The Scottish Premiership, known for sponsorship reasons as the Ladbrokes Premiership, is the top division of the Scottish Professional Football League, the league competition for men's professional football clubs in Scotland. The Scottish Premiership was established in July 2013, after the SPFL was formed by a merger of the Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League. Sixteen clubs have played in the Scottish Premiership since its creation in the 2013–14 season. Celtic are the current league champions, being the only league champion to date since its establishment. Teams receive one point for a draw. No points are awarded for a loss. Teams are ranked by total points goal difference, goals scored. At the end of each season, the club with the most points is crowned league champion. If the points, goal difference and goals scored between teams are equal, a playoff game held at a neutral venue shall be played to determine the final placings; the play-off will only occur when the position of the teams affects the outcome of the title, European qualification or relegation and shall not occur otherwise.
The top flight of Scottish football has contained 12 clubs since the 2000–01 season, the longest period without change in the history of the Scottish football league system. During this period the Scottish Premier League, now the Scottish Premiership, has operated a "split" format; this is used to prevent the need for a 44-game schedule, based on playing each other four times. That format was used in the Scottish Premier Division in the mid-1980s and early 1990s, 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 time all clubs have played 33 games, the league splits into two halves - a'top six' section and a'bottom six' section; each club proceeds to play a further five matches, one against each of the other 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 half in the league if they achieve more or fewer points than a higher or lower ranked team, respectively. At the beginning of each season, the SPFL'predicts' the positions of each club in order to produce a fixture schedule that ensures the best possible chance of all clubs playing each other twice at home and twice away; this is based on clubs' performance in the previous season. If the clubs do not finish in the half where they are predicted to finish anomalies can be created in the fixture list. Clubs sometimes play another three times at home and once away, or a club can end up playing 20 home games in a season; the bottom placed Premiership club at the end of the season is relegated, 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 play-offs involving the top flight were introduced for the first time in seventeen years. The Premiership club in eleventh place plays the Championship play-off winners over two legs, with the winner earning the right to play in the Scottish Premiership the following season; this enables two clubs to be relegated from the Premiership each season, with two being promoted. Prior to the creation of the Scottish Premiership, only a single club could be relegated each season - with only the second tier champions being promoted; the Scottish Football League had used playoffs amongst its three divisions since 2007. UEFA grants European places to the Scottish Football Association, determined by the Scotland's 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. At the end of the 2016–17 season, Scotland was ranked 23rd in Europe – granting them a single side in the UEFA Champions League and three sides in the UEFA Europa League.
From the 2018-19 season, the top placed team in the Scottish Premiership gains qualification to the Champions League first qualifying round, whilst the second and third placed teams enter the Europa League at the first qualifying round stage. An additional place in the Europa League second qualifying round is awarded to the winners of the Scottish Cup. Should the winners of that competition have qualified for European competition the second qualifying round place is given to the second placed team in the league, with the third and fourth placed teams entering the first qualifying round; the 2017'Global Sports Salaries Survey' report found a large variation between the wages offered by teams in the Scottish Premiership, with champions Celtic paying an average annual salary of £735,040, per player, whilst traditional rivals Rangers could only pay £329,600 and league runners-up Aberdeen offered £136,382. The lowest salary offered by any of the twelve member clubs was Hamilton's £41,488 – 17 times less than Celtic, whose wages were close to the sum of the other eleven clubs combined.
The report stated that this disparity was the third-greatest from the 18 leagues surveyed, that the Scottish Premiership offered the third-lowest salaries of those leagues. The clubs listed below have competed in the Scottish Premiership s
Direct free kick
A direct free kick is a method of restarting play in a game of association football, awarded to a team following most types of fouls. In a direct free kick, the fouled team is entitled to kick the ball from the spot of the foul, with opponents required to be at least 10 yards from the ball; the kicking team may score a goal directly from a direct free kick, that is, without the ball having first touched another player. This is in contrast with an indirect free kick – a restart with a similar procedure, awarded for technical infringements – where the ball must contact another player before a goal is scored. If a player commits a foul punishable by a direct freekick within his/her own penalty area, a penalty kick is awarded instead. Direct free kicks awarded near the opponent's goal can lead to scoring opportunities, either from the kick itself or from an ensuing set piece. Accordingly, developing plays from free kicks are an important part of team strategy, defending against them is an important skill for defenders.
The kick is taken from where the foul occurred, unless it was within the fouled team's own goal area, in which case it may be taken from anywhere within the goal area. The ball must be stationary prior to being kicked. Opponents must remain 10 yards from the ball; the ball becomes in play as soon as it is kicked and moves, unless the kick was taken from within the kicking team's penalty area, in which case it is in play once it has passed directly beyond the penalty area. A goal may be scored directly from a direct free kick, but only against the opposing side. Should the ball directly land in the kicking team's own goal, a corner kick is awarded to the opposing team. A player may be penalised for an offside offence committed from a direct free kick. A team may choose to take a "quick" free kick, that is, take the kick while opponents are within the 10-yard minimum required distance; this is done for some strategic reason, such as surprising the defence or taking advantage of their poor positioning.
The referee has full discretion on whether to allow a quick free kick, all other rules on free kicks still apply. However, in taking a quick free kick the kicking team waives their entitlement to retake the kick if an opponent, within 10 yards intercepts the ball. Football governing bodies may provide further instruction to referees on administering quick free kicks. There are various techniques used with direct free kicks. First, the player taking the direct free kick may blast the ball as hard as he can with the laces of the boot. Alternatively, some players try to curl the ball around the keeper or the wall, with the inside or outside the boot. Additionally, certain free-kick specialists will choose to kick the ball with minimal spin, making the ball behave unpredictably in the air; the kicker may attempt to drive the shot under the wall formed by the opposition defenders using the inside of their boot in a passing manner. Free kick takers may attempt to cross the ball to their centre-backs or strikers to get a header on goal, since they are the tallest members of the team if the position of the free kick is close to the wings.
If an opponent is less than 10 yards from the spot where the kick is taken, the kick is re-taken unless the kicking team chooses to do a quick free kick. An opponent may be cautioned for failing to retreat 10 yards. For a kick taken by a team inside their own penalty area, the ball is not considered in play until it has left the area. If the ball fails to travel directly out of the penalty area the kick is retaken; the kicker will concede an indirect free kick to their opponents if they touch the ball again before another player has touched it. If this second touch is an illegal handling of the ball offence, this takes priority and is penalised accordingly. Most teams have one or two designated free kick takers, depending on the distance from goal and the side of the field the free kick is to be taken from; the strategy may be to score a goal directly from the free kick, or to use the free kick as the beginning of a set piece leading towards a goal scoring opportunity. The kicking team may have more than one player line up behind the ball, run up to the ball, and/or feint a kick in order to confuse or deceive the defence as to their intentions.
Where there is a potential for a shot on goal to occur from a direct free kick the defending side will erect a "wall" of players standing side-by-side as a barrier to the shot. The number of players composing the wall varies based on strategy, it is not known when the wall was started. A kicker who has the skill to curl the ball around a wall is at a distinct advantage. Since 2000, referees at the highest levels of football have used vanishing spray to enforce the 10-yard minimum required distance for the wall. Indirect free kick Work on your Freekicks When is
Association football, more known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport; the game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal. Association football is one of a family of football codes, which emerged from various ball games played worldwide since antiquity; the modern game traces its origins to 1863 when the Laws of the Game were codified in England by The Football Association. Players are not allowed to touch the ball with hands or arms while it is in play, except for the goalkeepers within the penalty area. Other players use their feet to strike or pass the ball, but may use any other part of their body except the hands and the arms; the team that scores most goals by the end of the match wins.
If the score is level at the end of the game, either a draw is declared or the game goes into extra time or a penalty shootout depending on the format of the competition. Association football is governed internationally by the International Federation of Association Football, which organises World Cups for both men and women every four years; the rules of association football were codified in England by the Football Association in 1863 and the name association football was coined to distinguish the game from the other forms of football played at the time rugby 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 "rules of the game" were made in 1848, before the "split off in 1863". The term soccer comes from a slang or jocular abbreviation of the word "association", with the suffix "-er" appended to it; the word soccer was first recorded in 1889 in the earlier form of socca.
Within the English-speaking world, association football is now called "football" in the United Kingdom and "soccer" in Canada and the United States. People in countries where other codes of football are prevalent may use either term, although national associations in Australia and New Zealand now use "football" for the formal name. According to FIFA, the Chinese competitive game cuju is the earliest form of football for which there is 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 modern football. 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 and harpastum were played involving hands and violence.
They all appear to have resembled rugby football and volleyball more than what is recognizable as modern football. As with pre-codified "mob football", the antecedent of all modern football codes, these three games involved more handling the ball than kicking. Other games included kemari in chuk-guk in Korea. Association football in itself does not have a classical history. Notwithstanding any similarities to other ball games played around the world FIFA has recognised that no historical connection exists with any game played in antiquity outside Europe; the modern rules of association football are based on the mid-19th century efforts to standardise the varying forms of football played in the public schools of England. The history of football in England dates back to at least the eighth century AD; the Cambridge Rules, first drawn up at Cambridge University in 1848, were influential in the development of subsequent codes, including association football. The Cambridge Rules were written at Trinity College, Cambridge, at a meeting attended by representatives from Eton, Rugby and Shrewsbury schools.
They were not universally adopted. During the 1850s, many clubs unconnected to schools or universities were formed throughout the English-speaking world, to play various forms of football; some came up with their own distinct codes of rules, most notably the Sheffield Football Club, formed by former public school pupils in 1857, which led to formation of a Sheffield FA in 1867. In 1862, John Charles Thring of Uppingham School devised an influential set of rules; these ongoing efforts contributed to the formation of The Football Association in 1863, which first met on the morning of 26 October 1863 at the Freemasons' Tavern in Great Queen Street, London. The only school to be represented on this occasion was Charterhouse; the Freemason's Tavern was the setting for five more meetings between October and December, which produced the first comprehensive set of rules. At the final meeting, the first FA treasurer, the representative from Blackheath, withdrew his club from the FA over the removal of two draft rules at the previous meeting: the first allowed for running with the ball in hand.
Other English rugby clubs followed this lead and did not join the FA and instead in 1871 formed the Rugby Football Union. The eleven remaining clubs, under
Huddersfield Town A.F.C.
Huddersfield Town Association Football Club is a professional football club in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, which competes in the Premier League, the top tier of English football. Huddersfield became the first English club to win three successive English League titles in 1926, a feat which only three other clubs have matched; the first two league titles were won under legendary manager and pioneer Herbert Chapman, who led the club to an FA Cup win in 1922. In the late 1950s the club was managed by featured Denis Law and Ray Wilson. Following relegation from the First Division in 1972, Huddersfield spent 45 years in the second and fourth tiers of English football, before returning to the top flight in 2017. Nicknamed The Terriers, the club plays in white shorts, they play their home games at the Kirklees Stadium. In 1910, just three years after being founded, Huddersfield entered the Football League for the first time. In November 1919 a fund-raising campaign was needed to avoid a move to Leeds.
Citizens of Huddersfield were asked to buy shares in the club for £1 each, the club staved off the proposed merger. The team went on to win promotion to Division One. Huddersfield became the first English team to win three successive English League titles in 1926 – a feat that only three other clubs have been able to match – and was achieved under the leadership of legendary manager and pioneer Herbert Chapman and his successor Cecil Potter. Huddersfield Town won the FA Cup in 1922 and the Charity Shield the same year and have been runners-up on four other occasions in the FA Cup. During the club's heyday in the 1920s and 1930s, they achieved a record attendance of 67,037 on 27 February 1932 during their FA Cup 6th round tie against Arsenal at Leeds Road; this attendance has been bettered by only 13 other clubs in the history of the Football League. After the Second World War, the club began a gradual decline, losing its First Division status in 1952, they were relegated again three seasons later.
Before the start of the 1969–70 season, Huddersfield Town adopted the nickname "The Terriers". They won the Second Division title that season. After that they moved down through the lower three divisions for 45 years. In 1998, the club attracted the attention of local businessman Barry Rubery and, after protracted takeover talks, he took over the running of the club, promising significant investment as the club sought Premiership status. However, the club fell two divisions; the club was sold by Rubery to David Taylor and under Taylor's ownership, slipped into administration. In the summer of 2003, the Terriers came out of administration under the new ownership of Ken Davy. In 2010–11, Huddersfield went 43 games unbeaten, the second-highest in the league after Arsenal's 49-match run of 2003–04. On 26 May 2012, following a penalty shoot-out in the 2012 Football League One play-off Final victory over Sheffield United, Huddersfield were promoted to the Championship; the shoot-out was the longest contested in the current League One play-offs format.
After eleven rounds, the final score was 8–7 to Huddersfield, with the winning goal being scored by goalkeeper Alex Smithies. In November 2015, German-born ex-US international David Wagner was appointed head coach, becoming the first person born outside the British Isles to manage the club in their 107-year history. On 29 May 2017, the club earned promotion to the Premier League for the first time and the English top flight for the first time since 1972, beating Reading 4–3 on penalties following a 0–0 draw after extra time in the Championship play-off Final. On 9 May 2018, the club secured safety from relegation, earning another season in the Premier League, following a 1–1 draw against Chelsea and went on to place 16th. However, the club suffered a poor start to the following season - with them taking just 2 wins in 22 matches. With the team rooted to the bottom of the table with just 11 points on the board, Wagner left the club by mutual consent on 14 January 2019, he was replaced with former Borussia Dortmund II manager Jan Siewert on a 2 year deal.
However, he couldn't prevent Huddersfield suffering relegation from the Premier League on 30 March 2019 following a defeat to Crystal Palace, with the club joining Derby County and Ipswich Town as the only clubs in the league's history to be relegated with six matches left to play. The club spent over five years debating, it ranged from salmon pink to all-blue to white with blue yoke. In 1913, the club adopted the blue-and-white jersey that remains to this day; the club badge is based on the coat of arms of Huddersfield. Town first used a badge on its shirts for the 1920 FA Cup Final based on the local Huddersfield Corporation coat of arms, it appeared again with a Yorkshire Rose for the 1922 FA Cup Final and again for the finals of 1928, 1930 and 1938. The club's main colours are evident throughout the badge both in the mantling and in the shield, in the form of stripes. Two Yorkshire White Roses and Castle Hill form part of the history of the club and the area. Town stuck with the same principal design until 1966, when Scottish manager Tom Johnston introduced all-blue shirts.
The next badge did not feature until the 1966–67 season, when the simple "HTFC" adorned the Town's all-blue shirts. When the club adopted the nickname "The Terriers" for the 1969–70 season, the blue and white stripes returned and with it a red terrier with the words "The Terriers", just in time for their promot
A midfielder is an association football position. Midfielders are positioned on the field between their team's defenders and forwards; some midfielders play a disciplined defensive role, breaking up attacks, are otherwise known as defensive midfielders. Others blur the boundaries, being more mobile and efficient in passing: they are referred to as deep-lying midfielders, play-makers, box-to-box, or holding midfielders; the number of midfielders on a team and their assigned roles depends on the team's formation. Most managers assign at least one midfielder to disrupt the opposing team's attacks, while others may be tasked with creating goals, or have equal responsibilities between attack and defence. Midfielders are the players who travel the greatest distance during a match; because midfielders arguably have the most possession during a game they are among the fittest players on the pitch. Central or centre midfielders are players whose role is divided equally between attack and defence and to dominate the play around the centre of the pitch.
These players will try to pass the ball to the team's attacking midfielders and forwards and may help their team's attacks by making runs into the opposition's penalty area and attempting shots on goal themselves. When the opposing team has the ball, a central midfielder may drop back to protect the goal or move forward and press the opposition ball-carrier to recover the ball. A centre midfielder defending their goal will move in front of their centre-backs in order to block long shots by the opposition and track opposition midfielders making runs towards the goal; the 4–3–3 and 4–5–1 formations each use three central midfielders. The 4−4−2 formation may use two central midfielders, in the 4–2–3–1 formation one of the two deeper midfielders may be a central midfielder; the term box-to-box midfielder refers to central midfielders who are hard-working and who have good all-round abilities, which makes them skilled at both defending and attacking. These players can therefore track back to their own box to make tackles and block shots and run to the opponents' box to try to score.
The change of trends and the deviation from the standard 4–4–2 formation to the 4–2–3–1 formation imposed restrictions on the typical box-to-box midfielders of the 80s, as teams' two midfield roles were now divided into "holders" or "creators". Notable examples of box-to-box midfielders are Bastian Schweinsteiger, Yaya Touré, Radja Nainggolan. Left and right midfielders have a role balanced between attack and defence, similar to that of central midfielders, but they are positioned closer to the touchlines of the pitch, they may be asked to cross the ball into the opponents' penalty area to make scoring chances for their teammates, when defending they may put pressure on opponents who are trying to cross. Common modern formations that include left and right midfielders are the 4−4−2, the 4−4−1−1, the 4–2–3–1 and the 4−5−1 formations. Jonathan Wilson describes the development of the 4−4−2 formation: "…the winger became a wide midfielder, a shuttler, somebody who might be expected to cross a ball but was meant to put in a defensive shift."
Notable examples of wide midfielders are Ryan Giggs. The historic position of wing-half was given to midfielders, it became obsolete as wide players with defensive duties have tended to become more a part of the defence as full-backs. Defensive midfielders are midfield players; these players may defend a zone in front of their team's defence, or man mark specific opposition attackers. Defensive midfielders may move to the full-back or centre-back positions if those players move forward to join in an attack. Sergio Busquets described his attitude: "The coach knows that I am an obedient player who likes to help out and if I have to run to the wing to cover someone's position, great." A good defensive midfielder needs good positional awareness, anticipation of opponent's play, tackling, interceptions and great stamina and strength. A holding or deep-lying midfielder stays close to their team's defence, while other midfielders may move forward to attack; the holding midfielder may have responsibilities when their team has the ball.
This player will make short and simple passes to more attacking members of their team but may try some more difficult passes depending on the team's strategy. Marcelo Bielsa is considered as a pioneer for the use of a holding midfielder in defence; this position may be seen in the 4 -- 2 -- 3 -- 4 -- 4 -- 2 diamond formations. A defensive midfielder, or "destroyer", a playmaker, or "creator", were fielded alongside each other as a team's two holding central midfielders; the destroyer was responsible for making tackles, regaining possession, distributing the ball to the creator, while the creator was responsible for retaining possession and keeping the ball moving with long passes out to the flanks, in the manner of a more old-fashioned deep-lying playmaker or "regista". Early examples of a destroyer are Nobby Stiles, Herbert Wimmer, Marco Tardelli, while examples include Claude Makélélé and Javier Mascherano, although several of these players possessed qualities of other types of midfielders, were therefore not confined to a single role.
Early examples of a creator would be Gérson, Glenn Hoddle, Sunday Oliseh, while more recent examples Xabi Alonso, Michael Carrick. The latest and third type of holding midfielder developed as a box-to-box midfielder, or "carrier", neither destructive nor creative, capable of winning b
Gillingham Football Club is a professional association football club based in the town of Gillingham, England. The only Kent-based club in the Football League, the "Gills" play their home matches at the Priestfield Stadium; the team competes in the third tier of the English football league system. The club was founded in 1893 and joined the Football League in 1920, they were voted out of the league in favour of Ipswich Town at the end of the 1937–38 season, but returned to it 12 years after it was expanded from 88 to 92 clubs. Twice in the late 1980s they came close to winning promotion to the second tier of English football, but a decline set in and in 1993 they narrowly avoided relegation to the Football Conference. Between 2000 and 2005, Gillingham were in the second tier of the English football league system for the only time in their history, achieving a club record highest league finish of eleventh place in 2002–03; the local success of a junior football side, Chatham Excelsior F. C. encouraged a group of businessmen to meet with a view to creating a football club which could compete in larger competitions.
New Brompton F. C. was formed at the meeting, held on 18 May 1893. The founders purchased the plot of land which became Priestfield Stadium; the new club played its first match on 2 September 1893, losing 1–5 to Woolwich Arsenal's reserve side in front of a crowd of 2,000. New Brompton were among the founder members of the Southern League upon its creation in 1894, were placed in Division Two, they were named Champions in the first season going on to defeat Swindon Town in a test match to win promotion. In the seasons that followed, the club struggled in Division One, finishing bottom in the 1907–08 season, avoiding relegation only due to expansion of the league. Whilst the club's league performance was disappointing, the side did manage a famous cup victory over Football League First Division Sunderland and held Manchester City to a draw before losing in the replay. In 1912 the directors passed a resolution to change the club's name to Gillingham F. C. and the team played under this name throughout the 1912–13 season, although the change was not ratified by the shareholders until the following year.
The team finished bottom of Division One in the 1919–20 season but for a third time avoided relegation, due to the subsequent elevation of all Southern League Division One clubs to form the new Football League Division Three. In the first season of the newly created Football League Division Three, the 1920–21 season, Gillingham again finished bottom, in the years to follow there was little improvement on this, the club continually finishing in the lower reaches of the bottom division. In 1938 the team finished bottom of the Third Division and were required to apply for re-election for the fifth time since joining the league; this bid for re-election failed, with Gillingham returning to the Southern League and Ipswich Town being promoted in their place. Gillingham established themselves as one of the stronger sides in the league, winning a local double of the Kent League and Kent Senior Cup in the 1945–46 season. In the 1946–47 season the team won both the Southern League Cup and the Southern League championship, during which they recorded a club record 12–1 victory over Gloucester City.
The Gills won the league title in 1948–49. In 1950, plans were announced to expand the Football League Division Three from 22 to 24 teams and, taking into account their local success in the interim, Gillingham were re-elected to the Football League with a landslide vote; the team spent eight seasons in Division Three before the restructuring of the league system for the 1958–59 season saw them placed in the newly created Fourth Division. They remained in this division until 1964, when manager Freddie Cox led them to promotion, winning the first championship in the club's history; the team finished the season level on 60 points with Carlisle United, but with a fractionally better goal average, the tightest league title finish in Football League history. After relegation back to the Fourth Division in 1970–71, the Gills were soon promoted back to the Third Division in the 1973–74 season. After this the club seemed to find its level in Division Three mounting a challenge for promotion which fell short each time, never more so than in 1986–87 when they reached the play-offs only to lose in the final to Swindon Town.
During this period the club produced future stars Steve Bruce and Tony Cascarino, famously bought from non-league Crockenhill in exchange for a set of tracksuits. In 1987, the Gills hit the headlines when, on consecutive Saturdays, they beat Southend United 8–1 and Chesterfield 10–0, the latter a club record for a Football League match. Just a few months however, manager Keith Peacock was controversially sacked, within 18 months the club had fallen into Division Four; the ensuing spell in the lower division brought little success, in the 1992–93 Division Three campaign the Gills narrowly avoided relegation to the Football Conference. Beset with financial problems, the club went into administration in January 1995, by the end of the 1994–95 season faced the threat of being expelled from the Football League and closed down. In June 1995, however, a London-based businessman, Paul Scally, bought the club, he brought in new manager Tony Pulis, who led Gillingham to promotion in his first season, finishing second in the old Division Three.
In 1999 the Gills lost in the Division Two play-off final to Manchester City. The Gills were 2–0 up with less than two minutes left only to see City score twice, the equaliser in injury time, go on to w
Rotherham United F.C.
Rotherham United Football Club, nicknamed The Millers, is a professional association football club based in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, England. It competes in the Championship, the second tier of the English football league system, following its promotion from League One in the 2017–18 season. Founded in 1925 as a merger between Rotherham Town and Rotherham County, the club's colours were yellow and black, but evolved into the more traditional red and white. Rotherham United play their home games at New York Stadium, a 12,021 capacity all-seater stadium, having played since its foundation at Millmoor for 101 years. Joining the Football League back in 1925, Rotherham spent the first 25 years of their time in Division Three North, the lowest level of the Football League gaining promotion to Division Two at the end of the 1950–51 season; the Millers featured in the inaugural League Cup final in 1961, won the 1996 Football League Trophy and 1946 Football League North Cup. They achieved two separate back to back promotions in 1999–2001 under Ronnie Moore and 2012–2014 under Steve Evans.
The club's roots go back to 1870. George Cook was the trainer around this time. For many years the leading team in the area was Rotherham Town, who spent three seasons in the Football League while Thornhill United were still playing in the Sheffield & Hallamshire League. By the turn of the century, Town had resigned from the Football League and gone out of business. Meanwhile, Thornhill's fortunes were on the rise to the extent that in 1905 they laid claim to being the pre-eminent club in the town and changed their name to Rotherham County. For a period both clubs competed in the Midland League, finishing first and second in 1911–12. Rotherham County became members of the second division of the Football league in 1919 whilst Rotherham Town failed to become elected to the third division northern section the following year. By 1925 County's fortunes had declined and they had to seek re-election to the third division. By this time it had become clear that to have two professional clubs in the town was not sustainable.
Talks had begun in February 1925 and in early May the two clubs merged to form Rotherham United. Days the reformed club was formally re-elected to the Football League under its new name; the red and white was adopted around 1928 after playing in amber and black, but there was no improvement in the club's fortunes: in 1931 they again had to apply for re-election. After the Second World War things looked up; the Millers won the only post-war edition of the Football League Third Division North Cup in 1946 beating Chester 5–4 on aggregate. They finished as runners-up three time in succession between 1947 and 1949 and were champions of Division Three in 1951. Rotherham reached their highest league position of third in the Football League Second Division in 1955, when only goal average denied them a place in the top flight after they finished level on points with champions Birmingham City and runners-up Luton Town. During that season they had notable results including a 6–1 win over Liverpool. In 1961 the Millers beat Aston Villa 2–0 at Millmoor in the inaugural League Cup final first leg.
The second leg was played the season after due to Villa having a'Congested Fixture List'. The club held on to its place in Division Two until 1968 and went into a decline that took them down to Division Four in 1973. In 1975 they were promoted back to the Third Division finishing in the 3rd promotion spot in the Fourth Division; the Millers won the Division Three title in the 1980-81 season, missed out on a second consecutive promotion by four points, finishing seventh In the second tier 1981-82. They have not finished this high since; this season saw Rotherham accomplish what supporters consider their greatest league double, beating Chelsea 4-1 away at Stamford Bridge and 6-0 at home. During the 1990s Rotherham were promoted and relegated between the Football League's lowest two divisions and they slipped into the Fourth Division in 1991, just two years after being promoted, but reclaimed their status in the third tier by finishing third in the Fourth Division in 1992, they survived at this level for five years, never looking like promotion contenders, before being relegated in 1997.
In 1996 Rotherham United made their first trip to Wembley, beating Shrewsbury 2–1 to win the Football League Trophy, with two goals from Nigel Jemson giving Rotherham the win, with over 20,000 Rotherham United fans following them. In 1997, just after relegation to Division Three, Ronnie Moore took charge of Rotherham United, his first season ended in a mid-table finish and his second in a play-off semi-final defeat on penalties to Leyton Orient. In 1999–2000 as Rotherham finished as Division Three runners-up and gained promotion to Division Two, where they finished runners-up and won a second successive promotion. Rotherham managed to remain in Division One for four seasons, after relegation to League One in 2005, Mick Harford took over as the Millers' manager, but was sacked after a run of 17 games without a win. Harford was replaced by Alan Knill. Early in 2006 it was announced that the club faced an uncertain future unless a funding gap in the region of £140,000 per month could be plugged.
An eleventh-hour intervention by a consortium of local businessmen kept them in business. The final match of the 2005–06 season, home to Milton Keynes Dons, was a winner-take-all relegation showdown where a scorele