Welsh Football League
The Welsh Football League is a club football league in Wales. Division One of the Welsh Football League is at Level 2 of the Welsh football league system, the Welsh Football Leagues history stretches back to 1904 when the competition was first formed and Aberdare were crowned first champions of a seven-team First Division. Abergavenny were champions of Division 2 and Trelewis the winners of Division 3 and its current title was adopted in 1912 when it changed from the Glamorgan League. Prior to that it was known as the Rhymney Valley League, during the early days of the Rhymney Valley and Glamorgan Leagues there was also the South Wales League but this competition had no connection with the origins of the Welsh Football League. The Cymru Alliance and feeder leagues to the Cymru Alliance are its equivalent in North Wales and it also has its own knock-out competition, the Nathaniel Car Sales Welsh Football League Cup. Cardiff City Reserves has the record of trophies won with 7 titles, in April 1904 the Merthyr Express newspaper reported that a new football league would be formed in addition to the South Wales League which had been in existence since 1891. Interest in the new league was high and the formation of three divisions attracted no fewer than 25 clubs, including Corinthians from Cardiff. Seven clubs formed the new top division and Aberdare were crowned as the inaugural champions, the league is made up of three divisions each having 16 clubs. There is promotion and relegation between the divisions, with the top three teams in each division being promoted to the one above and the three being relegated to the one below. The winner of the First Division may be promoted to the national Welsh Premier League and this number totalled four in 2011, despite only two teams being promoted, in order for the three divisions to number 16 clubs. This division has changed its name on numerous occasions,22 Clubs won Top Division of the Welsh League in South Wales
Wales is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and the island of Great Britain. It is bordered by England to the east, the Irish Sea to the north and west, and it had a population in 2011 of 3,063,456 and has a total area of 20,779 km2. Wales has over 1,680 miles of coastline and is mountainous, with its higher peaks in the north and central areas, including Snowdon. The country lies within the temperate zone and has a changeable. Welsh national identity emerged among the Celtic Britons after the Roman withdrawal from Britain in the 5th century, Llywelyn ap Gruffudds death in 1282 marked the completion of Edward I of Englands conquest of Wales, though Owain Glyndŵr briefly restored independence to Wales in the early 15th century. The whole of Wales was annexed by England and incorporated within the English legal system under the Laws in Wales Acts 1535–1542, distinctive Welsh politics developed in the 19th century. Welsh Liberalism, exemplified in the early 20th century by Lloyd George, was displaced by the growth of socialism, Welsh national feeling grew over the century, Plaid Cymru was formed in 1925 and the Welsh Language Society in 1962. Established under the Government of Wales Act 1998, the National Assembly for Wales holds responsibility for a range of devolved policy matters, two-thirds of the population live in south Wales, mainly in and around Cardiff, Swansea and Newport, and in the nearby valleys. Now that the countrys traditional extractive and heavy industries have gone or are in decline, Wales economy depends on the sector, light and service industries. Wales 2010 gross value added was £45.5 billion, over 560,000 Welsh language speakers live in Wales, and the language is spoken by a majority of the population in parts of the north and west. From the late 19th century onwards, Wales acquired its popular image as the land of song, Rugby union is seen as a symbol of Welsh identity and an expression of national consciousness. The Old English-speaking Anglo-Saxons came to use the term Wælisc when referring to the Celtic Britons in particular, the modern names for some Continental European lands and peoples have a similar etymology. The modern Welsh name for themselves is Cymry, and Cymru is the Welsh name for Wales and these words are descended from the Brythonic word combrogi, meaning fellow-countrymen. The use of the word Cymry as a self-designation derives from the location in the post-Roman Era of the Welsh people in modern Wales as well as in northern England and southern Scotland. It emphasised that the Welsh in modern Wales and in the Hen Ogledd were one people, in particular, the term was not applied to the Cornish or the Breton peoples, who are of similar heritage, culture, and language to the Welsh. The word came into use as a self-description probably before the 7th century and it is attested in a praise poem to Cadwallon ap Cadfan c. 633. Thereafter Cymry prevailed as a reference to the Welsh, until c.1560 the word was spelt Kymry or Cymry, regardless of whether it referred to the people or their homeland. The Latinised forms of names, Cambrian, Cambric and Cambria, survive as lesser-used alternative names for Wales, Welsh
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west, the Irish Sea lies northwest of England and the Celtic Sea lies to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east, the country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain in its centre and south, and includes over 100 smaller islands such as the Isles of Scilly, and the Isle of Wight. England became a state in the 10th century, and since the Age of Discovery. The Industrial Revolution began in 18th-century England, transforming its society into the worlds first industrialised nation, Englands terrain mostly comprises low hills and plains, especially in central and southern England. However, there are uplands in the north and in the southwest, the capital is London, which is the largest metropolitan area in both the United Kingdom and the European Union. In 1801, Great Britain was united with the Kingdom of Ireland through another Act of Union to become the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. In 1922 the Irish Free State seceded from the United Kingdom, leading to the latter being renamed the United Kingdom of Great Britain, the name England is derived from the Old English name Englaland, which means land of the Angles. The Angles were one of the Germanic tribes that settled in Great Britain during the Early Middle Ages, the Angles came from the Angeln peninsula in the Bay of Kiel area of the Baltic Sea. The earliest recorded use of the term, as Engla londe, is in the ninth century translation into Old English of Bedes Ecclesiastical History of the English People. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, its spelling was first used in 1538. The earliest attested reference to the Angles occurs in the 1st-century work by Tacitus, Germania, the etymology of the tribal name itself is disputed by scholars, it has been suggested that it derives from the shape of the Angeln peninsula, an angular shape. An alternative name for England is Albion, the name Albion originally referred to the entire island of Great Britain. The nominally earliest record of the name appears in the Aristotelian Corpus, specifically the 4th century BC De Mundo, in it are two very large islands called Britannia, these are Albion and Ierne. But modern scholarly consensus ascribes De Mundo not to Aristotle but to Pseudo-Aristotle, the word Albion or insula Albionum has two possible origins. Albion is now applied to England in a poetic capacity. Another romantic name for England is Loegria, related to the Welsh word for England, Lloegr, the earliest known evidence of human presence in the area now known as England was that of Homo antecessor, dating to approximately 780,000 years ago. The oldest proto-human bones discovered in England date from 500,000 years ago, Modern humans are known to have inhabited the area during the Upper Paleolithic period, though permanent settlements were only established within the last 6,000 years
Geography of association football
The following article gives a list of association football confederations, sub-confederations and associations around the world. The sports international governing body is FIFA, but those not affiliated to FIFA are also included in this article. In the Americas, leagues are organised as either multi-stage tournaments or separate Apertura and Clausura stages. The football associations listed in this section are members of FIFA-affiliated confederations, all UEFA associations are affiliated with FIFA. All CONMEBOL associations are affiliated with FIFA, the football associations in this section represent fully or partially recognized sovereign states or dependent territories, but are not part of FIFA or a FIFA confederation. Beneath the national level, governance of football may be divided up into regional or territorial associations, other non-national associations represent stateless populations, diasporas or micronations. Details of these are listed at non-FIFA international football
The Union of European Football Associations is the administrative body for association football in Europe, although several member states are primarily or entirely located in Asia. It is one of six continental confederations of world footballs governing body FIFA, UEFA consists of 55 national association members. Until 1959 the main headquarters were located in Paris, and later in Bern, in 1995, UEFA headquarters were transferred to Nyon, Switzerland. Henri Delaunay was the first general secretary and Ebbe Schwartz the first president, UEFA was founded on 15 June 1954 in Basel, Switzerland after consultation between the Italian, French, and Belgian associations. The European football union began with 25 members, that number doubled by the early 1990s, UEFA membership coincides for the most part with recognition as a sovereign country in Europe, although there are some exceptions. Some UEFA members are not sovereign states, but form part of a recognized sovereign state in the context of international law. Some UEFA members are transcontinental states, countries which had been members of the Asian Football Confederation were also admitted to the European football association, particularly Israel and Kazakhstan. Additionally some UEFA member associations allow teams from outside their associations main territory to take part in their domestic competition, saarland Football Union 1954–1956 German football association of the German Democratic Republic 1954–1990 Football Federation of the Soviet Union 1954–1991, in 1992 became Russian Football Union. The newly independent 14 Soviet Republics created their own football associations, Football Association of Yugoslavia 1954–1992, became Football Association of Serbia and Montenegro. Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia and Slovenia became independent, Football Association of Serbia and Montenegro 1992–2006, became Football Association of Serbia. Montenegro, which became independent, created its own football association, the main competition for mens national teams is the UEFA European Football Championship, started in 1958, with the first finals in 1960, and known as the European Nations Cup until 1964. It is also called UEFA or the EURO, UEFA also runs national competitions at Under-21, Under-19 and Under-17 levels. For womens national teams, UEFA operates the UEFA Womens Championship for senior sides as well as Womens Under-19. UEFA also organized the UEFA-CAF Meridian Cup with CAF for youth teams in an effort to boost youth football, UEFA launched the UEFA Regions Cup, for semi-professional teams representing their local region, in 1999. In futsal there is the UEFA Futsal Championship and UEFA Futsal Under-21 Championship, the Italian, German, Spanish and French mens national teams are the sole teams to have won the European football championship in all categories. A second, lower-ranked competition is the UEFA Europa League and this competition, for national knockout cup winners and high-placed league teams, was launched by UEFA in 1971 as a successor of both the former UEFA Cup and the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup. A third competition, the UEFA Cup Winners Cup, which had started in 1960, was absorbed into the UEFA Cup in 1999, in womens football UEFA also conducts the UEFA Womens Champions League for club teams. The competition was first held in 2001, and known as the UEFA Womens Cup until 2009, the UEFA Super Cup pits the winners of the Champions League against the winners of the Europa League, and came into being in 1973
Promotion and relegation
In sports leagues, promotion and relegation is a process where teams are transferred between two divisions based on their performance for the completed season. In some leagues, playoffs or qualifying rounds are used to determine rankings. This process can continue through several levels of divisions, with teams being exchanged between levels 1 and 2, levels 2 and 3, levels 3 and 4, the number of teams exchanged between the divisions is almost always identical. Such variations will almost inevitably cause an effect through the lower divisions. Even in the absence of such circumstances, the pyramid-like nature of most European football league systems can still create knock-on effects at the regional level. The system is said to be the characteristic of the European form of professional sports league organization. Promotion and relegation have the effect of allowing the maintenance of a hierarchy of leagues and divisions and they also maintain the importance of games played by many low-ranked teams near the end of the season, which may be at risk of relegation. In contrast, a low-ranked US or Canadian teams final games serve little purpose, although not intrinsic to the system, problems can occur due to the differing monetary payouts and revenue-generating potential that different divisions provide to their clubs. For example, financial hardship has sometimes occurred in leagues where clubs do not reduce their wage bill once relegated, some leagues offer parachute payments to its relegated teams for the following year. The payouts are higher than the money received by some non-relegated teams and are designed to soften the financial hit that clubs take whilst dropping out of the Premier League. However, in many cases these parachute payments just serve to inflate the costs of competing for promotion among the lower division clubs as newly relegated teams retain a financial advantage. If these are not satisfied, a team may be promoted in their place. While the primary purpose of the system is to maintain competitive balance. On several occasions, the Italian Football Federation has relegated clubs found to have involved in match-fixing. This occurred most recently in 2006, when the initial champions Juventus were relegated to Serie B. An exception is the proposed UEFA Nations League, which will feature promotion and relegation across four levels, in tennis, the Davis Cup has promotion and relegation where each group uses a knockout tournament format in which first-round losers play off to avoid relegation. In the United States, Canada, and Australia, teams are not promoted or relegated. The USL set up two leagues, now known as the United Soccer League and the Premier Development League, although the system is now in place, it is not compulsory and is rarely used
The Welsh Cup is a knock-out football competition contested annually by teams in the Welsh football league system. The Football Association of Wales is the body of this competition. The winning team qualifies to play in the following seasons UEFA Europa League, until 1995, Welsh clubs playing in the Welsh or English leagues were invited to play in the Welsh Cup. On occasion some English clubs, mostly those from border areas such as Shrewsbury, Hereford, however, in the event of an English club winning the Welsh Cup, they were not allowed to progress to the European Cup Winners Cup. Instead, the best placed Welsh club in the Welsh Cup competition would take the European place, from 1996 to 2011, only clubs playing in the Welsh football league system were allowed to enter the Welsh Cup. This rule excluded the six Welsh clubs who played in the English football league system, Cardiff City, Colwyn Bay, Merthyr Tydfil Town, Newport County, Swansea City and Wrexham. On 20 April 2011, the Football Association of Wales invited these six clubs to rejoin the Welsh Cup for the 2011–12 season, between the 1961–62 and 1984–85 seasons, the final was played as a two-leg match, originally on a points basis rather than aggregate score. In the 1985–86 season, it reverted to a game, to be decided by extra time. The last English winner of the Welsh Cup was Hereford United in 1990, for a list of Welsh Cup finals including venue and attendance information see List of Welsh Cup finals
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 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
Scottish Challenge Cup
There were also two guest teams each from the NIFL Premiership and Welsh Premier League, the first time the competition featured teams from outside Scottish football. The competition was first held during the 1990–91 season as the B&Q Centenary Cup to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the formation of the SFL and it was intended to be a one-off competition but was continued due to its popularity. The first winner of the tournament was Dundee, who defeated Ayr United, Falkirk are the most successful team in the tournament, with four wins, most recently in 2012. The most recent winner was Dundee United, who defeated St Mirren in the 2017 final, the Challenge Cup is a knock-out tournament. Within a regionalised format, clubs are paired at random and the first club drawn listed as the home team, the winner of each match progresses to the next round and the loser is eliminated from the tournament. Every match, including the final, is a tie that lasts 90 minutes plus any additional stoppage time. If no clear winner has been determined after 90 minutes of time,30 minutes of extra time is played. If the score is level after extra time then the winner is decided by a penalty shoot-out. Beginning with the 2016–17 season, the competition has expanded to 54 entrants. Teams are seeded to enter the competition over any of the first four rounds, the final is played at a neutral venue. The competition was created in the 1990–91 season to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the formation of the Scottish Football League in 1890 and it was intended to run for only one season but continued due to its popularity. This was reflected in attendances at matches in the later rounds of the tournament including a full capacity crowd of 11,500 at Fir Park in the first final. The cup was sponsored by DIY retail company B&Q and named the B&Q Centenary Cup for the first year, when Stenhousemuir won the final in 1995 it was regarded as the clubs greatest achievement in its 111-year history. The number of competitors has varied in relation to the number of clubs with Scottish Football League membership, before the change in 2010, several clubs received a random bye in the first round in order to even out the number of fixtures. The Challenge Cup continued under the auspices of the Scottish Professional Football League after the Scottish Football League merged with the Scottish Premier League in 2013 and this was simplified in the 2014–15 season, with the two additional places going to the Highland League champion and the Lowland League champion. Two teams from the League of Ireland will be included in the competition for the 2017–18 season, the final match of the tournament is played at a neutral venue, usually one that is geographically close or equidistant to where the clubs contesting the match are based. Eight different venues have hosted the final, Fir Park in Motherwell was the first, in 1990, and has since hosted four more finals, the last in 2017. McDiarmid Park in Perth has been the most frequent venue, staging it nine times between 1994 and 2015, other venues to host the final more than once are Broadwood Stadium, Excelsior Stadium and Almondvale Stadium
The New Saints F.C.
They play in the Welsh Premier League, which they have won a record eleven times – including the past six seasons. Founded in 1959 as Llansantffraid F. C. from 1997 to 2006, in 2003, it merged with Oswestry Town F. C. and three years later it adopted its current name. TNS play at Park Hall in Oswestry after moving there in 2007 from the Recreation Ground in Llansantffraid, Park Hall accommodates 1,000 seated spectators and there are plans to upgrade the ground to 3,000 capacity in the future. The club was formed as Llansantffraid F. C. to represent the border village of Llansantffraid-ym-Mechain in 1959. They first tasted competitive football in the Montgomeryshire Amateur Football League, at the end of the 1989–90 season they were elected to the Central Wales League but their stay was brief, winning promotion to the Cymru Alliance as runners-up on their first attempt. Llansantffraids meteoric rise continued and in 1992–93 they gained promotion to the League of Wales, now the Welsh Premier League, as champions, in 1996, Llansantffraid won the Welsh Cup and qualified for the first time for the European Cup Winners Cup. At this time a computer company, Total Network Solutions of Oswestry. As Total Network Solutions Llansantffraid F. C. they met the Polish cup winners Ruch Chorzów, since then they have qualified for European competition several times. The clubs European home games are played at either Newtowns or Wrexhams stadium as their old Recreation Ground was far below UEFAs standards. In 1997 the clubs name was changed to Total Network Solutions F. C. being the first instance in the United Kingdom of a football club renaming itself after its sponsors name only. Following the financial meltdown of Barry Town in the summer of 2003, in the summer of 2005 however Llanelli AFC also announced plans to go full-time. In the summer of 2003 a merger with their financially weak neighbours, Oswestry Town, was approved by Oswestrys shareholders and it was also approved by the Football Association of Wales and was eventually ratified on 14 August 2003 by UEFA. The 2003–04 season was trophyless for TNS, they were runners-up in the League of Wales to Rhyl and were losing finalists in the Welsh Cup, the next season, 2004–05, proved much more successful, as TNS won a League and Cup double. After UEFA reached a compromise by which Liverpool were placed in the first qualifying round of the competition, TNS, a new club badge was also developed at the same time, featuring a dragon to represent Llansantffraid and a lion representing Oswestry. At the time, the move was complicated by Chester Citys governance issues. Chester City were liquidated a month later by HMRC, in any event, the New Saints were crowned 2009–10 Welsh Premier League Champions. The New Saints entered the Champions League in 2010–11 and they were drawn against League of Ireland Premier Division Champions Bohemians in the Second Qualifying Round. They lost the first leg 1–0 at Dalymount Park in Dublin on 13 July 2010, however they won the second leg at Park Hall 4–0 and won the tie 4–1 on aggregate, the first ever tie won by the club since their European debut in 1996
S4C is a Welsh-language public-service television channel based in Cardiff and broadcast throughout Wales. When digital television arrived several years later, S4C added a second, 100% Welsh-language service, S4C does not commission programming in English, but when English is used on the channel it is left untranslated. A high-definition service called S4C Clirlun, simulcasting S4Cs main channel, Channel 4 HD began broadcasting in Wales from 2 December 2012 in its place. In 1962 the ITV network had created an area for North and West Wales. This traded as Teledu Cymru and provided significant levels of Welsh-language programming, however, problems with transmission infrastructure and poor market research led to financial difficulties within two years and the station was taken over by its neighbour Television Wales and West. During the 1970s, Welsh-language activists had campaigned for a TV service in the language, both the Conservative and Labour parties promised a Welsh-language fourth channel, if elected to government in the 1979 general election. This led to acts of disobedience, including refusals to pay the television licence fee, thereby running the risk of prosecution or even a prison sentence. Some took more extreme measures, including attacking television transmitters in Welsh-speaking areas, the channel started broadcasting on 1 November 1982, the night before Channel 4s opening. S4C appointed its first female CEO, Iona Jones in 2005, S4Cs remit is to provide a service which features a wide range of programmes in the Welsh language. BBC Wales fulfils its public service requirement by producing programmes in Welsh, including Newyddion, S4Cs news bulletin, and an opera, Pobol y Cwm. It has also provided Welsh-language versions of English-language programmes, e. g, on the analogue service, S4C showed programmes produced for Channel 4 in the rest of the United Kingdom ― either simultaneously or time-shifted ― outside of peak hours. These programmes were provided to S4C by Channel 4, free of charge, to make content more accessible to English speakers, all Welsh-language programming carries English subtitles. Originally these were on Teletext page 888, with Welsh subtitles on page 889, TV films produced for S4C have received some good foreign reviews, Hedd Wyn was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Oscar in 1994 and Solomon & Gaenor was nominated in 2000. The S4C analogue signal also spilled over on to the east coast of the Republic of Ireland, in the past it was rebroadcast in a number of areas there on UHF terrestrial signals by so-called deflectors, however Channel 4 is now re-transmitted from satellite by the few remaining deflectors. Up until the 1990s, S4C was also carried by some Irish cable, the S4C signal also continues to overspill into the Republic of Ireland via the Freesat satellite service. Up until 2009, S4C ran its own service, Sbectel. According to S4Cs latest annual report,9.9 million people viewed the channel throughout the UK during 2015-2016, with 629,000 viewers throughout the UK in an average week. Following the switch-off of analogue terrestrial signals on 31 March 2010, Wales became the first fully digital region in the UK, with both S4C and Channel 4 now available to all homes
Welsh is a member of the Brittonic branch of the Celtic languages. It is spoken natively in Wales, by some in England, historically it has also been known in English as the British tongue, Cambrian, Cambric and Cymric. The United Kingdom Census 2011 counted 3.1 million residents of Wales, 27% of whom had been born outside Wales, and 73% of whom reported having no Welsh language skills. Of residents of Wales aged three and over, 19% reported being able to speak Welsh, and 77% of these were able to speak, read and this can be compared with the 2001 Census, in which 20. 8% of the population reported being able to speak Welsh. 787,854 of residents in Wales aged three and over had one or more skills in Welsh, in surveys carried out between 2004 and 2006, 57% of Welsh speakers described themselves as fluent in the written language. An estimated 110,000 to 150,000 people speak Welsh in England, Welsh emerged in the 6th century from Common Brittonic, the common ancestor of Welsh, Breton, Cornish and the extinct language known as Cumbric. The Middle Welsh period is considered to have lasted from then until the 14th century, when the Modern Welsh period began, the name Welsh originated as an exonym given to its speakers by the Anglo-Saxons, meaning foreign speech. The native term for the language is Cymraeg, and for the name of the country of Wales it is Cymru, Welsh evolved from Common Brittonic, the Celtic language spoken by the ancient Celtic Britons. Classified as Insular Celtic, the British language probably arrived in Britain during the Bronze Age or Iron Age and was spoken throughout the island south of the Firth of Forth. During the Early Middle Ages the British language began to fragment due to increased dialect differentiation, evolving into Welsh and it is not clear when Welsh became distinct. Kenneth H. Jackson suggested that the evolution in syllabic structure and sound pattern was complete by around 550, Jackson, however, believed that the two varieties were already distinct by that time. The earliest Welsh poetry – that attributed to the Cynfeirdd or Early Poets – is generally considered to date to the Primitive Welsh period. However, much of this poetry was composed in the Hen Ogledd, raising further questions about the dating of the material. An 8th century inscription in Tywyn shows the language already dropping inflections in the declension of nouns, the next main period, somewhat better attested, is Old Welsh, poetry from both Wales and Scotland has been preserved in this form of the language. Both the works of Aneirin and the Book of Taliesin were in this era, Middle Welsh is the label attached to the Welsh of the 12th to 14th centuries, of which much more remains than for any earlier period. This is the language of all surviving early manuscripts of the Mabinogion. It is also the language of the existing Welsh law manuscripts, Middle Welsh is reasonably intelligible, albeit with some work, to a modern-day Welsh speaker. The famous cleric Gerald of Wales tells, in his Descriptio Cambriae, during one of the Kings many raids in the 12th century, Henry asked an old man of Pencader, Carmarthenshire whether the Welsh people could resist his army
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
Welsh football league system
The Welsh football league system is a series of football leagues with regular promotion and relegation between them. At the top is the Welsh Premier League, which is the national league in Wales. Below it is the tier of leagues, covering north and south Wales. The south is covered by the Welsh Football League while the north, again, the champions or runners-up of these leagues can be promoted into the Cymru Alliance, given suitable grounds. The Welsh National League has two divisions of its own and the Clwyd East Football League is the feeder league below it. In the south, the Welsh Football League has three divisions all covering the whole of the South Wales geographical area, and it is not until the fifth tier of the pyramid that local leagues appear. Promotion to, and relegation from the Welsh League is structured, as in the north, each can send one promoted team into the Welsh Football League. This is straightforward enough in the Gwent FA area, where there is one senior league, below these two leagues are local leagues in the towns and cities of South Wales, the champions of which may play off to be promoted into the new league. However, as few west Wales clubs can face the prospect of the implications of moving up to the Welsh Football League. The latest clubs to promotion from this region were Llansawel in 2006, West End in 2005, Ystradgynlais in 2004, Cwmamman United in 2002. On 31st May 2016, Ynysygerwn beat Team Swansea 3-1 at the Old Road, Briton Ferry Llansawel in a play-off to gain promotion to the Welsh League Division 3
Sponsoring something is the act of supporting an event, activity, person, or organization financially or through the provision of products or services. The individual or group provides the support, similar to a benefactor, is known as sponsor. Sponsorship is a cash and/or in-kind fee paid to a property in return for access to the commercial potential associated with that property. While the sponsoree may be nonprofit, unlike philanthropy, sponsorship is done with the expectation of a commercial return, while sponsorship can deliver increased awareness, brand building and propensity to purchase, it is different from advertising. Unlike advertising, sponsorship can not communicate specific product attributes, nor can it stand alone, as sponsorship requires support elements. A range of psychological and communications theories have been used to explain how commercial sponsorship works to impact consumer audiences, cornwell, Weeks and Roy have published an extensive review of the theories so far used to explain commercial sponsorship effects. Title sponsor is highest status of sponsorship and it characterizes the most significant contribution to a company in organizing and hosting an event. Often the name of sponsor is placed next to the name of competition, teams. In case of title sponsors presence the general sponsor position may remain free, general sponsor is a sponsor that makes one of the largest contributions and that receives for it the right to use the image of competition as well as extensive media coverage. If necessary, the status of the sponsor may be supplemented by the general sponsors for certain categories. Official sponsor is a sponsor that makes a part of raised funds. Typically, the status may be granted by category. Technical sponsor is a sponsor which promotes organization of sporting events through the partial or full payment of goods, participating sponsor is a company, the sponsorship fee size of which usually does not exceed 10% of total raised funds. Informational sponsor is an organization that provides support through media coverage, conducting PR-actions, joint actions. All sponsorship should be based on contractual obligations between the sponsor and the sponsored party, sponsors and sponsored parties should set out clear terms and conditions with all other partners involved, to define their expectations regarding all aspects of the sponsorship deal. Sponsorship should be recognisable as such, the terms and conduct of sponsorship should be based upon the principle of good faith between all parties to the sponsorship. There should be clarity regarding the rights being sold and confirmation that these are available for sponsorship from the rights holder. Sponsored parties should have the right to decide on the value of the sponsorship rights that they are offering
In European football, the UEFA coefficients are statistics used for ranking and seeding teams in club and international competitions. Introduced in 1979, the coefficients are calculated by UEFA, who administer football within Europe and it was first introduced in 2003 and used for seeding the 2004 European Final tournament and 2006 World Cup qualification. Results from the tournaments, Play-off matches and friendly games were all ignored. In those cases where a nation did not take part at one of the two latest qualifying rounds, due to being qualified as a host, only one qualifying round would be taken into account. If two or more nations ended up with exactly the same coefficient, the ranking criteria was applied. Biggest average goal difference per game, found by dividing the sum of all differences by the number of ranked matches. Highest average number of goals scored per game, Highest average number of away goals scored per game. The last three times UEFA used this method was for the final UEFA coefficients in 2003,2005 and 2007. On 20 May 2008, UEFA announced changes to the coefficient ranking system, Ranking points for all games played inside those two and a half cycles, will be awarded according to the rules listed below. 10,000 points are awarded for each match played, regardless of the match result, each team earns an additional 30,000 for winning and 10,000 for drawing. In case of a game decided by penalty shoot-out, the points are allocated as a draw,501 points are earned for each goal scored, and -500 are given for each goal conceded. Coefficients are calculated for each two and a cycle, by dividing the sum of earned points with the number of games played. When calculating the overall average coefficient for the cycles, the latest full cycle and half cycle will each have double the weight, special arrangements are in place for those nations that did not participate in one of the previous qualifying tournaments due to hosting the competition. The UEFA ranking determines the number of competing in the season after the next. This coefficient is determined by the results of the clubs of the associations in the UEFA Champions League, two points are awarded for each win by a club, and one for a draw. The number of points awarded each season is divided by the number of teams participated for that association in that season. This number is rounded down to three decimal places. To determine a countrys coefficient for a season, the coefficients for the last five seasons are added
Aberystwyth Town F.C.
Aberystwyth Town Football Club is a semi-professional football team, playing in the Welsh Premier League. The club was founded in 1884, and plays at Park Avenue, Aberystwyth, the teams first choice strip is green shirts with a white stripes, black shorts and socks. The second choice strip is orange shirts with black trim, black shorts, the club was founded by Arthur Hughes, son of a local solicitor, and his brothers Jack and Hugh. at 4pm. Members subscriptions to be paid in advance, 2s, the clubs early days were limited to friendly matches, as the club did not join a league until 1896. It joined the Welsh League for a year, before reverting to playing friendlies again and they were members of the Montgomeryshire and District League in 1904, winning several championships. With the creation of the Welsh National League in 1921, Aberystwyth Town joined the Central Section, where won the title six times in the 1920s. Aberystwyth won the Welsh Amateur Cup in 1931 and 1933, and were losing finalists in 1935 and 1972, the club joined the Welsh League in 1951, although they continued to also field a team in the Mid-Wales League, and for a while in the Cambrian Coast League. Aberystwyth returned to the Mid-Wales competition in 1963 but did not win the championship until 1984. They retained the title in 1985, Aberystwyth were firmly established as one of premier clubs in Mid-Wales and in 1987 they returned to the Welsh League. They were three times runners-up before they became members of the League of Wales in 1992. Aberystwyth achieved their best Welsh Premier League position – 3rd – in their first season, Aberystwyth Town are one of only three teams that have taken part in each season of the Welsh Premier League, the other teams being Bangor City and Newtown. Aberystwyth Town Under 19s currently play in the Welsh Premier Development League – South, whilst the Ladies team, managed by Kevin Jenkins, play in the Welsh Premier Womens League. The Aberystwyth Disability Team who are known as Aber Stars were set up in 2013 and play in the West Wales PAN Disability League about once a month. However, the clubs biggest rivalries are with Newtown and Carmarthen Town, biggest win, 21–1 v. Machynlleth in 1934. Biggest defeat, 1–20 v. Caersws in 1962, biggest League of Wales win, 6–0 v. Briton Ferry Athletic and Llanidloes Town, both in 1993. Also by a margin of six, Afan Lido 0 Aberystwyth Town 6 on Tuesday 18 February 2014, biggest League of Wales defeat, 1–8 v. Barry Town in 1997. As of 4 February 2017 Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Players that have played/managed in the league or any foreign equivalent to this level
Barry Town United F.C.
Barry Town United Football Club is an association football team based in Barry. They are known for representing Wales in Europe as winners of the Welsh Premier League and Welsh Cup during the 1990s and early 2000s, the team, which has contained more than 50 full internationals, is now run by supporters. They play at their home of Jenner Park, Barry. Barry Town Uniteds history dates back to 1892 when a football team named Barry. During the early years, this side endured many upheavals, playing on five different grounds under various identities, including Barry Unionist Athletic, Barry United Athletic and Barry District. Players who featured during these years included Ted Vizard and Billy Jennings, in November 1912, a meeting at The Windsor public house in Holton Road saw townsfolk choose to pursue membership of the thriving Southern League as Barry AFC. The club would secure land owned by the Jenner family and the people of the came together to build Jenner Park. On 6 September 1913, Barry played their first ever fixture, the game attracted 4,000 spectators, including 1,000 travelling supporters. Fittingly, the new team would register a surprise, albeit merited, victory, with Barrys Ralph Isherwood scoring the very first goal at Jenner Park just three minutes in. His second, midway through the half, sealed a 2–1 victory, a fine start for the Barry side on, coincidentally. The ensuing two seasons would see Stoke City, Brentford, Coventry City and others visit the new ground, however, the Great War would soon interrupt any competitive proceedings, with Barry captain Major James Wightman one of the many casualties of The Battle of the Somme. The 1920–21 season ranks as one of the finest in Barrys history, the achievement was all the more impressive when considering the small Barry squad played over 100 matches in all competitions during the course of the season. Competing simultaneously in both the Welsh and Western League, the Barry board gave priority to Southern League fixtures, Barry retained membership of the Southern League for more than 60 years – their highest finish being fourth in the 1930s. Among the notable players of the era were Johnny Gardner, Dai Ward, meanwhile, Barry-born sportsman Ernie Carless combined his footballing exploits with a successful cricketing career with Glamorgan. At the end of the 1920s, a crowd of 6,000 at Upton Park saw Barry beat Dagenham 1–0 to progress to the FA Cup 2nd Round and it proved to be their most successful run in the competition. Barry would reach the 1st Round again in 1934–35, losing 1–0 to Northampton Town at Jenner Park, Football again took a backseat in 1939, with the eruption of World War II. In the 1949–50 season, Jenner Park became one of the first grounds in the country to introduce floodlights, with Newport County, Swansea City, two seasons later, an all-Welsh showdown in the FA Cup 1st Round saw Barry beaten by Newport, 4–0. Nevertheless, the town’s most celebrated footballing achievement was right around the corner, in May 1955, following a 1–1 draw at the Racecourse in Wrexham, Barry beat Chester City 4–3 at Ninian Park to lift the Welsh Cup for the first time
Bala Town F.C.
Bala Town Football Club are a Welsh football team from Bala, Gwynedd, who play in the Welsh Premier League. They play their games at Maes Tegid. Although the current Bala Town was formed in 1880, there is record of a club competing in the 1877–78 Welsh Cup. After Bala North End, Bala South End and Bala Thursdays merged, after only four seasons in the Cymru Alliance, Bala Town sealed promoted to the Welsh Premier League. In the 2014–15 season, the Lakesiders finished second, their highest ever league position, Bala Town have played at Maes Tegid in Bala since the 1950s. For European matches they use Rhyls Belle Vue stadium due to UEFA stadium regulations, notes 1Q, First qualifying round As of 3 April 2017 Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, Welsh Premier League, Runners-up, 2014–15, 2015–16 Welsh Premier League Cup, Runners-up, 2013–14, 2014–15 Official website Welsh Premier Official site – Bala Town page
Bangor City F.C.
Bangor City Football Club are a semi-professional Welsh football club from the City of Bangor, Gwynedd. The club compete in the Welsh Premier League, being ever present since the league was founded in 1992. Bangor City F. C. is one of Wales older football clubs, and has an history of competition in European football. In the 1961–62 season, Bangor City won the Welsh Cup, in the first round, Bangor was drawn against the Italian Cup winners, Napoli, at the time one of Europes greatest football teams. In the first leg, played at Farrar Road, unexpectedly Bangor won 2–0, world superstar Bobby Charlton guested for the Blues in the 1978 Anglo-Italian Tournament. At the end of 1977–78 when Southport was relegated from the English Football League Fourth Division, Bangor City, Boston United, due to Wigan Athletic having installed crush barriers, Bangor missed out on promotion. In 1979–80 Bangor City was invited to compete in the Alliance Premier League, on 12 May 1984 Bangor became the first Welsh club to play at Wembley since Cardiff in 1927, when reaching the FA Trophy final against Northwich Victoria. The match finished 1–1, with local boy Paul Whelan scoring for Bangor, the replay was played in Stokes Victoria Ground, and despite a goal from another Bangor lad, Bangor lost 2–1 conceding in the last minute. In 1985 Bangor City was back in the ECWC, in the first round drawn against the Norwegian cup winners, Fredrikstad. Interestingly, captain of Bangor that season was midfielder Mark Palios, against Atletico, Palios shaved the post with a header in the first minute that would have given Bangor an unlikely lead in the first leg at Farrar Road following a cross by Phil Lunn. In 1994 as League of Wales Champions, Bangor City entered the UEFA Cup, akranes won the leg in Bangor by 2–1, while Bangor lost the match in Iceland by 2–0. Łódź were a powerful side, But Nick dominated throughout the game. Having played Liverpool, Juventus and Manchester United in earlier campaigns, manager at the time was Nigel Adkins, now in charge of Championship side Reading. Unsurprisingly Bangor were beaten, 2–0 at home, and 1–0 in Finland, in 2006 the club made it to the Welsh Cup final where they were beaten by Rhyl 2–0 at Wrexhams Racecourse ground. The club managed to win back the Welsh Cup in 2008, defying the odds and defeating league high fliers Llanelli 4–2 after extra time at Latham Park, Newtown. An injury time equaliser saw an invasion by celebrating Bangor fans before the Blues were able proceeding to defeat their expensively-assembled opponents during the additional period. Victory in the Welsh Cup meant that Bangor had again qualified for Europe, the first leg was held at the Racecourse ground, Wrexham, saw Bangor beaten 6–1 by a talented Danish side. Despite this early setback Bangor ended the 2008–09 season with yet more silverware as they retained the Welsh Cup by defeating Aberystwyth Town 2–0 in a match held at Parc Y Scarlets, Llanelli
Cardiff Metropolitan University F.C.
Founded as UWIC Inter Cardiff in 2000, by the merger of Inter Cardiff F. C and UWIC F. C. the club changed its name to Cardiff Metropolitan University in 2012. The club has had a chequered history experiencing turbulent times and many name changes, the club was formed by a series of mergers and name changes. Firstly, Lake United renamed themselves A. F. C. In 1990, they were taken over by Sully F. C to form Inter Cardiff FC and then joined the Konica League of Wales. In 1996, but reverted to Inter Cardiff FC in 1999. Meanwhile, the team of Cardiff College of Education was developing, the team went through a series of name changes, mirroring the name changes of the institution it represented. The team was known as Cardiff College of Education F. C. They became South Glamorgan Institute F. C. in 1979, Cardiff Institute of Higher Education F. C. in 1990, in 2000, Inter Cardiff merged with Cardiff Metropolitan University to form UWIC Inter Cardiff F. C. The teams nicknames by fans included The International, The Sheep or The Divs, the Seagull on the teams logo originated from the Sully connection. They changed their name again in the summer of 2012 to Cardiff Metropolitan University F. C. On 3 May 2016, Cardiff Met confirmed their place in the Welsh Premier League after Caernarfon Town and Denbigh Town failed to secure licenses to play in the top flight of Welsh football. 1, League games only2, Name reverted to UWIC at end of season.3, Relegated as part of League reorganization4, in the 1994–95 tournament they lost 0–8 over two legs to Katowice of Poland in the Preliminary round. They also played Scottish giants Celtic F. C. in the 1997–98 season, in 1999–00 they lost 1–2 to Gorica of Slovenia over two legs in the 1st qualifying round. They qualified for the 1999–00 FAW Premier Cup but failed to progress from the group stage, squad for 2016/17 Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality
Carmarthen Town A.F.C.
Carmarthen Town Association Football Club is a Welsh semi-professional football club based in Carmarthen. The team play their games at Richmond Park. The club colours, reflected in their crest and kit, are gold, formed in 1950, Carmarthen Town was elected into the Welsh Football League in 1953. Their first league honour came in 1959–60, with promotion from Division 2 West to the First Division of the Welsh League, Carmarthen Towns first trophy was the Welsh Football League Cup, which they won in the 1995–96 season. Since then the club have gone on to win the Welsh Cup once and they have also qualified for UEFA competitions on four occasions. Carmarthen Town currently play in Welsh Premier League and have yet to win a league title, the club had their highest-ever finish in 2000–01, with third place, which qualified them for European competition for the first time. The first attempt to form a Carmarthen Town team came in 1920, jack Harding, a Geordie who settled in the town and had previously played in the Wearside League, made his initial effort in order to give other local sides more competition. The club only lasted for three years, jack then went on to play for the St. Peters and Quay Rovers clubs both of which folded in 1939. After the Second World War he founded a Carmarthen Athletic team, in fact one match had to be called off as most of the team were engaged in bell ringing on a Saturday. However, he was successful in 1950 when forming Carmarthen Town and he made some shrewd signings from Llanelli. The club played their first two seasons at Penllwyn Park and in 1952 moved to the newly created Richmond Park, a year later an application to join the Welsh League was successful with the new captain, Len Emanuel, taking over the reins. The stated aim of the club was to give the good football. With only one team gaining promotion from the Second Division the club achieved success in 1960 following five seasons as league runners-up. Alas, relegation followed twelve months later and it took four further years to win promotion again. The years passed with mediocre league placings and in 1976 the club looked like folding and it was the disbanded reserve teams committee which came to the fore and took over the running of the whole club. Relegation came again in 1979 and again in 1982, at long last promotion was achieved in 1992, and once more in 1995. The upward surge continued and the Welsh League Championship was won in 1996 along with the Welsh League Cup, the Old Gold were now in the League of Wales. The 1996–97 season was one of consolidation, early in the following season, in September 1997, Carmarthen attracted a record league crowd of 911 to their match against Barry Town
Cefn Druids A.F.C.
Cefn Druids Association Football Club is a football team based in the village of Cefn Mawr, Wrexham, Wales, who play in the Welsh Premier League. The club was founded in 1872 from the amalgamation of Cefn Albion F. C. and Druids United. Depending on sponsorship, the club was renamed Flexsys Cefn Druids F. C. in 1998, and NEWI Cefn Druids F. C. in 2003, the club was renamed again following in the summer of 2009 to Elements Cefn Druids F. C. The club reverted to Cefn Druids A. F. C. in 2010 following the end of the sponsorship deal, John Keegan was appointed manager of CEFN Druids in May 2014. Starting a career at York City where he made three appearances in 1999–00, Keegan has also played for Holywell, Caernarfon Town and Colwyn Bay. Keegan joined Druids as a player in 2012 but left a year later to become assistant manager at Conwy Borough in Huws Gray Alliance with Herbert and he hold the second highest coaching licence. Chris Herbert had been appointed 1st Team Co-ordinator, after taking Conwy Borough to a finish in the Huws Gray Alliance in 2012–13. Mark Roberts came into the club in 2014 to assist John Keegan in the management team, Roberts and Keegan hope to take Druids to a top flight finish. The teams first choice strip is black and white striped shirts, black shorts, the second choice strip is yellow shorts and red socks and red and yellow top. Planning permission for a 3,500 capacity stadium at the Rock, Rhosymedre, was given in March 2009, subject to approval from the Welsh Assembly and Health and Safety Executive. Delays to the beginning of construction put the back by 12 months. The team take their history from the famous old Welsh team Druids FC who were founded in the early 1860s. They had won the Welsh Cup on no less than 8 occasions and have finished runners-up five times, Druids were ancient mystic men throughout Celtic civilisation and were closely associated with Wales. Druids can claim to originate from the oldest existing team located in Wales and this is reflected in clubs nickname, The Ancients. In 1992 after many years of discussion the inevitable amalgamation of Druids United, the new look club took the bold step of applying to join the new Cymru Alliance. The joint resources of the clubs could be focused on a revival of fortunes in the village of Cefn Mawr. In 1999 Cefn Druids became Champions of the Cymru Alliance and were promoted into the League of Wales, the 2001–02 season was a season of consolidation in the Welsh Premier League finishing in 14th place. It was not to be, as a Marc Lloyd-Williams inspired Bangor City won 5–0 at Belle Vue, the 2002–03 season was a financially difficult one with the playing and management staff going weeks without payment at one point in the season
Connah's Quay Nomads F.C.
Connahs Quay Nomads Football Club, also known as Gap Connahs Quay for sponsorship reasons, is a football club based in Connahs Quay, Flintshire. The gap name was appended to the name for sponsorship reasons. They play in the Welsh Premier League, the club was founded in 1946 as Connahs Quay Juniors and adopted the Connahs Quay Nomads F. C. name in 1951. The clubs home ground is at Deeside Stadium on Kelsterton Road in Connahs Quay, for the 2006–07 season, they temporarily played their home games in Flint due to drainage problems with the Deeside Stadium pitch. Before the Nomads, two represented the town. The first was Connahs Quay, founded in 1890 and playing in the Golftyn area of the close to the present stadium. The club reached the Welsh Cup finals of 1908 and 1911, in 1928, the club moved to Dee Park, Shotton and won both the Welsh National League championship and the prestigious Welsh Cup in 1929. In the final they defeated First Division Cardiff City 3–0 at Wrexhams Racecourse Ground, cardiffs team contained several players who had beaten Arsenal in the 1927 FA Cup Final. Six months later Connahs Quay & Shotton folded with debts totalling more than £1,000, formed in July 1946 as Connahs Quay Juniors, the present-day club was the brainchild of the Everton and Wales centre-half T. G. Jones, a native of the town. By natural progression a senior team was formed and joined the Flintshire League in 1948, success soon followed and Connahs Quay Juniors reached the final of the Welsh Amateur Cup in 1950–51. Prior to the 1952–53 season, the suffix was changed to Nomads. Though unsuccessful in their challenge for the title, Connahs Quay once again contested the final of the Welsh Amateur Cup. The club also reached the semi-final of the Welsh Senior Cup before going down to Football League side Chester at Wrexhams Racecourse ground. In 1974, however, the joined the newly formed Clwyd League and spent more than a dozen seasons at this level. Following three successful seasons in the Welsh Alliance, Connahs Quay became founder members of the Cymru Alliance in 1990 and the League of Wales two seasons later. Neville Powell joined the club as player/manager in the summer of 1993 though he suffered a bad injury very early in his career at Connahs Quay that would end his playing career, nevertheless he steadily built his team into one capable of challenging for a European place. Within twelve months of Powells arrival, Nomads won the North Wales Coast F. A, Cup and, in 1995–96, won the League of Wales League Cup, beating Ebbw Vale in the final at Caersws. In the final, played at Wrexhams Racecourse Ground, Bangor City scored a last-minute equaliser, the Halfway Ground has since been demolished and is now the site of a residential development
Llandudno Football Club are a Welsh football team that currently play in the Welsh Premier League. They play their games at The Giant Hospitality Stadium in Llandudno, Conwy County Borough, Football in Llandudno dates back to 1878 when the club was originally known as Gloddaeth Rovers for around a decade. The club was re-formed and renamed Llandudno Football Club in 1988, the club was formed for the purpose of providing activity for cricketers during their close season. A full international, Wales v Ireland, was played on the field in 1898. Llandudno were founder members of the Welsh National League in 1921 and were champions in 1923, the club won the North Wales Combination FA Cup in 1926 and the North Wales Amateur Cup in 1929. Controversy struck the club in 1931 when the FAW instructed them to play in East Wales, Llandudno were founder members of the Welsh League in 1935 and remained in the league until war broke out in 1939 and then rejoined in 1945 and stayed till 1974. The club moved to its current home at Maesdu Park in 1991 after the field was used for the construction of an ASDA store in the late 1970s. The current ground was opened in 1991 and floodlights were added in 1994. The following season saw the erection of a clubhouse and two small stands which provide covered seating for 130 spectators, the club has in the past few seasons undergone major transitions, with the addition of a new press box. In season 2004–05 new dressing rooms were completed, new grandstands, with disabled access, are in place and the stadium now meeting the criteria set down for Welsh Premier League football. In August 2014, Wales national football team manager Chris Coleman visited Maesdu Park to officially open Llandudnos new £420,000 3G pitch, after a successful 2014–15 Cymru Alliance season, Llandudno were promoted as champions to the Welsh Premier League for the first time in their history. Llandudno enjoyed a remarkable first season in the Welsh Premier League which saw them finish 3rd, note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, gwyn Hughes web site includes this club
Newtown Association Football Club are a Welsh Football Club who play in the Welsh Premier League. Newtown are one of three clubs that can claim unbroken membership of the league since its formation in 1992, with the other two clubs being Aberystwyth Town and Bangor City. The club was founded in 1875 as Newtown White Stars, and were one of the members of the Football Association of Wales. The club plays at Latham Park, Newtown, which accommodates 5,000 spectators, Newtown White Stars won the Welsh Cup in 1879 and were losing finalists in 1881. Newtown AFC won the cup again in 1895, but this was the last national trophy won for sixty years, in 1992 the club became rather reluctant founder members of the Konica League of Wales. Since then it has finished runners-up in the league in both 1995–96 & 1997–98, and subsequently played UEFA cup ties against Skonto Riga of Latvia and Wisła Kraków of Poland. Newtown Association Football Club are one of the oldest clubs in Wales, in addition the club was also one of the founder members of the League of Wales, now known as the Welsh Premier. The club has a long and proud tradition with the move in the late 1980s into the Northern Premier League being part of the nature of the club. Way back in 1877, Newtown took part in the first ever Welsh Cup tie on Saturday 13 October against Druids of Ruabon, cefn Druids now former members of the Welsh Premier are derived from this club. In December 1895 Newtown travelled to play Manchester City at Maine Road, newtown’s W. Parry scored all three goals for the Robins. In 2014 Newtown became the 2nd Welsh Premier League club, after The New Saints, during the 2014/15 season Newtown finished in the top 6 for the second consecutive season. They also took part in their first Welsh Cup Final in 118 Years after memorable wins against Caersws, Bangor, however they lost the match 2–0 to The New Saints, despite it being played at Latham Park in front of a capacity crowd. After the cup defeat, Newtown entered the European play-offs. During the play-offs they won away at Port Talbot Town and won away at Aberystwyth Town to take a spot in the 2015–16 Europa League qualifiers, note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, brian Coyne Roger Preece Darren Ryan Andy Cale Darren Ryan Bernard McNally Chris Hughes Newtown have participated four times in the UEFA Cup/Europa League. In the Welsh Premier League Newtown have derby matches against fellow Mid-Wales clubs Aberystwyth Town and The New Saints
Prestatyn Town F.C.
Prestatyn Town Football Club is a Welsh football club based in Prestatyn, Denbighshire. RECORDS show that football has played in Prestatyn since the early 1890s with games being played on an undeveloped field on Marine Road. The guiding genius behind this team was Sam Bennett who, it seems, was a one man band. Bennett was the manager, carried out training, acted as club linesman, headed up the committee, Jones had also played with great credit for Rhyl in their Birmingham League days. Then there were the Roberts brothers, Alf and George and the wonderfully-named Cunnie Jones who left Prestatyn to become a stalwart centre-half with Rhyl. Success in these days was in short supply, the only triumph of any note being the capture of the North Wales Coast FA Junior Cup in 1928/9. The following season saw the Seasiders set up an end of season run of 14 straight wins to finish just four points behind champions Rhydymwyn. They also reached the semi-final of the Alves Cup while the team won the Clwyd Leagues Clwyd Cup. Season 1995/6 saw Prestatyn chasing eventual champions Denbigh Town all the way but again saw them end up in second place. In this season Town completed work on their clubhouse which meant the Seasiders now had their own entirely self-contained base, not bad for a club supposedly in crisis. Town re-joined the Welsh Alliance the next year, finishing seventh, by now a settled and ambitious outfit, 2001/2 saw Prestatyn appoint Graham Hunter as manager and Tony Thackeray became club chairman. Town were runners-up in the Alves Cup and the reserves retained the REM Jones Cup, 2002/3 saw managerial changes again when Paul Thomas and James Ainsworth took over the reins. Town were not outclassed by their Welsh Premier opponents and but for some wayward finishing, icing on the cake was a rewarding run in the Welsh Cup which ended in a narrow 2-1 defeat to Welsh Premier Carmarthen Town in front of 268 people at Bastion Road. The season also saw the reserves, under manager Sean Pritchard, finish a third in the Clwyd Leagues Premier Division. Prestatyn Town played their first game on 20 October 1910 when they travelled to Rhyl Amateurs, until the 2007–08 season, the club played in the Cymru Alliance, North Wales feeder league to the Welsh Premier League. After winning the title in 2007–08, the club was promoted to the Welsh Premier League for the 2008–09 season. Their promotion was dependent on their ground, Bastion Road, meeting certain criteria, the club installed floodlights and their promotion to the Welsh Premier League was ratified. The club maintained Premier League status for a season with a 15th-place finish in 2008–09
Alun Evans (FAW)
Alun E. Evans was general secretary of the Football Association of Wales between 1982 and 1995 and club Secretary of Welsh League side, UWIC. Evans obtained two degrees in economics and geography from the University of London followed by his teaching qualification at Pembroke College. Evans retained his interest in student sport, serving as an officer on its national organisations and was co-founder of the British Universities Sports Association in 1994, after several years of professional experience, he returned to academic study, taking a masters degree in sports history and culture. He also serves as BUSAs Disciplinary Panel Chair and he was also Technical Delegate for Football for the European Universities Sports Association. Evans opposes FAs Cardiff ruling Evans aims for long-term gains Uefa denies natural justice Were putting the best clubs were allowed to put in the competitions
Football Association of Wales
The Football Association of Wales is the governing body of association football in Wales. It is a member of FIFA, UEFA and the IFAB, the FAW was founded at a meeting held on 2 February 1876 at the Wynnstay Arms Hotel in Wrexham, initially to formalise the arrangements for the forthcoming match against Scotland. In May 1876, a meeting was called, this time in the ballroom of the Wynnstay Arms Hotel in Ruabon where the name Football Association of Wales was agreed. The arguments and discussions continued so long that the local policeman came in to call time, the meeting ended with Llewelyn Kenrick appointed as the first chairman and honorary secretary with John Hawley Edwards as first treasurer. Kenrick continued to serve the FAW until 1884, when he left, in 1897, when the FAW secretary was charged with fraud, Kenrick returned to guide the association through the crisis. He made the break a few months later over the minor issue of the allocation of gate money to Welsh Cup semi-finalists and finalists. The FAW is also responsible for all actions against players in teams associated with the FAW. This includes Welsh teams playing in the English football pyramid, superseding the English FA disciplinary system with the exception of Cardiff City, the FAW is based at Neptune Court, Vanguard Way, Cardiff. It is governed by a council including nineteen councillors who are either elected, in 2012, chief executive Jonathan Ford claimed the FAW had an income of £14 million, funded from FIFA, UEFA, grants, sponsorship and TV revenue. All finances were spent on the development of the game. In 2013, Dragon Park, the Wales National Football Development Centre, Wales national football team List of football clubs in Wales Official website Wales at FIFA site Wales at UEFA site A Bibliography of Association Football in Wales
Wales national football team
The Wales national football team represents Wales in international football. It is controlled by the Football Association of Wales, the body for football in Wales. During their history, Wales have qualified for two international tournaments. They reached the quarter-finals of the 1958 FIFA World Cup and they reached the semi-finals of UEFA Euro 2016 after beating Belgium in the quarter-final match on 1 July 2016. This was, therefore, the first time that Wales had reached the semi-final of a major tournament, Wales also progressed through UEFA Euro 1976 qualifying to the quarter-final, which was played on a home and away leg basis but they did not feature in the finals tournament. At all levels including the teams the Welsh national team draws players primarily from clubs in the English football league system. The main professional Welsh clubs play in the English leagues, with some full-time and part-time professional clubs playing in the Welsh football league system. Wales played its first competitive match on 25 March 1876 against Scotland in Glasgow, Scotland took the spoils winning 2–0. Wales first match against England came in 1879 – a 2–1 defeat at the Kennington Oval, London and in 1882 Wales faced Ireland for the first time, the associations of the four Home Nations met in Manchester on 6 December 1882 to set down a set of worldwide rules. This meeting saw the establishment of the International Football Association Board to approve changes to the rules, the 1883–84 season saw the formation of the British Home Championship, a tournament which was played annually between England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales, until 1983–84. Wales were champions on 12 occasions, winning seven times whilst sharing the title five times. As a result, Wales did not enter the first three World Cups, in 1932 Wales played host to the Republic of Ireland, the first time they played against a side from outside the four home nations. A year later, Wales played a match outside the United Kingdom for the first time when they travelled to Paris to take on France in a match which was drawn 1–1. The top two teams were to qualify for the finals in Brazil, but Wales finished bottom of the group. The 1950s were an age for Welsh football with stars such as Ivor Allchurch, Cliff Jones, Alf Sherwood, Jack Kelsey, Trevor Ford, Ronnie Burgess, Terry Medwin. Wales made its only World Cup finals tournament appearance in the 1958 FIFA World Cup in Sweden, however, their path to qualification was unusual. In the Asian/African qualifying zone Egypt and Sudan had refused to play against Israel following the Suez crisis, as a result, FIFA proclaimed Israel winners of their respective group. However, FIFA did not want a team to qualify for the World Cup finals without actually playing a match and so lots were drawn of all the second placed teams in UEFA
The Fédération Internationale de Football Association is the international governing body of association football, futsal, and beach soccer. FIFA is responsible for the organisation of major international tournaments, notably the World Cup which commenced in 1930. FIFA was founded in 1904 to oversee international competition among the associations of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden. Headquartered in Zürich, its membership now comprises 211 national associations, although FIFA does not control the rules of football, it is responsible for both the organization of a number of tournaments and their promotion, which generate revenue from sponsorship. In 2013, FIFA had revenues of over 1.3 billion U. S. dollars, for a net profit of 72 million and those among these officials who were also indicted in the U. S. are expected to be extradited to face charges there as well. Many officials were suspended by FIFAs ethics committee including Sepp Blatter, in early 2017 reports became public about FIFA president Gianni Infantino attempting to prevent the re-elections of both chairmen of the ethics committee during the FIFA congress in May 2017. The need for a body to oversee association football became apparent at the beginning of the 20th century with the increasing popularity of international fixtures. The French name and acronym are used even outside French-speaking countries, the founding members were the national associations of Belgium, Denmark, France, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. Also, that day, the German Association declared its intention of affiliating through a telegram. The first president of FIFA was Robert Guérin, Guérin was replaced in 1906 by Daniel Burley Woolfall from England, by then a member of the association. Membership of FIFA expanded beyond Europe with the application of South Africa in 1909, Argentina in 1912, Canada and Chile in 1913, and the United States in 1914. During World War I, with players sent off to war and the possibility of travel for international fixtures severely limited. Post-war, following the death of Woolfall, the organisation was run by Dutchman Carl Hirschmann and it was saved from extinction, but at the cost of the withdrawal of the Home Nations, who cited an unwillingness to participate in international competitions with their recent World War enemies. The Home Nations later resumed their membership, the FIFA collection is held by the National Football Museum at Urbis in Manchester, England. The first World Cup in the world was in 1930 in Montevideo, FIFA is headquartered in Zürich, and is an association established under the Law of Switzerland. FIFAs supreme body is the FIFA Congress, a made up of representatives from each affiliated member association. Each national football association has one vote, regardless of its size or footballing strength, the Congress assembles in ordinary session once every year, and extraordinary sessions have been held once a year since 1998. The congress makes decisions relating to FIFAs governing statutes and their method of implementation and application, only the Congress can pass changes to FIFAs statutes
The Home Nations, or Home Countries, refers collectively to England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, and in certain sports contexts, to England, Scotland, Wales and the whole island of Ireland. The term Home Countries is also used, and is synonymous. The Crown Dependencies are not part of the United Kingdom, but are associated with it. In association football, the Home Nations originally referred to the four national teams of the United Kingdom, England, Ireland, Scotland. The English Football Association, and the media used the term Home Nations to describe the parties to the debate. In the event, a team consisting only of English and Welsh players took part, in 1883, the first Home Nations Championship was played between England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. At this point in its history, the competition contained only teams from the UK, in 1910, France officially joined the competition and it was renamed the Five Nations Championship. Since the admission of Italy in 2000, the tournament has been known by its current name, victory by any Home Nation over the other three Home Nations is a Triple Crown. The Home Nations also contribute players to a team known as the British and Irish Lions. Southern Hemisphere teams who beat all four nations in one tour are said to have a Grand Slam Tour. The Amateur Four Nations competition in rugby league, run annually from 2002 to 2007 for the A sides of Wales, terminology of the British Isles Countries of the United Kingdom
The Football Association
The Football Association, also known simply as the FA, is the governing body of association football in England, and the Crown dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey, and the Isle of Man. Formed in 1863, it is the oldest football association in the world and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the amateur, the FA sanctions all competitive football matches within its remit at national level, and indirectly at local level through the County Football Associations. It runs numerous competitions, the most famous of which is the FA Cup, the FA is a member of both UEFA and FIFA and holds a permanent seat on the International Football Association Board which is responsible for the laws of the game. As the first football association, it not use the national name English in its title. The FA is based at Wembley Stadium, London, the FA is a member of the British Olympic Association, meaning that the FA has control over the mens and womens Great Britain Olympic football team. All of Englands professional football teams are members of the Football Association, although it does not run the day-to-day operations of the Premier League, it has veto power over the appointment of the League Chairman and Chief Executive and over any changes to league rules. The English Football League, made up of the three professional divisions below the Premier League, is self-governing, subject to the FAs sanctions. Another set of rules, the Sheffield Rules, was used by a number of clubs in the North of England from the 1850s, eleven London football clubs and schools representatives met on 26 October 1863 to agree on common rules. The founding clubs present at the first meeting were Barnes, Civil Service, Crusaders, Forest of Leytonstone, many of these clubs are now defunct or play rugby union. Civil Service FC, who now plays in the Southern Amateur League, is the one of the original eleven football clubs still in existence. There are only three institutions which have been members of the F. A. since 1863, those being Civil Service, Forest School and Kings College. Central to the creation of the Football Association and modern football was Ebenezer Cobb Morley and he was a founding member of the Football Association in 1863. In 1862, as captain of Barnes, he wrote to Bells Life newspaper proposing a governing body for the sport led to the first meeting at The Freemasons Tavern that created the FA. He was the FAs first secretary and its president and drafted the Laws of the Game generally called the London Rules at his home in Barnes. As a player, he played in the first ever match in 1863, the first version of the rules for the modern game was drawn up over a series of six meetings held in The Freemasons Tavern from October till December. Of the clubs at the first meeting, Crusaders, Surbiton and Charterhouse did not attend the subsequent meetings, replaced instead by the Royal Navy School, Wimbledon School, at the final meeting, F. M. Other English rugby clubs followed this lead and did not join the FA, the term soccer dates back to this split to refer to football played under the association rules. The Richmond side were obviously unimpressed by the new rules in practice because they helped form the Rugby Football Union in 1871
Irish Football Association
The Irish Football Association is the governing body for association football in Northern Ireland. It organised the Ireland national football team which, after 1921 and it should not be confused with the Football Association of Ireland, the governing body in the Republic of Ireland. The IFA was formed in 1880 by seven football clubs mostly in the Belfast area, a meeting was called by Cliftonville of other football clubs that followed the rules set out by the Scottish Football Association. At that meeting, on 18 November of that year, seven formed the IFA. The founding members were, Alexander, Avoniel, Cliftonville, Distillery, Knock, the IFAs first decision was to form an annual challenge cup competition similar to the FA Cup and Scottish Cup competitions, called the Irish Cup. Two years later, Ireland played its first international against England, shortly after the partition of Ireland, in 1921, the Football Association of Ireland was established as a rival association to regulate the game in what was to become the Irish Free State. The immediate cause of the lay in a bitter dispute over the venue for the replay of an Irish Cup match in 1921 involving Glentoran of Belfast. When the first cup match was drawn in Belfast, because of the Irish war of independence, Shelbourne refused to comply and forfeited the Cup. Such was the anger over the issue that the Leinster Football Association broke away from the IFA, the IFAs supporters argued that the federation should be based where the game was mainly played – namely Ulster, and its principal city Belfast. Interventions by FIFA gave the FAI de jure organising rights over the 26 counties of the Republic, from the 1950s onwards, the IFA no longer claimed it was the association for the whole of Ireland. In 1960, the moved to its present location on Windsor Avenue in south Belfast. The IFA continues to have responsibility for the running of the Northern Irish national team, the Northern Ireland Womens Football Association is the IFAs womens football arm. It runs a Womens Cup, Womens League and the Northern Ireland womens national football team, in April 2014, Northern Irelands Minister for Culture, Arts and Leisure Carál Ní Chuilín threatened to cut the IFAs funding unless it stopped treating womens football as an after thought
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
International Football Association Board
The International Football Association Board is the body that determines the Laws of the Game of association football. IFAB is known to take a conservative attitude regarding changes to the Laws of the Game. It is a body from FIFA, though FIFA is represented on the board. As a legacy of association footballs origins in the British Isles, amendments to the Laws require a three-quarter supermajority vote, meaning that FIFAs support is necessary but not sufficient for a motion to pass. Each UK association has one vote and FIFA has four, IFAB deliberations must be approved by three-quarters of the vote, which translates to at least six votes. Thus, FIFAs approval is necessary for any IFAB decision, as of 2016, all members must be present for a binding vote to proceed. The Board meets twice a year, once to decide on possible changes to the governing the game of Football. The first meeting is called the Annual General Meeting and the second is the Annual Business Meeting, in FIFA World Cup years, the AGM is held at FIFAs offices, otherwise, it rotates between Northern Ireland, Wales, England and Scotland in that order. Four weeks before the AGM, the member associations must send their written proposals to the secretary of the host association, FIFA then prints a list of suggestions that are distributed to all other associations for examination. The AGM is held either in February or March and the ABM is held between September and October, in cases of necessity, the Board can meet in a Special Meeting in addition to the two ordinary annual meetings. As of December 2012, the last Special Meeting was hosted by FIFA in Zurich on 5 July 2012, as well as permanent changes to the Laws, IFAB also authorise trials of potential amendments. Though the rules of football had largely been standardised by the early 1880s and this posed a problem with international matches and when matches were played, the rules of whoever was the home team were used. While this solution was workable, it was hardly ideal, the conference created the first international competition, the British Home Championship, and proposed the establishment of a permanent board to regulate the laws of the game. Therefore, the first meeting of IFAB took place at the FAs offices at Holborn Viaduct in London on Wednesday 2 June 1886, the FA, SFA, FAW and IFA each had equal voting rights. The growing popularity of the game led to the admittance of FIFA representatives to IFAB in 1913. Initially, they only had two votes and decisions required a majority to pass, meaning that the UK associations could still change the laws against FIFAs wishes if they all voted together. In 1958, the Board agreed on its current voting system, since Irish partition in 1921, the IFA has evolved to become the organising body for football in Northern Ireland. Football in the Republic of Ireland is now organised by the Football Association of Ireland, history of IFAB, including minutes of the meetings Soccer South Bay Referee Association FIFA/IFAB paper on the role of the IFAB FIFA
English football league system
There are more than 140 individual leagues, containing more than 480 divisions. As there are no definitions of any level below 11, any references to the structure at level 12. The pyramid for womens football in England runs separately to nine tiers, the Football League was created in 1888 by Aston Villa director William McGregor. It was dominated by clubs who had supported professionalism. The twelve founding members consisted of six from Lancashire and six from the Midlands, no sides from the South including London initially participated. The system consists of a pyramid of leagues, bound together by the principle of promotion and relegation. A certain number of the most successful clubs in each league can rise to a higher league, in addition to sporting performance, promotion is usually contingent on meeting criteria set by the higher league, especially concerning appropriate facilities and finances. In theory it is possible for a local amateur club to rise to the pinnacle of the English game and become champions of the Premier League. While this may be unlikely in practice, there certainly is significant movement within the pyramid, the top five levels contain one division each and are nationwide in scope. Below this, the levels have progressively more leagues, with each covering progressively smaller geographic areas. Many leagues have more than one division, at the lower levels the existence of leagues becomes intermittent, although in some of the more densely populated areas there are leagues more than twenty layers below the Premier League. Clubs from these leagues may, if they feel they meet the standard of play and have suitable facilities. The seven levels immediately below the Premier League and English Football League are known as the National League System, in May 2014 The Football Association announced provisional plans for a new division between the English Football League and the National League which would include B teams of higher level clubs. The English football league system does not include the version of the game often called Sunday league football. These leagues are independent entities with no promotion or relegation involving the football pyramid, however, some Sunday League clubs have been known to join pyramid leagues if they desire to progress higher. There are also some Saturday leagues such as the Lincolnshire League which are not officially part of the pyramid, at the top is the single division of the Premier League, containing 20 clubs, all of which, up to the 2010–11 season, were based in England. Below the Premier League is the English Football League, which is divided into three divisions of 24 clubs each, The Championship, League One and League Two, the 92 clubs in the Premier League and English Football League are all full-time professional clubs. They are often referred to as League clubs because, before the establishment of the Premier League in 1992, clubs outside this group are referred to as non-League clubs, although they too play most of their football in league-type competitions
Aberdare Athletic F.C.
Aberdare Athletic Football Club were a Welsh football club founded in 1893 and based in Aberdare. They joined the Football League in 1921 but were replaced by Torquay United after failing to be re-elected in 1927, founded in 1893, Aberdare were Welsh Cup runners-up, in 1903–04 1904–05 and 1922–23. In 1920–21 they joined the Welsh Section of the Southern League and that gained them entry to the Football League Third Division South in time for 1921–22. Aberdare spent six seasons in the League, with their best season being 1921–22, however, in the next season, 1926–27 Aberdare Athletic finished bottom of the Third Division South and failed to gain re-election to the league, Torquay United took their place. The merged club fully renamed themselves as Aberdare & Aberaman Athletic, however, the merged club only survived for another year, and in 1928 the Aberaman faction split away from the club to re-form Aberaman Athletic, while the Aberdare half folded. The club had several different team colours during their existence and their membership of the Football League coincided with that of a team from another Welsh town Merthyr Town. Comprehensive histories of the ex-Football League clubs, Volume 1, Aberdare Athletic at the Football Club History Database
Cardiff City F.C.
Cardiff City Football Club is a professional association football club based in the city of Cardiff, Wales that competes in the Championship, the second tier of the English football league system. The club was founded in 1899 as Riverside A. F. C. before changing its name to Cardiff City in 1908 and they play their home games at the Cardiff City Stadium, after moving from Ninian Park in 2009. The club reverted to their traditional blue in January 2015 and they have long-standing rivalries with nearby clubs Swansea City, known as the South Wales derby, and Bristol City, known as the Severnside derby. The club was founded in 1899 as Riverside A. F. C and their first season saw them playing friendlies against local sides at their Sophia Gardens ground, but in 1900 they joined the Cardiff & District League for their first competitive season. To combat this they arranged to join the South Wales Amateur League in 1907, with the club growing in stature, they were forced to turn down the opportunity to join the newly formed Southern League Second Division due to the lack of facilities at their Sophia Gardens ground. The club eventually secured land to build their own stadium, moving into Ninian Park, the club made its first signing the following year with the acquisition of Jack Evans from fellow Welsh club Cwmparc. With the new ground in place, Cardiff joined the Southern League Second Division, and appointed their first manager in Davy McDougall, who became player-manager. They went on to finish in place in their first year in the league but the board decided to replace McDougall with Fred Stewart. In 1920, the club submitted an application to join the Football League and were placed into the Second Division for the 1920–21 season. Stewart brought in players with Football League experience, breaking the clubs transfer record on two occasions to sign Jimmy Gill and later Jimmy Blair from The Wednesday. In the 74th minute, after collecting a throw George MacLachlan, dan Lewis, the Arsenal goalkeeper, appeared to collect the ball but, under pressure from the advancing Len Davies, clumsily allowed the ball to roll through his grasp. In a further attempt to retrieve the ball Lewis only succeeded in knocking the ball with his elbow into his own net, captain Fred Keenor received the FA Cup trophy from King George V only seven years after Cardiff City had entered the Football League. However, he was unable to turn the fortunes around by the end of the season. McCandless left the club soon after and was replaced by Cyril Spiers who led the club to promotion the in 1951–52 season, however, despite spending five seasons in the First Division, the club continually struggled in the bottom half of the table and were eventually relegated in 1957. They returned to the First Division for two seasons between 1960 and 1962 before again suffering relegation, during the 1960s, Cardiff began qualifying for European competition for the first time as a result of winning the Welsh Cup. They went on to reach the quarter-finals before being knocked out by Real Zaragoza, despite their exploits in Europe, the club were still struggling in league competition under the stewardship of Jimmy Scoular, finishing in 20th position in the Second Division. After a 1–1 draw in the first leg, just over 43,000 fans turned out at Ninian Park to watch Hamburg win 3–2, during the 1970–71 season, Cardiff reached the quarter-finals of the Cup Winners Cup where they faced Spanish side Real Madrid. The first leg of the tie was held at Ninian Park where 47,000 fans watched one of the most famous victories in the history when Brian Clark headed in to give Cardiff a 1–0 win
Merthyr Town F.C.
Merthyr Town Football Club is a Welsh semi-professional football club based in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales. The club will play in the Southern Football League Premier Division, Merthyr Town were founded in 1909 and played in the Football League during the 1920s, but the club folded in 1934 and were replaced by new formed Merthyr Tydfil F. C. in 1945. In 2010, the club reformed again after Merthyr Tydfil FC was liquidated, after finishing third in 1911–12 the club were promoted to the first division, though they were relegated back to the second division in 1913–14. The Southern League did not operate during the First World War, in the summer of 1920 the Football League expanded with the creation of a new Third Division, which was made up entirely of the First Division of the Southern League from the previous season. Despite having finished bottom in season before, usually a relegation place. In their first season in the Football League, the club had a better season. This, however, proved to be their most successful league season, from then on the club declined further, and finished bottom of the Third Division in 1924–5. Although they finished 14th in 1925–6, in the seasons the club finished 17th, 21st, 20th and then bottom again. They were replaced by the ill-fated Thames, during their penultimate season in the Football League the club had their best season in the FA Cup, getting past the first round for the only time, before losing to Watford in the second round. The club dropped back into the Southern League, but lasted four seasons. In 2010, Merthyr Tydfil F. C. of the Southern Football League Premier Division were liquidated despite finishing the 2009–10 season 17th of 22 clubs. The club was reformed under the name of Merthyr Town and consequently were required to drop three divisions to begin the 2010–11 season in the Western Football League Division One. The club was forced to switch grounds, and left Penydarren Park to take Rhiw Dda’r. In their first season they won Division One and were promoted to the Western League Premier Division, the newly promoted club once again called Penydarren Park home. Their first match back at their ground was a 1–9 defeat to Welsh Premier League side Llanelli in a pre-season friendly in July 2011. However Merthyr went on to secure a consecutive championship and with it promotion to the Southern League. On 6 April 2015, Merthyr Town were promoted back to the Southern League Premier Division only five years after being expelled, the club is fully owned by the supporters trust. As of 02 February 2017 Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality
Newport County A.F.C.
Newport County Association Football Club is a professional association football club based in the city of Newport, South Wales. The team play in League Two, the tier of the English football league system. Most recently reformed in 1989, the club is a continuation of the Newport County club which was founded in 1912 and was a member of the Football Leagues new Third Division in 1920. Newport County were Welsh Cup winners in 1980 and subsequently reached the quarter-finals of the UEFA Cup Winners Cup in 1981, the club was relegated from the Football League in 1988 and went out of business in February 1989. The club reformed shortly afterwards and entered the English football league system at a lower level. In 2013 the club won back to the Football League for the first time since 1988. Newport County, originally nicknamed The Ironsides due to Newport being home to Lysaghts Orb Works steel works, the official name of the club was The Newport & Monmouth County Association Football Club, although the shorter Newport County was soon adopted. The club were reformed in 1919 and were first elected to the Football League in 1920 and they were not re-elected after the 1930–31 season but rejoined for 1932–33. After almost 20 years in the Third Division South, the club clinched promotion to the Second Division as champions in 1939 under manager Billy McCandless. Hopes were high that the side could prosper in the Second Division. Newport County managed a 1–1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur and a 3–1 win over Southampton, the War League operated for the remainder of the 1939–40 season and County finished 10th in the South-West Division. After the war, the reformed and competed in the temporary Football League South for the 1945–46 season. Newcastle player Len Shackleton remarked they were lucky to get nil, despite victories over Coventry City, Sheffield Wednesday and Fulham, the club needed four wins out of the last four games to have any hope of safety. Despite a revenge victory over Newcastle United, defeats to Birmingham City, Luton Town, County finished bottom of the Second Division and were relegated. Newport reached the round of the 1948–49 FA Cup under manager Tom Bromilow. They only narrowly lost the game 3–2 away to Portsmouth, the eventual FA Cup semi-finalists, after 11 further seasons in the Third Division South, the club narrowly avoided another effective relegation with the creation of the Fourth Division for the 1958–59 season. The bottom 12 teams from the Third Division North and South were placed in the new division, County avoided this fate by a mere four points. However, in 1962, with seven wins all season