Charlton Athletic F.C.
Charlton Athletic Football Club is an English professional association football club based in Charlton, south-east London. They play in the third tier of English football; the club was founded on 9 June 1905 when a number of youth clubs in south-east London, including East Street Mission and Blundell Mission, combined to form Charlton Athletic. The club play at the Valley in Charlton, where they have played since 1919, apart from one year in Catford, during 1923–24, seven years at Crystal Palace and West Ham United between 1985 and 1992. Charlton turned professional in 1920 and first entered the Football League in 1921. Since they have had four separate periods in the top flight of English football: 1936–1957, 1986–1990, 1998–1999, 2000–2007. Charlton's most successful period was the 1930s, when the club's highest league finishes were recorded, including runners-up of the First Division in 1937. After World War II, the club reached the FA Cup Final twice, losing in 1946 and winning in 1947; the club's traditional kit consists of red shirts, white shorts and red socks, their most used nickname is The Addicks.
The club share local rivalries with Millwall. Charlton Athletic F. C. were formed on 9 June 1905 by a group of 15- to 17-year-olds in East Street, now known as Eastmoor Street and no longer residential. Charlton spent most of the years before the First World War playing in youth leagues, they became a senior side in 1913 the same year that nearby Woolwich Arsenal relocated to North London. After the war, they joined the Kent League for one season before becoming professional, appointing Walter Rayner as the first full-time manager, they were accepted by the Southern League and played just a single season before being voted into the Football League. Charlton's first Football League match was against Exeter City in August 1921, which they won 1–0. In 1923, Charlton became "giant killers" in the FA Cup beating top flight sides Manchester City, West Bromwich Albion, Preston North End before losing to eventual winners Bolton Wanderers in the Quarter-Finals; that year, it was proposed that Charlton merge with Catford Southend to create a larger team with bigger support.
In the 1923–24 season Charlton played in Catford at The Mount stadium and wore the colours of "The Enders", light and dark blue vertical stripes. However, the move fell through and the Addicks returned to the Charlton area in 1924, returning to the traditional red and white colours in the process. Charlton finished second bottom in the Football League in 1926 and were forced to apply for re-election, successful. Three years the Addicks won the Division Three championship in 1929 and they remained at the Division Two level for four years. After relegation into the Third Division south at the end of the 1932–33 season the club appointed Jimmy Seed as manager and he oversaw the most successful period in Charlton's history either side of the Second World War. Seed, an ex-miner who had made a career as a footballer despite suffering the effects of poison gas in the First World War, remains the most successful manager in Charlton's history, he is commemorated in the name of a stand at the Valley. Seed was an innovative thinker about the game at a time when tactical formations were still unsophisticated.
He recalled "a simple scheme that enabled us to pull several matches out of the fire" during the 1934–35 season: when the team was in trouble "the centre-half was to forsake his defensive role and go up into the attack to add weight to the five forwards." The organisation Seed brought to the team proved effective and the Addicks gained successive promotions from the Third Division to the First Division between 1934 and 1936, becoming the first club to do so. Charlton secured promotion to the First Division by beating local rivals West Ham United at the Boleyn Ground, with their centre-half John Oakes playing on despite concussion and a broken nose. In 1937, Charlton finished runners up in the First Division, in 1938 finished fourth and 1939 finished third, they were the most consistent team in the top flight of English football over the three seasons before the Second World War. This continued during the war years and they won the "war" cup and appeared in finals. Charlton lost 4 -- 1 to Derby County at Wembley.
Charlton's Bert Turner scored an own goal in the eightieth minute before equalising for the Addicks a minute to take them into extra time, but they conceded three further goals in the extra period. When the full league programme resumed in 1946–47 Charlton could finish only 19th in the First Division, just above the relegation spots, but they made amends with their performance in the FA Cup, reaching the 1947 FA Cup Final; this time they were successful, beating Burnley 1–0, with Chris Duffy scoring the only goal of the day. In this period of renewed football attendances, Charlton became one of only thirteen English football teams to average over 40,000 as their attendance during a full season; the Valley was the largest football ground in the League, drawing crowds in excess of 70,000. However, in the 1950s little investment was made either for players or to The Valley, hampering the club's growth. In 1956, the board undermined Jimmy Seed and asked for his resignation. From the late 1950s until the early 1970s, Charlton remained a mainstay of the Second Division before relegation to the Third Division in 1972 caused the team's support to drop, a promotion in 1975 back to the second division did little to re-invigorate the team's support and finances.
In 1979–80 Charlton were relegated again to the Third Division, but won immed
Wembley Stadium (1923)
The original Wembley Stadium was a football stadium in Wembley Park, which stood on the same site now occupied by its successor, the new Wembley Stadium. The demolition in 2003 of its famous Twin Towers upset many people worldwide. Debris from the stadium was used to make the Northala Fields in London. Wembley hosted the FA Cup final annually, the first in 1923, the League Cup final annually, five European Cup finals, the 1966 World Cup Final, the final of Euro 96. Brazilian footballer Pelé once said of the stadium: "Wembley is the cathedral of football, it is the capital of football and it is the heart of football," in recognition of its status as the world's best-known football stadium. The stadium hosted the 1948 Summer Olympics, rugby league’s Challenge Cup final, the 1992 and 1995 Rugby League World Cup Finals, it hosted numerous music events, including the 1985 Live Aid charity concert, in professional wrestling hosted the WWF’s SummerSlam in 1992. The stadium's first turf was cut by King George V, it was first opened to the public on 28 April 1923.
Much of Humphry Repton's original Wembley Park landscape was transformed in 1922–23 during preparations for the British Empire Exhibition of 1924–25. First known as the British Empire Exhibition Stadium or Empire Stadium, it was built by Sir Robert McAlpine for the British Empire Exhibition of 1924; the stadium cost was constructed on the site of an earlier folly called Watkin's Tower. The architects were the head engineer Sir Owen Williams, it was intended to demolish the stadium at the end of the Exhibition, but it was saved at the suggestion of Sir James Stevenson, a Scot, chairman of the organising committee for the Empire Exhibition. The ground had been used for football as early as the 1880sAt the end of the exhibition, an entrepreneur Arthur Elvin started buying the derelict buildings one by one, demolishing them and selling the scrap; the stadium had gone into liquidation after it was pronounced "financially unviable". Elvin offered to buy the stadium for £127,000, using a £12,000 downpayment and the balance plus interest payable over ten years.
After complications following the death of James White, the original Stadium owner, Elvin bought Wembley Stadium from the new owners, Wembley Company, at the original price, since they honoured Elvin's original deal. They immediately bought it back from Elvin, leaving him with a healthy profit. Instead of cash, he received shares, which gave him the largest stake in Wembley Stadium, he subsequently became chairman; the electric scoreboard and the all-encircling roof, made from aluminium and translucent glass, were added in 1963. The stadium's distinctive Twin Towers became its nickname. Well known were the 39 steps needed to be climbed to reach the Royal box and collect a trophy. Wembley was the first pitch to be referred to as "Hallowed Turf", with many stadia around the world borrowing this phrase. In 1934, the Empire Pool was built nearby; the "Wembley Stadium Collection" is held by the National Football Museum. The stadium closed in October 2000 and demolition commenced in December 2002, completing in 2003 for redevelopment.
The top of one of the twin towers was erected as a memorial in the park on the north side of Overton Close in the Saint Raphael's Estate. Wembley is best known for hosting football matches, having hosted the FA Cup Final annually as well as numerous England International fixtures; the Empire Stadium was built in 300 days at the cost of £750,000. Described as the world's greatest sporting arena, it was ready only four days before the "White Horse" Final in 1923; the FA had not considered admission by ticket, grossly underestimating the number of fans who arrived at the 104 gates on match day. However, after the match, every event, apart from the 1982 replay, was ticketed; the first event held at the stadium was the FA Cup Final on 28 April 1923 between Bolton Wanderers and West Ham United. This is known as the White Horse Final; such was the eagerness of fans and casual observers to attend the final at the new national stadium that vast numbers of people crammed through the 104 turnstiles into the stadium, far exceeding its official 127,000 capacity.
The crowds overflowed onto the pitch. Estimates of the number of fans in attendance range from 240,000 to well over 300,000, it is estimated. The FA were forced to refund 10% of the total gate money to fans unable to reach the terraces; the White Horse Final has the highest unofficial "non-racing" sports attendance in the world. It was thought that the match would not be played because of the volume of spectators inside the stadium that had spilled onto the pitch; that was until mounted police, including Police Constable George Scorey and his white horse, Billy pushed the masses back to the sides of the field of play for the FA Cup Final to start, just 45 minutes late. In honour of Billy, the footbridge outside the new Wembley Stadium has been named the White Horse Bridge; the official attendance is quoted as 126,047. The match was a 2–0 victory for Bolton Wanderers, with David Jack scoring the first goal at Wembley; the 1953 FA Cup Final between Blackpool and Bolton Wanderers was dubbed the "Matthews Final" after Blackpool's winger Stanley Matthews.
At age 38, he was making his third and his final attempt at winning an FA Cup medal. In the previous six years, he failed to earn a winner's medal against Manchester United in 1948 and Newcastle United in 1951, it featured a hat-trick by Blackpool's Stan Mortensen in his side's 4–3 w
Manchester United F.C.
Manchester United Football Club is a professional football club based in Old Trafford, Greater Manchester, 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 more trophies than any other club in English football, with a record 20 League titles, 12 FA Cups, 5 League Cups and a record 21 FA Community Shields. United have won three UEFA Champions Leagues, one UEFA Europa League, one UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, one UEFA Super Cup, one Intercontinental Cup and one FIFA Club World Cup. In 1998–99, the club became the first in the history of English football to achieve the continental European treble. By winning the UEFA Europa League in 2016–17, they became one of five clubs to have won all three main UEFA club competitions; 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 as manager, including 13 Premier League titles, 5 FA Cups and 2 UEFA Champions Leagues, between 1986 and 2013, when he announced his retirement. Manchester United was the highest-earning football club in the world for 2016–17, with an annual revenue of €676.3 million, the world's most valuable football club in 2018, valued at £3.1 billion. As of June 2015, it is the world's most valuable football brand, estimated to be worth $1.2 billion. After being floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1991, the club was purchased by Malcolm Glazer in May 2005 in a deal valuing the club at £800 million, after which the company was taken private again, before going public once more in August 2012, when they made an initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange. Manchester United is one of the most supported football clubs in the world, has rivalries 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. The team played games against other departments and railway companies, but on 20 November 1880, they competed in their first recorded match. By 1888, the club had become a founding member of a regional football league. Following the league's dissolution after only one season, Newton Heath joined the newly formed Football Alliance, which ran for three seasons before being merged with the Football League; 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 £280,000 in 2019 – the club was served with a winding-up order. Captain Harry Stafford found four local businessmen, including John Henry Davies, each willing to invest £500 in return for a direct interest in running the club and who subsequently changed the name.
Under Ernest Mangnall, who assumed managerial duties in 1903, the team finished as Second Division runners-up in 1906 and secured promotion to the First Division, which they won in 1908 – the club's first league title. The following season began with victory in the first Charity Shield and ended with the club's first FA Cup title. 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, where it remained until regaining promotion in 1925. 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. Following the death of principal benefactor John Henry Davies in October 1927, the club's finances deteriorated to the extent that Manchester United would have gone bankrupt had it not been for James W. Gibson, who, in December 1931, invested £2,000 and assumed control of the club.
In the 1938–39 season, the last year of football before the Second World War, the club finished 14th in the First Division. In October 1945, the impending resumption of football led to the managerial appointment of Matt Busby, who demanded an unprecedented level of control over team selection, player transfers and training sessions. Busby led the team to second-place league finishes in 1947, 1948 and 1949, to FA Cup victory in 1948. In 1952, the club won its first league title for 41 years, they won back-to-back league titles in 1956 and 1957. 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. En route to the semi-final, which they lost to Real Madrid, the team recorded a 10–0 victory over Belgian champions Anderlecht, which remains the club's biggest victory on record; the following season, on the way home from a European Cup quarter-final victory against Red Star Belgrade, the aircraft carrying the Manchester United players and journalists crashed while attempting to take off after refuelling in Munich, Germany.
A hat-trick or hat trick is the achievement of a positive feat three times in a game, or another achievement based on the number three. The term first appeared in 1858 in cricket, to describe H. H. Stephenson's taking three wickets with three consecutive deliveries. Fans held a collection for Stephenson, presented him with a hat bought with the proceeds; the term was used in print for the first time in 1865. The term was adopted by many other sports including hockey, association football, water polo, team handball. A hat-trick occurs in association football when a player scores three goals in a single game, whereas scoring two goals constitutes a brace. In common with other official record-keeping rules, penalty-kick goals are counted but goals in a penalty shootout are excluded from the tally; the extra time in a knockout cup match may be calculated towards a player's potential hat-trick. The fastest recorded time to score a hat-trick is 70 seconds, a record set by Alex Torr in a Sunday league game in 2013.
The previous record of 90 seconds was held by Tommy Ross playing for Ross County against Nairn County on 28 November 1964. The first hat-trick in an international game was by Scottish player John McDougall, against England on 2 March 1878. American player Bert Patenaude scored the first hat-trick in the FIFA World Cup, against Paraguay in the inaugural event. Two hat-tricks have been scored in a World Cup final, by Geoff Hurst for England in the 1966 final during extra time against West Germany, Carli Lloyd for the USA against Japan in the 2015 Women's World Cup final. Lloyd's was the fastest hat-trick scored in a World Cup final at 13 minutes from first to last goal, at 16 minutes the fastest from kickoff in any World Cup match for either sex. However, the fastest World Cup hat-trick for either men or women, as measured by time between goals, belongs to Fabienne Humm of Switzerland, who scored in the 47th, 49th and 52nd minutes against Ecuador in the 2015 group stage. Football has extended the term to include the phrase perfect hat-trick, achieved when a player scores one right-footed goal, one left-footed goal and one headed goal within one match.
In Germany and Austria, the term Hattrick refers to when a player scores three goals in a row in one half without the half-time break or a goal scored by another player interrupting the performance. Traditionally, a player who scores a hat-trick is allowed to keep the match ball as a memento. In the past, the term was used to describe when a player struck out three times in a baseball game, the term golden sombrero was more used when a player struck out four times in a game. In recent years, hat trick has been more used to describe when a player hits three home runs in a game. For example, on 29 August 2015, Toronto Blue Jays fans celebrated Edwin Encarnación's third home run of the game by throwing hats onto the field, similar to the tradition in ice hockey; the phenomenon continued during the 2016 season, on 17 June 2016, a number of Blue Jays fans at Oriole Park at Camden Yards threw hats on to the field after Toronto Blue Jays player Michael Saunders hit his third home run of the night, again on 28 August at Rogers Centre, when Blue Jays player Josh Donaldson hitting his third home run of the game in the eighth inning against the Minnesota Twins.
A hat-trick occurs in cricket. The deliveries may be interrupted by an over bowled by another bowler from the other end of the pitch or the other team's innings, but must be three consecutive deliveries by the individual bowler in the same match. Only wickets attributed to the bowler count towards a hat-trick. Hat-tricks are rare, as such are treasured by bowlers. In Test cricket history there have been just 43 hat-tricks, the first achieved by Fred Spofforth for Australia against England in 1879. In 1912, Australian Jimmy Matthews achieved the feat twice in one game against South Africa; the only other players to achieve two hat-tricks are Australia's Hugh Trumble, against England in 1902 and 1904, Pakistan's Wasim Akram, in separate games against Sri Lanka in 1999, England's Stuart Broad. In One Day International cricket there have been 36 hat-tricks, the first by Jalal-ud-Din for Pakistan against Australia in 1982, the most recent by Trent Boult. Lasith Malinga is the only bowler to take three hat-tricks in any form of international cricket with his three in ODI.
Three players have taken at least two ODI hat-tricks in their careers: Wasim Akram and Saqlain Mushtaq of Pakistan and Chaminda Vaas of Sri Lanka.. Taking two wickets in two consecutive deliveries is known as a brace, or being on a hat-trick; the feat of taking four wickets in four balls has occurred only once in international one-day cricket, in the 2007 World Cup, when Sri Lanka's Lasith Malinga managed the feat against South Africa by dismissing Shaun Pollock, Andrew Hall, Jacques Kallis and Makhaya Ntini, though it has occurred on other occasions in first-class cricket. Kevan James of Hampshire took four wickets in four balls and scored a century in the same county game against India in 1996; the Cricinfo report on the game claimed. Nuwan Zoysa of Sri Lanka is the only bowler to achieve a hat-trick off his first three balls in a Test, dismissing Murray Goodwin, Neil Johnson and Trevor Gripper of Zimbabwe. In 2006 Irfan Pathan of India achieved a hat-trick in the first over of the test match, off the last three balls, when dismissing Salman Butt, Younis Khan and Mohammad Yousuf of Pakistan.
Chaminda Vaas is the only o
Preston North End F.C.
Preston North End Football Club is a professional football club in Preston, whose team plays in the EFL Championship, the second tier of the English football league system. A cricket club, Preston have been based at Deepdale since 1875; the club first took up football in 1878 as a winter fitness activity and decided to focus on it in May 1880, when the football club was founded. Deepdale is now football's oldest ground in terms of continuous use by a major league club. Preston North End was a founder member of the Football League in 1888. In the 1888–89 season, the team won both the inaugural league championship and the FA Cup, the latter without conceding a goal, they were the first team to achieve the "Double" in English football and, as they were unbeaten in all matches, are remembered as "The Invincibles". Preston won the league championship again in 1889–90 but their only major success since has been their 1938 FA Cup Final victory over Huddersfield Town; the club's most famous players have been Tom Finney and Bill Shankly, who are both commemorated at Deepdale by stands named after them.
Other notable players include Alan Kelly Sr. and Graham Alexander. Until 1961, Preston were members of the First Division but, having been relegated after the 1960–61 season, they have not yet returned to the top flight, they were first relegated to the Third Division after the 1969–70 season and have spent 28 of the 49 seasons since 1970 in the bottom two divisions, including a span of 19 seasons from 1981–82 to 1999–2000. Preston were twice in danger of closure; the club is now owned by businessman Trevor Hemmings and has been established in the EFL Championship since gaining promotion in 2015. Preston North End was founded in 1863 as a cricket club, played their first matches at the Marsh near the River Ribble in the Preston suburb of Ashton; that year, they switching to Moor Park in the north of the town, calling themselves "North End" in recognition of the new location. On 21 January 1875, the club leased a field opposite Moor Park on the site of the current Deepdale stadium, its home since.
The club formed a rugby union team in 1877 as a winter fitness activity but this was not a success and, a year they played their first game under the rules of association football. In May 1880, a proposal to adopt the association code was unanimously accepted and Preston North End Football Club was founded. Preston became one of the first professional clubs by hiring players from Scotland. In 1887, they beat Hyde 26–0 in the first round of the FA Cup, still a record winning margin in English first-class football. Scottish forward Jimmy Ross scored eight goals in the match before going on to score 19 goals in the competition that season still a record, they played Hibernian F. C. in 1887 World Championship losing 2-1 in Edinburgh. In 1888–89, Preston became the first league champions and the first winners of "The Double", becoming the only team to date to go throughout an entire season unbeaten in both the league and FA Cup – winning the FA Cup without conceding a goal. In a contribution to Paul Agnew's 1989 biography of Tom Finney, the player himself wrote: "The club has long been known as Proud Preston, the Old Invincibles of the previous century set some incredible standards".
The author wrote elsewhere: "...and that team became immortalised as the'Old Invincibles'". Other sources call the team "The Invincibles" and both versions of the nickname have been used. In his autobiography, Finney wrote: "The championship stayed with North End — by now tagged the Old Invincibles — the following year, but runners-up spot had to suffice for the next three seasons"; as Finney said, Preston have not won the title since. In total, they have been league runners-up six times, including the three consecutive seasons from 1890–91 to 1892–93, twice in the 1950s when Finney was playing; the club's last major trophy win was in the 1938 FA Cup Final when they defeated Huddersfield Town 1–0 and the team included Bill Shankly, Andy Beattie and goalscorer George Mutch. Preston's most famous player, Tom Finney, joined the club as a teenager in 1938, his first team debut was delayed until 1946 by the Second World War but he played for Preston until he retired in 1960. He was nicknamed the "Preston Plumber" because of his local business.
Finney remains the club's top goalscorer, with 187 goals from 433 appearances, scored 30 international goals for England in 76 appearances. A year after Finney's retirement, Preston were relegated to the Second Division and have not played in the top division since, they had a memorable season in 1963–64 when, managed by former player Jimmy Milne, they finished third in the Second Division and reached the 1964 FA Cup Final where they lost a thrilling match 3–2 to West Ham United. Preston were first relegated to the Third Division after the 1969–70 season. Although they won promotion again the team have spent 28 of the 49 seasons since 1970 in the bottom two divisions, including a span of 19 seasons from 1981–82 to 1999–2000; the club experienced a near-terminal decline in the 1980s which brought about the real threat of closure, the nadir being the 1985–86 season when they finished 23rd in the Fourth Division and had to seek re-election to the league. Under manager John McGrath, the team recovered and won promotion back to the Third Division only a year but it was a false dawn as the team spent another three years in the bottom division from 1993 to 1996.
The club began to recover and move forward after a takeover by heating manufacturer Baxi in 1994 but their ownership ended in June 2002. The team's ce
L.R. Vicenza Virtus
L. R. Vicenza Virtus referred to as Vicenza, is an Italian football club based in Vicenza, Veneto. Founded in 1902 as Associazione del Calcio in Vicenza, they became Lanerossi Vicenza in 1953 Vicenza Calcio from 1990 to 2018, a year which saw the club going bankrupt and being put under controlled administration in order to preserve the Serie C spot at the end of the 2017-18 season. Renzo Rosso, owner of Diesel, merged its Bassano Virtus and some of the assets of Vicenza Calcio into one team, which will play in Vicenza, while the two sides will preserve their distinct youth teams. Vicenza is the oldest team in Veneto; the club plays in Italy's Serie C, having spent the entire 1960s, most of the 1970s and a large part of the 1990s in Serie A. Vicenza competed in the Italian Championship for the first time in 1911. During the 20s and the 30s, the team played in the lower divisions, reaching the first division for the first time in 1942. In the last round of the season, a 6–2 win versus Juventus in Turin, meant a final relegation escape.
In 1947, Vicenza were relegated at the end of the following season. The early 1950s were quite troublesome due to economic problems, but in 1953 the club was bought by Lanerossi, a woollen firm from Schio, with the side being renamed Lanerossi Vicenza. Between 1955 and 1975 Vicenza never left the top level, always putting a hard fight against more established clubs. In this period the side was known as Nobile Provinciale. In 1964 and 1966 it finished 6th, with the Brazilian Luis Vinicio finishing league's top-scorer in the former with 25 goals. In 1975 the club was relegated, after winning the 1976–77 second division, they would finish runners-up in the following season with a young Paolo Rossi led the scoring charts with 24 goals. In that year the side was nicknamed Real Vicenza. Club chairman Giuseppe Farina had just bought the striker from Juventus for a record fee of 2.6 billion lire, but the team would drop two divisions in just three seasons. In the mid-1980s, Roberto Baggio started his career at the club, leading it to the Serie B.
In 1986 Vicenza achieved a top flight promotion, subsequently denied due to its involvement in the second Totonero match-fixing scandal. The club was soon relegated back to Serie C1. In 1990 Vicenza took back its current name and was promoted to Serie B in 1993, thanks to coach Renzo Ulivieri, his successor, Francesco Guidolin took the team back to Serie A in 1995, led it through successive successful seasons. After finishing ninth in the league, the club won the 1996–97 Italian Cup with a 3–1 aggregate win over Napoli reaching next year's Cup Winners' Cup semi-finals, being defeated by Chelsea after winning the first leg in Vicenza for 1–0. In 1999 the team was relegated to Serie B and after a return to the top flight in 2000–01, was relegated to Lega Pro Prima Divisione in 2005, after losing a relegation playout against Triestina. However, the club was readmitted to Serie B as F. I. G. C. Had determined that Genoa C. F. C. had fixed the final match of the season. In the season 2011–12 the club was relegated to Lega Pro Prima Divisione after losing the relegation play-off against Empoli.
Vicenza, were reinstated in Serie B at the eve of the 2012–13 season in place of Lecce for its role in the 2011–12 Italian football scandal. However, the club finished the 2012-13 in 19th place. Vicenza ended the 2013–14 season in fifth place, being successively defeated by Savona in the promotion play-offs, were due to play the 2014–15 season in the unified Lega Pro division, that would have featured an unprecedented crosstown derby against Real Vicenza. However, the dissolution of Siena meant Vicenza were promoted to become the 22nd team in Serie B. Vicenza were relegated again at the conclusion of the 2016–17 Serie B after finishing 20th; the club entered a debt restructuring process since March 2016, which the new director stating that the club required a re-capitalization of at least €20 million. Vi. Fin. S.p. A. A special purpose vehicle for a consortium of new investors, provided just €2.5 million new shares of the club in May 2016. Before the recapitalization, Vi. Fin. acquired most of the shares of the club from Finalfa S.r.l.
A company owned by Sergio Cassingena. Former Vicenza chairman Tiziano Cunico and CEO Dario Cassingena were sued by the prosecutor of Italian Football Federation in September 2016 for allegations of reporting false profits from player exchanges with Parma; the players under the investigation that involving Vicenza were Sandrini Eventually the club and directors were inadmissible from the charge due to expiry of the legal proceeding. In a different matter, Dario Cassingena was sentenced 10 months by the Court of Vicenza, after the football club failed to paid the value-added tax in time. On 1 June 2017 the contract of general manager Andrea Gazzoli was resolved in a mutual consent and on 5 June, Alfredo Pastorelli resigned as the chairman. On 10 July 2017, Luxembourg-based Boreas Capital Sàrl announced; the parent company of Boreas Capital was Dubai-based G. S. Holding. However, the club faced another financial trouble during the first season of new owner
Old Trafford is a football stadium in Old Trafford, Greater Manchester and the home of Manchester United. With a capacity of 74,994, it is the largest club football stadium in the United Kingdom, the eleventh-largest in Europe, it is about 0.5 miles from the adjacent tram stop. Nicknamed "The Theatre of Dreams" by Bobby Charlton, Old Trafford has been United's home ground since 1910, although from 1941 to 1949 the club shared Maine Road with local rivals Manchester City as a result of Second World War bomb damage. Old Trafford underwent several expansions in the 1990s, 2000s, including the addition of extra tiers to the North and East Stands returning the stadium to its original capacity of 80,000. Future expansion is to involve the addition of a second tier to the South Stand, which would raise the capacity to around 88,000; the stadium's record attendance was recorded in 1939, when 76,962 spectators watched the FA Cup semi-final between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Grimsby Town. Old Trafford has hosted FA Cup semi-finals, England fixtures, matches at the 1966 World Cup and Euro 96 and the 2003 Champions League Final, as well as rugby league's annual Super League Grand Final and the final of two Rugby League World Cups.
It hosted football matches at the 2012 Summer Olympics, including women's international football for the first time in its history. Before 1902, Manchester United were known as Newton Heath, during which time they first played their football matches at North Road and Bank Street in Clayton. However, both grounds were blighted by wretched conditions, the pitches ranging from gravel to marsh, while Bank Street suffered from clouds of fumes from its neighbouring factories. Therefore, following the club's rescue from near-bankruptcy and renaming, the new chairman John Henry Davies decided in 1909 that the Bank Street ground was not fit for a team that had won the First Division and FA Cup, so he donated funds for the construction of a new stadium. Not one to spend money frivolously, Davies scouted around Manchester for an appropriate site, before settling on a patch of land adjacent to the Bridgewater Canal, just off the north end of the Warwick Road in Old Trafford. Designed by Scottish architect Archibald Leitch, who designed several other stadia, the ground was designed with a capacity of 100,000 spectators and featured seating in the south stand under cover, while the remaining three stands were left as terraces and uncovered.
Including the purchase of the land, the construction of the stadium was to have cost £60,000 all told. However, as costs began to rise, to reach the intended capacity would have cost an extra £30,000 over the original estimate and, at the suggestion of club secretary J. J. Bentley, the capacity was reduced to 80,000. At a time when transfer fees were still around the £1,000 mark, the cost of construction only served to reinforce the club's "Moneybags United" epithet, with which they had been tarred since Davies had taken over as chairman. In May 1908, Archibald Leitch wrote to the Cheshire Lines Committee – who had a rail depot adjacent to the proposed site for the football ground – in an attempt to persuade them to subsidise construction of the grandstand alongside the railway line; the subsidy would have come to the sum of £10,000, to be paid back at the rate of £2,000 per annum for five years or half of the gate receipts for the grandstand each year until the loan was repaid. However, despite guarantees for the loan coming from the club itself and two local breweries, both chaired by club chairman John Henry Davies, the Cheshire Lines Committee turned the proposal down.
The CLC had planned to build a new station adjacent to the new stadium, with the promise of an anticipated £2,750 per annum in fares offsetting the £9,800 cost of building the station. The station – Trafford Park – was built, but further down the line than planned; the CLC constructed a modest station with one timber-built platform adjacent to the stadium and this opened on 21 August 1935. It was named United Football Ground, but was renamed Old Trafford Football Ground in early 1936, it was served on match days only by a shuttle service of steam trains from Manchester Central railway station. It is known as Manchester United Football Ground. Construction was carried out by Messrs Brameld and Smith of Manchester and development was completed in late 1909; the stadium hosted its inaugural game on 19 February 1910, with United playing host to Liverpool. However, the home side were unable to provide their fans with a win to mark the occasion, as Liverpool won 4–3. A journalist at the game reported the stadium as "the most handsomest, the most spacious and the most remarkable arena I have seen.
As a football ground it is unrivalled in the world, it is an honour to Manchester and the home of a team who can do wonders when they are so disposed". Before the construction of Wembley Stadium in 1923, the FA Cup Final was hosted by a number of different grounds around England including Old Trafford; the first of these was the 1911 FA Cup Final replay between Bradford City and Newcastle United, after the original tie at Crystal Palace finished as a no-score draw after extra time. Bradford won the goal scored by Jimmy Speirs, in a match watched by 58,000 people; the ground's second FA Cup Final was the 1915 final between Sheffield Chelsea. Sheffield United won the match 3–0 in front of nearly 50,000 spectators, most of whom were in the military, leading to the final being nicknamed "the Khaki Cup Final". On 27 December 1920, Old Trafford played host to its largest pre-Second World War attend