Brentford Football Club is a professional association football club based in Brentford, Greater London, England. The team play in the Championship, the tier of English football. It was founded on 10 October 1889 and plays its games at Griffin Park, its home stadium since 1904. Brentfords most successful spell came during the 1930s, when it achieved consecutive top six finishes in the First Division, Brentford have been FA Cup quarter-finalists on four occasions, and have been runners-up of the Football League Trophy on three occasions. As a result of a vote, by eight votes to five, taken six days later, the very first fixture, between Brentford FC and Kew FC, was on 23 November 1889. Due to ownership of the land changing hands, Brentford FC was on the lookout for a new ground after only 30 months, in October 1892, Benns Field – land behind The Plough PH Little Ealing Lane – in Little Ealing, was the clubs new home. The football club decided to move nearer to Brentford and in December 1894 it moved to Shotters Field – what is now Gunnersbury School, The Ride – and stayed there until April 1898. As the club grew, therefore entertaining larger crowds, a move to a ground with the chance of improving better spectator facilities, with under cover enclosures and changing rooms, was looked for. Boston Park Cricket Ground, in York Road, Brentford – what is now land along the east side of Ealing Road, finally, in January 1904, the club agreed a 21-year lease on an orchard, once owned by Chiswick brewers Fuller, Smith and Turner. The clearance of the orchard, over 200 trees, and the levelling of the land took several months, in August 1904 trial matches were played on the pitch. Then the first competitive match was played, a team game in the Western League v Plymouth Argyle. On 7 September 1904, Brentford and West Ham United played out a 0–0 draw, in the Southern League First Division, in 1920 it was a founder member of the Football League Third Division. In 1921–22, the Football League Third Division was regionalised and Brentford FC was placed in the Southern section, during the late 1920s and 1930s, the club began to make real progress. In the 1929–30 season, the side won all 21 of its matches in the Third Division South. It is the last of six teams in English football to amass a perfect record. After several more near-misses, promotion to the Second Division was finally achieved in 1932–33, Two years later, Brentford reached the First Division and finished 5th in its debut season – which is still the clubs highest ever league position – to complete a remarkable rise for the club. Under manager Harry Curtis and captain Arthur Bateman, Brentford achieved more impressive placings in the league for the rest of the decade before the Second World War interrupted. During the war, Brentford competed in the London War Cup, the club was relegated in the first season after the war, and a downward spiral set in, which culminated in relegation to the Third Division in 1953–54 and the Fourth Division in 1961–62
Orsett is a village and ecclesiastical parish located within Thurrock unitary district in Essex, England, situated around 5 km north-east of Grays. It has historically been an agricultural community situated at the southern edge of the old ice age flood plain traversed by the river Mardyke. Orsett contains a ring and bailey earthwork known locally as Bishop Bonners palace, on the gravel terrace, there is a neolithic causewayed enclosure discovered as a result of crop marks which showed on aerial photographs taken by Dr St Joseph of Cambridge University. It has three concentric ditches with a number of breaks or causeways, the enclosure was used as a burial ground by the Saxons and contained at least three barrows visible on the aerial photo. Orsett Heath in the south of the parish was part of an extensive area of heathland that included Terrels Heath. The centre of Orsett is aligned on an east–west axis along the High Road, on which is the church of St Giles and All Saints along with the animal pound. Its former workhouse on Rowley Road was developed into a modern hospital in the 1960s but has, since the 1980s. The villages primary school has been located since the century in School Lane, educating children up to the age of 14 until 1944. These were followed by developments on the former site of the Anglican Rectory, off Rectory and Conways Roads. This estate is known as Bonners, and contains Whitmore Hall. Most of the hospital site has been re-developed as housing in the last five years. The redevelopment provided 200 houses, despite being within the green belt, opposite the Old Bakery, on the west side of Rectory Road, is Orsett Masonic Hall which is home to Orsett Masonic Lodge. The historic Orsett Hall on Prince Charless Avenue, the home of the Whitmore family until their estate was sold in the late-1960s, was destroyed by fire in May 2007 but was rebuilt during 2008/09, the exterior design is in keeping with the original Georgian building. It was used for a Help for Heroes charity event on 11 April 2010, Orsett House is an early-eighteenth-century house off the High Street and on the western edge of the village. It has a village hall at its western end and a centre for the churches in the High Street. Orsett is home to a well known cricket club and to two football clubs – HSSC Orsett and Orsett Green FC. It has one court and a bowling green. Orsett is part of a ward that also contains Bulphan Horndon-on-the-Hill, politically, it has traditionally been Conservative
Association football positions
In the sport of association football, each of the 11 players on a team is assigned to a particular position on the field of play. A team is made up of one goalkeeper and ten players who fill various defensive, midfield. These positions describe both the main role and their area of operation on the pitch. In the early development of the game, formations were much more offensively aggressive, in the latter part of the 19th century, the 2–3–5 formation became widely used and the position names became more refined to reflect this. As the game has evolved, tactics and team formations have changed, the term half-back fell out of use by the early 1970s and midfield was used in naming the positions that play around the middle third as in centre midfield and wide midfield. The fluid nature of the game means that positions in football are not as rigidly defined as in sports such as rugby or American football. Even so, most players play in a limited range of positions throughout their career, as each position requires a particular set of skills. Footballers who are able to play comfortably in a number of positions are referred to as utility players, however, in Total Football tactics, the players are only loosely defined into a position. This tactic required players who were extremely versatile, such as Johan Cruyff, goalkeeper is the most defensive position in football. The goalkeepers main job is to stop the team from scoring by catching, palming or punching the ball from shots, headers. Unlike their teammates, goalkeepers typically remain in and around their own penalty area for most of the game, as a result, goalkeepers have a better view of the pitch and often give advice to their defence when the other team is on the attack or during set pieces. Goalkeepers are the players on the pitch who are allowed to handle the ball. Positioning is another important job and is one of the hardest to master as keeper, goalkeepers must also wear a different coloured kit from the outfielders and officials. Common colours include yellow, green, grey, black and shades of blue, since the 1970s, goalkeepers have also typically worn specialised gloves. They provide better grip on the ball and protect their hands from hard shots and headers, caps were common between the 1910s and 1960s, as well as woolly jumpers but these are not worn in any professional or semi-professional context today. Defenders play behind the midfielders and their responsibility is to provide support to the team. They usually remain in the half of the field contains the goal they are defending. Taller defenders will move forward to the teams penalty box when their team takes corner kicks or free kicks
Huddersfield Town A.F.C.
F. C. Halifax Town is a semi-professional association football club based in Halifax, West Yorkshire, England. The club participates in the National League North, the tier of English football. They replaced Halifax Town A. F. C. which went into administration in the 2007–08 season, huge tax debts buried Halifax Town A. F. C. after almost 100 years as a football club. New figures put to a creditors meeting in May 2008 showed the cash-strapped Shaymen owed over £800,000 to Her Majestys Revenue. The Revenue refused any deal and that finished the club – already over £2 million in the red. It was originally thought the club owed the taxman around £500,000, but the news that it owed £814,000 meant that even if all the other creditors had accepted the 2. 5p-in-the-pound offer originally on the table it would not have been enough. Halifax appealed against the decision to them from the Football Conference. Though the appeal was rejected on 11 June, the hope was that Halifax could play in the NPL Premier Division. This did not materialise, and eventually Halifax Town were accepted to play in the Northern Premier League Division One North in the new season under the new name FC Halifax Town. The clubs first game under the new name FC Halifax Town was a friendly away against Tamworth on 19 July 2008, there was to be no fairytale ending however, and the game ended in a 2–0 defeat. The clubs first ever victory was against Alsager Town on 26 July 2008 by a 2–0 scoreline, colin Hunter scored the new clubs first ever goal after six minutes. Their first competitive Northern League Division One North match was at The Shay against Bamber Bridge on 16 August 2008, the club got off to a poor start, despite recording their first competitive victory in the next match. However, a 7–1 home win against Salford City in late September seemed to turn the tide for Town and they went on an 8-game unbeaten run,7 of those being victories, and shot to the top of the league table. The run eventually came to an end against Rossendale United, who ended up doing the double over Halifax. Despite the loss, Halifax remained top and more results, including 5–1 and 4–1 victories against Garforth Town and Wakefield respectively. After the Wakefield match however, Halifax won just 2 of their final 14 league games and this poor run led to the sacking of manager Jim Vince, and senior player Nigel Jemson stepped up to the managers position for the remainder of the season. They could only manage 2 draws and so a poor ending to the season cost them dearly, with new manager Neil Aspin taking the helm near the start of close season, Halifax Town got off to a much better start. Promising results in friendlies were consolidated after beating Colwyn Bay 3–0 on their own turf in the first league match of the season
West Ham United F.C.
West Ham United Football Club is a professional football club based in Stratford, East London, England. They compete in the Premier League, the top tier of English football, in 2016 the club re-located to the London Stadium. The club was founded in 1895 as Thames Ironworks and reformed in 1900 as West Ham United and they moved to the Boleyn Ground in 1904, which remained their home ground for more than a century. The team initially competed in the Southern League and Western League before joining the Football League in 1919 and they were promoted to the top flight in 1923, when they also losing finalists in the first FA Cup Final held at Wembley. In 1940, the won the inaugural Football League War Cup. West Ham have been winners of the FA Cup three times, in 1964,1975, and 1980, and have also been runners-up twice, in 1923, and 2006. The club have reached two major European finals, winning the European Cup Winners Cup in 1965 and finishing runners up in the competition in 1976. West Ham also won the Intertoto Cup in 1999 and they are one of eight clubs never to have fallen below the second tier of English football, spending 59 of 91 league seasons in the top flight, up to and including the 2016–17 season. The clubs highest league position to date came in 1985–86 when they achieved third place in the then First Division, three West Ham players were members of the 1966 World Cup final-winning England team, captain Bobby Moore and goalscorers Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters. The club, Thames Ironworks were the first ever winners of the West Ham Charity Cup in 1895 contested by clubs in the West Ham locality and they turned professional in 1898 upon entering the Southern League Second Division, and were promoted to the First Division at the first attempt. The following year they came second from bottom, but had established themselves as a fully fledged competitive team and they comfortably fended off the challenge of local rivals Fulham in a relegation play-off, 5–1 in late April 1900 and retained their First Division status. In 1899, they acquired their now-traditional home kit combination of claret shirts and sky blue sleeves in a wager involving Aston Villa players, because of the original works team roots and links, they are still known as the Irons or the Hammers amongst fans and the media. West Ham Utd joined the Western League for the 1901 season while continuing to play in the Southern Division 1. In 1907, West Ham were crowned the Western League Division 1B Champions, the reborn club continued to play their games at the Memorial Grounds in Plaistow but moved to a pitch in the Upton Park area in the guise of the Boleyn Ground stadium in 1904. The Cup Final match itself ended 2–0 to Bolton, the team enjoyed mixed success in Division 1 but retained their status for ten years and reached the FA Cup semi-final in 1933. In 1932, the club was relegated to Division Two and long term custodian Syd King was sacked after serving the club in the role of manager for 32 years, following relegation, King had mental health problems. He appeared drunk at a meeting and soon after committed suicide. The club spent most of the next 30 years in division, first under Paynter
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
Peterborough United F.C.
Peterborough United Football Club is a professional football club based in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, England. The team compete in League One, the tier in the English football league system. Peterborough United formed in 1934 and played in the old Midland League and their home ground is London Road Stadium, currently known as the ABAX Stadium for sponsorship reasons, and the club nickname is The Posh. After being relegated from the Championship on the day of the 2012–13 season. Their highest finishing position in the Football League ladder was 10th in the Championship, Peterborough were the holders of the 2013–14 Football League Trophy, beating Chesterfield 3–1 in the final at Wembley Stadium in March 2014. Peterborough United was formed in 1934 at Peterboroughs Angel Hotel to provide a replacement for Peterborough & Fletton United, the Posh played in the old Midland League. They won this league on six occasions, including five seasons in a row from 1956 to 1960, the Posh were elected to The Football League for the beginning of the 1960–61 season, winning Division Four. Following the Fourth Division Championship success in 1960–61, The Posh spent seven seasons in the 3rd Division and they reached the quarter-finals of the F. A. Cup in 1964–65, beating Arsenal and Swansea Town along the way before going out to Chelsea and they were relegated back to the 4th Division for financial irregularities in the summer of 1968. The club took six seasons to return to Division 3, winning the 4th Division championship, the Wrexham defeat cast a long shadow over the club and it fell into a long decline. Relegation followed in 1979 and Posh subsequently spent 12 years back in the 4th division, the 1980s was a long story of mismanagement and false dawns, punctuated by the odd cup run. Six players were signed on transfer deadline day, which at the time was a record for the number of players signed by one club on a single day, on the final day of the season, Posh travelled to Chesterfield needing a win to seal promotion. Despite going two goals down in the first ten minutes, the team rallied and drew level with goals from David Robinson, however, Poshs closest rivals, Blackpool lost at Walsall and promotion was achieved. The following season arguably remains the most successful in the clubs history, after an inconsistent start the team hit form during the Autumn when they knocked Wimbledon and Newcastle United out of the League Cup. The reward was a tie with a Liverpool team containing Bruce Grobbelaar, Jan Mølby, Steve McManaman, Dean Saunders. Garry Kimble scored the goal after 19 minutes prompting wild celebrations. In the league, the team went from strength to strength, progress continued in the league and a play-off place was clinched on the last day of the season despite a 1–0 defeat to champions Brentford. The following week, Huddersfield Town came to London Road for the first leg of the Semi-final, captain Mick Halsalls last minute equaliser levelled the score at 2–2
Swindon Town F.C.
Swindon Town Football Club is a professional football club in Swindon, Wiltshire, England. Founded as Swindon AFC in 1879, they became Spartans in 1880, the team compete in League One, the third tier of the English football league system. The clubs home ground, where it has played since 1896, is the 15,728 capacity County Ground, the club went professional in 1894 and entered the Football League in 1920. Swindon Town won promotion to the Premier League in the 1992–93 season, Swindon Town Football Club was founded by Reverend William Pitt of Liddington in 1879. The team turned professional in 1894 and joined the Southern League which was founded in the same year, during this period Septimus Atterbury played for the club. Swindon reached the FA Cup semi-finals for the first time in the 1909–10 season, Barnsley and Swindon were invited to compete for the Dubonnet Cup in 1910 at the Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris. The result was a 2–1 victory for Swindon with Harold Fleming scoring both of the clubs goals, the following season, 1910–11, Swindon Town won the Southern League championship, earning them a Charity Shield match with the Football League champions Manchester United. This, the highest-scoring Charity Shield game to date, was played on 25 September 1911 at Stamford Bridge with Manchester United winning 8–4, some of the proceeds of this game were later donated to the survivors of the Titanic. In 1912 Swindon Town reached the finals of the FA Cup for a second time in 3 years. Swindons exploits at this time owed a lot to the skilful forward H. J. Fleming who was capped by England 11 times between 1909 and 1914 despite playing outside the Football League. Fleming remained with Swindon throughout a career spanning 1907 and 1924. Swindon entered the Football League in 1920 as a member of Division Three. This result stands as a record for the club in League matches, the club was relegated back into Division Three in 1965 but it was about to create a sensation. In 1969, Swindon beat Arsenal 3–1 to win the League Cup for the time in the clubs history. As winners of the League Cup, Swindon were assured of a place in their first European competition, however, the Football Association had previously agreed to inclusion criteria with the organizers which mandated that only League Cup winners from Division One would be able to take part. As the team were not eligible, the short lived Anglo-Italian competitions were created to give teams from lower divisions experience in Europe, the first of these, the 1969 Anglo-Italian League Cup, was contested over two legs against Coppa Italia winners A. S. Swindon won 5–2, with the scorer of two goals in the League Cup final – Don Rogers – scoring once and new acquisition Arthur Horsfield acquiring his first hat-trick for the club. The team then went on to win the 1970 Anglo-Italian Cup competition in a tournament beset by hooliganism, napoli was abandoned after 79 minutes following pitch invasions and a missile barrage, with teargas being employed to allow the teams to return to the dressing room
West Bromwich Albion F.C.
The club was formed in 1878 and has played at its home ground, The Hawthorns, since 1900. Albion were one of the members of the Football League in 1888 and have spent the majority of their existence in the top tier of English football. They have been champions of England once, in 1919–20 and have been runners-up twice but they have had success in the FA Cup. The first came in 1888, the year the league was founded, and they also won the Football League Cup at the first attempt in 1966. The clubs longest consecutive period in the top division spanned twenty-four years between 1949 and 1973, and from 1986 to 2002 they spent their longest ever spell out of the top division and they currently play in the Premier League. The team has played in blue and white stripes for most of the clubs history. The club was founded as West Bromwich Strollers in 1878 by workers from George Salters Spring Works in West Bromwich, the club joined the Birmingham & District Football Association in 1881 and became eligible for their first competition, the Birmingham Cup. They reached the quarter-finals, beating several longer-established clubs on the way, in 1883, Albion won their first trophy, the Staffordshire Cup. Albion joined the Football Association in the year, this enabled them to enter the FA Cup for the first time in the 1883–84 season. In 1885 the club turned professional, and in 1886 they reached the FA Cup final for the first time and they reached the final again in 1887, but lost 2–0 to Aston Villa. In 1888 the team won the trophy for the first time, as FA Cup winners, they qualified to play in a Football World Championship game against Scottish Cup winners Renton, which ended in a 4–1 defeat. Thus when the Football League started later that year, Albion became one of the founder members. Albions second FA Cup success came in 1892, beating Aston Villa 3–0 and they met Villa again in the 1895 final, but lost 1–0. The team suffered relegation to Division Two in 1900–01, their first season at The Hawthorns and they were promoted as champions the following season but relegated again in 1903–04. The club won the Division Two championship once more in 1910–11, and the season reached another FA Cup Final. Albion won the Football League title in 1919–20 for the time in their history following the end of World War I. The team finished as Division One runners-up in 1924–25, narrowly losing out to Huddersfield Town, in 1930–31, they won promotion as well as the FA Cup, beating Birmingham 2–1 in the final. The Double of winning the FA Cup and promotion has not been achieved before or since, Albion reached the final again in 1935, losing to Sheffield Wednesday, but were relegated three years later
Norwich City F.C.
Norwich City Football Club is an English professional football club based in Norwich, Norfolk. The club currently plays in the Championship, the tier of English football. They were first promoted to the top flight in 1972, Norwich have won the League Cup twice, in 1962 and 1985. The club has never won the top flight, but finished third in 1993, the club was founded in 1902. The fans song On the Ball, City is regarded as being the oldest football song in the world which is still in use, the club plays in characteristic yellow and green kits and are nicknamed The Canaries after the history of breeding the birds in the area. They joined the Norfolk & Suffolk League for the 1902–03 season, but following a FA Commission, the club was ousted from the amateur game in 1905, deemed a professional organisation. Later that year Norwich were elected to play in the Southern League and with increasing crowds, they were forced to leave Newmarket Road in 1908, moving to The Nest, a disused chalk pit. During the First World War, with football suspended and facing spiralling debts, the club was officially reformed on 15 February 1919 – a key figure in the events was Charles Frederick Watling, future Lord Mayor of Norwich and the father of future club chairman, Geoffrey Watling. When, in May 1920, the Football League formed a third Division and their first league fixture, against Plymouth Argyle, on 28 August 1920, ended in a 1–1 draw. The club went on to endure a mediocre decade, finishing no higher than eighth, the inaugural match, held on 31 August 1935, against West Ham United, ended in a 4–3 victory to the home team and set a new record attendance of 29,779. The biggest highlight of the four seasons was the visit of King George VI to Carrow Road on 29 October 1938. However, the club was relegated to the Third Division at the end of the season, the league was suspended the following season as a result of the outbreak of the Second World War and did not resume until the 1946–47 season. City finished this and the season in 21st place, the poor results forcing the club to apply for re-election to the league. The 1958–59 season saw Norwich reach the semi-final of the FA Cup as a Third Division side, in the 1959–60 season, Norwich were promoted to the Second Division after finishing second to Southampton, and achieved a fourth-place finish in the 1960–61 season. In 1962 Ron Ashman guided Norwich to their first trophy, defeating Rochdale 4–0 on aggregate in a final to win the League Cup. They made their first appearance at Wembley Stadium in 1973, losing the League Cup final 1–0 to Tottenham Hotspur. Relegation to the Second Division in 1974 came after Saunders had departed and been succeeded by John Bond, a highly successful first season saw promotion back to the First Division and another visit to Wembley, again in the League Cup final, this time losing 1–0 to Aston Villa. Bond departed to Manchester City in the autumn of 1980 and the club were relegated six months later, Norwich had also been the beneficiaries of one of English footballs first million-pound transfers when they sold striker Justin Fashanu to Nottingham Forest in August 1981
England national under-21 football team
Englands national Under-21 football team, also known as England Under-21s or England U21, is considered to be the feeder team for the England national football team. It is also possible to play for one country at youth level, the U-21 team came into existence, following the realignment of UEFAs youth competitions, in 1976. A goalless draw in a friendly against Wales at Wolves Molineux Stadium was England U21s first result, England U21s do not have a permanent home. They play in stadia dotted all around England, in an attempt to encourage fans in all areas of the country to get behind England. Because of the lower compared to the senior national team. The match was one of the required two ramp up events the stadium hosted in order to gain its safety certificate in time for its full-capacity opening for the 2007 FA Cup Final in May. The original and most successful coach is Dave Sexton, who led the U21s from 1977 to 1990, in this period he combined his duties with managing the top-flight clubs Manchester United and Coventry City. After Coventry he took a position within the FA as their first Technical Director and he handed over U21 responsibilities to England manager Graham Taylors assistant Lawrie McMenemy for three years before resuming control from 1994 to 1996. Peter Taylor took over in 1996 and, although never winning a tournament, Howard Wilkinson took over afterwards, yet could only produce four wins in ten competitive matches and quit after a year and a half in charge. David Platt took charge upon his departure from Nottingham Forest, Platt was U21 boss from 2001 to 2004, but had little success before Taylors return. Taylor left in January 2007, as the national manager Steve McClaren wanted the U21s to have a full-time manager. Taylor, at the time, was combining his duties with his role as Crystal Palace boss, on 1 February 2007, Manchester City manager Stuart Pearce was appointed as head coach on a part-time basis until after the European Championships in the summer of 2007. Nigel Pearson, Newcastle Uniteds assistant manager, agreed to become Pearces assistant and their first match in charge was a 2–2 draw against Spain on 6 February 2007 at Derby Countys Pride Park Stadium. For the match against Italy Nigel Pearson took charge as Stuart Pearce had club commitments, Pearce was dismissed as Manchester City manager on 14 May 2007, before the 2007 European Championships, but on 19 July 2007 he was named full-time U21s coach. He remained in the post until June 2013, when it was announced that his contract would not be renewed, former England international Gareth Southgate was made manager of the under-21 team on 22 August. In September 2016, Southgate was appointed to the position of caretaker manager of the England senior side after the departure of Sam Allardyce. With Southgate overseeing the main team for four games, Aidy Boothroyd, as a European U21 team, England compete for the European Championship, with the finals every odd-numbered year, formerly even-numbered years. There is no Under-21 World Cup, although there is an Under-20 World Cup, for the first six European Under-21 Football Championships, England did well, getting knocked out in the semi-finals on four occasions and winning the competition in 1982 and 1984
Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played between two teams of eleven players with a spherical ball. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies making it the worlds most popular sport, the game is played on a rectangular field with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by getting the ball into the opposing goal, players are not allowed to touch the ball with their hands or arms while it is in play, unless they are goalkeepers. Other players mainly use their feet to strike or pass the ball, the team that scores the most goals by the end of the match wins. If the score is level at the end of the game, the Laws of the Game were originally codified in England by The Football Association in 1863. Association football is governed internationally by the International Federation of Association Football, the first written reference to the inflated ball used in the game was in the mid-14th century, Þe heued fro þe body went, Als it were a foteballe. The Online Etymology Dictionary states that the word soccer was split off in 1863, according to Partha Mazumdar, the term soccer originated in England, first appearing in the 1880s as an Oxford -er abbreviation of the word association. Within the English-speaking world, association football is now usually called football in the United Kingdom and mainly soccer in Canada and the United States. People in Australia, Ireland, South Africa and New Zealand use either or both terms, although national associations in Australia and New Zealand now primarily use football for the formal name. According to FIFA, the Chinese competitive game cuju is the earliest form of football for which there is scientific evidence, cuju players could use any part of the body apart from hands and the intent was kicking a ball through an opening into a net. It was remarkably similar to football, though similarities to rugby occurred. During the Han Dynasty, cuju games were standardised and rules were established, phaininda and episkyros were Greek ball games. An image of an episkyros player depicted in low relief on a vase at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens appears on the UEFA European Championship Cup, athenaeus, writing in 228 AD, referenced the Roman ball game harpastum. Phaininda, episkyros and harpastum were played involving hands and violence and they all appear to have resembled rugby football, wrestling and volleyball more than what is recognizable as modern football. As with pre-codified mob football, the antecedent of all football codes. Non-competitive games included kemari in Japan, chuk-guk in Korea and woggabaliri in Australia, Association football in itself does not have a classical history. Notwithstanding any similarities to other games played around the world FIFA have recognised that no historical connection exists with any game played in antiquity outside Europe. The modern rules of football are based on the mid-19th century efforts to standardise the widely varying forms of football played in the public schools of England
A midfielder is an association football position. Midfielders are generally positioned on the field between their teams defenders and forwards, some midfielders play a disciplined defensive role, breaking up attacks, and are otherwise known as defensive midfielders. Others blur the boundaries, being mobile and efficient in passing, they are commonly referred to as deep-lying midfielders, play-makers, box-to-box. The number of midfielders on a team and their assigned roles depends on the teams formation, most managers assign at least one midfielder to disrupt the opposing teams attacks, while others may be tasked with creating goals, or have equal responsibilities between attack and defence. Midfielders are the players who typically travel the greatest distance during a match, central or centre midfielders are players whose role is divided roughly equally between attack and defence. When the opposing team has the ball, a midfielder may drop back to protect the goal or move forward. The 4–3–3 and 4–5–1 formations each use three central midfielders, the 4−4−2 formation may use two central midfielders, and in the 4–2–3–1 formation one of the two deeper midfielders may be a central midfielder. The term box-to-box midfielder refers to central midfielders who have abilities and are skilled at both defending and attacking. These players can track back to their own box to make tackles and block shots. A good box-to-box midfielder needs good passing, vision, control, stamina, tackling and marking in defence, left and right midfielders have a role balanced between attack and defence, similar to that of central midfielders, but they are positioned closer to the touchlines of the pitch. They may be asked to cross the ball into the penalty area to make scoring chances for their teammates. Common modern formations that include left and right midfielders are the 4−4−2, the 4−4−1−1, the 4–2–3–1, a notable example of a right midfielder is David Beckham. Defensive midfielders are players who focus on protecting their teams goal. These players may defend a zone in front of their teams defence, defensive midfielders may also move to the full-back or centre-back positions if those players move forward to join in an attack. Sergio Busquets described his attitude, The coach knows that I am an obedient player who likes to help out and if I have to run to the wing to cover someones position, great. A good defensive midfielder needs good positional awareness, anticipation of play, marking, tackling, interceptions, passing and great stamina. A holding or deep-lying midfielder stays close to their teams defence, a player in this role will try to protect their goal by disrupting the opponents attacking moves and stopping long shots on the goal. The holding midfielder may also have responsibilities when their team has the ball and this player will make mostly short and simple passes to more attacking members of their team but may try some more difficult passes depending on the teams strategy
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
West Ham United F.C. Under-23s and Academy
The Academy of Football, or just The Academy, is a nickname of the English football club West Ham United. The title pays homage to the success of the club in coaching talented young players, the original tribute intended to reference the entire culture of the club, in much the same way as the Liverpool Boot Room. The term was first used in the years of Ron Greenwoods reign as West Ham manager. Further foundations had been laid with stalwart Ken Brown at the back, Malcolm Musgrove on the wing. The true heritage of this side however owed its pedigree to the put in place by the previous manager. Fenton was praised as a forward thinking manager and he pushed for the establishment of The Academy that brought through a series of young players to augment a side that could not be improved with the limited finances available. Two of the signings he did manage to make were those of John Dick, cafe Cassettari sat opposite the Boleyn Ground, and Fenton organised a deal that saw meals and a warm welcome for the players of the club at a price the club could manage. It became a place for discussion of the team, and ideas and wisdom freely passed back. The tradition of mentorship and lasted long into the 60s even after Fenton had moved on and saw future managers John Lyall, Fenton introduced continental ideas to the team, revamping training methods and taking inspiration from higher ranked teams, and even inspiring some. Fenton had been impressed greatly by the all conquering Hungarians of the 50s led by Ferenc Puskás, ernie Gregory said Wed usually eaten fish or chicken and toast before then, but Dr. Thomas advised us all to eat steak and rice two hours before kick-off. All the other clubs copied us after that, the Academy also involved, beyond the routine training and development of the youth and squad, actual tactical discussions between the players. In 1966, these played a part in England’s victory in the World Cup. Moore was the most well-known of the three and he captained the England squad and was later named by Pelé as the greatest of all the defenders he had played against. In the World Cup final against West Germany in which England won 4–2, Hurst scored the only ever scored at a World Cup final match. This gave rise to the West Ham supporters partly tongue-in-cheek terrace chant, I remember Wembley, When West Ham beat West Germany. Peters one and Geoffrey three, And Bobby got his OBE. A bronze statue of three players holding the Jules Rimet Trophy aloft was erected in 2003 at the junction of Barking Road. During the next thirty years West Hams youth academy produced many professional players, Paul Ince played his first game for West Ham in 1986, and went on to win more trophies than any other Academy graduate, albeit with Manchester United. In 1996, the reputation of the Academy began a revival with the arrival of Rio Ferdinand
Tottenham Hotspur F.C. Under-23s and Academy
The Tottenham Hotspur Development Squad consist of mainly young players under the age of 21 who have signed professional contracts, many of whom have progressed through Tottenhams youth academy. The reserves in recent times have been known as the Development Squad to reflect the purpose of producing players for the first team. They have won one Premier Reserve League South title since the formation in 1999 and were runners-up in the inaugural Barclays U21 Premiership League which took over from 2012. In 1948 Tottenham entered an A team into the Eastern Counties League and they won the League Cup in their first season and the league title and the East Anglian Cup in their second. In 1957–58 they again won both the league and East Anglian Cup and went on to win the League Cup the following season and they won three consecutive league titles in 1959–60, 1960–61 and 1961–62. In 1963 they left the ECL to join the Metropolitan League, which won in 1966–67 as well as the League Cup in 1963–64. The academy features a network of 35 scouts who are tasked with finding the best local, national and international talent, whilst under 16, in the Youth development phase, players are coached or play in the evenings and the weekend whilst they are in full-time education. On reaching 16, the best players are offered a place in the U18s Academy on a full-time 2 year Scholarship contract and this provides an academic programme alongside their football commitments. Players will usually progress through first and second years of the development phase whereupon on completion. Where a player is borderline or has held back because of injury there is the option of offering a third year at the Academy by exception. The Academy Manager is John McDermott, one of the former Youth Team coaches is Alex Inglethorpe who joined the club in 2006 after a two-year spell as manager of Exeter City. In November 2012 after six years service to Tottenham he joined Liverpool to become their Under-21 coach, players who have progressed through the Academy and have shown the potential to play at a higher level are offered professional contracts and will then join the Development Squad. The Development Squad may also be joined by under 21 players signed from clubs or free agents who have proved themselves in trials at the club. The purpose of the Development Squad is to produce new players for the First Team though breaking into the squad is no easy feat for a young player. As well as playing in U21 games players may be loaned out to clubs in lower leagues or sometimes clubs abroad to give them experience. As of the 2012 -2013 season the Development squad have played in the Barclays U21 Premiership League, in July 2014 Ugo Ehiogu, former professional footballer was appointed Under-21 Team Coach following a period working part-time with the Academy. They lost just three times during the league season, home games were played at Broadhall Way, the home ground of Stevenage Borough. The 2006–07 was less successful for the team with them finishing mid-table in fifth place behind league winners Reading, Watford, Chelsea
UEFA Europa League
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
They play their home games at Toumba Stadium, with a capacity of 28,803 seats. PAOK was established on 20 April 1926 by Greek Constantinopolitans who fled to Thessaloniki from the city of Constantinople (present-day Istanbul in the wake of the Greco-Turkish War, emblem of the team is a Byzantine-style double-headed eagle, adopted three years after the establishment of the club. PAOK currently plays in the top-flight Superleague Greece, which they have won twice and they have won also four times the Greek Football Cup. The team has appeared several times in the UEFA Europa League competition and their best European performance was in the 1973–74 season, when they reached the quarter-finals of the UEFA Cup Winners Cup. PAOK FC is the oldest division of PAOK Sports Club, the successor of Hermes Sports Club, which was formed in 1877 by the Greek community of Pera, the football club was founded in 1926. The original logo of PAOK was a horseshoe and a four-leaf clover, the two teams were merged in 1929, adopting the still-current two-headed eagle symbol, also in 1929. The eagle symbolizes the origins of the club in the former Byzantine capital, Constantinople, the first professional contract was signed by the club on 5 September 1928. The contract stipulated that the French footballer Raymond Etienne – of Jewish descent from Pera Club – would be paid 4,000 drachmas per month, the contract was signed by Dr. Meletiou, the PAOK chairman, and Mr. Sakellaropoulos, the Hon. Secretary. In the 1950s, the won the Thessaloniki Championship for four successive seasons. In 1959, their new Toumba Stadium opened, Giorgos Koudas, the great star of the team made his first appearance in 1963. With him, PAOK won their first national titles, the Greek Football Cup and they won also for the first time the Greek Championship in 1975–76, a feat they would repeat in 1984–85. At the European level, the club made its best ever performance after reaching the quarter-finals of the UEFA Cup Winners Cup in 1973–74, where they were knocked out by Milan. PAOK also made an appearance against German giants Bayern Munich in the 1983–84 UEFA Cup. Since 1985, a period of decline affected the club, in 1992, they lost in the Greek Cup final to Olympiacos. In 1996, Thomas Voulinos handed over the reins of the club to Giorgos Batatoudis, numerous transfers of well-known players such as Percy Olivares, Zisis Vryzas, Spiros Marangos and Kostas Frantzeskos took place under the new administration. In 1997, having served its five-year ban, PAOK qualified for the UEFA Cup under coach Angelos Anastasiadis, the clubs reappearance at European level was marked by a victory and qualification over Arsenal. The new team, however, did not prove successful in the domestic league. The clubs continuing inability to break the dominance of the big three in the league resulted in several changes over the following three years
FC Rubin Kazan
FC Rubin Kazan is a Russian association football club based in the city of Kazan in the Republic of Tatarstan. Founded in 1958, Rubin played its first-ever top flight season in 2003 and it has remained there ever since, winning the Russian Premier League championship in 2008 and 2009. The club also won the 2011–12 Russian Cup and has been a regular in European competition in recent seasons, the team plays in the Kazan Arena. FC Rubin Kazan was previously called Iskra from 1958 to 1964, having never played in the Soviet Top League, the football club joined the Russian First Division in 1992 and fell to the Russian Second Division in 1994. The mayor of Kazan at the time, Kamil Iskhakov, purchased the team in 1996, Rubin won the Second Division in 1997 and was promoted back to the First Division the following season. The next four seasons, the team finished above 8th place. Finally winning the title in 2002, Rubin was promoted to the Russian Premier League for the first time in 2003, Rubin finished third in its debut season to qualify for the UEFA Cup. The team faced a setback in the 2004 campaign finishing in 10th place. The year of 1958 came, and the team formed a part of Class B of USSR Championship, because of successful game, again a team of masters appeared in the city. Nowadays 1958 is considered to be a year of foundation of an up-to-date «Rubin», program to the match Iskra – Torpedo. 3 June 1958 «Iskra», thus was the name of a debutant, found itself in the first zone of RSFSR Class B, in whicn mainly clubs of Povolzhye, the debut was on April,20 in Kherson. Practice makes perfect – kazanners lost to local «Spartak» 2–4, the author of the first goal of «Iskra» in USSR championships was Igor Ignatov. The squad in that game was the one, Galimov, Zinnourov, Surkov, Khorkov, Kashurin, Dardymov, Polyakov, Markov, Gelman. In 1958 «Iskra» took 14th place, left below only teams of Ulyanovsk, lack of experience and often changes in a coach staff adversely affected the game of «Iskra». In 1959 «Iskra» was headed by a 50-year-old specialist Nikolay Sentyabrev, withion the next 12 years the post of a Head Coach of the team was occupied. Neither before nor after no one could reach that period, earlier Sentyabrev played for the region of Ivanovo and coached «Tekstilschik». His work didn’t make waiting for results, «Iskra» at one stroke made 9 steps up in the tournament table and stopped at the 5th position. In comparison with previous season much more goals were scored and less balls were missed, two footballers – a defender Viktor Surkov and a goalkeeper Ilyas Galimov – were included into the list of RSFSR National Squad
The club have played continuously in the top tier of the Italian football league system since its debut in 1909. Inter have won 30 domestic trophies as well as local rivals A. C. Milan, from 2006 to 2010, the club won five successive league titles, equalling the all-time record. They have won the Champions League three times, two back-to-back in 1964 and 1965 and then another in 2010 and their latest win completed an unprecedented Italian seasonal treble, with Inter winning the Coppa Italia and the Scudetto the same year. The club has won three UEFA Cups, two Intercontinental Cups and one FIFA Club World Cup. Inters home games are played at the San Siro stadium, also known as the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, shared with rivals A. C. Milan, the stadium is the largest in Italian football. The local team A. C. Milan are considered among their biggest rivals, as of 2010, Inter is the second-most supported team in Italy, and the sixth most-supported team in Europe. The club is one of the most valuable in Italian and world football and it was a founding member of the now-defunct G-14 group of Europes leading football clubs. The club was founded on 9 March 1908 as Football Club Internazionale, following the schism with the Milan Cricket, the name of the club derives from the wish of its founding members to accept foreign players as well as Italians. The club won its very first championship in 1910 and its second in 1920, the captain and coach of the first championship winning team was Virgilio Fossati, who was later killed in battle while serving in the Italian army during World War I. In 1922, Inter remained in the top league after winning two play-offs, six years later, during the Fascist era, the club was forced to merge with the Unione Sportiva Milanese and was renamed Società Sportiva Ambrosiana. The team wore white jerseys around this time with a red cross emblazoned on it, the jerseys design was inspired by the flag and coat of arms of the city of Milan. Their first Coppa Italia was won in 1938–39, led by the iconic Giuseppe Meazza, a fifth championship followed in 1940, despite Meazza incurring an injury. After the end of World War II the club regained its name, winning its sixth championship in 1953. He would transform Inter into one of the greatest teams in Europe and he modified a 5–3–2 tactic known as the Verrou to include larger flexibility for counterattacks. The catenaccio system was invented by an Austrian coach Karl Rappan, herrera would modify it by adding a fifth defenders, the sweeper or libero behind the two centre backs. The sweeper or libero who acted as the man would deal with any attackers who went through the two centre backs. Inter finished third in the Serie A in his first season, second the next year, then followed a back-to-back European Cup victory in 1964 and 1965, earning him the title il Mago. In 1964, Inter reached the European Cup Final by beating Borussia Dortmund in the semi-final, in the final, they met Real Madrid, a team that had reached seven out of the nine finals to date
Queens Park Rangers F.C.
Queens Park Rangers Football Club is a professional association football club based in White City, London, that plays in the Championship, the second tier of English football. Their honours include winning the League Cup in 1967, as well as finishing top of the tier in 1983 and 2011. QPR were also runners-up of the Football League First Division in 1975–76, Queens Park Rangers were founded in 1886 after the merger of Christchurch Rangers and St. Judes Institute. Owing to their proximity to other west London clubs, QPR maintain long-standing rivalries with other clubs in the area. The most notable of these are Chelsea, Fulham and Brentford, outside London, QPR also traditionally share rivalries with Watford, Luton and Cardiff, although in recent years these fixtures have become less prominent. For the current season see 2015–16 Queens Park Rangers F. C. season The club was formed in 1886, the resulting team was called Queens Park Rangers, because most of the players came from the Queens Park area of north-west London. QPR were promoted as champions of Division 3 South in the 1947–48 season, Dave Mangnall was the manager as the club participated in four seasons of the Second Division, being relegated in 1951–52. Tony Ingham was signed from Leeds United and went on to make the most ever league appearances for QPR, arguably the clubs greatest ever manager, Alec Stock, arrived prior to the start of the 1959–60 season. The 1960–61 season saw QPR achieve their biggest win to date, in time, Stock, together with Jim Gregory who arrived as chairman in the mid-1960s, helped to achieve a total transformation of the club and its surroundings. It is still the major trophy that QPR have won. It was also the first League Cup final to be held at Wembley Stadium, after winning promotion in 1968 to the top flight for the first time in their history, Rangers were relegated after just one season and spent the next four years in Division Two. Terry Venables joined from Spurs at the beginning of the 1969–70 season, during this time, new QPR heroes emerged including Phil Parkes, Don Givens, Dave Thomas and Stan Bowles. These new signings were in addition to home-grown talent such as Dave Clement, Ian Gillard, Mick Leach, after completing their 42-game season, QPR sat at the top of the league, one point ahead of Liverpool who went on to defeat Wolverhampton Wanderers to clinch the title. Wolves were relegated to the Second Division that same season, following Sextons departure in 1977 the club eventually slipped into the Second Division in 1979. In 1980 Terry Venables took over as manager and the club installed a plastic pitch, in 1982 QPR, still playing in the Second Division, reached the FA Cup Final for the only time in the clubs history, facing holders Tottenham Hotspur. Tottenham won 1–0 in a replay, the following season QPR went on to win the Second Division championship and returned to English footballs top division. After a respectable fifth-place finish, and UEFA Cup qualification, the following year, in 1988 the club had a new chairman, Richard Thompson. Who at 24 was the Premier Leagues youngest ever chairman, over the next seven years, various managers came and went from Loftus Road and the club spent many seasons finishing mid table but avoided relegation
Futbol Club Barcelona, commonly known as Barcelona and familiarly as Barça, is a professional football club based in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. Founded in 1899 by a group of Swiss, English and Catalan footballers led by Joan Gamper, unlike many other football clubs, the supporters own and operate Barcelona. It is the second most valuable team in the world, worth $3.56 billion. The official Barcelona anthem is the Cant del Barça, written by Jaume Picas, Barcelona was ranked first in the IFFHS Club World Ranking for 1997,2009,2011,2012 and 2015 and currently occupies the third position on the UEFA club rankings. The club has a rivalry with Real Madrid, matches between the two teams are referred to as El Clásico. Barcelona is one of the most supported teams in the world, Barcelonas players have won a record number of Ballon dOr awards, as well as a record number of FIFA World Player of the Year awards. Barcelona is one of three founding members of the Primera División that have never relegated from the top division, along with Athletic Bilbao. In 2011, the club became European champions again and won five trophies, by winning their fifth Champions League trophy on 6 June 2015, Barcelona became the first European club in history to achieve the continental treble twice. On 22 October 1899, Hans Gamper placed an advertisement in Los Deportes declaring his wish to form a football club, FC Barcelona had a successful start in regional and national cups, competing in the Campionat de Catalunya and the Copa del Rey. In 1902, the club won its first trophy, the Copa Macaya and he said in a meeting, Barcelona cannot die and must not die. If there is nobody who is going to try, then I will assume the responsibility of running the club now on. Club president on five occasions between 1908 and 1925, he spent 25 years in total at the helm. One of his achievements was ensuring Barça acquire its own stadium. On 14 March 1909, the moved into the Camp de la Indústria. To celebrate their new surroundings, the club conducted a logo contest the following year, Carles Comamala won the contest, and his suggestion became the crest that the club still wears – with some minor changes – as of the present day. The contest was the most prestigious in that era, from the inaugural year in 1910 to 1913, Barcelona won the competition four consecutive times. Carles Comamala played a part of the four-time champion, managing the side along with Amechazurra. The latter became the clubs first full-time coach in 1917, the last edition was held in 1914 in the city of Barcelona, which local rivals Espanyol won
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
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
Manchester United F.C. Reserves and Academy
Manchester United Football Club Under-23s is the most senior of Manchester Uniteds youth teams and the clubs former reserve team. They play in the Premier League 2, the highest tier of the Professional Development League and they were champions of the former Premier Reserve League five times between its introduction in 1999 and its dissolution in 2012. The team also won the 2012–13 Professional U21 Development League 1 in its inaugural season, the team also participates in the Manchester Senior Cup and the Lancashire Senior Cup. The teams manager is currently Nicky Butt, a graduate in the 1990s who played for United until 2004. Butt stood in for Warren Joyce on a basis when Joyce was appointed Wigan Athletic manager on 2 November 2016. Joyce, who took over from Ole Gunnar Solskjær as manager of the reserves in December 2010, was previously the manager of Royal Antwerp, Manchester Uniteds feeder club in Belgium. From November 2008 to August 2013, the team played its matches at Moss Lane in Altrincham. For the 2013–14 Under-21 Premier League season, the team has played the majority of its matches at Salford City Stadium in Barton-upon-Irwell. Since 2014–15, the play its home matches at Leigh Sports Village. Rules set out by the Premier League state that at least three home games must be played at the clubs main stadium, Old Trafford. In previous seasons, the team has played at the Victoria Stadium, the home of Northwich Victoria, and Ewen Fields, Manchester United also has an Under-18s team that plays in the Premier League Under-18s Group 2 and the FA Youth Cup. The under-18s play their games at the clubs Trafford Training Centre in Carrington. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. The current academy is based at the clubs Aon Training Complex, the Manchester United youth team is statistically the most successful in English football, with nine players in the English football Hall of Fame. Manchester United also have the best FA Youth Cup record, winning on 10 occasions out of 14 final appearances. The academy comprises age-group teams ranging from Under-9s up to the flagship Under-18s, in 2007, Manchester United Under-18s were the inaugural winners of the Champions Youth Cup, intended to be a Club World Championship for youth sides, beating Juventus 1–0 in the final in Malaysia. Players who are playing at Manchester United, or for another club on loan from Manchester United, are highlighted in bold
2013-14 Tottenham Hotspur F.C. season
The 2013–14 season was Tottenham Hotspurs 22nd season in the Premier League and 36th successive season in the top division of the English football league system. The campaign featured Tottenhams 12th appearance in the UEFA Europa League, note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, Last updated,19 May 2014 Source, Competitions Last updated,11 May 2014. Source, Premier League Last updated,11 May 2014, Source, Statto. comGround, A = Away, H = Home. Result, D = Draw, L = Loss, W = Win, P = Postponed
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
In sports, a loan involves a particular player being to temporarily play for a club other than the one he is currently contracted to. Loan deals may last from a few weeks to all season-long, players may be loaned out to other clubs for several reasons. Most commonly, young prospects will be loaned to a club in a league in order to gain valuable first team experience. In this instance, the parent club may continue to pay the wages in full or in part. Some clubs put a formal arrangement in place with a club for this purpose, such as Manchester United and Royal Antwerp, Arsenal and Beveren, or Chelsea. In other leagues such as Italys Serie A, some clubs have a reputation as a farm club and regularly take players, especially younger players. A club may take a player on loan if they are short on transfer funds but can still pay wages, the parent club might demand a fee and/or that the loaning club pays some or all of the players wages during the loan period. A club might seek to out a squad player to make a saving on his wages. A loan may be made to get around a transfer window, such a loan might include an agreed fee for a permanent transfer when the next transfer window opens. Some players are loaned because they are unhappy or in dispute with their current club, examples of this situation include Henri Camara with Wolverhampton Wanderers, Craig Bellamy with Newcastle United, and Darren Bent with Aston Villa. In the Premier League, players on loan are not permitted to play against the team holds their registration. Loanees are, however, allowed to play against their owning clubs in cup competitions, in the Scottish Professional Football League, clubs are permitted to take players on as unpaid trialists even for competitive fixtures. Sometimes for the first two weeks of a trial period players names are obfuscated, match reports use the convention A Trialist to refer to players in lieu of using their real names
The English Football League Championship is the highest division of the English Football League and second-highest overall in the English football league system, after the Premier League. Each year, the top finishing teams in the Championship are promoted to the Premier League, the Football League Championship, which was introduced for the 2004–05 season, was previously known as the Football League First Division, and before that was known as Division Two. The winners of the Championship receive the Football League Championship trophy, the Championship is the wealthiest non-top flight football division in the world and the seventh richest division in Europe. With an average attendance for the 2015-16 season of 17,578. Bundesliga as the secondary league in the world. In the 2015–16 season, Burnley were the champions, Middlesbrough were the runners up. At present, Ipswich Town hold the longest tenure in the Championship, the total figures were aided somewhat by the presence of 24 clubs, compared to 20 clubs in both Serie A and Ligue 1, and 18 in the Bundesliga. A major factor to the success comes from television revenue. On 30 September 2009, Coca-Cola announced they would end their deal with The Football League at the end of the 2009–10 season. On 18 July 2013, UK bookmaker Sky Bet announced that signed a 5-year agreement to sponsor the league. Three points are awarded for a win, one for a draw, the teams are ranked in the league table by points gained, then goal difference, then goals scored and then their head-to-head record for that season. At the end of the season, the top two teams and the winner of the Championship play-offs are promoted to the Premier League and the three teams are relegated to Football League One. The Football League Championship play-offs is a competition for the teams finishing the season in third to sixth place with the winner being promoted to the Premier League. In the play-offs, the team plays against the sixth-placed team. The winners of each semi-final then compete in a match with the prize being promotion to the Premier League. From 2009 to 2012, Sky Sports had the rights to broadcast 65 live matches, the BBC had the rights to show 10 first choice live games for the regular season as well as the rights to show a highlight show. The deal is on a contract and is worth £264m that will mostly be paid by Sky. The deal included 75 live league games, all the matches,15 League Cup ties
Burnley Football Club is a professional association football club based in Burnley, Lancashire. Nicknamed The Clarets, due to the dominant colour of their home shirts, Burnley have been Football League Champions twice, in 1920–21 and 1959–60, have won the FA Cup once, in 1914, and have won the Community Shield twice, in 1960 and 1973. The Clarets also reached the 1961 quarter-finals of the European Cup and they are one of only three teams to have won all top four professional divisions of English football, along with Wolverhampton Wanderers and Preston North End. The club colours of claret and blue were adopted in 1910 in tribute to the dominant club of English football at the time and their home ground since 1883 has been Turf Moor and their current manager is Sean Dyche. During May 1882, Burnley Rovers Football Club decided to shift their allegiance from rugby union to football, in 1883 the club moved to Turf Moor and remain there, only their Lancashire rivals Preston North End having occupied the same ground continuously for longer. Burnley first appeared in the FA Cup in 1885–86 but were ignominiously beaten 11–0 when eligibility restrictions meant that their side had to be fielded against Darwen. On 13 October 1886, Turf Moor became the first ground to be visited by a member of a Royal Family, when it was decided to found the Football League for the 1888–89 season, Burnley were among the 12 founders of that competition. William Tait of Burnley scored the first ever hat-trick in League football and that season did, however, present Burnley with their first honours, winning the Lancashire Cup with a 2–0 final victory over Blackburn Rovers. Before Burnley won a trophy again, they were relegated to the Second Division in 1896–97 and they responded to this by winning promotion the next season, losing only 2 of their 30 matches along the way before gaining promotion through a play-off series then known as Test Matches. Burnley and Stoke City both entered the last match, to be played between the two teams, needing a draw for promotion. A 0–0 draw ensued, reportedly The Match without a shot at goal, Burnley needed a win against Forest in the last match of the season to escape relegation. This is the earliest recorded case of match fixing in football, Burnley changed their colours from green to the claret and sky blue of Aston Villa, the most successful club in England at the time, for the 1910–11 season. The 1912–13 season saw them win promotion to the First Division once more, as well as reaching the FA Cup semi-final, only to lose to Sunderland. The next season was one of consolidation in the top flight, but more importantly their first major honour and this cup final was historic in that King George V became the first reigning monarch to present the cup to the winning captain. The winning Burnley team also got special medals with English Cup Winners written on it instead of the usual FA Cup Winners inscription. World War I impacted the 1914–15 season, in which Burnley finished 4th in the First Division, before English football reorganised itself, Burnley struggled in English footballs second tier, narrowly avoiding a further relegation in 1931–32 by only two points. The years through to the outbreak of the Second World War were characterised by uninspiring league finishes, broken only by an FA Cup semi-final appearance in 1934–35 and the arrival of Tommy Lawton. Burnley participated in the football leagues that continued throughout the war
Nathaniel Lawrence Knight-Percival is an English professional footballer who plays as a defender for League One club Bradford City. He started his career at Histon, progressing through the youth ranks and he won two promotions during his six years with Histon, both of which came in his first three years at the club. In 2010 he moved to Wrexham, earning a place in the Conference Team of the Year following a second season at the Welsh club. He caught the eye of former Wrexham player and Peterborough manager Darren Ferguson, at the end of his contract, he joined Shrewsbury Town in 2014, winning automatic promotion from League Two in his first season. Having already spent his career at Histon, Knight-Percival debuted for the first team during the 2004–05 season. In April 2010, Knight-Percival signed for Wrexham for an undisclosed fee – believed to be around £5,000 and he worked in a car factory before joining the Dragons, but couldnt pass up the opportunity to turn professional. During his first season at the Welsh club he played as both a striker and a winger, before transferring to central defence in the 2011/12 season, with defensive restrictions at Wrexham due to an injury of Chris Westwood. This meant the reds had just one back at the club who was fit. Midway through the season Percival was made taking the armband on many occasions due to regular captain Dean Keates being injured. After impressing at Wrexham, Knight-Percival signed a deal with Peterborough in May 2012. In regards to the transfer, Knight-Percival said, It’s a massive step-up for me, Peterborough have a habit of finding players in the lower divisions who can perform much higher and hopefully I will be one of those. He made his debut against Reading in the second round of the League Cup. Reading won the match 3–2, and Knight-Percival scored an own goal in the 38th minute of the game and he made his league debut on 18 September 2012, starting in a 2–1 defeat to Bristol City. Knight-Percivals first game of the season was another second round League Cup tie against Reading, on 23 September 2013, he received a red card against Milton Keynes Dons in the 7th minute, following an elbow on Patrick Bamford. Peterborough were reduced to nine men when Mark Little was also sent off in the 76th minute, on 11 January 2014, Knight-Percival scored his first goal for Peterborough in a 2–1 loss to Swindon Town. He made 23 appearances in all competitions during the season, including Peterboroughs League Trophy triumph over Chesterfield at Wembley Stadium, just two days after Leyton Orient defeated Peterborough in the second leg of the League One play-off semi-final, Knight-Percival was among five players released by the club. Knight-Percival joined Shrewsbury Town on a transfer on 22 May 2014. He made his debut on the day of the season
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
Watford Football Club is a professional football club based in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, that plays in the Premier League, the highest level in the English football league system. Founded in 1881 as Watford Rovers, the club entered the FA Cup for the first time in 1886, after finishing the 1914–15 season as Southern League champions under the management of Harry Kent, Watford joined the Football League in 1920. The club played at grounds in its early history, before moving to a permanent location at Vicarage Road in 1922. Watford spent most of the half century in the lower divisions of The Football League, changing colours. England manager Graham Taylors tenure at the club saw Watford scale new heights, between Taylors appointment in 1977 and departure in 1987, Watford rose from the Fourth Division to the First Division. The team finished second in the First Division in the 1982–83 season, competed in the UEFA Cup in 1983–84, the club experienced a further one season stint in the top division of English football during the 2006–07 season, under Aidy Boothroyds management. After eight years, Watford are again competing in the Premier League 2015–16 season, Watford is currently owned by the Pozzo family, which also owns Udinese Calcio in Italy and previously Granada CF in Spain. Watford Rovers was formed in 1881 by Henry Groverand, who went on to play for the club as a full-back, Rovers, originally composed entirely of amateur players, held home games at several locations in the town of Watford. The team first competed in the FA Cup in the 1886–87 season, the team became the football section of West Hertfordshire Sports Club in 1890, and consequently moved to a ground on Cassio Road. Renamed as West Hertfordshire in 1893, Rovers joined the Southern Football League in 1896, West Hertfordshire merged with local rivals Watford St. Marys in 1898, the merged team was named Watford Football Club. Following relegation to the Southern League Second Division in 1903, Watford appointed its first manager – former England international and he led Watford to promotion, and kept the team in the division until his departure in 1910. Despite financial constraints, Watford won the Southern League title in the 1914–15 season under his successor, there was a re-election system in place which meant the bottom two teams in each of the two divisions had to apply for re-election to the league. Watford finished outside the top six positions in every season between 1922 and 1934. The Football League was suspended in 1939 due to the Second World War, Football resumed in 1946, with Watford still in the Third Division South. Ron Burgess replaced McBain during that season, and in the following campaign Burgess presided over Watfords first Football League promotion and this team included Fourth Division top scorer Cliff Holton, who scored a club record 42 league goals in the season. Holton was sold to Northampton the following year after another 34 goals, eighteen-year-old Northern Irish goalkeeper Pat Jennings also featured under McGarry, and made his international debut despite being a Third Division player. Furphys rebuilding came to fruition in 1969 with the signing of Barry Endean, Watford secured the Third Division title in April, at home to Plymouth Argyle. A year later Watford reached the FA Cup semi-final for the first time, defeating First Division teams Stoke City, hampered by a lack of funds, however, Furphy eventually joined Blackburn Rovers, to be succeeded by George Kirby
Massimo Corey Luongo is an Australian international football player who plays as a midfielder for English club Queens Park Rangers and the Australian national team. Born in Sydney, Luongo played youth football for APIA Leichhardt Tigers before moving to England to play for Tottenham Hotspur, following a loan spell at Ipswich Town, he played on loan at Swindon Town, a move which was eventually made permanent. He joined current club Queens Park Rangers in 2015, Luongo has played for the Australia national team since 2014 and has made eighteen appearances. He was a member of the squad at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and played a role in Australia winning the 2015 AFC Asian Cup. His father Mario is of Italian heritage and mother Ira Luongo is of Indonesian heritage and he attended Waverley College where he won the championship in 2009. He is the youngest of three children, he has a sister Angela and a brother Tiziano, in addition to holding an Australian passport, Luongo also has an Italian passport. Luongo had his penalty saved by Thomas Sørensen, resulting in the defeat. On 6 February 2012, he was called up to a match for the first time. Thirteen days later he was included in the squad for the last time, on 23 July 2012, Luongo joined Championship side Ipswich Town on a season-long loan for the 2012–13 season. He made his debut on 14 August in the first round of the League Cup, four days later he played his first professional league game, starting in a 1–1 home draw against Blackburn Rovers and making way for Andy Drury after 70 minutes. The loan was terminated on 9 November after new Ipswich manager Mick McCarthy said that he wanted a different type of player, on 28 March 2013, Luongo signed for Swindon Town on loan along with fellow Spurs trainees Nathan Byrne and Dean Parrett. The very next day he went straight into the squad to face Oldham Athletic, on 16 April, Luongo scored his first goal for Swindon in a 4–1 win over Crewe Alexandra, heading in Gary Roberts cross. Swindon eventually lost the tie in a penalty shootout, Luongo signed a season-long loan deal with Swindon Town on 2 July 2013 and was handed the number 4 shirt. However, on 31 August 2013, Swindon signed Luongo on a permanent three-year contract having agreed a fee of £400,000 with Spurs. He scored six goals in 44 league appearances that season, including a first professional brace in a 5–2 home win over Port Vale on 2 November. In the following campaign, he got just as many goals but in 34 matches, on 28 May 2015, Luongo joined Queens Park Rangers, along with Swindon Town teammate Ben Gladwin, both signing a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee reported to be £3.5 million. QPR head coach Chris Ramsey was Luongos youth coach at Tottenham and he made his debut in the first game of the Championship season on 8 August, playing the full 90 minutes of a 2–0 defeat at Charlton Athletic. Luongo played 30 league games in his first season –32 overall – He provided 6 league assists, however, his performances earned him a place on the FIFA Ballon dOr longlist for the 2015 campaign
Ryan Glen Mason is an English professional footballer who plays for Premier League club Hull City and the England national team. Mason is most comfortable as a midfielder but also played extensively as a forward in Tottenhams youth system and he made his Tottenham debut in 2008, and was loaned to Yeovil Town, Doncaster Rovers. Millwall, French side Lorient and Swindon Town before playing his first Premier League match for Tottenham in 2014 and he moved to Hull City in 2016 for a club record fee. Mason is a former England youth international, having represented teams up to under-20 level, in March 2015, he earned his first senior international cap. Mason was born in Enfield, London and he joined the Tottenham Hotspur academy aged eight, before signing a professional contract with the club in August 2008. He made his debut in the group stages of the UEFA Cup on 27 November 2008. During the 2008–09 season he topped the Academy scoring sheets with 29 goals in 31 games as Spurs finished runners-up in the Premier Academy League, on 13 June 2009, Mason went on loan to League One club Yeovil Town, along with teammate Steven Caulker. He made his debut on 8 August in their first match of the 2009–10 season. The goal against Exeter was included in BBC Sports Goals of the Week, according to the Spurs website, after impressing for Terry Skivertons men at the start of the 2009–10 season, the loan deal was extended for a further three months. Along with fellow Tottenham loanees, Caulker and Jon Obika, on 5 November 2009 their loans were extended until May 2010, Mason was recalled prematurely, on 13 March 2010 back to Spurs after playing 28 league games for Yeovil and scoring 6 goals. In August 2010, Mason was loaned for the first time to Championship team Doncaster Rovers on a loan deal. Then in January 2011, he was loaned back to Doncaster until the end of the season, on 28 July 2011, Mason signed a new two-year contract with Tottenham, keeping him at the club until June 2013. He was then loaned back to Doncaster on a season-long loan. Mason was recalled back to Tottenham in November 2011 after making five appearances since the start of the season, on 29 December 2011, Mason and teammate Harry Kane agreed a loan deal with Championship side Millwall from 1 January until the end of the season. Mason made an appearance in Tottenhams goalless draw in the Europa League group stages against Lazio at White Hart Lane on 20 September 2012 and he made his first Tottenham start six days later in a League Cup last 32 match against Carlisle United, a 3–0 away win. On the last day of the transfer window, Mason joined French side Lorient on loan for the remainder of the 2012–13 season. It was terminated on 23 April 2013 with Mason having failed to make a senior appearance, on 23 July 2013, Mason signed on a season-long loan for League One Swindon Town, joining fellow Tottenham players Massimo Luongo, Grant Hall and Alex Pritchard. On 31 August, he scored a hat trick against Crewe Alexandra in a 5–0 win, after a successful pre-season in the United States with Spurs, Mason was included in Mauricio Pochettinos Premier League squad
County Ground (Swindon)
The County Ground is a stadium located near the town centre of Swindon, England, and has been home to Swindon Town Football Club since 1896. The current capacity of 15,728, all-seated, has been at that level since the mid-1990s, a record attendance of 32,000 was set on 15 January 1972, against Arsenal in the 3rd round of the FA Cup. North of the stadium is Swindon Cricket Club, with their pitch is also named The County Ground which was used for the football club from 1893 till 1896. Since its original construction, the ground has been updated with new features or fittings. A covered stand on the Shrivenham Road side was erected in 1932, at a cost of £4,300 a roof was erected over the Town End, this was raised by the Supporters Club, and was opened on 27 August 1938 by local MP, W. W. The War Department took over the ground in 1940, where for a while POWs were housed in huts placed on the pitch, for this the club received compensation of £4,570 in 1945. The addition of floodlights in 1951 at a cost of £350 and these were first tried out v Bristol City on 2 April 1951 beating Arsenal by six months. These original set of lights were supplemented by lights on both side stand roofs, which were sufficient for the County Ground to stage its first floodlit league match on 29 February 1956 v Millwall, the present pylons date from 1960. The Nationwide Stand replaced the Shrivenham Road enclosure, a two-tiered terrace, during the stands history, a fire broke out on the top tier making the upper area unsafe. In its last years the upper tier was used by TV cameras, the ground itself is on land owned by Swindon Borough Council to whom the club pay rent. Swindon have in the past considered a move to a club owned stadium to generate more revenue, the stadium is pro Swindon Towns new owners released a 10-point plan after they took over the club in January 2008 outlining future plans for the County Ground. In this 10 point plan various upgrades to the current ground were noted, the club plans to replace all of the seats that are not red and white and replace them with red and white seas to unify the seating and make the stadium look more up to date. The club also plan to improve disabled access and improve the playing surface, relocation was first proposed around the year 2000, but since then redevelopment appears to have been the preferred option. In September 2009 Swindon Town announced that the County Ground would be redeveloped into a 25, had Bristol become a World Cup host city, it had been hoped that international Teams will use the County Ground as a training ground in 2018 or 2022. However, Englands bid to host the World Cup failed in December 2010 and it was also suggested that in the future, if needs be, the stadium could be increased to hold 25,000. This proposition was due to the increased financial viability and sustainability for the future. The land which the county ground is on will also be bought in the process and these plans, however, were delayed due to Swindon Towns relegation to League Two at the end of the 2010-11 season. By the end of the 2012-13 season, redevelopment should start with the end being the first stand to be rebuilt
The EFL Cup, or simply the League Cup, is an annual knockout football competition in mens domestic English football. First held in 1960–61 as the Football League Cup, it is one of the three top domestic competitions in England, alongside the Premier League and FA Cup. It concludes in February, long before the two, which end in May. It was introduced by the league as a response to the popularity of European football. It also took advantage of the roll-out of floodlights, allowing the fixtures to be played as midweek evening games, with the renaming of the Football League as the English Football League in 2016, the tournament was rebranded as the EFL Cup from the 2016–17 season onwards. The tournament is played over seven rounds, with single leg ties throughout, the final is held at Wembley Stadium, it is the only tie in the competition played at a neutral venue and on a weekend. Entrants are seeded in the rounds, and a system of byes based on league level ensures higher ranked teams enter in later rounds. Winners receive the EFL Cup, of which there have been three designs, the current one also being the original, the current holders are Manchester United, who beat Southampton 3–2 in the 2017 final to win their fifth League Cup. Some clubs have fielded a weaker side in the competition. Many of the top English sides, Arsenal and Manchester United in particular, have used the competition to give young players valuable big-game experience. However, in 2010, in response to Arsène Wengers claim that a League Cup win would not end his trophy drought, Alex Ferguson described the trophy as a pot worth winning. The original idea for a League Cup came from Stanley Rous who saw the competition as a consolation for clubs who had already knocked out of the FA Cup. However it was not Rous who came to implement it, the re-organisation of the league was not immediately forthcoming, however, the cup competition was introduced regardless. The trophy was paid for personally by Football League President Joe Richards, Richards was proud of the competition, Richards described the competitions formation as an interim step on the way to the leagues re-organisation. I hope the Press will not immediately assume that the League is going to fall out with the F. A. or anybody else, the time has come for our voice to be heard in every problem which affects the professional game. The League Cup competition was established at a time when match day attendances were dwindling, the league had lost 1 million spectators compared to the previous season. It was established at a time when tensions between the Football League and the Football Association were high, the biggest disagreement was how revenue was shared between the clubs. During the late 1950s, the majority of senior English clubs equipped their grounds with floodlights and this opened up the opportunity to exploit weekday evenings throughout the winter
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
In sports, an ejection is the removal of a participant from a contest due to a violation of the sports rules. Most sports have provisions that allow players to be ejected, and many allow for the ejection of coaches, managers, the decision to eject a participant usually lies with one or more officials present at the contest. In addition to removal from the contest, many sports leagues provide additional sanctions against participants who have been ejected, such as monetary fines or suspensions from future contests. In many youth sports leagues, ejected players are required to stay with their coach in the team area, if a participant refuses to cooperate with an ejection, additional sanctions may be levied, such as forfeiture of the contest, monetary fines, or suspensions. In NBA and most other games, a player or coach is ejected from the game if he accumulates two technical fouls of an unsportsmanlike nature over the course of the game. Participants who commit fouls of violence or enter the stands are ejected summarily regardless of the number of technical fouls accumulated, ejected players/coaches must leave the court area for the remainder of play, and must do so immediately, or else risk even heavier fines/suspensions. In the NBA, an ejection will result in, at minimum, a $1,000 fine, in domestic games, refusing to leave after being ejected can result in a player being put on report. If being put on report does not provide enough encouragement for a player to leave the court, players who incur 16 technical fouls in a single NBA season are automatically suspended for one game, an additional suspension is imposed for each increment of two thereafter. In the playoffs, players are suspended if they receive seven technical fouls, a significant rule change was made in 1981 whereby the NBA eliminated the ejection of a coach for three technical fouls caused by an illegal defense. These technical fouls are referenced as Non-Unsportsmanlike Conduct Technical Fouls, the NBA all-time leader in disqualifications is Vern Mikkelsen, who was disqualified 127 times in 631 games. In FIBA sanctioned games, a player is ejected for two technicals, unsportsmanlike fouls or one disqualifying foul, Technical fouls in FIBA include swinging of elbows without contact and flopping, which are not fouls in the NBA. A coach can be ejected upon having incurred two coach technical fouls, or a combination of three bench and coach technical fouls, there is no separation regarding a non-unsportsmanlike conduct technical foul, as in the NBA, so two delay of game violations result in an ejection. In NFHS contests, ejected players must remain on the team bench, in NCAA contests, ejected players are dismissed to the locker room, no adult supervision is required as NCAA players are assumed to be legally of adult age. Basketball also features disqualification, also known as fouling out, a player who commits a certain number of personal fouls in a game, is removed from the game and is said to have fouled out. Unlike ejection, disqualification is not considered an action but rather a natural consequence of a very physical sport with many instances of contact. Disqualified players are permitted to remain on the bench with the team and are not subject to any further penalties, they can resume play in their next game. In the NBA, a foul is also assessed for re-entering a game after fouling out of a game in emergency situations listed in Rule 3. Disqualification also occurs at the school level as the result of two technical fouls