Rugby Park is a football stadium situated in the Scottish town of Kilmarnock. It was first used in 1899 and is the home of Kilmarnock FC and it underwent a major redevelopment in 1994–95, becoming an all-seater stadium with a capacity of 17,889. In addition to its duty of hosting home matches for Kilmarnock it has been the venue for two Scottish international matches. It can also be used for concerts, with Elton John playing to 15,000 in a first for the venue, in 2002, the club constructed Park Hotel, a 4-star complex next to the ground. Kilmarnock first played matches at the present Rugby Park site in 1899. Despite that, the venue is actually Kilmarnock’s fourth home ground, the Grange, Holm Quarry and Wards Park all hosted matches, before the club moved to Rugby Park in 1877. This was not the present stadium, but one situated close by near South Hamilton Street and this ground was shared by cricket and rugby teams – sports which Kilmarnock had played previously – and the connection with rugby gave the ground its name. This name was taken with the club when they moved to their present stadium, the ground was inaugurated with a match against then-champions Celtic on 1 August, when Kilmarnock fought back from a 2–0 deficit to secure a draw. It was their first match in the top tier of Scottish football, originally, the ground was constructed with a running track around its edge, a pavilion and a stand along the west side. In 1935 a cover was added to part of the south terrace, during the Second World War, the army used the ground as an ammunition dump, as league matches were suspended. The pitch had to be reconstructed after the war and Italian prisoners of war helped rebuild, a roof was added to the east terrace in 1959, and the West Stand was renovated during the 1960–61 season. The following season a record 35,995 fans saw Kilmarnock lose 4–2 to Rangers in the Scottish Cup, however, the fans were to witness happier times as the team clinched the league championship in 1964–65. During the summer of 1968 the floodlight system was upgraded to accommodate live television broadcasts, the ensuing years saw little change at the ground. By the early nineties pressures within the game, especially following the Taylor Report, a move to a new stadium was discussed, but rejected in favour of redevelopment. The last game at the reconstruction was played 7 May 1994. Building work commenced the next day, during 1994–95 season the stadium capacity was significantly reduced as three new stands were constructed, the Moffat Stand, the Chadwick Stand and the East Stand. Their completion brought the capacity of the stadium to 18,128, Kilmarnock opened the new Rugby Park on 6 August 1995, in a friendly match against English champions Blackburn Rovers. Alan Shearer hit a hat-trick as the team lost 5–0
Kilmarnock is a large burgh in East Ayrshire, Scotland with a population of 46,350, making it the 15th most populated place in Scotland and the second largest town in Ayrshire. The River Irvine runs through its eastern section, and the Kilmarnock Water passes through it, Kilmarnock is often shortened to Killie, especially when it is referenced in a footballing situation. The first collection of work by Scottish poet Robert Burns, Poems, chiefly in the Scottish dialect, was published here in 1786, the internationally distributed whisky brand Johnnie Walker originated in the town in the 19th century. Protest and backing from the Scottish Government took place in 2009, after Diageo, in recent years, Kilmarnock has been used for musical acts and film locations. Rock band Biffy Clyro were formed in the town in a school in the mid-1990s. The 2001 film, Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat was shot in the town as was Manhunt, the name Kilmarnock comes from the Gaelic cill, and the name of Saint Marnoch or Mernoc who is also remembered in the name of Portmarnock in Ireland and Inchmarnock. It may come from the three Gaelic elements mo, my, Ernán and the diminutive ag, giving Church of My Little Ernán, according to tradition, the saint founded a church there in the 7th century. There are 12 Church of Scotland congregations in the town, plus other denominations, in 2005, the Reverend David W. Lacy, minister of the towns Henderson Church, was elected Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. In 1668 the town was destroyed by an accidental fire. About 120 families lost most of their possessions and were forced to live destitute in the surrounding the town. These tradespeople had no way of making a living and had already been driven to the edge of poverty by having troops stationed with them as part of the anti-Covenanter measures. Parish churches throughout Scotland collected money for the relief of these homeless citizens, added later was John Finnie Street, which is regarded as one of the finest Victorian planned streets in Scotland. The Sandbed Street Bridge is the oldest known surviving bridge in the area, the Member of Parliament for the Kilmarnock and Loudoun constituency area in the Westminster parliament is Kilmarnock-born Alan Brown. Brown defeated Labour candidate Cathy Jamieson with a majority with Brown receiving 30,000 votes with Jamieson only receiving 16,363. The member of the Scottish Parliament for Kilmarnock is Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock is the home of the East Ayrshire Council Chambers and offices situated on the London Road, thus making Kilmarnock the main town within East Ayrshire. In local council elections, Kilmarnock comprises four wards, Kilmarnock North, Kilmarnock East and Hurlford, Kilmarnock West and Crosshouse, the leader in East Ayrshire is Douglas Reid of the SNP party, who has been leader since 2007. The chief executive is Fiona Lees, following the East Ayrshire Council election,2012, the SNP and the Scottish Conservative parties formed a coalition government for East Ayrshire, following the result of a hung council. At present, the Scottish Labour party is the opposition in the East Ayrshire parliament with their leader, kilmarnocks traditional industries were based around textiles and heavy engineering such as locomotives from 1837, and valves, which are still in production
East Ayrshire is one of thirty-two council areas of Scotland. It shares borders with Dumfries and Galloway, East Renfrewshire, North Ayrshire, South Ayrshire, the headquarters of the council are located on London Road, Kilmarnock. With South Ayrshire and the areas of North Ayrshire, it formed the former county of Ayrshire. Kilmarnock is the largest town, followed by Cumnock, other main towns are New Cumnock. The area was formed in 1996, from the former Kilmarnock and Loudoun and Cumnock, Kilmarnock is the countys capital and also largest town. The former Kilmarnock and Loudoun District Council was also twinned with Sukhum, following a review of links this link is now considered as a friendship link. Kilmarnock and Loudoun was one of nineteen local government districts in the Strathclyde region of Scotland from 1975 to 1996, the district was abolished in 1996 by the Local Government etc. Act 1994, which replaced the regions and districts with unitary council areas, the districts area was combined with that of Cumnock and Doon Valley to form the East Ayrshire council area. The name Kilmarnock and Loudoun continues to be used for a constituency of the House of Commons and, covering a similar area, there are many early settlements within East Ayrshire. The Burns Monument Centre and Dick Institute also hold local newspapers from 1834 to date, the Burns Monument Centre holds local photographs and postcards. Microfiche/film readers are available within the Burns Monument Centre and the Dick Institute, Kilmarnock Academy, situated in Elmbank Drive area of Kilmarnock is one of only two schools in the world to have educated two Nobel laureates, Alexander Fleming and John Boyd Orr. East Ayrshire Council East Ayrshire at DMOZ East Ayrshire Forums - Tenants Portal
Stephen Clarke is a Scottish former footballer and manager. He was most recently the assistant manager of Aston Villa, Clarke played for St Mirren, Chelsea and Scotland, winning three major trophies with Chelsea towards the end of his career. After retiring as a player he moved into coaching and worked at Newcastle United, Chelsea, West Ham United and he has since managed West Bromwich Albion and Reading. Clarke was born in Saltcoats, North Ayrshire, spotted whilst playing for Beith Juniors, he started his professional football career with St Mirren. Clarke was initially on a contract with St Mirren, while he completed an apprenticeship as an instrument engineer. He was transferred to Chelsea for £422,000 in February 1987 and he stayed at Chelsea until 1998, making 421 appearances. He was a part of the Chelsea sides which won the 1997 FA Cup Final,1998 Football League Cup Final and 1998 UEFA Cup Winners Cup Final, the latter game, against VfB Stuttgart in Stockholm, was Clarkes final appearance for the club. In 2005 he was voted into Chelseas centenary XI, occupying the right-back berth and he made 6 appearances for the Scotland national squad. In 1998 Clarke joined Newcastle United as assistant manager to Ruud Gullit, Clarke was caretaker manager following Gullits resignation, taking charge of one match, a 5–1 defeat against Manchester United. For that match, Clarke reinstated Alan Shearer and Rob Lee to the team, after a stint in charge of the youth teams at Chelsea, Clarke was promoted to the position of assistant manager when Jose Mourinho was appointed manager in the summer of 2004. Clarke was a part of the coaching set-up which saw Chelsea win two Premier League titles, an FA Cup and two League Cups over three seasons under Mourinho, both Grant and ten Cate left the club at the end of the 2007–08 season. BBC Sport and The Times both reported then that although Clarke remained on the Chelsea coaching staff, he would be looking to pursue opportunities to become a manager in his own right. Chelsea assured Clarke of his status, citing his loyalty, popularity amongst the clubs supporters, on 12 September 2008, Clarke handed in his resignation to Chelsea, hoping to move to West Ham United to be assistant to former Chelsea teammate Gianfranco Zola. Chelsea initially rejected his resignation, demanding compensation worth two years of Clarkes salary, after a deal was agreed between the clubs, Clarke became West Hams first-team coach on 15 September. West Ham finished ninth in the Premier League in the 2008–09 season, earning Clarke, the club struggled during the next season, however, narrowly avoiding relegation. In June 2010, not long after the dismissal of Zola as manager, on 10 January 2011, Clarke was appointed first-team coach at Liverpool by Kenny Dalglish, after Dalglish had replaced the dismissed Roy Hodgson two days before. Clarke was credited for turning Liverpools season around, having an average of around 2 points per match from his arrival. On 12 May 2011, Clarke, as well as manager Dalglish, on 14 May 2012, Clarke offered his resignation to Liverpool following the sacking of manager Dalglish and Liverpools 8th-place finish in the 2011–12 Premier League
The Scottish Premiership was established in July 2013, after the Scottish Professional Football League was formed by a merger of the Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League. Teams receive three points for a win and one point for a draw, no points are awarded for a loss. Teams are ranked by points, then goal difference. At the end of season, the club with the most points is crowned league champion. If points are equal, the goal difference determines the winner, if this still does not result in a winner, the tied teams must take part in a playoff game at a neutral venue to determine the final placings. The top flight of Scottish football has contained 12 clubs since the 2000–01 season, during this period the SPL and now the SPFL have operated a split format. This is done to prevent the need for a 44-game schedule and that format was used in the Scottish Premier Division, but is now considered to be too high a number of games in a league season. A season, which runs from August until May, is divided into two phases, during the first phase, each club plays three games against every other team, either once at home and twice away or vice versa. After this first phase of matches, by which all clubs have played 33 games, the league splits into a top six. Each club then plays a further five matches, one against each of the five teams in their own section. Points achieved during the first phase of 33 matches are carried forward to the second phase, but the teams compete only within their own sections during the second phase. After the first phase is completed, clubs cannot move out of their own section in the league, even if they achieve more or fewer points than a higher or lower ranked team and this is known as the league seeding and is based on clubs performance in previous years. If a club does not finish in the half where it is predicted to finish, it faces the possibility of playing a number of home. For example, one club sometimes plays another three times at home and once away, the bottom placed Premiership club at the end of the season is relegated, and swaps places with the winner of the Scottish Championship, provided that the winner satisfies Premiership entry criteria. With the creation of the SPFL, promotion and relegation involving the top flight were introduced for the first time in 17 years. That now means the Premiership club in 11th place face the Championship play-off winners over two legs, the winner of those play-offs will earn the right to play in the Scottish Premiership the following season along with the winners of the Scottish Championship. The Scottish Football League had used playoffs between its three divisions since 2007, clubs finishing in the top positions of the Premiership will gain qualification to compete in one of UEFAs European competitions. UEFA grants European places to the Scottish Football Association, determined by the Scotlands position in the UEFA coefficients ranking system, the Scottish Football Association in turn allocate a number of these European places to final Scottish Premiership positions
Kit (association football)
In association football, kit is the standard equipment and attire worn by players. The sports Laws of the Game specify the minimum kit which a player must use, footballers generally wear identifying numbers on the backs of their shirts. Professional clubs also usually display players surnames or nicknames on their shirts, Football kit has evolved significantly since the early days of the sport when players typically wore thick cotton shirts, knickerbockers and heavy rigid leather boots. The Laws of the Game set out the equipment which must be worn by all players in Law 4. Five separate items are specified, shirt, shorts, socks, footwear, goalkeepers are allowed to wear tracksuit bottoms instead of shorts. While most players wear studded football boots, the Laws do not specify that these are required, shirts must have sleeves, and goalkeepers must wear shirts which are easily distinguishable from all other players and the match officials. Thermal undershorts may be worn, but must be the colour as the shorts themselves. Shin pads must be covered entirely by the stockings, be made of rubber, plastic or a similar material, and provide a reasonable degree of protection. The only other restriction on equipment defined in the Laws of the Game is the requirement that a player must not use equipment or wear anything that is dangerous to himself or another player. In the event of a match between teams who would wear identical or similar colours the away team must change to a different colour. The England national team plays in red shirts even when it is not required. Many professional clubs also have a kit, ostensibly to be used if both their first-choice and away colours are deemed too similar to those of an opponent. Most professional clubs have retained the basic colour scheme for several decades. Teams representing countries in international competition generally wear national colours in common with other sporting teams of the same nation, shirts are normally made of a polyester mesh, which does not trap the sweat and body heat in the same way as a shirt made of a natural fibre. Depending on local rules, there may be restrictions on how large these logos may be or on what logos may be displayed, competitions such as the Premier League may also require players to wear patches on their sleeves depicting the logo of the competition. The captain of team is usually required to wear an elasticated armband around the left sleeve to identify him as the captain to the referee. Most current players wear specialist football boots, which can be either of leather or a synthetic material. Modern boots are cut slightly below the ankles, as opposed to the high-ankled boots used in former times, studs may be either moulded directly to the sole or be detachable, normally by means of a screw thread
Away colours are a choice of coloured clothing used in team sports. They are required to be worn by one team during a game between teams that would wear the same colours as each other, or similar colours. This change prevents confusion for officials, players, and spectators, in most sports it is the visiting team that must change – second-choice kits are commonly known as away kits or change kits in British English, and road uniforms in American English. Some sports leagues mandate that teams must always wear an alternative kit. In some sports, conventionally the home team has changed its kit, in most cases, a team wears its away kit only when its primary kit would clash with the colours of the home team. However, sometimes teams wear away colours by choice, occasionally even in a home game, at some clubs, the away kit has become more popular than the home version. Replica home and away kits are available for fans to buy. Some teams also have produced third-choice kits, or even old-fashioned throwback uniforms, in American sports, road teams usually wear a change uniform regardless of a potential colour clash. Further, almost all road uniforms are white in American football, in the National Basketball Association, home uniforms are white or yellow, and visiting teams wear a darker colour. In the United States, color vs. color games are a rarity, most teams choose to wear their color jerseys at home, with the road team changing to white in most cases. White road uniforms gained prominence with the rise of television in the 1950s, a white vs. color game was easier to follow in black-and-white. According to Phil Hecken, until the mid 1950′s, not only was color versus color common in the NFL, even long after the advent of color television, the use of white jerseys has remained in almost every game. The NFLs current rules require that a home jerseys must be either white or official team color throughout the season. If a team insists on wearing its home uniforms on the road, the road team might instead wear a third jersey, such as the Seattle Seahawks Wolf Grey alternate. According to the Gridiron Uniform Database, the Cleveland Browns wore white for home game of the 1955 season. The only times they wore brown was for games at Philadelphia and the New York Giants, in 1964 the Baltimore Colts, Browns, Vikings and Rams wore white regularly for their home games according to Tim Brulias research. The St. Louis Cardinals wore white for several of their home games, until 1964 Dallas had worn blue at home, but it was not an official rule that teams should wear their colored jerseys at home. The use of white jerseys was instigated by general manager Tex Schramm, the Cowboys still wear white at home today
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
The Celtic Football Club is a professional football club based in Glasgow, Scotland, which plays in the Scottish Premiership. The club was founded in 1887 with the purpose of alleviating poverty in the immigrant Irish population in the East End of Glasgow and they played their first match in May 1888, a friendly match against Rangers which Celtic won 5–2. Celtic established itself within Scottish football, winning six league titles during the first decade of the 20th century. The club enjoyed their greatest successes during the 1960s and 70s under Jock Stein when they won nine league titles. Celtic have won the Scottish League Championship on 48 occasions, most recently in the 2016–17 season, the Scottish Cup 36 times, Celtic also reached the 1970 European Cup Final, and the 2003 UEFA Cup Final. Celtic have a fierce rivalry with Rangers, and the clubs have become known as the Old Firm. The two clubs have dominated Scottish football, winning 102 league titles between them since the inception of the Scottish League in 1890. The clubs fanbase was estimated in 2003 as being around nine million worldwide, an estimated 80,000 fans travelled to Seville for the 2003 UEFA Cup Final. The club has the nickname, The Bhoys. However, according to the Celtic press office, the established club was known to many as the bold boys. A postcard from the early 20th century that pictured the team, the extra h imitates the spelling system of Gaelic, wherein the letter b is often accompanied by the letter h. On 28 May 1888, Celtic played their first official match against Rangers, Neil McCallum scored Celtics first ever goal. Celtics first kit consisted of a shirt with a green collar, black shorts. The original club crest was a green cross on a red oval background. In 1889 Celtic reached the final of the Scottish Cup, this was their first season in the competition, Celtic again reached the final of the Scottish Cup in 1892, but this time were victorious after defeating Queens Park 5–1 in the final, the clubs first major honour. Several months later the moved to its new ground, Celtic Park. In 1895, Celtic set the League record for the highest home score when they beat Dundee 11–0, in 1897, the club became a Private limited company and Willie Maley was appointed as the first secretary-manager. Between 1905 and 1910, Celtic won the Scottish League Championship six times in a row, in both 1907 and 1908 Celtic also won the Scottish Cup, this was the first time a Scottish club had ever won the Double
Hampden Park is a football stadium in the Mount Florida area of Glasgow, Scotland. The 51, 866-capacity venue serves as the stadium of football in Scotland. It is also used for concerts and other sporting events. There were two 19th century stadia called Hampden Park, built on different sites, a stadium on the present site was first opened on 31 October 1903. Hampden was the biggest stadium in the world when it was opened and this was increased further between 1927 and 1937, reaching a peak of 150,000. The record attendance of 149,415, for a Scotland v England match in 1937, is the European record for a football match. Tighter safety regulations meant that the capacity was reduced to 81,000 in 1977, the stadium has been fully renovated since then, with the most recent work being completed in 1999. The stadium houses the offices of the Scottish Football Association and Scottish Professional Football League, Hampden has hosted prestigious sporting events, including three Champions League finals, two Cup Winners Cup finals and a UEFA Cup final. Hampden is a UEFA category four stadium and it is served by the nearby Mount Florida, Queens Park, the oldest club in Scottish football, have played at a venue called Hampden Park since October 1873. The first Hampden Park was overlooked by a terrace named after Englishman John Hampden. Queens Park played at the first Hampden Park for 10 years beginning with a Scottish Cup tie on 25 October 1873, the ground hosted the first Scottish Cup Final, in 1874, and a Scotland v England match in 1878. The club moved to the second Hampden Park,150 yards from the original, a lawn bowling club at the junction of Queens Drive and Cathcart Road marks the site of the first Hampden. The second Hampden Park opened in October 1884 and it became a regular home to the Scottish Cup Final, but Celtic Park shared some of the big matches including the Scotland v England fixture in 1894. In the late 1890s, Queens Park requested more land for development of the second Hampden Park and this was refused by the landlords, which led to the club seeking a new site. Henry Erskine Gordon agreed to sell 12 acres of land off Somerville Drive to Queens Park in November 1899, james Miller designed twin grandstands along the south side of the ground with a pavilion wedged in between. The natural slopes were shaped to form banks of terracing, designed by Archibald Leitch, construction of the new ground took over three years to complete, during construction, a disaster occurred at Ibrox in which part of the wooden terraces collapsed. In response, the terraces at Hampden were firmly set in the earthwork, Third Lanark A. C. took over the second Hampden Park in 1903 and renamed it Cathkin Park. The club rebuilt the ground from scratch due to a failure to agree a fee for the whole stadium, Third Lanark went out of business in 1967 and Cathkin Park is now a public park with much of the original terracing still evident
The Scottish Football Association Challenge Cup, commonly known as the Scottish Cup, is an annual association football knock-out cup competition for mens football clubs in Scotland. The competition was first held in 1873–74, entry is open to all clubs with full or associate membership of the Scottish Football Association. The competition is called the William Hill Scottish Cup for sponsorship reasons and it was first presented to Queens Park, who won the final match of the inaugural tournament in March 1874. The current holder is Hibernian, who won the tournament for the time by defeating Rangers 3–2 in the 2016 final. The tournament starts at the beginning of the Scottish football season in August or September, the Scottish Cup Final is usually the last game of the season, taking place at the end of May. Participating teams enter the tournament at different stages depending on their league ranking, the lowest ranked clubs enter the tournament at the first round whilst the highest ranked, those that compete in the Scottish Premiership, enter at the fourth round stage. The competition is a knock-out tournament, in each round of games the teams are paired at random, with the first team drawn listed as the home team. Every game lasts 90 minutes plus any additional stoppage time, the winner of each game advances to the next round, whilst the loser is eliminated from the tournament. If a game ends in a draw, the fixture is replayed at the ground of the other team at a later date. If the replay also ends in a draw,30 minutes of time is played followed by a penalty shoot-out if there is still no clear winner. In the semi-final and final rounds, if the ends in a draw there is no replay. The competition has a staggered entry system, Scottish League One and six Scottish Championship clubs started in the third round, while the remaining four Championship clubs and all 12 Scottish Premiership clubs entered in the fourth round. Any club that is a full or associate member of the Scottish Football Association is entitled to compete in the tournament, every team that plays in the Scottish Professional Football League is therefore eligible. Between 1895 and 2007, clubs that were SFA members but not competitors in the professional football leagues could only qualify for the tournament by winning the Scottish Qualifying Cup. Clubs that are not members of the SFA may still qualify for the tournament by winning the Highland League, Lowland League, three junior clubs, Banks O Dee, Girvan and Linlithgow Rose are also SFA members and therefore qualify automatically. From 2015, the winners of the Scottish Amateur Cup are also eligible to qualify, players that are registered with a competing club are eligible to play. However, players are not entitled to play for more than one club during the same tournament, each club names eleven players and up to five substitutes before every match. In order to play in the match, a player must have also been registered to compete in the semi-final round for the same club
Ayr United F.C.
Ayr United Football Club are a Scottish association football club, based in Ayr that plays in the Scottish Championship, the second tier of the Scottish Professional Football League. Formed in 1910 after the merger of former clubs Ayr Parkhouse and Ayr, their nickname is The Honest Men, taken from a line in the poem Tam o Shanter by Scotlands national poet, Robert Burns. The club have spent 34 seasons in Scotlands top division altogether, the club have been the champions of the second tier of Scottish football on six occasions and of the third tier twice, but have not won any national cup competitions. The clubs most famous and most successful manager is Ally MacLeod, in May 2016 United secured promotion to the Scottish Championship via the Playoffs. Ayr United were founded in 1910 after the merger of Ayr Parkhouse, the clubs honours include winning six Second Division titles and a further two such titles, most recently in 1996–97. They have won the competition the Ayrshire Cup on 26 occasions. The Ayrshire Cup was last played for in season 1996–97, since when the competition has been suspended, the clubs overall record scorer is Peter Price, who scored 213 times in competitive matches for the club between 1955 and 1962. Former Scottish national team manager Ally MacLeod is regarded as the clubs most famous and he led the club on three separate occasions spanning 15 years, during which his teams recorded a record 214 wins, and won two league titles. In 1973 MacLeod was voted Ayrs Citizen of the Year, more recent managers have also included the recent Scottish national team manager, George Burley, and former Scottish League Cup winner with Raith Rovers, Gordon Dalziel. Gordon Dalziel is the manager to take Ayr to a National Cup Final on 17 March 2002 when they lost to Rangers 4–0. Their current manager is Ian McCall, although the club has spent 34 seasons in Scotlands top division, they have played in the second and third tiers of Scottish senior football since the 1977–78 season. In 1988, Ayr United fan and businessman Sir David Murray offered to buy the club, during much of the 1990s and 2000s, a period of relative success both in league and cup competitions, the Ayr United chairman was local construction magnate Bill Barr. After Barr stood down, there were occasional boardroom struggles, the club suffered significant cashflow problems in 2004 although it survived with a combination of efforts, prestwick-based Roy Kennedy failed to takeover the club in 2005, and his company Kennedy Construction went bankrupt in 2006. On 24 May 2009, Ayr won the Scottish First Division Play-off against Airdrie United 3–2 on aggregate to win promotion to the First Division. The following season, to celebrate the centenary, Ayr United played in black and white hoops. The away kit was crimson and gold with blue shorts to reflect the club colours. But it was not a successful season, Ayr were relegated on the last day of the season after losing 2–1 to Morton. The club bounced back the season, winning promotion after defeating Forfar Athletic
The Ayrshire Derby is a derby match between the two senior Scottish football sides based in Ayrshire, Ayr United and Kilmarnock. The first match was held on 14 September 1910, in the year that Ayr United were formed. This game was the final of the Ayrshire League in the 1909-10 season, Ayr United were the first of the clubs to record a win the following season. The six most recent meetings took place in national cup competitions because Kilmarnock have played in a division than Ayr since 1993. Up until 1998, both competed in a local cup competition, the Ayrshire Cup, which also involved local junior sides. The current record for Ayrshire derby games stands at 189 wins for Kilmarnock and 66 for Ayr United, in January 2009, the two clubs met for the first time in over seven years. They were drawn together in the Scottish Cup at Somerset Park, the game finished 2-2, with Kilmarnock twice taking the lead and Ayr United equalising twice, with the final goal of the game scored by substitute Ayr striker Alex Williams in injury time. Ayr keeper Stephen Grindlay also saved a penalty kick from Kilmarnocks Allan Russell, in the replay at Rugby Park, Ayr United took the lead with a goal from Bryan Prunty, which television replays confirmed had involved the use of his hand. However, Kilmarnock won the tie 3-1 with goals from Simon Ford and this was Kilmarnocks first victory in the derby in a senior competition for seventeen years. The previous meeting was a Scottish League Cup tie in October 2001, Ayr United had midfielder Paul Sheerin sent off early in the second half, playing the rest of the 90 minutes and extra time with ten men. However, no goals were scored in open play, and Ayr United won 5-4, previously, Ayr United scored 3-0 and 2-0 wins in the Scottish Cup in 1998-99 and 1997–98, the latter bringing to an end Kilmarnocks reign as the cup holders. In the 1998-99 match Andy Walker scored two penalties, the second of them being chipped over the Kilmarnock goalkeeper Gordon Marshall, the last league meeting between the sides was on 20 March 1993 at Rugby Park, finishing in a 1-1 draw. Since then, Kilmarnock have played in the Scottish Premier League, by contrast, in the late 1970s Ayr United played in the then-top tier of Scottish league football with Kilmarnock in the division below. The two clubs have won this local competition on many occasions, but the last time it was contested was in 1998. This match was even more special with Kilmarnock left back Dylan Kerr jumping into the Moffat stand to celebrate his superb strike to make it 3-2. The trophy has been won by Kilmarnock on 42 occasions and by Ayr United on 27, between 2003 and 2005, a series of annual one-off friendly matches were held in October, sponsored by a local commercial radio station and named the West Sound Trophy. Kilmarnock won the first match at Rugby Park 1-0, the year at Somerset Park Ayr United won on penalties, having earlier been 2-0 behind. On 28 January 2012 Ayr United and Kilmarnock met at Hampden for the League Cup semi final, Kilmarnock won 1-0, thanks to a 109th-minute goal from Dean Shiels
Leeds United F.C.
Leeds United Football Club is a professional association football club in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. The club was formed in 1919 following the disbanding of Leeds City F. C. by the Football League and they play in the Championship, the second tier of the English football league system. Leeds United have won three First Division league titles, one FA Cup and one League Cup, the club has also won two Inter-Cities Fairs Cups. The majority of the honours were won under the management of Don Revie in the 1960s and 1970s, Leeds lost the 1975 European Cup Final against Bayern Munich and reached the semi-finals of the tournaments successor, the Champions League, in 2001. Leeds play in all-white kits, leading to their nickname being the whites, the clubs badge features the White Rose of York together with the monogram LUFC. The clubs anthem is Marching On Together, Leeds Uniteds predecessor team, Leeds City, was formed in 1904, and were elected League members in 1905. At first they found it hard to draw big crowds to Elland Road, in 1919, Leeds United was formed and they received an invitation to enter the Midland League, being voted into it on 31 October, taking the place vacated by Leeds City Reserves. Following Leeds Citys disbanding, Yorkshire Amateurs bought their stadium Elland Road, Yorkshire Amateurs offered to make way for the new team under the management of former player Dick Ray. The chairman of Huddersfield Town, Hilton Crowther loaned Leeds United £35,000 and he brought in Barnsleys manager Arthur Fairclough and on 26 February 1920, Dick Ray stepped down to become Faircloughs assistant. On 31 May 1920, Leeds United were elected to the Football League, over the following few years, they consolidated their position in the Second Division and in 1924 won the title and with it promotion to the First Division. They failed to establish themselves and were relegated in 1926–27, after their relegation, Fairclough resigned, which paved the way for Ray to return as manager. In the years up until the start of World War II Leeds were twice relegated, on 5 March 1935, Ray resigned and was replaced by Billy Hampson, who remained in charge for 12 years. In the 1946–47 season after the war, Leeds were relegated again, after this season, Hampson resigned and was replaced in April 1947 by Willis Edwards. In 1948, Sam Bolton replaced Ernest Pullan as the chairman of Leeds United, Edwards was moved to assistant manager in April 1948 after just one year as manager. He was replaced by Major Frank Buckley, Leeds remained in the Second Division until 1955–56, when they once again won promotion to the First Division, inspired by John Charles. Charles was hungry for success at the highest level, and manager Raich Carter was unable to convince him that Leeds could satisfy his ambitions, Charles was sold to Juventus for a then world record of £65,000. The loss of Charles resulted in Leeds being relegated to the Second Division in the 1959–60 season, in March 1961, the club appointed former player Don Revie as manager, following the resignation of Jack Taylor. His stewardship began in adverse circumstances, the club was in financial difficulty, Revie implemented a youth policy and a change of kit colour to an all-white strip in the style of Real Madrid, and Leeds soon won promotion to the First Division in 1963–64
UEFA Champions League
The UEFA Champions League is an annual continental club football competition organised by the Union of European Football Associations and contested by top-division European clubs. It is one of the most prestigious tournaments in the world, the UEFA Champions League final is the most watched annual sporting event worldwide. The final of the 2012–13 tournament had the highest TV ratings to date, the pre-1992 competition was initially a straight knockout tournament open only to the champion club of each country. During the 1990s, the format was expanded, incorporating a round-robin group stage to include clubs that finished runner-up of some nations top-level league. Clubs that finish next-in-line in each top level league, having not qualified for the UEFA Champions League competition. In its present format, the UEFA Champions League begins in mid-July with three qualifying rounds and a play-off round. The 10 surviving teams enter the stage, joining 22 other teams qualified in advance. The 32 teams are drawn into eight groups of four teams, the eight group winners and eight runners-up proceed to the knockout phase that culminates with the final match in May. The winner of the UEFA Champions League qualifies for the UEFA Super Cup, Real Madrid is the most successful club in the competitions history, having won the tournament 11 times, including its first five seasons. Spanish clubs have accumulated the highest number of victories, followed by England, the competition has been won by 22 different clubs,12 of which have won it more than once. Since the tournament changed name and structure in 1992, no club has managed consecutive wins, Milan were the last holders to defend their title. The reigning champions are Real Madrid, who secured their title in the competition after defeating Atlético Madrid on penalties following a 1–1 draw in the 2016 final. The first pan-European tournament was the Challenge Cup, a competition between clubs in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Mitropa Cup, a competition modelled after the Challenge Cup, was created in 1927, an idea of Austrian Hugo Meisl, and played between Central European clubs. In 1930, the Coupe des Nations, the first attempt to create a cup for national clubs of Europe, was played and organised by Swiss club Servette. Held in Geneva, it brought together ten champions from across the continent, the tournament was won by Újpest of Hungary. Latin European nations came together to form the Latin Cup in 1949 and it was conceived in Paris in 1955 as the European Champion Clubs Cup. The first edition of the European Cup took place during the 1955–56 season, the first European Cup match took place on 4 September 1955, and ended in a 3–3 draw between Sporting CP and Partizan. The first goal in European Cup history was scored by João Baptista Martins of Sporting CP, the inaugural final took place at the Parc des Princes between Stade de Reims and Real Madrid
UEFA Cup Winners' Cup
The UEFA Cup Winners Cup was a football club competition contested annually by the most recent winners of all European domestic cup competitions. The cup is one of the many inter-European club competitions that have been organised by UEFA, the first competition was held in the 1960–61 season — but not recognised by the governing body of European football until two years later. The final tournament was held in 1998–99, after which it was absorbed into the UEFA Cup, in the 1985–86 season, English clubs were banned from European competition. Consequently, Manchester United, Everton, Coventry City, Wimbledon, from 1972 onwards, the winner of the tournament progressed to play the winner of the European Cup in the UEFA Super Cup. Since the abolition of the UEFA Cup Winners Cup, the UEFA Super Cup place previously reserved for the Cup Winners Cup winner has been taken by the winner of the UEFA Cup, now UEFA Europa League. The competitions official name was originally the European Cup Winners Cup, in common with other UEFA club tournaments, the away goal applied when aggregate scores was parity. Following the influx of new UEFA member nations during the 1990s, however, if this team also qualified for the European Champions Cup then they would default on their place in the Cup Winners Cup and no other team would replace them. In 1998–99, the final year, Heerenveen of the Netherlands entered the Cup Winners Cup despite only reaching the semi-final of the previous seasons Dutch Cup. This was due to both Dutch Cup finalists Ajax and PSV Eindhoven qualifying for the recently expanded Champions League. The European Cup had proven to be a success and the Fairs Cup had also proven popular – as a result. One proposal was for a tournament based upon the format of the European Cup, but with national cup winners rather than league champions taking part, the inaugural Cup Winners Cup was held in the 1960–61 season and was basically a semi-official pilot tournament. It was essentially only in England, Scotland and to a lesser extent Germany, for the tournaments second season in 1961–62, UEFA took over the running of all aspects of the competition and this time all the clubs eligible to enter accepted the opportunity. By 1968, all UEFA member nations had set up domestic cup competitions due to the success of the Cup Winners Cup, UEFA regarded it as the second most prestigious competition, behind the European Cup and ahead of the Fairs Cup. Nevertheless, many commentators and fans regarded the Cup Winners Cup as weaker than the UEFA Cup, no club managed to retain the Cup Winners Cup, although eight times a winning side followed up their victories with a losing appearance in the following seasons final. After the establishment of the UEFA Champions League in the early 1990s, with the expansion of the Champions League in 1997 to allow more than one team from the highest-ranked member associations to enter, the Cup Winners Cup began to look noticeably inferior. Since then, domestic cup winners who do not otherwise qualify for the Champions League are given a place in the Europa League, the Cup Winners Cup trophy itself is a property of UEFA and it is not assigned to any club. Sport. Soccer Statistics Foundation UEFA website
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
Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players on a cricket field, at the centre of which is a rectangular 22-yard-long pitch with a wicket at each end. One team bats, attempting to score as many runs as possible, each phase of play is called an innings. After either ten batsmen have been dismissed or a number of overs have been completed, the innings ends. The winning team is the one that scores the most runs, including any extras gained, at the start of each game, two batsmen and eleven fielders enter the field of play. The striker takes guard on a crease drawn on the four feet in front of the wicket. His role is to prevent the ball hitting the stumps by use of his bat. The other batsman, known as the non-striker, waits at the end of the pitch near the bowler. A dismissed batsman must leave the field, and a teammate replaces him, the bowlers objectives are to prevent the scoring of runs and to dismiss the batsman. An over is a set of six deliveries bowled by the same bowler, the next over is bowled from the other end of the pitch by a different bowler. If a fielder retrieves the ball enough to put down the wicket with a batsman not having reached the crease at that end of the pitch. Adjudication is performed on the field by two umpires, the laws of cricket are maintained by the International Cricket Council and the Marylebone Cricket Club. Traditionally cricketers play in all-white kit, but in limited overs cricket they wear club or team colours. In addition to the kit, some players wear protective gear to prevent injury caused by the ball. Although crickets origins are uncertain, it is first recorded in south-east England in the 16th century and it spread globally with the expansion of the British Empire, leading to the first international matches in the mid-19th century. ICC, the governing body, has over 100 members. The sport is followed primarily in Australasia, Britain, the Indian subcontinent, southern Africa, womens cricket, which is organised and played separately, has also achieved international standard. A number of words have been suggested as sources for the term cricket, in the earliest definite reference to the sport in 1598 it is called creckett. One possible source for the name is the Old English cricc or cryce meaning a crutch or staff, in Samuel Johnsons Dictionary, he derived cricket from cryce, Saxon, a stick
Rugby is a type of football developed at Rugby School in Rugby, Warwickshire, one of many versions of football played at English public schools in the 19th century. The two main types of rugby are rugby league and rugby union, although rugby league initially used rugby union rules, they are now wholly separate sports. Following the 1895 split in rugby football, the two rugby league and rugby union differed in administration only. Soon the rules of rugby league were modified, resulting in two different forms of rugby. After 100 years, in 1995 rugby union joined rugby league, the Greeks and Romans are known to have played many ball games, some of which involved the use of the feet. These games appear to have resembled rugby football, the Roman politician Cicero describes the case of a man who was killed whilst having a shave when a ball was kicked into a barbers shop. Roman ball games already knew the air-filled ball, the follis, episkyros is recognised as an early form of football by FIFA. In 1871, English clubs met to form the Rugby Football Union, in 1892, after charges of professionalism were made against some clubs for paying players for missing work, the Northern Rugby Football Union, usually called the Northern Union, was formed. The existing rugby union authorities responded by issuing sanctions against the clubs, players, after the schism, the separate clubs were named rugby league and rugby union. Rugby union is both a professional and amateur game, and is dominated by the first tier unions, Argentina, Australia, England, France, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Scotland, South Africa and Wales. Rugby Union is administered by World Rugby, whose headquarters are located in Dublin and it is the national sport in New Zealand, Wales, Fiji, Samoa, Tonga and Madagascar, and is the most popular form of rugby globally. The Olympic Games have admitted the seven-a-side version of the game, known as Rugby sevens, there was a possibility sevens would be a demonstration sport at the 2012 London Olympics but many sports including sevens were dropped. In Canada and the United States, rugby union evolved into gridiron football, during the late 1800s, the two forms of the game were very similar, but numerous rule changes have differentiated the gridiron-based game from its rugby counterpart. Rugby league is also both a professional and amateur game, administered on a level by the Rugby League International Federation. International Rugby League is dominated by Australia, England and New Zealand, in Papua New Guinea it is the national sport. Other nations from the South Pacific and Europe also play in the Pacific Cup, distinctive features common to both rugby codes include the oval ball and throwing the ball forward is not allowed, so that players can gain ground only by running with the ball or by kicking it. As the sport of rugby league moved further away from its counterpart, rule changes were implemented with the aim of making a faster-paced. League players may not contest possession after making a tackle, play is continued with a play-the-ball, in league, if the team in possession fails to score before a set of six tackles, it surrenders possession
Queen's Park F.C.
Queens Park Football Club is a Scottish football club based in Glasgow. Queens Park is the oldest association football club in Scotland, having founded in 1867. Queens Park is also the only Scottish football club to have played in the FA Cup Final, the clubs home is a Category 4 stadium, the all-seated Hampden Park in South East Glasgow, which is also the home of the Scottish national team. With 10 titles, Queens Park has won the Scottish Cup the third most times of any club, behind Rangers and Celtic, gentlemen from the local YMCA took part in football matches in the local Glasgow area which gave the club its name. During the inaugural meeting, debate raged over the clubs name, proposals included, The Celts, The Northern and Morayshire. Perhaps such choice of names suggest a Highland influence within the new club, after much deliberation, Queens Park was adopted and carried, but only by a majority of one vote. Although Queens was not the first club in Britain, that going to Edinburgh and John Hopes Football Club, formed in 1824. Opposition first came in the form of a now defunct Glaswegian side called Thistle F. C. on 30 November 1872, Scotland faced England at the West of Scotland Cricket Club ground at Hamilton Crescent. For the one and only time all eleven Scots players were from Queens Park and they wore blue jerseys,4,000 spectators watched Scotland play with a 2–2–6 formation and England with a 1–1–8 line-up. Queens Park formed the Scottish Football Association on 13 March 1873, the match against Dumbreck on 25 October was the first match to be played at Hampden Park. It was also the first match which saw Queens Park players wear their black and white hooped jerseys. David Wotherspoon, a Queens Park player and committee member, has credited with the introduction of the black. Most importantly, it was the first Scottish Cup tie and Scottish competitive match for the club, in the final, Queens defeated Clydesdale 2–0 at Hampden. Success in the Scottish Cup followed in the two years with final victories over Renton and Third Lanark. In drawing 2–2 with Clydesdale in the 1875 semi-final, Queens conceded their first ever goals, defeat for the club was first experienced with a 2–1 defeat to Vale of Leven in the 5th round in December 1876. Third Lanark and Rangers eliminated the Spiders before Queens reclaimed the cup in 1880 with a win over Thornliebank, Dumbarton were beaten in the final in successive years. In 1881, Queens had to them twice after Dumbarton successfully appealed that the crowd at Kinning Park had encroached following a 2–1 defeat. Dumbarton got revenge in 1883 but Queens won again in 1884 without even having to play the final after Vale of Leven refused to play on the date stipulated by the SFA, in the early days of Englands FA Cup, Scottish clubs were often invited to compete
Scottish Football Association
Members of the SFA include clubs in Scotland, affiliated national associations as well as local associations. It was formed in 1873, making it the second oldest national football association in the world and it is not to be confused with the Scottish Football Union, which is the name that the SRU was known by until the 1920s. The Scottish Football Association sits on the International Football Association Board which is responsible for the laws of the game, the SFA is also a member of FIFA and founder member of UEFA. It is based at Hampden Park in Glasgow, in addition, the Scottish Football Museum is located there. Furthermore, Kilmarnock sent a letter stating their willingness to join, one of the most prominent roles of the chief executive is to hire and dismiss Scotland national football team managers. There was also a team, but this was disbanded in 2008. In womens football, there is the full Scotland womens national team, under-19. The Scottish Football Association encourages quality of governance in football clubs through a system of club licence awards, all SFA member clubs are assessed annually in four areas and, if appropriate, awarded a licence at gold, silver, bronze or entry level. As of January 2015, gold-level licences have been awarded to two clubs, Celtic and Hibernian. All clubs in the Scottish Professional Football League are required to be licensed at entry level or above, this has been extended to the Highland Football League and Lowland Football League
Scottish Football League
The Scottish Football League was a league featuring professional and semi-professional football clubs mostly from Scotland. From its foundation in 1890 until the breakaway Scottish Premier League was formed in 1998, after 1998, the SFL represented levels 2 to 4 of the Scottish football league system. In June 2013, the SFL merged with the SPL to form the Scottish Professional Football League, the SFL was associated with a title sponsor from the 1985–86 season. As this sponsor has changed over the years the league was known in turn as the Fine Fare League, B&Q League, Bells Scottish Football League, the SFL also organised two knock-out cup competitions, the Scottish League Cup and the Scottish Challenge Cup. Organised football in Scotland began in 1873 with the formation of the Scottish Football Association, during the next 15 years or so, clubs would play friendly matches, Scottish Cup ties and local cup ties. The Football League, initially containing clubs from the North West and this had been done in response to the professionalisation of football in England in 1885, with the regular diet of league fixtures replacing the haphazard arrangement of friendlies. Many Scottish players, known as the Scotch Professors, moved to the English league clubs to receive the high salaries on offer. This prompted Scottish clubs into thinking about forming their own league, in March 1890, the secretary of Renton wrote to thirteen other clubs inviting them to discuss the organisation of a league. All of the clubs accepted the invitation, except Queens Park and these concerns were to prove well-founded, as six of the founder members would leave the league before 1900. The Scottish Football League was inaugurated on 30 April 1890, the first season of competition, 1890–91, commenced with 11 clubs because St Bernards were not elected. The eleven original clubs in membership were Abercorn, Cambuslang, Celtic, Cowlairs, Dumbarton, Heart of Midlothian, Rangers, Renton, St Mirren, Third Lanark and Vale of Leven. Renton were expelled five games of the 1890–91 season for playing against St Bernards. Renton raised an action against the SFA in the Court of Session and won, in the 1890–91 season, Rangers and Dumbarton were level at the top of the league on 29 points. The teams drew 2–2 in a match, but no further thought had been given to separating teams by another method. Goal average was introduced for the 1921–22 season and replaced by goal difference for the 1971–72 season, the league proved to be highly successful, and in 1893 a Second Division was formed by the inclusion of a number of clubs previously in the Scottish Football Alliance. Promotion was initially based on a ballot of clubs, automatic promotion was not introduced until 1922, in 1923, the League decided to introduce a Third Division. The Western Football League was used as its backbone but the new set-up lasted only three years before it collapsed under heavy financial losses, from 1926 until 1946, the League returned to two divisions. Post-World War II reforms saw the League resume with three divisions, postwar seasons saw the divisions renamed A, B and C with the last section also including reserve sides
Albion Rovers F.C.
Albion Rovers Football Club is a semi-professional football team from Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire, Scotland. They are members of the Scottish Professional Football League and, as of the 2016–17 season, play in League One and their sole major honours during that time have been wins in the lower two divisions of the senior league system. The clubs stadium, Cliftonhill, known as the Exsel Group Stadium for sponsorship purposes, Albion Rovers were formed in 1882 from a merger of the two Coatbridge sides Albion FC and Rovers FC, and played at Meadow Park from that year. The club joined the Scottish Football League Second Division in 1903 along with Ayr Parkhouse following an expansion in numbers. Rovers settled into the League reasonably well, albeit without ever clinching promotion, by 1915 the Scottish Football League had been merged into a single division structure, with the second division scrapped. The Rovers moved to join the Western Football League and whilst members of this moved to their current Cliftonhill home in 1919. They were close to returning to the Scottish League in 1917 but lost out in a vote amongst Clydebank, Vale of Leven, with their new stadium completed, Rovers returned to the single division Scottish League for the 1919–20 season. Rovers remained a top-flight side even after the return of the Second Division until their relegation in 1923 and it was during this period that John Jock White, became Rovers only international appearing for Scotland, in a match against Wales. The club remained in the Second Division until the 1933–34 season when they took the title by a point from Dunfermline Athletic, of the five seasons immediately before the Second World War Rovers spent all but one of them as a top-flight side. They took part in the emergency Western League during the 1939–40 season before transferring over to the Southern Football League, despite struggling from time to time to get a full side out the Rovers managed to survive the war in good shape. To add to their problems the celebrated wing partnership of Willie Findlay and Johnny McIlhatton was broken up when the former departed for Rangers, One feature of the McIlhatton transfer was a friendly match between the two clubs at Goodison Park in September 1946, which the Toffees won 6–3. Rovers took a 2–0 lead in the first leg against Kilmarnock, and no team has ever been able to put together a more spicy trio than Currie, Sage and Rice, who appeared in Rovers sides of the early 1970s. Changes brought in for the 1975–76 season saw Rovers placed in the new Second Division, in 1986 a book covering the clubs history was published, The Boys From the Brig by Robin Marwick. Players such as Vic Kasule and Bernie Slaven brought some flamboyancy to Rovers in the mid-1980s, the First Division stay was again to last just one season and Rovers subsequently finished bottom of the bottom division several times during the 1990s. Rovers found themselves in the newly created Scottish Football League Third Division, in an attempt to cut costs, the number of full-timers was substantially reduced and the clubs board took a decision to sell Cliftonhill and groundshare with Airdrieonians. Following another last place finish in 1999–00 there was an attempt to change the clubs fortunes, the team went full-time, although many of the full-time players were youths to whom the club gave employment under a government scheme. Rovers went into the last day of the season in 2001–02 and 2002–03 with a chance of promotion, the full-time experiment proved too expensive and had to be dismantled to keep the clubs costs under control. Rovers stayed put and it was against this background that a group of fans set up Albion Rovers Supporters Trust with a view to benefit the club and local community
Rangers Football Club are a football club in Glasgow, Scotland, which plays in the Scottish Premiership, the first tier of the Scottish Professional Football League. Their home ground, Ibrox Stadium, is in the south-west of the city, Rangers were the first British club to reach a UEFA tournament final and won the European Cup Winners Cup in 1972 after being runner-up twice in 1961 and 1967. A third runners-up finish in Europe came in the UEFA Cup in 2008, Rangers have a long-standing rivalry with Celtic, the two Glasgow clubs being collectively known as the Old Firm. The four founders of Rangers – brothers Moses and Peter McNeil, Peter Campbell, Rangers first match, in May that year, was a goalless friendly draw with Callander on Glasgow Green. David Hill was also a founder member, in 1873, the club held its first annual meeting and staff were elected. By 1876 Rangers had its first international player, with Moses McNeil representing Scotland in a match against Wales. In 1877 Rangers reached a Scottish Cup final, after drawing the first game, Rangers refused to turn up for the replay, Rangers won the Glasgow Merchants Charity Cup the following year against Vale of Leven 2–1, their first major cup. The first-ever Old Firm match took place in 1888, the year of Celtics establishment, Rangers lost 5–2 in a friendly to a team composed largely of guest players from Hibernian. The 1890–91 season saw the inception of the Scottish Football League, the clubs first-ever league match, on 16 August 1890, resulted in a 5–2 victory over Heart of Midlothian. After finishing joint-top with Dumbarton, a play-off held at Cathkin Park finished 2–2, Rangers first-ever Scottish Cup win came in 1894 after a 3–1 final victory over rivals Celtic. By the start of the 20th century, Rangers had won two titles and three Scottish Cups. During William Wiltons time as secretary and then team manager. Taking over as manager from William Wilton in 1920, Bill Struth was Rangers most successful manager, on 2 January 1939 a British league attendance record was broken as 118,567 fans turned out to watch Rangers beat Celtic in the traditional New Years Day Old Firm match. During the wartime regional league setup, Rangers achieved their highest score against old firm rivals Celtic with an 8–1 win in the Southern Football League, Rangers also lost by their biggest Old Firm margin of 7–1. Rangers reached the semi-finals of the European Cup in 1960, losing to German club Eintracht Frankfurt by a record aggregate 12–4 for a Scottish team. In 1961 Rangers became the first British team to reach a European final when they contested the Cup Winners Cup final against Italian side Fiorentina, Rangers lost again in the final of the same competition in 1967, by a single goal after extra time to Bayern Munich. The Ibrox disaster occurred on 2 January 1971 when large-scale crushing on an exit at the culmination of the New Years Day Old Firm game claimed 66 lives. An enquiry concluded that the crush was likely to have happened ten minutes after the final whistle and to have been triggered by someone falling on the stairs
Heart of Midlothian F.C.
Heart of Midlothian Football Club, commonly known as Hearts, is a Scottish professional football club based in Gorgie in the west of Edinburgh. It is currently the only Scottish Premiership club in the city, with Edinburgh derby rivals Hibernian playing in the Scottish Championship and Edinburgh City playing in Scottish League Two. Hearts is the oldest football club in the Scottish capital, having formed in 1874 by a group of friends from the Heart of Midlothian Quadrille Assembly Club. The modern club crest is based on the Heart of Midlothian mosaic on the citys Royal Mile, Hearts play at Tynecastle Stadium, where home matches have been played since 1886. Their current training facilities are at the nearby Heriot Watt University in Edinburgh, the clubs most successful period was under Tommy Walker from the mid 1950s to mid 1960s. They won seven trophies in this period and were runners up for five others, Jimmy Wardhaugh, Willie Bauld and Alfie Conn, Sr. known affectionately as the Terrible Trio were famed forwards at the start of this period with wing half lynch pins Dave Mackay and John Cumming. Wardhaugh was part of another notable Hearts attacking trinity in the 1957–58 league winning side, along with Jimmy Murray and Alex Young they set the record for the number of goals scored in that league winning campaign. In doing so became the only side to finish a season with a goal difference exceeding 100. Hearts have won the Scottish Cup eight times, most recently in 2012 after a 5–1 win over city-rivals Hibernian, Hearts four Scottish League Cup triumphs were all under Walker, most recently a 1–01962 Scottish League Cup Final victory against Kilmarnock. The most recent Scottish League Cup Final appearance was in 2013 when they lost to St Mirren 3–2, in 1958, Heart of Midlothian became the third Scottish and fifth British team to compete in European competition at the time. The club reached the quarter-finals of the 1988–89 UEFA Cup, losing out to Bayern Munich 2–1 on aggregate, the club was formed by a group of friends from the Heart of Midlothian Quadrille Assembly Club. The group of friends bought a ball before playing local rules football at the Tron from where they were directed by a policeman to The Meadows to play. Local rules football was a mix of rugby and football as we know it, in December 1873 a match was held between XIs selected by Mr Thomson from Queens Park and Mr Gardner from Clydesdale at Raimes Park in Bonnington. This was the first time that Association rules had seen in Edinburgh. Members from the dance club viewed the match and in 1874 decided to adopt the association rules, the new side was Heart of Mid-Lothian Football Club. The earliest mention of Heart of Midlothian in a context is a report in The Scotsman newspaper from 20 July 1864 of The Scotsman vs Heart of Mid-Lothian at cricket. It is not known if this was the club who went on to form the football club. The club took its name from the Heart of Midlothian jail, by becoming members of the Scottish Association Hearts were able to play in the Scottish Cup for the first time
Dundee United F.C.
Dundee United Football Club is a Scottish professional football club based in the city of Dundee. Formed in 1909, originally as Dundee Hibernian, the changed to the present name in 1923. United are nicknamed The Terrors or The Tangerines and the supporters are known as Arabs, the club has played in tangerine kits since the 1960s and have played at the present ground, Tannadice Park, since their foundation in 1909. United were founder members of the Scottish Premier League in 1998 and were ever-present in the competition until it was abolished in 2013 to make way for the SPFL structure, United were relegated in 2016 to the Scottish Championship, which is the second tier of the SPFL. Domestically, the club has won the Scottish Premier Division on one occasion, the Scottish Cup twice, United appeared in European competition for the first time in the 1966–67 season, going on to appear in Europe in 14 successive seasons from 1976. They also reached the European Cup semi-finals in 1984 and the UEFA Cup final in 1987, the club has a 100% record in four matches against Barcelona in competitive European ties. The club was formed as Dundee Hibernian in 1909, playing from the outset at Tannadice Park and they were voted into the Scottish Football League in 1910. After being saved from going out of business in October 1923, between 1925 and 1932 United were promoted and then relegated three times, winning the Second Division title in 1925 and 1929. The club achieved little success until Jerry Kerr became manager in 1959. Kerrs team won promotion in his first season in charge and became established in the top flight, Jim McLean took over from Kerr in 1971 and his youth policy led to the most successful era in the clubs history. United won the Scottish League Cup in 1979 and 1980 and then the Premier Division title in 1982–83, the club were also successful in Europe, reaching the European Cup semi-finals in 1984 and the 1987 UEFA Cup Final. The latter featuring another elimination of Barcelona, despite losing to IFK Gothenburg in the final, the club won a FIFA Fair Play Award. McLean retired as manager in 1993, but remained as club chairman, United won the Scottish Cup for the first time in 1994 under McLeans successor Ivan Golac, but were relegated in 1995, returning a year later. Shortly after Leveins departure, the won the Scottish Cup for a second time in 2010 under the management of Peter Houston. After several relatively successful seasons, a slump in form led to United being relegated in 2016, for a complete pictorial history of playing kit, see the Historical Football Kits site. After persuasion by the wife of manager Jerry Kerr, the colour would soon be adopted as the own in 1969 to give the club a brighter. The new colour was paraded for the first time in a friendly against Everton in August. When founded as Dundee Hibernian, they had followed the example of clubs of similar heritage by adopting the traditionally Irish colours of green shirts
2012 Scottish League Cup Final
The 2012 Scottish League Cup Final was the 66th final of the Scottish League Cup. The final took place on 18 March 2012 at Hampden Park in Glasgow, in front of a crowd of 49,572. The clubs contesting the 2012 final were SPL clubs Celtic and Kilmarnock, the match was Celtics twenty-ninth League Cup final, and Kilmarnocks sixth. As both clubs had finished in the top five of last seasons Scottish Premier League, they entered the League Cup in the third round. Celtic played no home games throughout the tournament with trips to Easter Road, Celtic entered the final as favourites, with Kilmarnock as underdogs. Both Celtic and Kilmarnock were two of the five Scottish Premier League sides who entered the League Cup in the third round, in the third round Celtic faced an away tie at Victoria Park against First Division team Ross County. Gary Hooper and a Scott Boyd own-goal gave Celtic a 2–0 victory, in the next round Celtic faced fellow Scottish Premier League team Hibernian at Easter Road. Celtic came back from a goal behind to win 4–1 thanks to goals from Hooper, Anthony Stokes, Celtic beat Falkirk 3–1 in the semi-final. A Scott Brown penalty and two goals from Stokes put Celtic into the final In Kilmarnocks third round tie they were at home against First Division side Queen of the South at Rugby Park Stadium. Kilmarnock won 5–0 after a hat-trick from Paul Heffernan and goals from Gary Harkins, Kilmarnocks next match was against Second Division side East Fife, again at home. They won 2–0 thanks to goals from Harkins and Mahamadou Sissoko, in the semi-final at the neutral Hampden Park Kilmarnock faced Ayshire rivals Ayr United. The match finished 0–0 after 90 minutes before Dean Shiels scored the winner in extra-time, Celtic had previously appeared in 28 League Cup finals, winning 15. Their most recent appearance was in the season when they lost 2–1 to Rangers. Their most recent victory was in the 2009 Scottish League Cup Final when they beat Rangers 2–0, Kilmarnock had reached the final five times before without success. Their last previous appearance was in the 2007 Scottish League Cup Final when they lost 5–1 to Hibernian, in the build-up to the match Celtic were considered the favourites and Kilmarnock the underdogs. Celtic had the chance of winning the Treble and the League Cup was the first part of that, kilmarock manager Kenny Shiels said that he thought Celtic deserved to win the Treble and that they were the best team in Scotland. However, he felt that his side had the ability to match Celtic if they played to their full potential. Kilmarnocks first choice striker Paul Heffernan was a doubt before the due to a groin strain. Celtic defender Mikael Lustig was also a doubt with a groin injury, while Kilmarnock defenders Ryan OLeary and Manuel Pascali were both ruled out due to long-term injuries
2007 Scottish League Cup Final
The 2007 Scottish League Cup Final was played on 18 March 2007 at Hampden Park in Glasgow and was the 60th Scottish League Cup Final. The final was contested by Kilmarnock and Hibernian, who had never met before in a Cup Final. The previous years winners were Celtic, who had beaten Dunfermline Athletic 3–0 in the 2006 Final, but they were knocked out in the quarter-finals by Falkirk, who beat them 5–4 on penalties. With Dunfermline also being eliminated in the rounds, it was the fourth successive year in which both of the previous years finalists did not make it back to the final. Rangers shock 2–0 defeat by First Division club St Johnstone meant that neither Old Firm club featured in the semi-finals, Kilmarnock beat Falkirk 3–0 at Fir Park and Hibernian beat St Johnstone 3–1 after extra time at Tynecastle in the semi-finals
It is one of three SPFL clubs in the city, the others being their Edinburgh derby rivals Hearts and Edinburgh City. Hibernian was founded in 1875 by Irish immigrants, but support for the club is now based on rather than ethnicity or religion. The Irish heritage of Hibernian is still reflected, however, in its name, colours, the name of the club is usually shortened to Hibs. The team are also called The Hibees and The Cabbage, a shortening of the slang for Hibs of Cabbage and Ribs, by fans of the club. Home matches are played at the Easter Road stadium, in use since 1893, Hibernian have played in the second tier of the Scottish football league system, known as the Scottish Championship, since being relegated in 2014. Hibernian have won the Scottish league championship four times, most recently in 1952, three of those four championships were won between 1948 and 1952, when the club had the services of The Famous Five, a notable forward line. The club have won the Scottish Cup three times, in 1887,1902 and 2016, Hibs have also won the Scottish League Cup three times, in 1972,1991 and 2007. The club was founded in 1875 by Irishmen from the Cowgate area of Edinburgh, the name is derived from Hibernia, the Roman name for Ireland. James Connolly, the famous Irish Republican leader, was a Hibs fan, there was some sectarian resistance initially to an Irish club participating in Scottish football, but Hibs established themselves as a force in Scottish football in the 1880s. Hibs were the first club from the east coast of Scotland to win a major trophy and they went on to defeat Preston North End, who had won the 1887 FA Cup, in a friendly match described as the Association Football Championship of the World Decider. Mismanagement over the few years led to Hibs becoming homeless. A lease on the Easter Road site was acquired in late 1892, despite this interruption, the club today views the period since 1875 as one continued history and therefore counts the honours won between 1875 and 1891, including the 1887 Scottish Cup. The club were admitted to the Scottish Football League in 1893, a significant change at this time was that players were no longer required to be members of the Catholic Young Mens Society. Hibs are not seen today as being an Irish or Roman Catholic institution, for instance, the Irish harp was only re-introduced to the club badge when it was last re-designed in 2000. This design reflects the three pillars of the identity, Ireland, Edinburgh and Leith. Geography rather than religion is now seen as the reason for supporting Hibs. Hibs had some success after being reformed, winning the 1902 Scottish Cup, after this, however, the club endured a long barren spell. The club lost its placing in the league, and were relegated for the first time in 1931, the notorious Scottish Cup drought began as they reached three cup finals, two in consecutive years, but lost each of them
Steven John Naismith is a Scottish professional footballer who plays as an attacking midfielder for Championship club Norwich City and the Scotland national team. Naismith began his career with Kilmarnock in 2004 and he spent four years with the Ayrshire side where he won the SFWA Young Player of the Year award in 2006 and the SPFA Young Player of the Year award the following season. Naismith joined Rangers in the summer of 2007 for £1.9 million, while with the club he won three consecutive league titles, the Scottish Cup in 2008 and the League Cup twice in 2010 and 2011. In 2012 he signed for Premier League side Everton, Naismith has 45 caps for Scotland since his senior international début in 2007, scoring seven goals. Naismith grew up in a family, his father is a social worker. A resident of Stewarton, Naismith attended Lainshaw Primary School and Stewarton Academy, Naismith was also on the books at Rangers as a youngster. Naismith overcame dyslexia and has become an ambassador for the Dyslexia Scotland charity. Naismith played several years in the Kilmarnock youth team before signing professionally in August 2002 and he scored his first senior goal for the club in a 2–2 draw with Heart of Midlothian in February 2005. In the 2005–06 season his performances won him the SPL Young Player of the Month award in August and January and he signed a new 4-year contract extension, and went on to win the Scottish Football WritersYoung Player of the Year award, after scoring twelve goals during the season. He scored his first professional hat-trick in a 3–0 Scottish League Cup semi-final victory over Falkirk and he won the SPL Young Player of the Month award in March 2007, and then the Scottish PFA Young Player of the Year award for the 2006–07 season. In August 2007, following bids from both Rangers and Celtic as well as a submission and then withdrawal of a transfer request from the player himself. On 31 August 2007, Kilmarnock accepted Rangers offer for Naismith for around £1. 9m, the following day Naismith made his debut as an 83rd-minute substitute against Gretna. He scored his first goal for Rangers in a 3–0 win over Aberdeen on 23 September 2007, Naismith made his Champions League debut at the Camp Nou against FC Barcelona in November 2007, coming on as a 78th-minute substitute. He scored in games against Hibernian and Dundee United at the turn of the year during season 2007–08. A month later he scored his fourth and fifth goals for Rangers against Falkirk. During Rangers Scottish Cup semi-final against St Johnstone in April 2008, St Johnstone player Martin Hardie stepped on Naismiths left knee and appeared to injure him. However, after limping off the pitch he returned to the field of play, only to collapse a short time later. After cruciate ligament damage, Naismith underwent surgery in May 2008 and was ruled out of action for up to a year, however, Naismith featured in the 2009 Scottish Cup Final win over Falkirk after missing the majority of the season through injury
Falkirk Football Club are a Scottish professional association football club based in the town of Falkirk. The club was founded in 1876 and competes in the Scottish Championship as a member of the Scottish Professional Football League, the football club was registered as a Limited Liability Company in April 1905 – Falkirk Football & Athletic Club Ltd. Falkirk won the Scottish Cup for the first time in 1913, after 1945, Falkirk were promoted and demoted between the Premier and First Divisions seven times until 1995–96, and during the 1970s spent three seasons in the Second Division. In 2005, Falkirk were promoted to the Scottish Premier League, Falkirk won the Scottish Cup again in 1957 and were runners-up in the competition in 1997,2009 and 2015. As a result of its performance in the 2009 Scottish Cup, Falkirk have won the second tier of Scottish football a record seven times, an honour shared with St Johnstone. They have also won the Scottish Challenge Cup more than any other club, in their early years, Falkirk played at three venues, Hope Street, Randyford Park and Blinkbonny Park. Between 1885 and 2003, the club was based at Brockville Park, after the creation of the SPL in 1998, its strict stadium criteria – to which Brockville Park did not conform – was enforced, and the club was denied promotion on three occasions. The clubs present home ground since 2003 is the Falkirk Stadium, the clubs date of formation is uncertain. Although some accounts point to the year 1876, others claim it was formed in 1877, however, the former is the date used by the club and its fans. The club reached the round in the first year that it competed. In the first few years after it was formed, Falkirk played mostly friendly games and they played their home matches at three different grounds during this period, Hope Street, Randyford Park and Blinkbonny Park. It left the latter in 1884 and moved to Brockville Park, the Stirlingshire Football Association was founded in 1883, which invited clubs from the Stirlingshire region to join. It resulted in the establishment of a new tournament, the Stirlingshire Cup, a competition open exclusively to the teams from the region, the clubs nickname is The Bairns, a Scots word meaning sons or daughters, which is given to natives of the town of Falkirk. This is reflected in the Falkirk Burgh motto, Better meddle wi the deil than the Bairns o Fakirk, at the time, the league consisted of two tiers, the First and Second Divisions. Falkirk was promoted to the top division with a second-place finish behind Clyde after two seasons, despite the clubs success, several months beforehand a proposal to merge with local rivals East Stirlingshire was raised, which was narrowly rejected in a vote. In 1907–08, Falkirks third season in the top flight, the finished the season in second place, its highest league position to date. On both occasions it finished behind champions Celtic despite being the top scorers in the league. In 1913, the won the Scottish Cup for the first time
Mika-Matti Petteri Mixu Paatelainen is a Finnish football player and manager who was most recently the head coach of Scottish Premiership club Dundee United. He scored 18 goals in 70 appearances for the Finnish national team and he is the eldest of three brothers, all of whom have played professional football. Their father Matti was also a Finnish international, Paatelainen had a 20-year playing career, playing for nine different clubs in four countries. Most of his career was spent in the Scottish leagues, with Dundee United, Aberdeen, Hibernian, St Johnstone and he also played for Valkeakosken Haka in Finland, Bolton Wanderers and Wolverhampton Wanderers in England and RC Strasbourg in France. While at Bolton, Paatelainen became the first Finn to play in the Premier League, after a season coaching in his native Finland with TPS, Paatelainen returned to Scotland as manager of Hibernian. He left that position by mutual consent after 18 months, after a year out of the game, Paatelainen was appointed manager of Kilmarnock. He was Kilmarnock manager for less than one season, but enjoyed success during that time. He was appointed manager of the Finnish national team in March 2011 and he was appointed by Dundee United in October 2015, parting company with the club in May 2016 after Uniteds relegation to the Scottish Championship. Paatelainen made his debut for FC Haka in 1985 and he played 48 league matches for Haka, scoring 18 goals. During his debut season, Haka won the Finnish Cup, the honour of the club during his time there. In October 1987, Scottish Premier Division club Dundee United signed him for a £100,000 transfer fee. He scored on his debut a day later and quickly established himself as a first team regular, scoring 11 goals in his first season, including four goals in a 7–0 rout of Morton in April 1988. Paatelainen also helped Dundee United reach the Scottish Cup Final in May 1988 and he was the clubs top scorer for the following two seasons, and in total scored 47 times in 173 matches for United. In March 1992, he transferred to Aberdeen for £400,000, during the three seasons he stayed there, he scored 23 goals in 75 matches. Paatelainen played in two cup finals during his time at Pittodrie, but lost to Rangers in October 1992 in the League Cup Final, Paatelainen transferred in 1994 to the English side Bolton Wanderers. The team was promoted to the Premier League in his first season with the club, Paatelainen also played in the 1995 Football League Cup Final, in which Wanderers were beaten 2–1 by Liverpool. He was unable to keep Bolton in the Premier League in 1995–96 and he then played for Wolverhampton Wanderers during the 1997–98 season. He failed to score for Wolves in the league but scored four times in their FA Cup run, with goals against Darlington, Charlton Athletic and he also scored once in the League Cup, against Queens Park Rangers