point for English football, the 1988 negotiations were the first signs of a breakaway league, ten clubs threatened to leave and form a super league, but were eventually persuaded to stay. As stadiums improved and match attendance and revenues rose, the top teams again considered leaving the Football League in order to capitalise on the influx of money into the sport. At the close of the 1991 season, a proposal was tabled for the establishment of a new league that would bring money into the game overall. The Founder Members Agreement, signed on 17 July 1991 by the games top-flight clubs, the argument given at the time was that the extra income would allow English clubs to compete with teams across Europe. The managing director of London Weekend Television, Greg Dyke, met with the representatives of the big five clubs in England in 1990. The meeting was to pave the way for an away from The Football League. The FA did not enjoy a relationship with the Football League at the time
Arsenal Football Club is a professional football club based in Highbury, London, that plays in the Premier League, the top flight of English football. The club has won 13 League titles,12 FA Cups, Arsenal was the first club from the South of England to join The Football League, in 1893. They entered the First Division in 1904, and have accumulated the second most points. Relegated only once, in 1913, they continue the longest streak in the top division, in the 1930s, Arsenal won five League Championships and two FA Cups, and another FA Cup and two Championships after the war. In 1970–71, they won their first League and FA Cup Double, between 1989 and 2005, they won five League titles and five FA Cups, including two more Doubles. They completed the 20th century with the highest average league position, Herbert Chapman won Arsenals first national trophies, but died prematurely. He helped introduce the WM formation, floodlights, and shirt numbers, Arsène Wenger has been the longest-serving manager and has won the most trophies. His teams set several English records, the longest win streak, the longest unbeaten run, in 1886, Woolwich munitions workers founded the club as Dial Square. In 1913, the crossed the city to Arsenal Stadium in Highbury. They became Tottenham Hotspurs nearest club, commencing the North London derby, in 2006, they moved down the road to the Emirates Stadium. Arsenal earned €435. 5m in 2014–15, with the Emirates Stadium generating the highest revenue in world football, based on social media activity from 2014–15, Arsenals fanbase is the fifth largest in the world. In 2016, Forbes estimated the club was the second most valuable in England, on 1 December 1886, munitions workers in Woolwich, now South East London, formed Arsenal as Dial Square, with David Danskin as their first captain. Named after the heart of the Royal Arsenal complex, they took the name of the complex a month later. Royal Arsenal F. C. s first home was Plumstead Common, though spent most of their time in South East London playing on the other side of Plumstead. Royal Arsenal won Arsenals first trophies in 1890 and 1891, Royal Arsenal renamed themselves for a second time upon becoming a limited liability company in 1893. They registered their new name, Woolwich Arsenal, with The Football League when the club ascended later that year, Woolwich Arsenal was the first southern member of The Football League, starting out in the Second Division and winning promotion to the First Division in 1904. Falling attendances, due to financial difficulties among the munitions workers, businessmen Henry Norris and William Hall took the club over, and sought to move them elsewhere. In 1913, soon after relegation back to the Second Division, Woolwich Arsenal moved to the new Arsenal Stadium in Highbury and this saw their third change of name, the following year, they reduced Woolwich Arsenal to simply The Arsenal
List of English football champions
The English football champions are the winners of the highest league in English football, which since 1992-1993 is the Premier League. At the end of the 1888–89 season, Preston North End were the first club to be crowned champions after completing their fixtures unbeaten and its status as the countrys pre-eminent league was strengthened in 1892, when the rival Football Alliance was absorbed into the Football League. Former Alliance clubs comprised the bulk of a new Second Division and it was not until 1931 that a Southern club were crowned champions, when Herbert Chapmans Arsenal secured the title. Arsenal scored 127 goals in the process, a record for a title-winning side, rules stipulating a maximum wage for players were abolished in 1961. This resulted in a shift of power towards bigger clubs, financial considerations became an even bigger influence from 1992, when the teams then in the First Division defected to form the FA Premier League. The first five champions in the Premier League era - Arsenal, Blackburn Rovers, Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United - had all won the title at least once prior to 1992. Leicester City were crowned champions for the first time in 2016, becoming the first, all the clubs which have ever been crowned champions are still in existence today and all take part in the top four tiers of the English football league system - the football pyramid. Sheffield Wednesday are the club who have ever changed their name after winning a league title having been known as The Wednesday for the first three of their four titles. Manchester United have won 20 titles, the most of any club, uniteds rivals Liverpool are second with 18. Liverpool dominated during the 1970s and 1980s, while United dominated in the 1990s and 2000s under Sir Alex Ferguson, Arsenal are third, their 13 titles all came after 1930. Everton have enjoyed success throughout their history, and both Aston Villa and Sunderland secured the majority of their titles before World War I. Huddersfield Town in 1924–26, Arsenal in 1933–35, Liverpool in 1982–84 and Manchester United in 1999–2001, teams in bold are those who won the double of League Championship and FA Cup, or the European Double of League Championship and European Cup in that season. See The Double and The Treble
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
Leicester City F.C.
Leicester City Football Club, also known as the Foxes, is an English professional football club based at the King Power Stadium in Leicester. They compete in the Premier League, Englands top tier of football, having been promoted as champions of the Football League Championship in 2013–14, this signalled a return to the top flight of English football after a decade away. The club was founded in 1884 as Leicester Fosse F. C. playing on a field near Fosse Road and they moved to Filbert Street in 1891, were elected to the Football League in 1894 and adopted the name Leicester City in 1919. They moved to the nearby Walkers Stadium in 2002, which was renamed the King Power Stadium after a change of ownership in 2011, Leicester City won the 2015–16 Premier League, their first top-level football championship. They are one of six clubs to have won the Premier League since its inception in 1992. A number of newspapers described their title win as the greatest sporting upset ever, multiple bookmakers had never paid out at such long odds for any sport. Due to the magnitude of the title win, it went down in English football history as one of the games finest ever achievements. The clubs previous highest ever finish was second place in the top flight, throughout Leicesters history, they have spent all but one season within the top two leagues of English football. They hold a joint-highest seven second-tier titles, the club have been FA Cup finalists four times, in 1948–49, 1960–61, 1962–63 and 1968–69. This is a tournament record for the most defeats in the final without having won the competition, City have several promotions to their name, two play-off final wins, and one League One title. In 1971, they won the FA Community Shield, and in 2016 and they have also won the League Cup three times in 1964,1997 and 2000, as well as being runners up in 1964–65 and 1999. Formed in 1884 by a group of old boys of Wyggeston School as Leicester Fosse, before moving to Filbert Street in 1891, the club played at five different grounds, including Victoria Park south-east of the city centre and the Belgrave Road Cycle and Cricket Ground. The club also joined the Midland League in 1891, and were elected to Division Two of the Football League in 1894 after finishing second. Leicesters first ever Football League game was a 4–3 defeat at Grimsby Town, with a first League win the following week, the same season also saw the clubs largest win to date, a 13–0 victory over Notts Olympic in an FA Cup qualifying game. In 1907–08 the club finished as Second Division runners-up, gaining promotion to the First Division, however, the club were relegated after a single season which included the clubs record defeat, a 12–0 loss against Nottingham Forest. In 1919, when League football resumed after World War I, the club was reformed as Leicester City Football Club, particularly appropriate as the borough of Leicester had recently been given city status. However the 1930s saw a downturn in fortunes, with the relegated in 1934–35 and, after promotion in 1936–37. City reached the FA Cup final for the first time in their history in 1949, the club, however, was celebrating a week later when a draw on the last day of the season ensured survival in Division Two
Leeds United F.C.
Leeds United Football Club is a professional association football club in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. The club was formed in 1919 following the disbanding of Leeds City F. C. by the Football League and they play in the Championship, the second tier of the English football league system. Leeds United have won three First Division league titles, one FA Cup and one League Cup, the club has also won two Inter-Cities Fairs Cups. The majority of the honours were won under the management of Don Revie in the 1960s and 1970s, Leeds lost the 1975 European Cup Final against Bayern Munich and reached the semi-finals of the tournaments successor, the Champions League, in 2001. Leeds play in all-white kits, leading to their nickname being the whites, the clubs badge features the White Rose of York together with the monogram LUFC. The clubs anthem is Marching On Together, Leeds Uniteds predecessor team, Leeds City, was formed in 1904, and were elected League members in 1905. At first they found it hard to draw big crowds to Elland Road, in 1919, Leeds United was formed and they received an invitation to enter the Midland League, being voted into it on 31 October, taking the place vacated by Leeds City Reserves. Following Leeds Citys disbanding, Yorkshire Amateurs bought their stadium Elland Road, Yorkshire Amateurs offered to make way for the new team under the management of former player Dick Ray. The chairman of Huddersfield Town, Hilton Crowther loaned Leeds United £35,000 and he brought in Barnsleys manager Arthur Fairclough and on 26 February 1920, Dick Ray stepped down to become Faircloughs assistant. On 31 May 1920, Leeds United were elected to the Football League, over the following few years, they consolidated their position in the Second Division and in 1924 won the title and with it promotion to the First Division. They failed to establish themselves and were relegated in 1926–27, after their relegation, Fairclough resigned, which paved the way for Ray to return as manager. In the years up until the start of World War II Leeds were twice relegated, on 5 March 1935, Ray resigned and was replaced by Billy Hampson, who remained in charge for 12 years. In the 1946–47 season after the war, Leeds were relegated again, after this season, Hampson resigned and was replaced in April 1947 by Willis Edwards. In 1948, Sam Bolton replaced Ernest Pullan as the chairman of Leeds United, Edwards was moved to assistant manager in April 1948 after just one year as manager. He was replaced by Major Frank Buckley, Leeds remained in the Second Division until 1955–56, when they once again won promotion to the First Division, inspired by John Charles. Charles was hungry for success at the highest level, and manager Raich Carter was unable to convince him that Leeds could satisfy his ambitions, Charles was sold to Juventus for a then world record of £65,000. The loss of Charles resulted in Leeds being relegated to the Second Division in the 1959–60 season, in March 1961, the club appointed former player Don Revie as manager, following the resignation of Jack Taylor. His stewardship began in adverse circumstances, the club was in financial difficulty, Revie implemented a youth policy and a change of kit colour to an all-white strip in the style of Real Madrid, and Leeds soon won promotion to the First Division in 1963–64
Chelsea Football Club is an English professional football club based in Fulham, London, that competes in the Premier League. Founded in 1905, the home ground since then has been Stamford Bridge. Chelsea had their first major success in 1955, when they won the league championship and they then won various cup competitions between 1965 and 1996. The clubs greatest period of success has come during the last two decades, winning 21 trophies since 1997. Chelsea are the only London club to win the UEFA Champions League, and one of four clubs, Chelseas regular kit colours are royal blue shirts and shorts with white socks. The clubs crest has changed several times in attempts to re-brand the club. The current crest, featuring a lion rampant regardant holding a staff, is a modification of the one introduced in the early 1950s. The club have the sixth-highest average all-time attendance in English football and their average home gate for the 2015–16 season was 41,500, the seventh highest in the Premier League. Since 2003, Chelsea have been owned by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, in 2016, they were ranked by Forbes magazine as the seventh most valuable football club in the world, at £1.15 billion. In 1904, Gus Mears acquired the Stamford Bridge athletics stadium with the aim of turning it into a football ground, an offer to lease it to nearby Fulham was turned down, so Mears opted to found his own club to use the stadium. Chelsea were founded on 10 March 1905 at The Rising Sun pub, opposite the main entrance to the ground on Fulham Road. The club won promotion to the First Division in their second season and they reached the 1915 FA Cup Final, where they lost to Sheffield United at Old Trafford, and finished third in the First Division in 1920, the clubs best league campaign to that point. Chelsea attracted large crowds and had a reputation for signing big-name players, former Arsenal and England centre-forward Ted Drake became manager in 1952 and proceeded to modernise the club. The following season saw UEFA create the European Champions Cup, but after objections from The Football League, Chelsea failed to build on this success, and spent the remainder of the 1950s in mid-table. Drake was dismissed in 1961 and replaced by player-coach Tommy Docherty, Docherty built a new team around the group of talented young players emerging from the clubs youth set-up and Chelsea challenged for honours throughout the 1960s, enduring several near-misses. They were on course for a treble of League, FA Cup and League Cup going into the stages of the 1964–65 season, winning the League Cup. In three seasons the side were beaten in three major semi-finals and were FA Cup runners-up, under Dochertys successor, Dave Sexton, Chelsea won the FA Cup in 1970, beating Leeds United 2–1 in a final replay. Chelsea took their first European honour, a UEFA Cup Winners Cup triumph, the year, with another replayed win
Manchester United F.C.
Manchester United Football Club is a professional football club based in Old Trafford, Greater Manchester, England, that competes in the Premier League, the top flight of English football. Nicknamed the Red Devils, the club was founded as Newton Heath LYR Football Club in 1878, changed its name to Manchester United in 1902 and moved to its current stadium, Old Trafford, in 1910. Manchester United have won a record 20 League Titles, a joint-record 12 FA Cups,5 League Cups, the club has also won three European Cups, one UEFA Cup Winners Cup, one UEFA Super Cup, one Intercontinental Cup and one FIFA Club World Cup. In 1998–99, the became the first in the history of English football to achieve the treble of the Premier League, the FA Cup. The 1958 Munich air disaster claimed the lives of eight players, in 1968, under the management of Matt Busby, Manchester United became the first English football club to win the European Cup. Alex Ferguson won 38 trophies, including 13 Premier League titles,5 FA Cups and 2 UEFA Champions Leagues, José Mourinho is the clubs current manager, having been appointed on 27 May 2016. As of June 2015, it is the worlds most valuable football brand and it is one of the most widely supported football teams in the world. In August 2012, Manchester United made a public offering on the New York Stock Exchange. The club holds several rivalries, most notably with Liverpool, Manchester City and Leeds United, Manchester United was formed in 1878 as Newton Heath LYR Football Club by the Carriage and Wagon department of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway depot at Newton Heath. By 1888, the club had become a member of The Combination. Following the leagues dissolution after only one season, Newton Heath joined the newly formed Football Alliance and this resulted in the club starting the 1892–93 season in the First Division, by which time it had become independent of the railway company and dropped the LYR from its name. After two seasons, the club was relegated to the Second Division, in January 1902, with debts of £2,670 – equivalent to £260,000 in 2017 – the club was served with a winding-up order. The following season began with victory in the first ever Charity Shield, Manchester United won the First Division for the second time in 1911, but at the end of the following season, Mangnall left the club to join Manchester City. In 1922, three years after the resumption of football following the First World War, the club was relegated to the Second Division, relegated again in 1931, Manchester United became a yo-yo club, achieving its all-time lowest position of 20th place in the Second Division in 1934. Gibson, who, in December 1931, invested £2,000, in the 1938–39 season, the last year of football before the Second World War, the club finished 14th in the First Division. Busby led the team to second-place league finishes in 1947,1948 and 1949, in 1952, the club won the First Division, its first league title for 41 years. With an average age of 22, the title winning side of 1956 were labelled the Busby Babes by the media. In 1957, Manchester United became the first English team to compete in the European Cup, despite objections from The Football League, who had denied Chelsea the same opportunity the previous season
Liverpool Football Club is a professional association football club based in Liverpool, Merseyside, England. They compete in the Premier League, the top tier of English football, the club has won 5 European Cups,3 UEFA Cups,3 UEFA Super Cups,18 League titles,7 FA Cups, a record 8 League Cups, and 15 FA Community Shields. The club was founded in 1892 and joined the Football League the following year, the club has played at Anfield since its formation. The club holds many long-standing rivalries, most notably the North West Derby against Manchester United, the clubs supporters have been involved in two major tragedies. The second was the Hillsborough disaster in 1989, where 96 Liverpool supporters died in a crush against perimeter fencing, the team changed from red shirts and white shorts to an all-red home strip in 1964 which has been used ever since. The clubs anthem is Youll Never Walk Alone, Liverpool F. C. was founded following a dispute between the Everton committee and John Houlding, club president and owner of the land at Anfield. After eight years at the stadium, Everton relocated to Goodison Park in 1892, the team won the Lancashire League in its début season, and joined the Football League Second Division at the start of the 1893–94 season. After finishing in first place the club was promoted to the First Division, Liverpool reached its first FA Cup Final in 1914, losing 1–0 to Burnley. Liverpool suffered its second Cup Final defeat in 1950, playing against Arsenal, the club was relegated to the Second Division in the 1953–54 season. Soon after Liverpool lost 2–1 to non-league Worcester City in the 1958–59 FA Cup, the club was promoted back into the First Division in 1962 and won it in 1964, for the first time in 17 years. In 1965, the club won its first FA Cup, in 1966, the club won the First Division but lost to Borussia Dortmund in the European Cup Winners Cup final. Liverpool won both the League and the UEFA Cup during the 1972–73 season, and the FA Cup again a year later, Shankly retired soon afterwards and was replaced by his assistant, Bob Paisley. In 1976, Paisleys second season as manager, the club won another League, the following season, the club retained the League title and won the European Cup for the first time, but it lost in the 1977 FA Cup Final. Liverpool retained the European Cup in 1978 and regained the First Division title in 1979, Paisley retired in 1983 and was replaced by his assistant, Joe Fagan. Liverpool won the League, League Cup and European Cup in Fagans first season, Liverpool reached the European Cup final again in 1985, against Juventus at the Heysel Stadium. Before kick-off, Liverpool fans breached a fence separated the two groups of supporters, and charged the Juventus fans. The resulting weight of people caused a wall to collapse, killing 39 fans. The incident became known as the Heysel Stadium disaster, the match was played in spite of protests by both managers, and Liverpool lost 1–0 to Juventus
Newcastle United F.C.
Newcastle United Football Club is an English professional association football club based in Newcastle upon Tyne. Following the clubs most recent relegation from the top-flight during the 2015–16 season, Newcastle returned to the Football Leagues 2nd tier, the Championship, for the 2016–17 campaign. Newcastle United was founded in 1892 by the merger of Newcastle East End and Newcastle West End, the ground was developed into an all-seater stadium in the mid-1990s and now has a capacity of 52,354. They have won four League Championship titles, six FA Cups and a Charity Shield, as well as the 1969 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, Newcastle United has the ninth highest total of trophies won by an English club. The clubs most successful period was between 1904 and 1910, when they won an FA Cup and three of their First Division titles. The club were successful in the Premier League in the 1990s and early 2000s, but have been mostly struggling since the 2006–07 season. Newcastle has a local rivalry with Sunderland, and the two clubs have engaged in the Tyne–Wear derby since 1898. The clubs traditional kit colours are black and white striped shirts, black shorts and their traditional crest takes elements of the city coat of arms, which features two grey seahorses. The club has been owned by Mike Ashley since 2007, succeeding long term chairman, the club is the seventeenth highest revenue producing club in the world in terms of annual revenue, generating €169. 3m in 2015. Historically, Newcastles highest placing was in 1999 when they were the fifth highest revenue producing club in the world. The first record of football being played on Tyneside dates from 3 March 1877 at Elswick Rugby Club, later that year, Newcastles first football club, Tyne Association, was formed. The origins of Newcastle United Football Club itself can be traced back to the formation of a club by the Stanley Cricket Club of Byker in November 1881. This team was renamed Newcastle East End F. C. in October 1882, to avoid confusion with the club in Stanley. Rosewood F. C. of Byker merged with Newcastle East End a short time later, in 1886, Newcastle East End moved from Byker to Heaton. In August 1882, Newcastle West End F. C. formed from West End Cricket Club, and in May 1886, the two clubs became rivals in the Northern League. In 1889, Newcastle East End became a team, before becoming a limited company the following March. However, on the hand, Newcastle West End were in serious financial trouble. With only one club in the city for fans to support
Middlesbrough Football Club is a professional association football club based in Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire, England. Formed in 1876, they have played at the Riverside Stadium since 1995 and they played at the Linthorpe Road ground from 1882 to 1903 and at Ayresome Park for 92 years, from 1903 to 1995. They were one of the members of the Premier League in 1992. The clubs main rivals are Sunderland and Newcastle United, there is also a rivalry with fellow Yorkshire club Leeds United. The clubs highest league finish to date was third in the 1913–14 season, the club came close to folding in 1986 after experiencing severe financial difficulties before it was saved by a consortium led by then board member and later chairman Steve Gibson. Middlesbrough were deducted three points for failing to fulfil a fixture against Blackburn Rovers in the 1996–97 Premier League season and they were promoted the following season and spent 11 seasons in the top division before being relegated again in 2009. Middlesbrough won the League Cup in 2004, the clubs first and they reached the 2006 UEFA Cup Final, but were beaten by Spanish side Sevilla. After seven years in the Championship, Middlesbrough secured promotion to the Premier League in 2016 after finishing in second place, the clubs traditional kit is red with white detailing. The various crests throughout the history, the most recent of which was adopted in 2007. They won the FA Amateur Cup in 1895 and again in 1898, the club turned professional in 1889, but reverted to amateur status in 1892. They turned professional permanently in 1899, after three seasons, they won promotion to the First Division, where they would remain for the next 22 years. In 1903, the moved to Ayresome Park, their home for the next 92 years. In 1905, the club sanctioned the transfer of Alf Common for £1,000, over the next few years, their form fluctuated greatly, rising to sixth in 1907–08 before dropping to 17th two seasons later. The club rose to their highest league finish to date, third, World War I soon intervened and football was suspended. Before league football resumed, Middlesbrough won the Northern Victory League and they remained in the First Division for the next few seasons, but were relegated in 1923–24 after finishing bottom, ten points adrift of their nearest rivals. Three seasons later, they won the Division Two title, during that season, debutant George Camsell, who had signed from Third Division North side Durham City the previous season, finished with a record 59 league goals, which included nine hat-tricks. He would continue as top scorer for each of the ten seasons. Their tenure back in the top flight lasted one season
Thierry Daniel Henry is a retired French professional footballer who played as a forward, and the current second assistant manager of the Belgium national team. He played for Monaco, Juventus, Barcelona, New York Red Bulls, at international level he represented France and is his countrys record goalscorer. Henry made his debut with Monaco in 1994. Good form led to an international call-up in 1998, after which he signed for the Serie A defending champions Juventus, a year later he signed for Premier League club Arsenal for £11 million. It was at Arsenal that Henry made his name as a world-class player, under long-time mentor and coach Arsène Wenger, Henry became a prolific striker and Arsenals all-time leading scorer with 228 goals in all competitions. He won two titles and three FA Cups at the club. In 2003 and 2004 Henry was runner-up for the FIFA World Player of the Year and he was named the PFA Players Player of the Year twice, and the FWA Footballer of the Year three times. Henry spent his two seasons with Arsenal as club captain, leading them to the 2006 UEFA Champions League Final. In June 2007, after eight years with Arsenal, he transferred to Barcelona for a fee of €24 million, in 2009, he was an integral part of the clubs historic treble when they won La Liga, the Copa del Rey and the UEFA Champions League. He went on to achieve an unprecedented sextuple by also winning the Supercopa de España, the UEFA Super Cup, in total, Henry has been named in the UEFA Team of the Year five times. In 2010, he joined the New York Red Bulls of Major League Soccer and he returned to Arsenal on loan for two months in 2012. In 2013, Henry with the New York Red Bulls won the MLS Supporters Shield, Henry enjoyed success with the French national team, winning the 1998 FIFA World Cup, UEFA Euro 2000 and 2003 FIFA Confederations Cup. In October 2007, he surpassed Michel Platinis record to become Frances top goalscorer, after amassing 123 appearances and 51 goals, Henry retired from international football after the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Henry was also one of the top commercially marketed footballers, he was ranked ninth in the world in 2006, in August 2016 he was appointed as the second assistant manager of Belgiums national team, alongside head coach Roberto Martínez and fellow assistant Graeme Jones. Henry is of Antillean heritage, his father, Antoine, is from Guadeloupe and he was born and raised in Les Ulis suburb of Paris which, despite sometimes being seen as a tough neighbourhood, provided good footballing facilities. As a seven-year-old, Henry showed great potential, prompting Claude Chezelle to recruit him to the local club CO Les Ulis and his father pressured him to attend training, although the youngster was not particularly drawn to football. He joined US Palaiseau in 1989, but after a year his father out with the club, so Henry moved to ES Viry-Châtillon. US Palaiseau coach Jean-Marie Panza, Henrys future mentor, followed him there, in 1990, Monaco sent scout Arnold Catalano to watch Henry, then at the age of 13 in a match
Portsmouth Football Club /ˈpɔərtsməθ/ is a professional football club in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England, which plays in League Two, the fourth tier of English football. Home matches have been played at Fratton Park since the formation in 1898. Portsmouth have been champions of England twice, in 1949 and 1950, in the 2008–09 UEFA Cup, Portsmouth played European heavyweights A. C. Milan. In this period, the club had international footballers including England players Glen Johnson, Jermain Defoe, Peter Crouch, David James, financial problems, however, soon set in and Portsmouth were relegated to the Football League Championship in 2010. In 2012, they were relegated, to League One. They began the 2013–14 season in the tier of the English football league system for the first time since the late 1970s. Portsmouth became the largest fan-owned football club in England, after the Pompey Supporters Trust successfully gained possession of Fratton Park in April 2013, Portsmouth Football Club are nicknamed Pompey, a name which it shares with the city of Portsmouth and its historic naval base. Pompey is thought most likely to originate from the abbreviation of Portsmouth Point to the shorter Pom. The club was founded in 1898 with John Brickwood — owner of the local Brickwoods Brewery — as chairman, a blue plaque on the wall of 12 High Street Portsmouth commemorates the founding on 5 April. That first season was successful, with the club winning 20 out of 28 league matches, 1910–11 saw Portsmouth relegated, but with the recruitment of Robert Brown as manager, the team was promoted the following season. League football was suspended during First World War, but following the resumption of matches Portsmouth won the Southern League for the second time, continuing success saw them in the Third Division for the 1920–21 season. They finished 12th that year, but won the division in the 1923–24 season, the club continued to perform well in the Second Division, winning promotion by finishing second in the 1926–27 season, gaining a record 9–1 win over Notts County along the way. Portsmouths debut season in the First Division was a struggle, the next season they continued to falter, losing 10–0 to Leicester City, still a club record defeat. Despite their failings in the league, however, that also saw Portsmouth reach the FA Cup final for the first time. Portsmouth managed to survive relegation, and their fortunes began to change, the 1933–34 season saw Portsmouth again reach the FA Cup final, beating Manchester United, Bolton, Leicester and Birmingham City on the way. The club was defeated in the final, this time to Manchester City. Having established themselves in the top flight, the 1938–39 season saw Portsmouth reach the FA Cup final and this time, Portsmouth managed to convincingly defeat favourites Wolverhampton Wanderers 4–1. Bert Barlow and Jock Anderson scored, whilst Cliff Parker scored twice to complete a famous victory, League football resumed for the 1946–47 campaign after five years and Portsmouth continued in the First Division
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
Manchester City F.C.
Manchester City Football Club is a football club in Manchester, England. Founded in 1880 as St. Marks, they became Ardwick Association Football Club in 1887, the club moved to the City of Manchester Stadium in 2003, having played at Maine Road since 1923. After losing the 1981 FA Cup Final, the club went through a period of decline, having regained their Premier League status in the early 2000s, the club was purchased in 2008 by Abu Dhabi United Group and has become one of the wealthiest in the world. Since 2011 the club have won five major honours, including the Premier League in 2012 and 2014, by 2014–15, Manchester City had the sixth-highest revenue in the footballing world with an annual revenue of €463.5 million. In 2016, Forbes magazine estimated they were the sixth most valuable football club. City gained their first honours by winning the Second Division in 1899, with it promotion to the highest level in English football. A fire at Hyde Road destroyed the main stand in 1920, in the 1930s, Manchester City reached two consecutive FA Cup finals, losing to Everton in 1933, before claiming the Cup by beating Portsmouth in 1934. The club won the First Division title for the first time in 1937, after relegation to the Second Division in 1963, the future looked bleak with a record low home attendance of 8,015 against Swindon Town in January 1965. In the summer of 1965, the management team of Joe Mercer, in the first season under Mercer, City won the Second Division title and made important signings in Mike Summerbee and Colin Bell. Further trophies followed, City won the FA Cup in 1969, before achieving European success by winning the European Cup Winners Cup in 1970, beating Górnik Zabrze 2–1 in Vienna. City also won the League Cup that season, becoming the second English team to win a European trophy, the club continued to challenge for honours throughout the 1970s, finishing one point behind the league champions on two occasions and reaching the final of the 1974 League Cup. Former United player Denis Law scored with a backheel to give City a 1–0 win at Old Trafford, the final trophy of the clubs most successful period was won in 1976, when Newcastle United were beaten 2–1 in the League Cup final. A long period of decline followed the success of the 1960s and 1970s, Malcolm Allison rejoined the club to become manager for the second time in 1979, but squandered large sums of money on unsuccessful signings, such as Steve Daley. A succession of managers then followed – seven in the 1980s alone, under John Bond, City reached the 1981 FA Cup final but lost in a replay to Tottenham Hotspur. The club were relegated from the top flight in the 1980s. However, this was only a respite, and following Reids departure Manchester Citys fortunes continued to fade. City were co-founders of the Premier League upon its creation in 1992, after two seasons in Division One, City fell to the lowest point in their history, becoming the second ever European trophy winners to be relegated to their countrys third league tier, after 1. After relegation, the club underwent off-the-field upheaval, with new chairman David Bernstein introducing greater fiscal discipline, under manager Joe Royle, City were promoted at the first attempt, achieved in dramatic fashion in a play-off against Gillingham
Bolton Wanderers F.C.
Bolton Wanderers Football Club is a professional association football club based in Bolton, Greater Manchester. The club currently competes in League One, the tier of the English football league system. The club was formed as Christ Church Football Club in 1874, founder members of the Football League in 1888, Bolton have spent the highest number of seasons of any club in the top flight without winning the title. The closest they have come to the title is third in the First Division on three occasions, as of 2015, the club has spent more seasons in the top division than any other club outside the current Premier League. Bolton were a successful cup side in the 1920s, winning the FA Cup three times, the club won the cup a fourth time in 1958. A leaner spell followed, reaching a nadir in 1987 when the club spent a season in the Fourth Division, the club regained top-flight status in 1995 after a 15-year absence. In a period of success, the club qualified for the UEFA Cup twice, reaching the last 32 in 2005–06. The club played at Burnden Park for 102 years from 1895, on 9 March 1946, The Burnden Park disaster occurred, which was a human crush in which 33 Bolton fans lost their lives. In 1997 it moved out of town to the Reebok Stadium, the stadium was renamed the Macron Stadium in July 2014, to reflect the clubs new deal with Italian sportswear company Macron. The club was founded by the Reverend Joseph Farrall Wright, Perpetual curate of Christ Church Bolton and Thomas Ogden, the schoolmaster at the adjacent church school in 1874 as Christ Church F. C. It was initially run from the church of the name on Deane Road. The club left the following a dispute with the vicar. The name was chosen as the club initially had a lot of difficulty finding a permanent ground to play on, Bolton were one of the 12 founder members of the Football League, which formed in 1888. At the time Lancashire was one of the strongest footballing regions in the country, having remained in the Football League since its formation, Bolton have spent more time in the top flight than out of it. In 1894 Bolton reached the final of the FA Cup for the first time, a decade later they were runners-up a second time, losing 1–0 to local rivals Manchester City at Crystal Palace on 23 April 1904. In this period Bolton equalled their record finish of third twice, in 1920–21 and 1924–25, on 28 April 1923, Bolton won their first major trophy in their third final, beating West Ham United 2–0 in the first ever Wembley FA Cup final. The match, famously known as The White Horse Final was played in front of over 127,000 supporters, boltons centre-forward, David Jack scored the first ever goal at Wembley Stadium. Driven by long-term players Joe Smith in attack, Ted Vizard and Billy Butler on the wings, in 1928 the club faced financial difficulties and so was forced to sell David Jack to Arsenal to raise funds
Tottenham Hotspur F.C.
Tottenham Hotspur Football Club /ˈtɒtnəm, -tənəm/, commonly referred to as Spurs, is an English football club located in Tottenham, Haringey, London, that competes in the Premier League. The clubs home stadium is White Hart Lane and their newly developed training ground is in Bulls Cross on the northern borders of the London Borough of Enfield. Founded in 1882, Tottenham won the FA Cup for the first time in 1901, Tottenham were the first club in the 20th century to achieve the League and FA Cup Double, winning both competitions in the 1960–61 season. After successfully defending the FA Cup in 1962, in 1963 they became the first British club to win a UEFA club competition – the European Cup Winners Cup, in 1967, Spurs won the FA Cup for a third time in the 1960s. In the 1970s Tottenham won the League Cup on two occasions and were the winner of the UEFA Cup in 1972, becoming the first British club to win two different major European trophies. In the 1980s Spurs won several trophies, the FA Cup twice, FA Community Shield, in the 1990s the club won the FA Cup and the League Cup. When they won the League Cup once more in 2008, it meant that they had won a trophy in each of the last six decades – an achievement only matched by Manchester United. The clubs Latin motto is Audere est Facere, and its emblem is a cockerel standing upon a football, the club has a long-standing rivalry with nearby neighbours Arsenal, with head-to-head fixtures known as the North London derby. The club was formed in 1882, as Hotspur F. C. and played in the Southern League from 1896 until 1908, when they were elected into the Football League Second Division. Before this promotion Tottenham had won the FA Cup in 1901, since then, Tottenham have won the FA Cup a further seven times, the Football League twice, the Football League Cup four times, the UEFA Cup twice and also the UEFA Cup Winners Cup. The Cup Winners Cup victory in 1963 made Tottenham the first English team to win a UEFA competition, in 1960–61 they became the first team to complete The Double in the 20th century. Tottenham played their first matches at Tottenham Marshes on the public pitches. It was at this ground that Spurs first played archrivals Arsenal, there were occasions on which fights would break out on the marshes in dispute of the teams that were allowed to use the best pitches. Crowd sizes were regularly increasing and a new site was becoming needed to accommodate these supporters, in 1898 the club moved from the marshes to Northumberland Park and charged an admission fee of 3d. They only remained at this ground for a year as in April 1899,14,000 fans turned up to watch Spurs play Woolwich Arsenal. The ground was no able to cope with the larger crowds and Spurs were forced to move to a new larger site 100 yards down the road. The White Hart Lane ground was originally a disused nursery owned by the brewery Charringtons, the landlord spotted the increased income he could enjoy if Tottenham played their matches behind his pub and in 1899 the club moved in. They brought with them the stand they used at Northumberland Park which gave shelter to 2,500 fans, notts County were the first visitors to the Lane in a friendly watched by 5,000 people and provided in £115 in receipts, Spurs won 4–1
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
Their home ground since 2001 has been St Marys Stadium, before which they were based at The Dell. Southampton has a rivalry with Portsmouth due to its close proximity. Matches between the two sides are known as the South Coast derby, the club has won the FA Cup once, in 1976, and their highest-ever league finish was second in the First Division in 1983–84. Southampton were relegated from the Premier League on 15 May 2005 and they returned after a seven-year absence, and have played there ever since. Southampton were founded at St. Marys Church, on 21 November 1885 by members of the St. Marys Church of England Young Mens Association. More important matches, such as cup games, were played either at the County Cricket Ground in Northlands Road or the Antelope Cricket Ground in St Marys Road. During this time, they moved to a newly built £10,000 stadium called The Dell, the club reached the first of their four FA Cup Finals in 1900. On that day, they went down 4–0 to Bury and two later they would suffer a similar fate at the hands of Sheffield United as they were beaten 2–1 in a replay of the 1902 final. After World War I, Saints joined the newly formed Football League Third Division in 1920 which split into South and North sections a year later, the 1921–22 season ended in triumph with promotion and marked the beginning of a 31-year stay in the Second Division. The 1922–23 season was a unique Even Season –14 wins,14 draws and 14 defeats for a total of 42 points, goals for and against statistics were also equal and the team finished in mid-table. In 1925 and 1927, they reached the semi-finals of the FA Cup, losing 2–0 and 2–1 to Sheffield United, in the 1948–49 and 1949–50 seasons, Charlie Wayman rattled in a total of 56 goals. Then relegation in 1953 sent Saints sliding back into Division 3 and it took until 1960 for Saints to regain Second Division status with Derek Reeves plundering 39 of the champions’106 league goals. On 27 April 1963 a crowd of 68,000 at Villa Park saw them lose 1–0 to Manchester United in the FA Cup semi-final. In 1966, when Ted Bates’ team were promoted to the First Division as runners-up, for the following campaign Ron Davies arrived to score 43 goals in his first season. Saints stayed among the elite for eight years, with the highest finishing position being seventh place in 1968–69 and again in 1970–71. These finishes were high enough for them to qualify for the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup in 1969–70 and its successor, the UEFA Cup in 1971–72, in December 1973, Bates stood down to be replaced by his assistant Lawrie McMenemy. The Saints were one of the first victims of the new three-down relegation system in 1974, the following season, they played in Europe again in the Cup Winners Cup, reaching Round 3 where they lost 2–3 on aggregate to Anderlecht. In 1977–78, captained by Alan Ball, Saints finished runners-up in the Second Division and they finished comfortably in 14th place in their first season back in the top flight
Fulham Football Club is a professional association football club based in Fulham, Greater London, England. Founded in 1879, they play in the Championship, the tier of English football. They are the football team from London to have played in the Premier League. The club has spent 25 seasons in English footballs top division, the latter spell was associated with former chairman Mohamed Al-Fayed, after the club had climbed up from the fourth tier in the 1990s. The club has produced many English greats, including Johnny Haynes, George Cohen, Bobby Robson, Rodney Marsh and they play at Craven Cottage, a ground on the banks of the River Thames in Fulham which has been their home since 1896. Fulhams training ground is located near Motspur Park, where the clubs Academy is also situated, Fulham were formed in 1879 as Fulham St Andrews Church Sunday School F. C. founded by worshipers at the Church of England on Star Road, West Kensington. Fulhams mother church still today with a plaque commemorating the teams foundation. They won the West London Amateur Cup in 1887 and, having shortened the name from Fulham Excelsior to its present form in 1888, one of the clubs first ever kits was half red, half white shirts with white shorts worn in the 1886–87 season. Fulham started playing at their current ground at Craven Cottage in 1896, the club gained professional status on 12 December 1898, the same year that they were admitted into the Southern Leagues Second Division. They were the club from London to turn professional, following Arsenal. They adopted a red and white kit during the 1900–01 season, in 1902–03, the club won promotion from this division, entering the Southern League First Division. The club won the Southern League twice, in 1905–06 and 1906–07, Fulham joined The Football League after the second of their Southern League triumphs. The clubs first league game, playing in the Second Divisions 1907–08 season, the first win came a few days later at Derby Countys Baseball Ground by a score line of 1–0. Fulham finished the three points short of promotion in fourth place. The club progressed all the way to the semi-final of that seasons FA Cup, in the semi-final, however, they were heavily beaten, 6–0, by Newcastle United. This is still a loss for an FA Cup semi-final game. Two years later, the won the London Challenge Cup in the 1909–10 season. Fulhams first season in Division Two turned out to be the highest that the club would finish for 21 years, until in 1927–28 when the club were relegated to the 3rd Division South, created in 1920
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
Patrick Vieira is a French former footballer and current head coach of New York City FC. A former midfielder, Vieira began his career with French club Cannes in 1994 and he moved to Italian side Milan the following season, but was unable to break into the starting line-up, and was subsequently sold. He rose to prominence during a successful spell at Arsenal from 1996 to 2005, where he eventually became club captain. He transferred from Arsenal in 2005 and spent one season at Juventus, in May 2010, Vieira was nominated Goodwill Ambassador of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Before being appointed as coach of MLS club New York City FC on 1 January 2016. Vieiras family moved from Senegal to Dreux, France, when he was eight and his parents divorced when Vieira was young, and he never met his father again. His grandfather served in the French Army, making him eligible for French nationality at birth and his surname Vieira, which is Portuguese, is his mothers maiden name, who is from Cape Verde. Vieira first played for Cannes, where he made his debut at the age of 17, in the summer of 1995, he was signed by Italian giants Milan, though he played mainly in the reserves and made just two first-team appearances for the club. On 10 August 1996, the Daily Mirror reported that Vieira was subject to a move to English club Arsenal and he joined Arsenal four days later in a £3.5 million move. Being able to speak French to him will make life a lot easier for me, Vieira made his full debut against Middlesbrough at the Riverside Stadium, three days after. He scored his first goal for the club against Derby County on 8 December 1996 – a late equaliser in a 2–2 draw, davis himself noted that in the matches Vieira was suspended during the Christmas period, Arsenal struggled to win. He ended his first season with 38 appearances in total and Arsenal finished in third place, Vieiras partnership with international teammate Emmanuel Petit the following season was instrumental in helping Arsenal complete a domestic league and cup double. Vieira scored his first goal of the campaign against Manchester United in a 3–2 victory on 9 November 1997, Vieira, however, twisted his knee during the match and was ruled out from playing for a month. He returned for the trip at Wimbledon on 22 December 1997, in a game against Coventry City on 16 January 1998, Vieira received his first red card for using foul and abusive language at referee Stephen Lodge. Vieira was again dismissed a month later, this time in a League Cup semi-final against Chelsea, after a successful World Cup campaign with the national team, Vieira had another productive season at Arsenal in 1998–99. Although Arsenal failed to retain the Premier League, Vieira’s endeavour was rewarded – he was named in the PFA Team of the Year alongside Petit, against West Ham United on 2 October 1999, Vieira was sent off for a second booking, after fouling striker Paolo Di Canio. Moments after, he spat at Neil Ruddock, who walked into him and was dragged off the pitch by officials, Vieira was subsequently charged, banned for six matches and fined a record £45,000 by The Football Association. The season ended in disappointment for both Vieira and Arsenal, as the team finished 18 points behind champions Manchester United, in second place
Arsenal Stadium was a football stadium in Highbury, North London, which was the home ground of Arsenal Football Club between 6 September 1913 and 7 May 2006. It was mainly known as the Highbury Stadium due to its location and was given the nickname of the Home of Football by the club. It was originally built in 1913 on the site of a local recreation ground and was significantly redeveloped twice. The first reconstruction came in the 1930s from which the Art Deco East and West Stands date, the stadium also hosted international matches – both for England and in the 1948 Summer Olympics – and FA Cup semi-finals, as well as boxing, baseball and cricket matches. Its presence also led to the local London Underground station being renamed to Arsenal in 1932, making it the only station on the Underground network to be named after a football club. The lease negotiation also agreed that no matches were to be played on days and that no intoxicating liquor would be sold at the stadium, however. The stadium was built over the summer of that year. It featured a single stand on the side and the other three sides had banked terracing. It opened whilst not fully complete, with Arsenals first match of the 1913–14 season, leicesters Tommy Benfield scored the first goal at the new ground while George Jobey was the first Arsenal player to do so. Highbury hosted its first England match in 1920, the Australian rugby league team suffered the first loss of their 1921–22 Kangaroo tour of Great Britain at Highbury to an English side 4 points to 5 before approximately 12,000 spectators. Arsenal bought the site outright in 1925, for £64,000. No significant portion of Leitchs original stadium remains today following a series of bold redevelopments during the 1930s, the idea was to create a ground for London that could capture the grandeur of Villa Park, home of Birmingham club Aston Villa. On 5 November the same year the local Tube station was renamed from Gillespie Road to Arsenal, Leitchs main stand was demolished to make way for a new East Stand, matching the West, in 1936. The West Stand cost £45,000 while the East Stand went far over budget and ended up costing £130,000, the North Bank terrace was given a roof and the southern terrace had a clock fitted to its front, giving it the name the Clock End. During the 1948 Summer Olympics, the hosted the football preliminaries. For the next 50 years, the stadium changed little, although during the Second World War the North Bank terrace was bombed and had to be rebuilt, the roof was not restored until 1956. Floodlights were fitted in 1951, with the first floodlit match being a friendly against Hapoel Tel Aviv on 19 September of that year, the floodlights that adorn Dalymount Park, once stood at the Arsenal stadium. They were shipped to Dublin in 1962, the inaugural floodlit match saw Arsenal beat Bohemians 3–8
Barclaycard is a multinational credit card and payment services provider, and a division of Barclays plc. The Barclaycard was the first British credit card introduced in the United Kingdom and it enjoyed a monopoly, until the introduction of the Access card in 1972. The Barclaycard was not the first payment card to be issued in the United Kingdom though, Diners Club, at the time, American Express was seen as Barclaycards main competitor. Barclaycard later became part of the Visa network, but now offer MasterCard, Visa, as of May 2016, Barclaycard remains one of Europe’s leading credit card issuers with over 10 million customers in the United Kingdom. Barclaycards main offices are in Northampton, along with several floors at Barclays corporate headquarters, One Churchill Place in Canary Wharf, Barclaycard has over ten million customers in the United Kingdom, issuing one in five United Kingdom credit cards. It is currently the leading United Kingdom credit card issuer and it is based at 1234 Pavilion Drive in Northampton, in an specially designed building. It is one of the employers in Northampton. Barclaycard customer service representatives for the United Kingdom are based in India, Barclays were the only major British clearing bank not to issue cheque guarantee cards, instead allowing its customers to guarantee cheques with their Barclaycard. In June 2016, Barclaycard won Best Credit Card Provider at the British Bank Awards,1962, Diners Club becomes the first major charge card company in Britain following the merger of Finders Services and Credit Card facilities. 1963, American Express is launched in the United Kingdom,1977, Barclaycard becomes a founding member of the international Visa system. 1986, Barclaycard launches first loyalty scheme,1997, Barclaycard is the first United Kingdom credit company to allow bills to be paid over the Internet. 2006, TfL and Barclaycard join forces to launch contactless payments on the London Underground,2008, Barclaycard purchases Goldfish, Discover Financial Services credit card division within the United Kingdom. 2011, Barclaycard, in partnership with Orange, launches Contactless mobile payments,2012 H1, Barclaycard remove their original Freedom rewards scheme. 2012, Barclaycard launch two brand new rewards scheme cards - Cashback Rewards & Freedom Rewards,2014, Barclaycard issue cards on the American Express network in the United Kingdom for the first time. 2014, AEG partners with Barclaycard for the British Summer Time festival in Hyde Park,2014, Hawaiian Airlines and Barclaycard launch their consumers and business credit cards. 2014, Barclaycard acquires leading United Kingdom based payment and loyalty business,2015, The bPay band, a contactless wearable, is fully launched. 2015, bPay joins forces with Topshop to launch a collection of contactless wearable accessories,2016, Barclaycard becomes the first financial service provider in the United Kingdom to enable contactless payments from Android phones. 2016, Apple Pay and Barclaycard join forces, allowing customers to pay with their Barclays debit card and Barclaycard credit card using an Apple device,2016, Barclaycard celebrates its 50th birthday
The Invincibles (football)
In English football, The Invincibles has been used to refer to the Preston North End team of the 1880s managed by William Sudell, and the Arsenal team of the 2003–04 season managed by Arsène Wenger. Preston earned the nickname after completing a season undefeated in league and cup competition. Prestons league record was 18 wins,4 draws and 0 losses, out of 22 games played, Preston also won the Cup without conceding a goal. Prestons unbeaten run stretched to one game the season, their first league defeat came away to Aston Villa in the second game. Of the seven teams to have completed the Double in England, Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger wanted his team to push on for more honours and described the defeat of Manchester United as a shift of power in English football. Do you think Manchester United, Liverpool or Chelsea dont dream that as well and they just dont say it because theyre scared to look ridiculous, but nobody is ridiculous in this job as we know anything can happen. Arsenal lost to Everton in October 2002 and failed to win their three matches in all competitions, representing their worst run of form in 19 years. By March 2003, Arsenal had established themselves as league leaders, Arsenal finished the season with league wins against Southampton and Sunderland and was later consoled with success in the FA Cup – they beat the former team 1–0 in the 2003 final. Wenger sought to strengthen his team with minor additions, goalkeeper Jens Lehmann, as well as a number of players from academies abroad, namely Gaël Clichy. In comparison to their rivals Chelsea, bankrolled by new owner Roman Abramovich, the financial constraints that came with the Ashburton Grove stadium project meant Wenger had little income to spend on new players. Once funding was found amidst the season, the added to its roster, José Antonio Reyes arrived in the winter transfer window. In the 2003–04 season, Arsenal regained the Premier League without a single defeat, over the 38 games played, their league record stood at 26 wins,12 draws and 0 losses. The unbeaten run came close to ending six matches into the campaign against Manchester United, striker Ruud van Nistelrooy missed a penalty in injury time, the match then ended 0–0. In Europe, Arsenal reached the stage of the UEFA Champions League where they were eliminated by London rivals Chelsea. Continuing into the season, a special gold version of the Premier League trophy was commissioned to commemorate Arsenal winning the title without a single defeat. The run extended to six matches for a total of 49 league games undefeated. Compared with the clubs double-winning side of 1998, only Patrick Vieira and Dennis Bergkamp remained as first team throughout the unbeaten run, Martin Keown. Defenders Lee Dixon and Tony Adams had retired from football in 2002
Preston North End F.C.
Preston North End Football Club is a professional association football club located in the Deepdale area of Preston, Lancashire. They play in the Championship, the tier of the English football league system. Prestons unbeaten League and Cup season earned them the nickname The Invincibles, Prestons most recent major trophy success was their FA Cup victory over Huddersfield Town in 1938. Many notable players have played for the club, including Tom Finney, Bill Shankly, Tommy Docherty, Alan Kelly, Sr. and Graham Alexander. On 21 January 1875, the club leased a field opposite Moor Park on the site of the current Deepdale stadium, Preston North End were famously successful during the early years of professional football in England. In 1887, Preston beat Hyde 26–0 in the First Round of the FA Cup, Preston forward Jimmy Ross scored eight goals in the match, going on to score 19 goals in the competition that season, also still a record. The clubs last major win was their FA Cup triumph in 1938. Prestons most famous player, Sir Tom Finney, played for the club between 1946 and 1960, Finney is considered to be one of the greatest footballers of all time, and was also a local lad, dubbed the Preston Plumber due to his professional training as a plumber. Finney remains the top goalscorer, with 187 goals from 433 appearances. Following Finneys retirement, Preston were relegated to the Second Division in 1961 and have not played in the top division since, the club did reach the FA Cup final in 1964, but lost to West Ham United. Preston were relegated to the Third Division in the 1969–70 season, Alan Ball, Sr. John McGrath oversaw Prestons promotion back to the Third Division a year later, where they remained when John Beck took over in October 1992. The 38-year-old Beck had only recently been sacked by Cambridge United, the club almost made it two promotions in a row to reach the Premier League, but lost to Bolton Wanderers in the 2001 play-off final. Simon Grayson was appointed by the club on 18 February 2013, of Simon Graysons next 10 games, Preston won 3, drew 4 and lost 3. In Simon Graysons first summer in charge, he permanently signed 4 players, Tom Clarke, a centreback, Chris Humphrey, a winger, Kevin Davies, a Centre forward and Alex Nicholson. He also signed Declan Rudd on a long loan from Norwich City. He allowed 3 players to leave during the summer, those being Luke Foster, Chris Robertson, the 2013–14 season started off well, unbeaten in their first 9 league games. They also beat local rivals Blackpool in the League Cup, before being beaten by Lancashire rivals Burnley in the second round. The 9 league game unbeaten run came to an end on 5 October, against Peterborough United, Preston then went on another 9 game unbeaten league run, winning 5 and drawing 4, including a win against Leyton Orient, only their second league defeat of the season
Roman Arkadyevich Abramovich is a Russian billionaire businessman, investor, and politician. Abramovich is the owner of the private investment company, Millhouse LLC and is best known outside Russia as the owner of Chelsea Football Club. According to Forbes 2016 billionaire list, Abramovichs net worth was US$7.6 billion, making him the 13th richest person in Russia, the same year, The Sunday Times estimated his net worth at ₤6.40 billion. Abramovich started his business during his army service. After a brief stint in the Soviet Army, Abramovich married his first wife, Abramovich first worked as a street-trader and then as a mechanic at a local factory. At the peak of perestroika, Abramovich sold imported rubber ducks from his Moscow apartment, Abramovich attended the Gubkin Institute of Oil and Gas in Moscow, then traded commodities for Runicom, a Swiss trading company. In 1988, as opened up opportunities for privatization in the Soviet Union. He and Olga set up a company making dolls, within a few years his wealth spread from oil conglomerates to pig farms and he also started investing in other businesses. Abramovich set up and liquidated at least 20 companies during the early 1990s, in sectors as diverse as tyre retreading and bodyguard recruitment. From 1992 to 1995, Abramovich founded five companies that conducted resale, produced consumer goods, Abramovich co-operated with the investigation, and the case was closed after the oil production factory was compensated by the diesels buyer, the Latvian-US company, Chikora International. In 1995, Abramovich and Boris Berezovsky, an associate of President Boris Yeltsin, the fast-rising value of the company led many observers, in hindsight, to suggest that the real cost of the company should have been in the billions of dollars. Abramovich later admitted in court that he paid bribes to government officials and obtained protection from gangsters to acquire these. Thus the main stages of Abramovichs financial career were January 1989 to May 1991, as chairman of the Comfort Co-op, according to various sources, from 1992 to 1995 Roman Abramovich set up five companies engaged in the production of consumer goods and selling-and-buying. In May 1995, jointly with Boris Berezovsky, he set up the P. K. In 1999, and now a tycoon, Abramovich was elected governor of Russias remote, far eastern province of Chukotka and he began selling oil from Noyabrsk. Eventually, he met fellow Russian businessman and entrepreneur Boris Berezovsky, according to two different sources, he first met Berezovsky either at a meeting of the Russian businessmen in the Caribbean in 1993 or in the summer of 1995 on the yacht of his friend Pyotr Aven. Together with Berezovsky, Abramovich founded the offshore company Gibraltar-registered Runicom Ltd. Abramovich headed the Moscow affiliate of the Swiss firm, Runicom S. A. In August 1995, Sibneft was created by Boris Yeltsin’s presidential decree and it was rumored that Abramovich was the chief of the organization with Berezovsky promoting the business in higher circles
Ruud van Nistelrooy
Rutgerus Johannes Martinus Ruud van Nistelrooy is a retired Dutch footballer and a current manager for the PSV youth team. A former striker, he is the fourth-highest goalscorer in UEFA Champions League history with 56 goals and he is a three-time Champions League top scorer, as well as a top scorer in three different European domestic leagues. Van Nistelrooy began his career with Den Bosch, before moving onto Heerenveen, eventually making a name for himself at PSV, where he won two Eredivisie titles. His time at United was successful, winning the Premier League, FA Cup, Football League Cup and FA Community Shield, along with winning the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year twice. Van Nistelrooy hit 150 goals in just 219 games for United, as well as becoming, at the time, their all time European record goalscorer, Real Madrid then secured his services in 2006. Although an injury blighted the end of his days with Madrid, he did win La Liga twice, after one-and-a-half seasons with Hamburg, he moved back to Spain with Málaga in the summer of 2011. His retirement from football was announced on 14 May 2012, after netting 12 goals in 31 games in the 1996–97 campaign, he transferred for €360,000 to Heerenveen the next year, and scored 13 goals in 31 matches in his only season with the club. He was then signed by PSV the next season for €6.3 million, Van Nistelrooy capped off the year by winning the Dutch Player of the Year award. The following season, he won his second Eredivisie scoring title with 29 goals, Ferguson sent team representatives to PSVs next league game and signed Van Nistelrooy the next day. Van Nistelrooy looked set to complete a club record £18.5 million transfer to Manchester United in the summer of 2000, a year later, Van Nistelrooy signed a five-year contract after passing his medical. He downplayed Uniteds £19 million investment to reporters, saying, The price is not heavy for me – it lifts me up because it means United have big confidence in me, Van Nistelrooy made his debut in the Charity Shield against Liverpool, scoring in a 2–1 loss. On 19 August, Van Nistelrooy made his Premier League debut against Fulham at Old Trafford and he scored his first Champions League goals on 17 October in a 3–2 loss to Deportivo de La Coruña. On 22 December, Van Nistelrooy scored his first Premier League hat-trick in a 6–1 win against Southampton, in total during his first season, Van Nistelrooy scored 23 goals in 32 league games. He broke the record he shared with Mark Stein, Alan Shearer and Thierry Henry and he also scored 10 Champions League goals, and was named the PFA Players Player of the Year. The following season, he finished as the top Premier League scorer with 25 goals in 34 games and his tally included three hat-tricks against Newcastle United, Fulham, and Charlton Athletic. He also scored in each of the eight games of the season as United won the title. Van Nistelrooy won the Premier League Player of the Season in 2003 and he was accredited with spearheading the title win for United with a goal tally that was described as astonishing. After scoring 12 Champions League goals, he was named by UEFA as the best striker in Europe, Van Nistelrooy started the 2003–04 season by scoring twice in his first two league matches
David Robert Joseph Beckham, OBE is an English former professional footballer. He is the first English player to win titles in four countries, England, Spain. He announced his retirement in May 2013 after a 20-year career and he was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame in 2008. A global ambassador for the sport, Beckham is regarded as a British cultural icon, Beckhams professional club career began with Manchester United, where he made his first-team debut in 1992 aged 17. With United, he won the Premier League title six times, the FA Cup twice, and he then played four seasons with Real Madrid, winning the La Liga championship in his final season with the club. In July 2007 Beckham signed a contract with Major League Soccer club LA Galaxy. While a Galaxy player, he spent two spells in Italy with Milan in 2009 and 2010. He was the first British footballer to play 100 UEFA Champions League games, in international football, Beckham made his England debut on 1 September 1996 at the age of 21. He was captain for six years, earning 58 caps during his tenure and he made 115 career appearances in total, appearing at three FIFA World Cup tournaments, in 1998,2002 and 2006, and two UEFA European Championship tournaments, in 2000 and 2004. Beckham has consistently ranked among the highest earners in football, and in 2013 he was listed as the player in the world. He has been married to Victoria Beckham since 1999 and they have four children and he has been a UNICEF UK ambassador since 2005, and in 2015 he launched 7, The David Beckham UNICEF Fund. In 2014, MLS announced Beckham and a group of investors would own a team in Miami. Beckham was born at Whipps Cross University Hospital in Leytonstone, London and he is the son of Sandra Georgina, a hairdresser, and David Edward Alan Ted Beckham, a kitchen fitter, who married at the London Borough of Hackney in 1969. He has a sister, Lynne Georgina, and a younger sister. He regularly played football in Ridgeway Park, Chingford, as a child, in a 2007 interview, Beckham said that, At school whenever the teachers asked, What do you want to do when youre older. Id say, I want to be a footballer, and theyd say, No, what do you really want to do, for a job. But that was the only thing I ever wanted to do, Beckhams maternal grandfather was Jewish, and Beckham has referred to himself as half Jewish and wrote in his autobiography Ive probably had more contact with Judaism than with any other religion. In his book Both Feet on the Ground, he stated that growing up he attended every week with his parents
Real Madrid C.F.
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol, commonly known as Real Madrid, or simply as Real outside Spain frontiers, is a professional football club based in Madrid, Spain. Founded in 1902 as Madrid Football Club, the team has worn a white home kit since inception. The word Real is Spanish for Royal and was bestowed to the club by King Alfonso XIII in 1920 together with the crown in the emblem. The team has played its matches in the 85, 454-capacity Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in downtown Madrid since 1947. Unlike most European sporting entities, Real Madrids members have owned and operated the club throughout its history. The club was estimated to be worth €3.24 billion in 2015, the club is one of the most widely supported teams in the world. Real Madrid is one of three founding members of the Primera División that have never relegated from the top division, along with Athletic Bilbao. The club holds many long-standing rivalries, most notably El Clásico with Barcelona, Real Madrid established itself as a major force in both Spanish and European football during the 1950s, winning five consecutive European Cups and reaching the final seven times. This success was replicated in the league, where the club won five times in the space of seven years. In domestic football, the club has won a record 32 La Liga titles,19 Copa del Rey, nine Supercopa de España, a Copa Eva Duarte, and a Copa de la Liga. Real Madrid was recognised as the FIFA Club of the 20th Century on 23 December 2000, the club received the FIFA Centennial Order of Merit in 2004. The club is ranked first in the latest IFFHS Club World Ranking, setting a new ranking-points record, the club also leads the current UEFA club rankings. They founded Football Club Sky in 1897, playing on Sunday mornings at Moncloa and it split into two clubs in 1900, New Foot-Ball de Madrid and Madrid Football Club. On 6 March 1902, after a new Board presided by Juan Padrós had been elected, three years after its foundation, in 1905, Madrid FC won its first title after defeating Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish Cup final. The club became one of the sides of the Royal Spanish Football Federation on 4 January 1909. After moving between grounds the team moved to the Campo de ODonnell in 1912, in 1920, the clubs name was changed to Real Madrid after King Alfonso XIII granted the title of Real to the club. In 1929, the first Spanish football league was founded, Real Madrid led the first league season until the last match, a loss to Athletic Bilbao, meant they finished runners-up to Barcelona. Real Madrid won its first League title in the 1931–32 season, Real won the League again the following year, becoming the first team to have won the championship twice
Rio Gavin Ferdinand is an English former professional footballer who played as a centre-back. He played 81 times for the England national football team between 1997 and 2011, and was a member of three FIFA World Cup squads. He is regarded by many to be one of Englands greatest ever players and he became a fan favourite, winning the Hammer of the Year award the following season. He earned his first senior cap in a match against Cameroon in 1997. His achievements and footballing potential attracted Leeds United and he transferred to the club for a fee of £18 million. He spent two seasons at the club, becoming the captain in 2001. He joined Manchester United in July 2002 for around £30 million and he won the Premier League, his first major club honour, in a successful first season at the club. Upon his return, he established himself in the Manchester United first team and received plaudits for his performances, more club success followed with another Premier League win in the 2006–07 season and a Premier League and UEFA Champions League double the following year. He announced his retirement from football on 30 May 2015. His brother, Anton, also a centre-back, plays for Southend United, former England international striker Les Ferdinand, Ferdinand was born at Kings College Hospital in Camberwell, but grew up in Peckham. He is the son of an Irish mother, Janice Lavender, Ferdinand grew up in Peckham in a large family. Both parents worked to support the family, his mother as a child carer and his parents never married and they separated when he was 14 years old. His father remained close, moving to an estate, and took the kids to football training. At school, he focused on maths and revelled in the opportunity to perform before an audience during a production of Bugsy Malone. I always as a kid wanted to do something different, Id get bored very easily – even playing football or hanging around with my mates, so travelling away from home, meeting new people. He chose to attend Blackheath Bluecoat School to make new friends and settled in well and his second year was marred by the death of a fellow pupil, Stephen Lawrence, and the event demonstrated the ever-present threat of violence. Ferdinand enjoyed physical expression, taking part in not just football and gymnastics classes but drama, theatre, Ferdinand attended the ballet classes, travelling to the city centre four days a week for four years. Ferdinands superior footballing abilities were evident even as a child, when he was 11 years old a youth coach, David Goodwin, remarked Im going to call you Pelé, son, I like the way you play
Maine Road was a football stadium in Moss Side, Manchester, England, that was home to Manchester City F. C. from 1923 to 2003. It hosted FA Cup semi-finals, Charity Shield matches, a League Cup final and England matches and, because of its high capacity, gained the nickname Wembley of the North. The following season Manchester City moved to the City of Manchester Stadium in East Manchester, two sites in Belle Vue, East Manchester were suggested, but neither was deemed sufficient. To many City fans east Manchester was regarded as Citys home, but the site was just 8 acres and an available lease of 50 years was deemed too short by the club, so it was decided that City would move to Moss Side. The move to a stadium at Maine Road was backed by then manager Ernest Mangnall. Many were disappointed when a site in south Manchester was chosen, a City director, John Ayrton, resigned from the Board later in the decade and helped to form a breakaway club, Manchester Central F. C. which played at Belle Vue. A sixteen and a quarter acre former brickworks on Maine Road was purchased for £5,500, during construction, the stadium was reputedly cursed by a gypsy when officials evicted a gypsy camp from the area. This curse was allegedly removed on 28 December 1998, however, the gypsy curse is likely to be an urban myth, as such stories are endemic to a number of football league grounds. Construction took 300 days, the total cost £100,000, the initial layout of the ground consisted of one covered stand with a seating capacity of 10,000, and uncovered terracing on the other three sides, with gentle curves connecting the corners. The first match at Maine Road took place on 25 August 1923 when 58,159 fans watched the home side beat Sheffield United 2–1. The first changes to the ground took place in 1931, when the corner between the Main Stand and the Platt Lane end at the south of the ground was rebuilt to incorporate a roof. This renovation was the first of many, as Maine Roads layout, in 1934, the second highest attendance at an English football game at a club ground was recorded at Maine Road. The first was the 1913 FA Cup Final, hosted by Crystal Palace with a crowd of 121,919, the Maine Road match was between Manchester City and Stoke City in front of 84,569 fans in the 6th round of the FA Cup on 3 March 1934. Queues formed four hours before the match, and one journalist stated that Maine Road was packed two hours before kick-off, a decision was taken to close the turnstiles with an attendance at approximately 85,000,3000 short of what was thought to be the maximum capacity. Supporters witnessed a visiting Stoke team which included Stanley Matthews and Citys team boasted players, Frank Swift, Fred Tilson, Sam Cowan, the match was won 1–0 by Manchester City. This is the home attendance for a domestic match and the record home attendance at a club ground. Changes at the Platt Lane end took place in 1935, extending the terracing and providing a roof for the full stand and this marked the peak capacity of the ground, estimated at around 88,000. Further changes were planned, but suspended when Manchester City were relegated from Division One in 1938, the stadium was shared by Manchester United after the Second World War as Manchester Uniteds Old Trafford ground had been damaged during the Manchester Blitz
City of Manchester Stadium
It was agreed in 1997 that Manchester City F. C. would lease the stadium from Manchester City Council and move from their aging Maine Road ground - a move which took place in the summer of 2003. In August 2015, a 7,000 seat third tier on the South Stand was completed, the expansion was designed to be in keeping with the existing roof design. A North Stand third tier has planning approval and work on it is expected to begin by 2017, plans to build a new stadium in Manchester were formulated before 1989 as part of the citys bid to host the 1996 Summer Olympics. Manchester City Council submitted a bid that included a design for an 80, the bid failed and Atlanta hosted the Games. For the February 1993 bid the city council submitted another 80, 000-capacity stadium design produced by design consultants Arup Associates, in 1996, this same planned stadium competed with Wembley Stadium to gain funding to become the new national stadium, but the money was used to redevelop Wembley. However, Manchester City Council did not have the money to facilitate movable seating, the stadiums foundation stone was laid by Prime Minister Tony Blair in December 1999, and construction began in January 2000. The first public event at the stadium was the ceremony of the 2002 Commonwealth Games on 25 July 2002. Among the dignitaries present was Queen Elizabeth II who made a speech, delivered to her in an electronic baton, during the following ten days of competition, the stadium hosted the track and field events and all the rugby sevens matches. Sixteen new Commonwealth Games track and field records were set in the stadium, in terms of number of participating nations, it is still the largest Commonwealth Games in history, featuring 72 nations competing in 281 events across seventeen sports. The three temporary stands with a capacity of 16,000 were dismantled, and replaced with a permanent structure of similar design to the existing one at the southern end. This work took nearly a year to complete and added 23,000 permanent seats, Manchester City F. C. moved to the ground in time for the start of the 2003–04 season. 5m. The stadium is owned by Manchester City Council and leased by the football club, the 2008 takeover made the football club one of the wealthiest in the world, prompting suggestions that it could consider buying the stadium outright. Manchester City signed an agreement with Manchester City Council in March 2010 to allow a £1 billion redevelopment led by architect Rafael Viñoly. This new agreement occurred as part of a standard 5-year review of the original lease, during 2011-14 the club sold all 36,000 of its allocated season tickets each season and experienced an average match attendance that is very close to its maximum seating capacity. Consequently, during the 2014-15 season an expansion of the stadium was undertaken, the South Stand was extended with the addition of a third tier which, in conjunction with an additional three rows of pitch side seating, increased stadium capacity to approximately 55,000. Construction commenced on the South Stand in April 2014 and was completed for the start of the 2015-16 season. A final phase of expansion, that planning approval at the same time as the others but which remains unscheduled. Once this last phase is completed it will bring the total seating capacity up to approximately 61,000
Jens Gerhard Lehmann is a retired German footballer who played as a goalkeeper. He was voted UEFA Club Goalkeeper of the Year for the 1996–97 and 2005–06 seasons and he was a member of Arsenals Invincibles, playing every match of their famous unbeaten title winning season. He also holds the UEFA Champions League record for the most consecutive clean sheets, Lehmann started his career in the 1988/89 season with Schalke 04, playing for them for nearly a decade. He scored his first league goal on 12 March 1995 in a 6–2 victory over 1860 Munich in the 84th minute and his second goal was a last-minute equaliser scored against Borussia Dortmund on 19 December 1997. Lehmann became Schalkes team hero in their 1997 UEFA Cup Final victory over Internazionale, after playing a strong season, Lehmann left Schalke for Milan in 1998, however his performances didnt match the standards set at Milan. In one game Gabriel Batistuta scored a hat-trick against him, including a goal from a kick in the box which Lehmann had conceded by handling a back pass. In another game he was substituted after giving away a penalty, Lehmann was dropped after just five matches and believing he wouldnt get another chance at Milan, he left during the winter. In early 1999, Lehmann returned to Germany to play for Borussia Dortmund replacing long-time goalkeeper Stefan Klos, Lehmann had a difficult start with the team with several poor performances and a lack in his discipline and reliability. Rumors of a parting of Lehmann arose, who was viewed critically by both supporters and critics. However, Borussia Dortmund began the 2001–02 season strongly, Lehmanns overall performance improved and he became more reliable for the team. FC Köln, Hamburger SV and Werder Bremen back-to-back, Lehmann, during the same season Lehmann became known for his poor disciplinary record. In a match against SC Freiburg, Lehmann kicked opposing attacker Soumaila Coulibaly after they collided in the penalty area, Lehmann was suspended afterwards and currently still holds the record for most red cards for any player of Borussia Dortmund as well as for any goalkeeper in the German Bundesliga. After a weak season in 2003, which saw Borussia Dortmund slip into mediocrity and he was replaced by Roman Weidenfeller and Guillaume Warmuz, who had just left Arsenal. Arsenal continued unbeaten until 24 October 2004, at the end of his first season at Arsenal, he had already played 54 times earning himself a Premier League winners medal at the end of the season. By the middle of the 2004–05 season, Lehmann did not play well, however, Almunia made a series of mistakes himself, thus allowing Lehmann to regain his position. Lehmann had an outstanding 2005–06 season with Arsenal, making his 100th Premier League appearance for the club in their game against West Bromwich Albion on 15 April 2006. That run formed the bulk of an 853-minute spell without conceding a goal, the final clean sheet was earned in the semi-finals against Villarreal, after Lehmann saved an 89th minute Juan Román Riquelme penalty. Lehmanns contract at Arsenal was due to expire in summer 2007, however, it was reported on 26 April 2007 that he had signed a years extension on his contract, tying him to the club until 2008
Stephen McClaren is an English professional football manager and former player who was recently the manager of Derby County. McClaren served as manager of the England national team from August 2006 to November 2007 and he was sacked when England failed to qualify for UEFA Euro 2008. McClarens managerial career began at Middlesbrough in the Premier League, who won the League Cup in 2004 and were runners-up in the 2006 UEFA Cup, in 2008, McClaren became manager of Twente, with whom he won the clubs first Eredivisie championship in the 2009–10 season. He then worked as manager of VfL Wolfsburg in Germany between May 2010 and February 2011, after a short spell as manager of Nottingham Forest, he returned to Twente in January 2012. McClarens return to Twente was initially greeted with enthusiasm and the club was deemed to be one of the favourites to the 2012–13 Eredivisie championship at the start of the season, after unsuccessful results, however, McClaren resigned his position on 26 February 2013. Within seven months, he was back in management with Derby County, in May 2015, McClaren was sacked by Derby. On 10 June 2015, McClaren was appointed as coach of Newcastle United on a three-year deal. He returned to Derby on 12 October 2016 before being sacked for a time by the club 5 months later on 12 March 2017. McClaren was born on 3 May 1961 in Fulford, York, described as Yorkshire born and bred, McClarens ancestors worked variously as miners, brewers, cotton mill workers, labourers, and farmworkers, and in domestic service. As a child, McClaren attended Nunthorpe Grammar School after passing his eleven-pluses, in order to attend he had to cycle a daily ten-mile round trip across York. This is cited as an example of his determination to succeed in sport, at school he played rugby, tennis, squash and was captain of the schools football team. He also played for York Boys under-15 team and represented the county of Yorkshire, playing as midfielder, McClaren is remembered as being a tiny player but also skilful on the ball and head and shoulders above the rest. As a player, McClaren was a midfielder who spent most of his career in the leagues of English football. The bulk of his career was with Hull City, who he joined in 1979 at the age of 18 after leaving school. He then played for Derby County between 1985 and 1988, making 25 appearances, during 1987, he joined Lincoln City making only eight appearances. In 1988, he moved to Bristol City and played 61 times and he joined his final club, Oxford United, in 1989. He played 33 times for Oxford before an injury forced him to retire in 1992, after retiring from playing, McClaren began his coaching career as a youth and reserve team coach at Oxford United, where Denis Smith was manager. He moved back to Derby County in 1995, where he was assistant manager to Jim Smith, the pair won promotion to the Premier League in their first season in charge, establishing themselves in this division and later enjoyed further consolidation in the top flight
The UEFA Europa League, previously called the UEFA Cup, is an annual football club competition organized by UEFA since 1971 for eligible European football clubs. Clubs qualify for the competition based on their performance in their national leagues, previously called the UEFA Cup, the competition has been known as the UEFA Europa League since the 2009–10 season, following a change in format. For UEFA footballing records purposes, the UEFA Cup and UEFA Europa League are considered the same competition, in 1999, the UEFA Cup Winners Cup was abolished and merged with the UEFA Cup. For the 2004–05 competition a group stage was added prior to the knockout phase, the 2009 re-branding included a merge with the UEFA Intertoto Cup, producing an enlarged competition format, with an expanded group stage and changed qualifying criteria. The winner enters at least at the round, and will enter the group stage if the berth reserved for the Champions League title holders is not used. The title has been won by 27 different clubs,12 of which have won the more than once. The UEFA Cup was preceded by the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, which was a European football competition played between 1955 and 1971, the competition grew from 11 teams during the first cup to 64 teams by the last cup which was played in 1970–71. It had become so important on the European football scene that in the end it was taken over by UEFA, the UEFA Cup was first played in the 1971–72 season, with an all-English final of Wolverhampton Wanderers versus Tottenham Hotspur, with Spurs taking the first honours. The title was retained by another English club, Liverpool in 1973, Borussia would win the competition in 1975 and 1979, and reach the final again in 1980. Liverpool won the competition for the time in 1976, beating Club Brugge in the final. During the 1980s, IFK Göteborg and Real Madrid won the competition twice each,1989 saw the commencement of the Italian clubs domination, when Maradonas Napoli beat Stuttgart. The 1990s started with two finals, and in 1992, Torino lost the final to Ajax on the away goals rule. Juventus won the competition for a time in 1993 and Internazionale kept the cup in Italy the following year. 1995 saw a third final, with Parma proving their consistency. The only final with no Italians during that decade was in 1996, Parma won the cup in 1999, which ended the Italian club era. Liverpool won the competition for the time in 2001 and Porto triumphed in the 2003 and 2011 tournaments. In 2004, the cup returned to Spain with Valencia being victorious, either side of Sevillas success, two Russian teams, CSKA Moscow in 2005 and Zenit Saint Petersburg in 2008, had their glory and yet another former Soviet club, Ukraines Shakhtar Donetsk, won in 2009. Atlético Madrid would themselves win twice in three seasons, in 2010 and 2012, the latter in another all-Spanish final, in 2013, Chelsea would become the first Champions League holders to win the UEFA Cup/Europa League the following year
Glenn Hoddle is an English former footballer and manager who played as a midfielder for Tottenham Hotspur, AS Monaco, Chelsea and Swindon Town and at international level for England. He was most recently first team coach at Queens Park Rangers having been appointed, on a part-time basis, however, following Redknapps resignation in February 2015, Hoddle also left the club. He has been manager of Swindon Town, Chelsea, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, as a manager, he took England to the second round of the 1998 FIFA World Cup, where they lost to Argentina on penalties. Hoddle is currently part of ITVs coverage of England Internationals as well as contributing to The Mail on Sunday, Hoddle was born in Hayes, Middlesex. He started his career at Watford, having been a product of their youth academy, Hoddle also played over 45 matches for his secondary school before being spotted at a school football game by a passing scout who was apparently walking his dog at the time. Hoddle joined the club as an apprentice in April 1974 following the recommendation of another Tottenham legend. He successfully overcame knee problems in his teens and collected England Youth caps prior to making his first-team debut as a 17-year-old substitute against Norwich City in August 1975. Hoddle was forced to wait until February 1976 to start a First Division match and immediately announced his arrival with a strike past Stoke City. As Tottenhams transitional phase continued, Hoddles enigmatic and often controversial international career began in December 1976 against Wales in an Under-21 fixture. He would collect another seven caps at that level and play twice for the England B team prior to scoring on his international debut against Bulgaria in November 1979. In October 1983, he helped Spurs win 6–2 on aggregate against a Feyenoord Rotterdam side containing Johan Cruyff, such was the quality of his performance in both matches, the Dutch legend entered the Tottenham dressing room and offered Hoddle his shirt as a sign of respect. The unexpected loss to the Midlands side was Hoddles last match for Spurs as newly appointed AS Monaco manager Arsène Wenger brought him to the principality for a fee of £750,000. Between 1975 and 1987, the gifted playmaker scored 110 goals in 490 first-team matches in all competitions, at international level, Hoddle won 44 caps for England during his Tottenham career. In 1987, Hoddle also found himself in the pop charts, with the single Diamond Lights making the UK Top 20 in a duet with Spurs and England team-mate Chris Waddle. He joined AS Monaco alongside George Weah and fellow Englishman Mark Hateley and immediately inspired the club to the 1988 Ligue 1 championship, Hoddle was voted the Best Foreign Player in French football and helped to guide the team to the quarter-finals of the European Cup in the 1988–89 campaign. Arsène Wenger was the coach who brought him to Monaco and ironically Hoddle would go on to face his former manager in the heated North London Derby as manager of Tottenham Hotspur. During his three and a spell in France, Hoddle represented England nine times, making his international farewell against the Soviet Union in June 1988. Hoddle made his debut in Englands Euro 80 qualifying tie against Bulgaria on 22 November 1979 and he scored in his third appearance against Australia on 31 May 1980 in a friendly in Sydney
Jacques Santini is a former football player and manager. He played for Saint-Étienne during the 1970s, and reached the European Cup final with them in 1976 and he has coached the French national team - winning the 2003 FIFA Confederations Cup and reaching the quarter-finals of Euro 2004 - and clubs including Olympique Lyonnais. Jacques Santini is one of the most accomplished football managers in France, together with Jean Michel Aulas and Bernard Lacombe he was involved in the transformation of Lyon into a French football giant. From 1997 to 2000 he was Sports director, helping lay the foundation which resulted in Lyon becoming the best football club in France, as manager of Lyon from 2000-2002 he was winner of French League Cup in 2001, and in 2002 he won the French Championship. He had already resigned from the position before Euro 2004, where France surprisingly lost to Greece in the quarter-final, Santini took the managerial position at Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur after Euro 2004. He surprisingly announced his resignation after just 13 games, officially, Santini left England due to personal problems, but it was widely reported that a series of disagreements with then Sporting Director Frank Arnesen led to his departure. Speaking in 2005, Santini said he quit partly because he felt agreements with the club were broken and he took the job of head coach of AJ Auxerre in Ligue 1 in 2005, but was sacked in 2006 due to the his conflict with Vice-President of Auxerre Guy Roux. On 23 June 2008, Santini was linked with the vacant managerial position at Scottish Premier League club Hearts but he has refused this offer
Maarten Cornelis Martin Jol is a Dutch football manager and former midfielder. Jol played over 400 games during his career included spells in the Netherlands, Germany. Jol was born in The Hague and he started his playing career with an amateur team before joining the local professional side ADO Den Haag. He turned professional with Den Haag in 1973 and he won the 1975 Dutch Cup with the team defeating FC Twente. He played in the Bundesliga for the 1978–79 season with Bayern Munich before returning to the Dutch Eredivisie to play for Twente in 1979, while with Twente, he won his first cap for the Netherlands national football team in October 1980. Jol moved to England in 1982, joining West Bromwich Albion and he appeared in the semi-finals of both domestic cup competitions in 1981–82. He signed for Coventry City in 1984 but wanted to leave the club after manager Bobby Gould was asked to leave, Jol returned to Den Haag in 1985, and won the 1985 Dutch Footballer of the Year award in the Eerste Divisie league. At international level, Jol won 10 schoolboy caps,20 B caps,12 Under-21 caps and 12 Under-23 caps and he also made three appearances for the senior team, and competed at the 1980 Mundialito held in Uruguay. Jols coaching career began in 1991 when he took over at the amateur side ADO Den Haag, Jol then moved to the leading local amateur side SVV Scheveningen for one season, where he won the national non-league championship. Jol then spent two years as manager at the professional Eredivisie side Roda JC from the town of Kerkrade, during which time he won the Dutch Cup in 1997, between 1998 and 2004, Jol managed the Dutch professional team RKC Waalwijk. He started there in November with only three points at the bottom of the table and he saved them from relegation in their first year and was in contention for European football in the years after. He was honoured with the Dutch Football Writers Coach of the Year 2001 and with the Dutch Players, RKC Waalwijk denied reports in June 2004 that Jol was about to become assistant manager of Tottenham Hotspur. Several days later, however, Jol was given the job under Tottenhams new coach, Jacques Santini, Santini resigned from the managers job after just 13 games, and on 8 November 2004, Jol was confirmed as his replacement. In his first season in charge, Jol improved their league fortunes, Jol, however, ruled out moving clubs early. Jol led Tottenham to the verge of European qualification but the season ended with a finish in the Premier League after a final day draw at home to Blackburn Rovers. This meant Spurs missed out on the UEFA Cup spot by two points, in August 2005, he signed a new three-year contract with Tottenham. The season saw Tottenham concede just 38 league goals, the fewest the club has conceded since 1971, the 2006–07 season saw Jol end Tottenhams lengthy hoodoo against Chelsea with a win, the first against them in the league since 1990. In the Football League Cup, they were knocked-out in the semi-finals by rivals Arsenal, a 4–0 FA Cup win away to Fulham, however, kick-started a run of form which saw Tottenham take 27 points from their final 12 league games, losing just once
Frank Arnesen is a former Danish footballer. Arnesen was the Director of Football at English football clubs Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea, as a player, he most notably played with Dutch clubs Ajax and PSV Eindhoven, winning the 1988 European Cup with PSV. Arnesen was capped 52 times and scored 14 goals for the Danish national team, Arnesen moved from his childhood club Fremad Amager, in the lower leagues of Danish football, to the big Dutch team Ajax in November/December 1975. At the time he was only 19, and made the move together with Fremad Amager and teammate Søren Lerby, Arnesen got his debut with Ajax 3 or 4 months later, on 7 March 1976, in a 1–1 draw with FC Utrecht. It was also in his time at Ajax, that Arnesen debuted for the Danish national team, in a 1977 friendly 1–0 loss against Sweden, in Malmö. In Arnesens six seasons at Ajax, he won three Dutch Eredivisie championship titles in 1977,1979, and 1980, and won the KNVB Cup in 1979, beating FC Twente 3–0 in the final. In 1980, Arnesen and Ajax reached the semi-final of the European Cup, in the summer of 1981, Arnesen was bought by the Spanish football club Valencia CF, and two years later he went to Belgium to play for RSC Anderlecht. In November 1985, Arnesen returned to the Netherlands to play for Ajax rivals PSV Eindhoven. Here he saw three extremely successful seasons, winning the Eredivisie three years in a row, in 1986,1987, and 1988, with fellow Danes Jan Heintze, Søren Lerby, Arnesen stopped his international career in 1987, after the Danish team qualified for the Euro 1988. In 1988, he won the KNVB Cup once more, and he was part of the PSV team that conquered the European Cup, though he did not play in the final match due to an injury. After his active career, Arnesen was first appointed assistant coach at PSV under Bobby Robson from 1991 to 1993, in May 2004, Arnesen was brought to Tottenham Hotspur, replacing David Pleat. Things didnt work out well, and Santini left within months citing personal problems as his reason for leaving, Arnesens original hiring for assistant coach, Martin Jol, was put in charge of the club. Arnesen was suspended by Spurs on 4 June 2005 for expressing a desire to move to rival club Chelsea, Arnesen was photographed aboard one of Roman Abramovichs three luxury yachts on 22 June 2005 thus reinforcing Tottenhams compensation claim. Arnesen was recommended to Abramovich by Piet de Visser, later on one of the reasons to end José Mourinhos contract would have been that Mourinho did not want to engage with Abramovichs football consultants. Arnesen has since played a key role in bringing Salomon Kalou, Florent Malouda, but the club has still pursued expensive purchases of established international players rather than unearthing and developing young talent as hoped. On 27 November 2010 Chelsea announced that Arnesen had resigned as sporting director, on 20 February he decided to join Hamburger SV for the foreseeable future as sporting director. As a Hamburg SV Sporting Director, Arnesen took Chelsea youngsters to Hamburg like Jacopo Sala, Michael Mancienne, Gökhan Töre, Slobodan Rajković and Jeffrey Bruma. On 10 October 2011 Arnesen took over the task of the head coach of Hamburger SV for just one match before hiring and installing a permanent new coach with Thorsten Fink
Peter Reid is an English football manager, pundit and retired player. A defensive midfielder in his days, Reid enjoyed a long. He built his reputation as one of Englands brightest midfield talents of the time at Bolton Wanderers and it was there that he enjoyed the most fruitful spell of his career, as he helped the club win domestic and European honours, including the Football League twice. He was voted as the PFA Players Player of the Year in 1985 and came fourth in the World Soccer Player of the Year award, behind Michel Platini, Preben Elkjær and Diego Maradona. He also received his first senior England call-up that year, Reid joined Queens Park Rangers in 1989, but moved on to Manchester City a year later to begin his managerial career. He spent three years at Maine Road as player-manager, and guided them to two fifth-place finishes in the First Division, the first of which saw them finish above their city rivals Manchester United. He was persuaded to resume his career after leaving Manchester City. He won promotion to the Premier League with the club on two occasions and achieved two finishes in the top division. He combined his role at the Stadium of Light with the job as manager of the England U21 for a spell in 1999. His seven-year association with Sunderland ended in 2002 and he returned to management a year later, Reid left Elland Road the following season. He was appointed manager of Coventry City in 2004 but his tenure lasted less than a year and he then worked as a pundit for the BBC at the 2006 FIFA World Cup, and also worked for Sky Sports and ESPN before returning to management with Thailand in 2008. He won the T&T Cup with the country before returning to England as assistant manager to Tony Pulis at Stoke City and he then managed Plymouth Argyle, taking over in June 2010, but was sacked after just over a year at the Devon club. Reid signed professional forms with Bolton Wanderers in 1974 and he first won a medal when Bolton won the championship of the Football League Second Division in 1978, but he only enjoyed two seasons of First Division football before Bolton were relegated. He was transferred to Everton for a fee of £60,000 in 1982 only 12 months after a much larger fee had been mooted – a succession of injuries had cut the price. At club level his greatest achievement was as part of the Everton team that in 1984 won the FA Cup, in 1985 and 1987 the Football League championship and they nearly won a unique treble but lost 1–0 to Manchester United in the 1985 FA Cup final. In that game, Reid was recklessly challenged by Manchester United defender Kevin Moran who became the first player to be sent off in an FA Cup final. He was voted PFA Footballer of the Year in 1985, the year that he collected a Football League title. Reids form was so good that year, he came 4th in the World Soccer player of the award behind only Michel Platini, Preben Elkjaer
Gordon David Strachan /ˈɡɔːrdən ˈdeɪvɪd ˈstrɑːxən/ OBE is a Scottish football manager and former player. Strachan is the manager of the Scotland national team, Strachan played for Dundee, Aberdeen, Manchester United, Leeds United and Coventry City, as well as the Scotland national team. He has managed Coventry City, Southampton, Celtic and Middlesbrough, in club football, he played 635 league games, scoring a total of 138 goals, playing 21 of 25 career seasons in either the English or Scottish top-flight. In international football Strachan earned 50 caps, scoring five goals, Strachan retired from playing in 1997 at age 40, setting a Premier League record for an outfield player. A right-sided midfielder, Strachan made his debut in 1974 with Dundee before moving on within Scotland. He first played for the Scotland national team in 1980, while at Aberdeen Strachan won multiple domestic league and cup honours in the early 1980s, as well as the 1982–83 European Cup Winners Cup and 1983 European Super Cup. He played his last game for Scotland in 1992 while still at Leeds, Strachan became full-time manager of Coventry when the incumbent Ron Atkinson was appointed as Director of Football. After five years in the job he was sacked in 2001, however, he immediately returned to the Premier League with Southampton and guided the Saints to the 2003 FA Cup Final – where they lost 1–0 to Arsenal. Strachan resigned from Southampton in 2004 and took a 16-month break from management before returning to Scotland to become manager of Celtic in the Scottish Premier League. With Celtic he achieved three league titles and other domestic cup wins, before resigning in May 2009 after failing to win a fourth title. Five months later he became manager of Middlesbrough in the English Championship, Strachan was named as FWA Footballer of the Year for the 1990–91 season while at Leeds. He was also named Manager of the Year in Scotland several times by writers and players while at Celtic, in 2007, Strachan was inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame. He is the father of Craig Strachan and Gavin Strachan, also footballers, born and raised in Muirhouse, Edinburgh, he supported Hibernian as a boy. His father, Jim, worked as a scaffolder, and his mother, Catherine and he was offered a contract by Hibernian manager Eddie Turnbull, but his father decided against the offer after stating the club did not pay sufficient expenses for footwear. Strachan began his career with Dundee, having decided to sign with the Scottish club at the age of 14, in joining the club he rejected an approach from Manchester United, reasoning that he had a better chance to establish himself in the first team at Dens Park. His natural talent was apparent and he quickly earned a reputation as an outstanding player in the second team. He made his mark as an 18-year-old when he outplayed Alan Ball in a friendly with Arsenal in August 1975, Strachan became a regular player in the 1975–76 season, the inaugural season of the Scottish Premier Division, featuring in 17 of the clubs 36 league games. However David Whites Dee were relegated on the last day of the season after rivals Dundee United edged ahead on goal average with a draw with champions Rangers
Plymouth Argyle F.C.
Plymouth Argyle Football Club is a professional association football club based in the city of Plymouth, Devon, England. They have played in League Two, the tier of the English football league system. They are one of two teams in Devon currently competing in the Football League, the other being Exeter City – Argyles local rivals, since becoming professional in 1903, the club has won five Football League titles, five Southern League titles and one Western League title. The 2009–10 season was the clubs 42nd in the tier of English football. The team set the record for most championships won in the tier, having finished first in the Third Division South twice, the Third Division once. The club takes its nickname, The Pilgrims, from an English religious group that left Plymouth for the New World in 1620, the club crest features the Mayflower, the ship that carried the pilgrims to Massachusetts. The club have played in dark green and white throughout their history, with a few exceptions in the late 1960s. The city of Plymouth is the largest in England never to have hosted top-flight football and they are the most southerly and westerly League club in England. Home Park is the 37th biggest stadium in England, the original ground of the professional club at Home Park was destroyed by German bombers during the Blitz on Plymouth in World War II. Having been rebuilt after the war, Home Park was largely demolished as part of a process of renovation. The new Devonport End was opened for the 2001 Boxing Day fixture with Torquay United, the other end, the Barn Park End, opened on the same day. The Lyndhurst stand reopened on 26 January 2002 for the game against Oxford United, plans are currently under discussion regarding the completion of the refurbishment of the ground with the replacement of the Mayflower stand. The ground is situated in Central Park, very near to the area of Peverell. Towards the end of the 2005–06 Championship season, the decided to buy the stadium for £2.7 million from Plymouth City Council. This purchase was concluded in December 2006, in December 2009 it was announced that the stadium was to be one of 12 chosen to host matches during the World Cup 2018, should Englands bid be successful. The then Argyle chairman Paul Stapleton stated that work on a new South Stand at Home Park would start in 2010, however, England failed to be chosen for the 2018 tournament, and Plymouth Argyle entered administration in March 2011. After selling the back to the council on 14 October 2011 for £1.6 million. The club was taken over by local business owner James Brent, who submitted fresh plans to build a new Mayflower Grandstand with a 5,000 seating capacity