Wales national football team
The Wales national football team represents Wales in international football. It is controlled by the Football Association of Wales, the governing body for football in Wales and the third-oldest national football association in the world. Although part of the United Kingdom, Wales has always had a representative side that plays in major professional tournaments, though not in the Olympic Games, as the International Olympic Committee has always recognised United Kingdom representative sides. During their history, Wales have qualified for two major international tournaments, they reached the quarter-finals of the 1958 FIFA World Cup and reached the semi-finals of UEFA Euro 2016. Wales progressed through UEFA Euro 1976 qualifying to the quarter-final, played on a home and away leg basis, but they did not feature in the finals tournament. At all levels, including the youth teams, the Welsh national team draws players from clubs in the English football league system; the main professional Welsh clubs play in the English leagues, with some full-time and part-time professional clubs playing in the Welsh football league system.
Wales played its first competitive match on 25 March 1876 against Scotland in Glasgow, making it the third oldest international football team in the world. Although the Scots won the first fixture 4–0, a return match was planned in Wales the following year, so it was that the first international football match on Welsh soil took place at The Racecourse Ground, Wrexham, on 5 March 1877. Scotland took the spoils winning 2–0. Wales' first match against England came in 1879, a 2–1 defeat at the Kennington Oval, in 1882, Wales faced Ireland for the first time, winning 7–1 in Wrexham; the associations of the four Home Nations met in Manchester on 6 December 1882 to set down a set of worldwide rules. This meeting saw the establishment of the International Football Association Board to approve changes to the rules, a task the four associations still perform to this day; the 1883–84 season saw the formation of the British Home Championship, a tournament, played annually between England, Scotland and Wales, until 1983–84.
Wales were champions on 12 occasions, winning outright seven times whilst sharing the title five times. The FAW became members of FIFA, world football's governing body, in 1906, but the relationship between FIFA and the British associations was fraught and the British nations withdrew from FIFA in 1928 in a dispute over payments to amateur players; as a result, Wales did not enter the first three FIFA World Cups. In 1932, Wales played host to the Republic of Ireland, the first time they played against a side from outside the four home nations. One year Wales played a match outside the United Kingdom for the first time when they travelled to Paris to play France national football team in a match drawn 1–1. After World War II, along with the other three home nations, rejoined FIFA in 1946 and took part in the qualifying rounds for the 1950 World Cup, the 1949–50 Home Championships being designated as a qualifying group; the top two teams were to qualify for the finals in Brazil. The 1950s were a golden age for Welsh football with stars such as Ivor Allchurch, Cliff Jones, Alf Sherwood, Jack Kelsey, Trevor Ford, Ronnie Burgess, Terry Medwin and John Charles.
Wales made its only World Cup finals tournament appearance in the 1958 edition in Sweden. However, their path to qualification was unusual. Having finished second to Czechoslovakia in qualifying Group 4, the golden generation of Welsh football managed by Jimmy Murphy seemed to have missed out on qualification, but the politics of the Middle East subsequently intervened. In the Asian/African qualifying zone and Sudan had refused to play against Israel following the Suez crisis, while Indonesia had insisted on meeting Israel on neutral ground; as a result, FIFA proclaimed Israel winners of their respective group. However, FIFA did not want a team to qualify for the World Cup finals without playing a match, so lots were drawn of all the second-placed teams in UEFA. Belgium were drawn out first but refused to participate, so Wales was drawn out and awarded a two-legged play-off match against Israel with a place in Sweden for the winners. Having defeated Israel 2–0 at the Ramat Gan Stadium and 2–0 at Ninian Park, Wales went through to a World Cup finals tournament for the first—and only—time.
The strong Welsh squad made their mark in Sweden, drawing all the matches in their group against Hungary and Sweden before defeating Hungary in a play-off match to reach the quarter-finals against Brazil. However, Wales' chances of victory against Brazil were hampered by an injury to John Charles that ruled him out of the match. Wales lost; the goal made Brazil went on to win the tournament. Wales' remarkable campaign in Sweden was the subject of the best-selling book When Pele Broke Our Hearts: Wales and the 1958 World Cup, published on the 40th anniversary of the World Cup and was the inspiration for a Bafta Cymru-nominated documentary. Wales had never qualified for the finals tournament of the UEFA European Championship since its inception in 1960. However, in 1976, the team managed by Mike Smith reached the last eight of the competition, having finished top of qualifying Group 2 ahead of Hungary and Luxembourg. Prior to 1980, only four countries qualified for the finals tournament, Wales were drawn to play against the winners of Group 3—Yugoslavia—on a home and away basis match.
Wales lost the first leg 2–0 in Zagreb and were eliminated from
St Andrew's (stadium)
St Andrew's, known since June 2018 for sponsorship reasons as St Andrew's Trillion Trophy Stadium, is an association football stadium in the Bordesley district of Birmingham, England. It has been the home ground of Birmingham City Football Club for more than a century. Constructed and opened in 1906 to replace the Muntz Street ground, which had become too small to meet the club's needs, the original St Andrew's could hold an estimated 75,000 spectators, housed in one grandstand and a large uncovered terrace; the attendance record, variously recorded as 66,844 or 67,341, was set at a 1939 FA Cup tie against Everton. During the Second World War, St Andrew's suffered bomb damage and the grandstand, housing a temporary fire station, burned down in an accidental fire. In the 1950s, the club replaced the stand and installed floodlights, erected a second small stand and roofed over the open terraces, but there were few further changes; the ground became dilapidated: a boy was killed when a wall collapsed during rioting in the 1980s.
When new owners took the club out of administration in 1993, they began a six-year redevelopment programme during which the ground was converted to an all-seater stadium to comply with the Taylor Report into safety at sports grounds, all areas apart from the Main Stand were rebuilt. The seating capacity of the modern stadium is around 30,000, it has function rooms suitable for business or social events and a club store selling Birmingham City merchandise. A 2004 proposal that the club should sell the ground and move into a multi-purpose City of Birmingham Stadium remains speculative. In 2013, the ground was listed as an Asset of Community Value under the Localism Act 2011. St Andrew's has been the venue for England international football matches at all levels below the senior national team, for semifinal matches in the FA Cup and finals of lesser competitions, it has played host to events in other sports, including rugby union and professional boxing, more has staged music concerts. Small Heath Alliance – the original name of Birmingham City Football Club – played their first home games on waste ground off Arthur Street, in the Bordesley Green district of Birmingham near the site where St Andrew's would be built.
In 1876, they made a temporary move to a fenced-off field in Ladypool Road, with an estimated capacity of 3,000 spectators. Interest in the team grew, a year they moved again, this time to a rented field in Small Heath, situated on the eastern edge of Birmingham's built-up area, just north of the main road to Coventry; this ground, which became known as Muntz Street, had four sides of open terracing, a small covered wooden stand, a changing-room for the players. When first opened it could hold 10,000 spectators. Over the years the height of the terracing was raised, which increased the capacity to around 30,000, but this became insufficient to cope with the demand; the attendance at a match in 1905 against local rivals Aston Villa was recorded as 28,000 spectators, but several thousand more climbed walls or forced turnstiles to gain entry. The landlords refused to sell the freehold of the ground, nor would they permit major extensions to be made; as the board of directors estimated that staying at Muntz Street was costing the club £2,000 a year, they began the search for an alternative site.
Director Harry Morris identified a site for a new ground in Bordesley, some three-quarters of a mile from Muntz Street towards the city centre. Covering an area of 7.5 acres, bounded by Cattell Road, Coventry Road, Tilton Road, Garrison Lane and the railway, near St Andrew's church, the site was where a brickworks had once operated. Though Morris described the land itself as "a wilderness of stagnant water and muddy slopes", the Sporting Mail considered it "very favourably situated for obtaining easy communication with the city and many of the suburbs, will be served by an excellent service of electric cars, while the provision of a railway station close at hand is considered as within the bounds of possibility."The club took the land on a 21-year lease, entrusted the role of surveyor and engineer to a local carpenter, Harry Pumfrey, who despite a lack of qualifications produced plans "which would have done credit to the most expensive professional architect". Club director Thomas Turley, a builder, acted as clerk of works, it is estimated the club saved more than £2,000 in professional fees by keeping the work in-house.
Tradition has it that gypsies, evicted from the site before work could begin, laid a 100-year curse on the club. Artesian springs, which kept the land flooded, had to be drained and blocked off with tons of rubble before soil could be laid on top. To create height for the terracing on the Coventry Road side of the ground, the club offered the site as a tip, local people paying a total of £800 for dumping an estimated 100,000 loads of rubbish; this embankment was known from the beginning as the Spion Kop, stood 110 terraces high at its highest point, had a reported capacity of 48,000 spectators, each paying 6d. The Grandstand, on the Garrison Lane side of the ground, was 123 yards in length, it held 6,000 seats divided among six sections, priced from 1s to 2s, all accesses were lit by electricity. In front of the stand was space for 5,000 to stand under cover. Beneath the stand were refreshment rooms, changing rooms, a training area with plunge bath, a billiard room donated by brewery magnate Sir John Hol
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
Jordanhill is an affluent area of the West End of the city of Glasgow, Scotland. The area consists of terraced housing dating from the early to mid 20th century, with some detached and semi-detached homes and some modern apartments; the University of Strathclyde has an education faculty in the area and the associated school has a high reputation. The area was part of the Jordanhill Estate within the parish of Renfrew centred on Jordanhill House. Before the twentieth century, Jordanhill was a poor area, similar to neighbouring Knightswood, with mining for coal at Skaterigg; the building of more affluent residences was coincidental with the expansion of Glasgow and the construction of a commuter railway. The site of the house was sold to Jordanhill Teacher Training College, is now the home of the Strathclyde University Faculty Of Education; the area consists of terraced housing dating from the early to mid 20th century, with some detached and semi-detached homes and some modern apartments. Jordanhill and Knightswood have been linked to stories of the Knights Templar.
When asked, the Lord Lyon King of Arms rebutted a proposal to include the Maltese cross of the Knights of St. John in the crest of Jordanhill College. Jordanhill may be related to the family name "Jardine". There are a number of parks in Jordanhill and the immediate vicinity, as well as large playing fields on the Jordanhill Campus. Jordanhill is directly adjacent to Victoria Park, one of the largest green spaces in Glasgow and home to the Fossil Grove, an area of fossilized prehistoric tree stumps; the area has excellent transport links. Jordanhill railway station has regular local train services to central Glasgow on the North Clyde and Argyle lines, regular bus services are provided by First Glasgow; the Clyde Tunnel is located nearby. There are two pubs in the area, both are situated near the railway station; this area used to be home to a branch of The Jolly Giant Toy Superstores, based on Crow Road. Jordanhill School is located on Chamberlain Road at the foot of the hill on which Jordanhill College sits, was the College's training school.
It is now a state comprehensive school. The school is unique in the Scottish state sector in that it contains both Primary and Secondary departments, providing education for children from 4 to 18, in that it has Grant Maintained status and is independent from local government control, it had been an independent demonstration school for Jordanhill College. Private school the High School of Glasgow is located in the Jordanhill vicinity. Saint Thomas Aquinas Secondary School is a Catholic secondary school located on Mitre Road in the newer part of Jordanhill, it has several feeder primary schools, including Corpus Christi, Notre Dame, St Pauls, St. Peter's, St. Brendan's, St. Patrick's in, St. Clare's and St. Ninian's. There are two churches in Jordanhill, both located on Woodend Drive, off Crow Road: Jordanhill Parish Church and All Saints Church. Both churches are used for a variety of community and social events, in addition to regular worship, All Saints is home to Westbourne Gardens Nursery School.
The 72nd and 178th Glasgow Scouts are based in the area, as well as 130th and the 272nd Glasgow Boys' Brigades. Hillhead Jordanhill RFC Jordanhill School A Short History of Jordanhill dated 1931 Historical notes on South Jordanhill 130th Glasgow Company, The Boys' Brigade Jordanhill Parish Church All Saints Scottish Episcopal Church Jordanhill Phoenix Rugby Football Club
Scottish Football League XI
The Scottish League XI was a representative side of the Scottish Football League. The team played against the Football League and other national league select teams between 1892 and 1980. For a long period the annual fixture between the English and Scottish leagues was only second in importance to the matches between the two national teams; the fixture declined in importance after regular European club competition was instituted in the 1950s. A match involving a Scottish League XI was last played in 1990. Soon after the creation of the Scottish Football League in 1890, there was a desire on the part of its officials to test its strength against the more senior Football League. An Anglo-Scottish league match was first played in April 1892 at Pike's Lane and ended in a 2–2 draw; the first Football League team contained Scottish players. This practice did not continue, however, as Scots were not selected for the Football League again until the 1960s, by when the match was declining in importance.
A return match was played at Celtic Park in April 1893, attracting an attendance of 31,500. In the same year, the Scottish League played its first match against the Irish League XI, in Belfast. In the early years of organised football, clubs in the Football League were exclusively from northern England and the Midlands, while clubs from southern England played in the Southern Football League; the increased importance of the Southern League was reflected when a fixture was played between the Scottish League and the Southern League for the first time, at Millwall in October 1910. The Southern League won both a match against The Football League in the same year; these matches continued until the First World War, after which the Southern League was absorbed into the Football League. Frederick Wall, the secretary of the Football Association, wrote to the SFL in 1913 objecting to the use of the term "international" in describing matches between the Scottish League and the Football League; the SFL defended their right to use the term in Scottish advertising of the fixture.
The Scottish League team was always at a disadvantage compared to the Scotland national team because many of the better Scottish players were contracted to English clubs. Despite this handicap, the Scottish League team performed quite well before the fixtures were stopped due to the First World War. After the end of the war, the Scottish Football League was badly affected by the decline of heavy industry, which meant that only the Old Firm clubs and Motherwell were able to retain a high standard of player. To improve the standard of the Scottish League team, two notable English-born players were selected, Bob Ferrier of Motherwell and J. B. McAlpine of Queen's Park as well as Donegal-born Patsy Gallacher, their birthplace meant that they were ineligible to play for the national team, but they were educated and played all of their senior football in Scotland. Despite these efforts, the Scottish League team suffered heavy defeats against the Football League in 1928 and 1930; the Football League started to express concerns about the viability of the match because playing it on a Saturday meant that any cancelled league fixtures had to be played instead on midweek afternoons as floodlights were not yet in use.
The match continued to be played because the fixtures in Scotland were well attended and therefore lucrative to both leagues. The higher attendances in Scotland reflected the greater interest in the fixture there; some venues in England had good attendance though Newcastle. Matches against the Irish League XI were poorly attended. In the early years of the fixture, steps were taken to improve attendance, such as moving it around Scotland and picking local players. For example, the match in 1900 was played at Easter Road and each of the four senior Edinburgh clubs were represented. Just before the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939, the Scottish League played its first match against the League of Ireland XI; the clubs in the Irish Free State had formed their own League of Ireland after the partition of Ireland in 1922. The League of Ireland XI won 2–1 against a strong Scottish League XI. Only one inter-league match was played during the Second World War, a 3–2 defeat against the Football League at Blackpool in October 1941.
The Scottish League XI selected Matt Busby, playing as a guest for Hibernian. Attendances for the inter-league matches increased after the war; the first match, a 3–1 defeat to a Football League XI inspired by Stanley Matthews and Wilf Mannion, attracted 84,000 to Hampden Park on a snowy day in March 1947. The less attractive fixture against the Irish League XI drew a crowd of 62,000 to Ibrox Park in 1949. A frequent problem for the selectors was judging the strength of opposition and the importance of the match. An example of this was when the Scottish League XI played a Welsh League XI at Cardiff in September 1952, although the term "Welsh League" was inaccurate as their players were selected from the Welsh clubs playing in the Football League; the Scottish League picked only a few players of genuine international quality and lost 3–0, with Ivor Allchurch scoring twice for the Welsh side. The Scottish League XI played opposition from outside the British Isles for the first time in 1955, when a Danish Combination was beaten 4–0 in Copenhagen.
The South African player Johnny Hubbard scored one of the goals. The best result achieved by the Scottish League XI was in November 1961, when an Italian league team containing John Charles and Denis Law was held to a 1–1 draw at Hampden, watched by 6
Birmingham is the second-most populous city in the United Kingdom, after London, the most populous city in the English Midlands. It is the most populous metropolitan district in the United Kingdom, with an estimated 1,137,123 inhabitants, is considered the social, cultural and commercial centre of the Midlands, it is the main local government of the West Midlands conurbation, the third most populated urban area in the United Kingdom, with a population of 2,897,303 in 2017. The wider Birmingham metropolitan area is the second largest in the United Kingdom with a population of over 4.3 million. It is referred to as the United Kingdom's "second city". A market town in the medieval period, Birmingham grew in the 18th-century Midlands Enlightenment and subsequent Industrial Revolution, which saw advances in science and economic development, producing a series of innovations that laid many of the foundations of modern industrial society. By 1791 it was being hailed as "the first manufacturing town in the world".
Birmingham's distinctive economic profile, with thousands of small workshops practising a wide variety of specialised and skilled trades, encouraged exceptional levels of creativity and innovation and provided an economic base for prosperity, to last into the final quarter of the 20th century. The Watt steam engine was invented in Birmingham; the resulting high level of social mobility fostered a culture of political radicalism which, under leaders from Thomas Attwood to Joseph Chamberlain, was to give it a political influence unparalleled in Britain outside London, a pivotal role in the development of British democracy. From the summer of 1940 to the spring of 1943, Birmingham was bombed by the German Luftwaffe in what is known as the Birmingham Blitz; the damage done to the city's infrastructure, in addition to a deliberate policy of demolition and new building by planners, led to extensive urban regeneration in subsequent decades. Birmingham's economy is now dominated by the service sector.
The city is a major international commercial centre, ranked as a beta- world city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network. Its metropolitan economy is the second largest in the United Kingdom with a GDP of $121.1bn, its six universities make it the largest centre of higher education in the country outside London. Birmingham's major cultural institutions – the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Birmingham Royal Ballet, the Birmingham Repertory Theatre, the Library of Birmingham and the Barber Institute of Fine Arts – enjoy international reputations, the city has vibrant and influential grassroots art, music and culinary scenes. Birmingham is the fourth-most. People from Birmingham are called Brummies, a term derived from the city's nickname of "Brum", which originates from the city's old name, which in turn is thought to have derived from "Bromwich-ham"; the Brummie accent and dialect are distinctive. Birmingham's early history is that of a marginal area; the main centres of population and wealth in the pre-industrial English Midlands lay in the fertile and accessible river valleys of the Trent, the Severn and the Avon.
The area of modern Birmingham lay in between, on the upland Birmingham Plateau and within the densely wooded and sparsely populated Forest of Arden. There is evidence of early human activity in the Birmingham area dating back to around 8000 BC, with stone age artefacts suggesting seasonal settlements, overnight hunting parties and woodland activities such as tree felling; the many burnt mounds that can still be seen around the city indicate that modern humans first intensively settled and cultivated the area during the bronze age, when a substantial but short-lived influx of population occurred between 1700 BC and 1000 BC caused by conflict or immigration in the surrounding area. During the 1st-century Roman conquest of Britain, the forested country of the Birmingham Plateau formed a barrier to the advancing Roman legions, who built the large Metchley Fort in the area of modern-day Edgbaston in AD 48, made it the focus of a network of Roman roads. Birmingham as a settlement dates from the Anglo-Saxon era.
The city's name comes from the Old English Beormingahām, meaning the home or settlement of the Beormingas – indicating that Birmingham was established in the 6th or early 7th century as the primary settlement of an Anglian tribal grouping and regio of that name. Despite this early importance, by the time of the Domesday Book of 1086 the manor of Birmingham was one of the poorest and least populated in Warwickshire, valued at only 20 shillings, with the area of the modern city divided between the counties of Warwickshire and Worcestershire; the development of Birmingham into a significant urban and commercial centre began in 1166, when the Lord of the Manor Peter de Bermingham obtained a charter to hold a market at his castle, followed this with the creation of a planned market town and seigneurial borough within his demesne or manorial estate, around the site that became the Bull Ring. This established Birmingham as the primary commercial centre for the Birmingham Plateau at a time when the area's economy was expanding with population growth nationally leading to the clearance and settlement of marginal land.
Within a century of the charter Birmingham had grown into a prosperous urban centre of merchants and craftsmen. By 1327 it was the third-largest town in Warwickshire, a position it would retain for the next 200 years; the principal governing institutions of medieval Birmingham – including the Guild of the Ho
England national football team
The England national football team represents England in senior men's international football and is controlled by The Football Association, the governing body for football in England. England is one of the two oldest national teams in football, alongside Scotland, whom they played in the world's first international football match in 1872. England's home ground is Wembley Stadium and their headquarters are at St George's Park, Burton upon Trent; the team's manager is Gareth Southgate. Although part of the United Kingdom, England's representative side plays in major professional tournaments, but not the Olympic Games. Since first entering the tournament in 1950, England has qualified for the FIFA World Cup 15 times, they won the 1966 World Cup, when they hosted the finals, finished fourth in 1990 and 2018. Since first entering in 1964, England have never won the UEFA European Championship, with their best performances being a third-place finish in 1968 and 1996, the latter as hosts; the England national football team is the joint-oldest in the world.
A representative match between England and Scotland was played on 5 March 1870, having been organised by the Football Association. A return fixture was organised by representatives of Scottish football teams on 30 November 1872; this match, played at Hamilton Crescent in Scotland, is viewed as the first official international football match, because the two teams were independently selected and operated, rather than being the work of a single football association. Over the next 40 years, England played with the other three Home Nations—Scotland and Ireland—in the British Home Championship. At first, England had no permanent home stadium, they joined FIFA in 1906 and played their first games against countries other than the Home Nations on a tour of Central Europe in 1908. Wembley Stadium became their home ground; the relationship between England and FIFA became strained, this resulted in their departure from FIFA in 1928, before they rejoined in 1946. As a result, they did not compete in a World Cup until 1950, in which they were beaten in a 1–0 defeat by the United States, failing to get past the first round in one of the most embarrassing defeats in the team's history.
Their first defeat on home soil to a foreign team was a 0–2 loss to the Republic of Ireland, on 21 September 1949 at Goodison Park. A 6–3 loss in 1953 to Hungary, was their second defeat by a foreign team at Wembley. In the return match in Budapest, Hungary won 7–1; this stands as England's largest defeat. After the game, a bewildered Syd Owen said, "it was like playing men from outer space". In the 1954 FIFA World Cup, England reached the quarter-finals for the first time, lost 4–2 to reigning champions Uruguay. England got to the semi final in 2018. Although Walter Winterbottom was appointed as England's first full-time manager in 1946, the team was still picked by a committee until Alf Ramsey took over in 1963; the 1966 FIFA World Cup was hosted in England and Ramsey guided England to victory with a 4–2 win against West Germany after extra time in the final, during which Geoff Hurst famously scored a hat-trick. In UEFA Euro 1968, the team reached the semi-finals for the first time, being eliminated by Yugoslavia.
England qualified for the 1970 FIFA World Cup in Mexico as reigning champions, reached the quarter-finals, where they were knocked out by West Germany. England had been 2–0 up, but were beaten 3–2 after extra time, they failed in qualification for the 1974, leading to Ramsey's dismissal, 1978 FIFA World Cups. Under Ron Greenwood, they managed to qualify for the 1982 FIFA World Cup in Spain; the team under Bobby Robson fared better as England reached the quarter-finals of the 1986 FIFA World Cup, losing 2–1 to Argentina in a game made famous by two goals by Maradona for contrasting reasons, before losing every match in UEFA Euro 1988. They next went on to achieve their second best result in the 1990 FIFA World Cup by finishing fourth – losing again to West Germany in a semi-final finishing 1–1 after extra time 3–4 in England's first penalty shoot-out. Despite losing to Italy in the third place play-off, the members of the England team were given bronze medals identical to the Italians'; the England team of 1990 were welcomed home as heroes and thousands of people lined the streets, for a spectacular open-top bus parade.
However, the team did not win any matches in UEFA Euro 1992, drawing with tournament winners Denmark, with France, before being eliminated by host nation Sweden. The 1990s saw four England managers, each in the role for a brief period. Graham Taylor was Robson's successor, but resigned after England failed to qualify for the 1994 FIFA World Cup after losing a controversial game against the Netherlands in Rotterdam. At UEFA Euro 1996, held in England, Terry Venables led England, equalling their best performance at a European Championship, reaching the semi-finals as they did in 1968, before exiting via a penalty shoot-out loss to Germany, he resigned following investigations into his financial activities. His successor, Glenn Hoddle left the job for non-footballing reasons after just one international tournament – the 1998 FIFA World Cup — in which England were eliminated in the second round again by Argentina and again on penalties. Following Hoddle's departure, Kevin Keegan took England to UEFA Euro 2000, but performances were disappointing and he resigned shortly afterwards.
Sven-Göran Eriksson took charge between 2001 and 2006, was the team's first non-English manager. He guided England to the quarter-finals of the 2002 FIFA World C