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Oldham Athletic briefly appeared to be emerging as a force in English football at this time, emerging as title challengers in the season before finishing runners-up.
However, after league football was resumed in , the reshaped Oldham side failed to match their pre-war standards, and were relegated in , not reclaiming their First Division status for 68 years.
Clubs from the South fared poorly in comparison, though in Woolwich Arsenal became the first club from London to be promoted to the First Division, while a slew of clubs from the capital joined the League including Clapton Orient , Chelsea , Fulham and Tottenham Hotspur , making it a properly nationwide competition; both Chelsea and Spurs quickly gained promotion to the top flight as well.
They were to play at this site for 93 years until relocating to the Emirates Stadium nearby in On the international scene, the Home Nations continued to play each other, with Scotland the slightly more successful of the four [ citation needed ].
When the countries combined to play as Great Britain in the Olympic Games they were unbeatable, winning all three pre-World War I football gold medals.
England played their first games against teams outside of the British Isles in [ citation needed ]. From to the Football League expanded further, gaining a new Third Division expanding quickly to Division Three South and Division Three North , with all leagues now containing 22 clubs, making 88 in total.
During the interwar years, Arsenal and Everton were the two most dominant sides in English football, although Huddersfield Town did make history in by becoming the first team to complete a hat-trick of successive league titles.
Arsenal would do the same in Manager Herbert Chapman was involved with both of these teams. He guided Huddersfield to the first two of their league titles before taking over at Arsenal, where he presided over the first two league titles, but he died just before the third consecutive title was clinched.
Everton had hit the headlines in by winning the league championship thanks largely to the record breaking 60 league goals of year-old centre-forward Dixie Dean.
He was helped by the new rules of the s, including the allowing of goals from a corner kick , and the relaxing of the offside rule.
Everton also won the league twice more, in and , and the FA Cup in Their neighbours Liverpool had earlier won back-to-back titles in and , but were unable to sustain this success.
Sheffield Wednesday were also successful during the s, winning the —30 title, the FA Cup in and finishing in the top three in all but one season in the period — The s saw the breakthrough of notable players including Stanley Matthews , who was first capped for England in when playing for Stoke City , and just before the outbreak of war, Tommy Lawton , who succeeded Dixie Dean in attack for Everton and England.
The national team remained strong, but lost their first game to a non-British Isles country in against Spain in Madrid and refused to compete in the first three World Cups , held once every four years from There was no World Cup in due to wartime hostilities, and although the war ended in , there was not enough time or funding to organise a World Cup for English football reconvened in the years following the end of World War II, when most clubs had closed down for a period, with the —46 FA Cup , which saw the competition played over two legs to make up for a lack of league competition that season, although there had been regional wartime competitions and friendly matches during the hostilities.
The first post-war trophy went to Derby County , who beat Charlton Athletic 4—1 in the final. The league restarted in the —47 season , with the first title going to Liverpool.
However, both Derby and Liverpool lost their First Division status during the s, with Liverpool not returning until and Derby not until In the immediate post-war years, Arsenal won another two titles and an FA Cup but after the second title win in , began to fade considerably and would not win another trophy for nearly 20 years, although they did remain in the First Division throughout this time.
However, three of their London rivals would enjoy major success over the next 15 years, with Chelsea , Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United all winning major trophies.
Portsmouth were also successful in the early postwar years. Having won the FA Cup in the last season before the war, they won their first league title in and retained it a year later, but like Liverpool they were relegated by the time the decade was over.
Manchester United re-emerged as a footballing force under new manager Matt Busby. Manchester United also became the first English team to compete in the new European Cup , contested by champions of European domestic leagues, reaching the semi-finals in and But the Munich air disaster on 6 February resulted in the deaths of eight players including Taylor and Edwards and ended the careers of two others, while Busby survived with serious injuries.
He built a new United side with a mix of young players, Munich survivors and new signings, and five years later his rebuilding programme paid off with FA Cup glory.
The other dominant team of the era was Wolverhampton Wanderers. Wolves, who had previously spent most of the interwar period in the lower divisions, won three league titles and two FA Cups under manager Stan Cullis and captain Billy Wright.
In addition, in Tottenham Hotspur became the first team in English football to win the league title immediately after being promoted, and Chelsea won their first and only league title of the 20th century in English football as a whole, however, began to suffer at this time, with tactical naivety setting in.
The early European club competitions also went without much English success, with the FA initially unwilling to allow clubs to compete.
No English team reached a European Cup final until , which was the same year that England got their first Fairs Cup success; although English teams Birmingham City twice and a London XI had reached the first three finals of the competition in its formative days.
While Edwards and Taylor both lost their lives due to the Munich tragedy, many older players naturally reached the end of their illustrious careers at around the same time.
The end of the s had seen the beginning of the modernisation of English football, with the Divisions Three North and South becoming the national Division Three and Division Four in Meanwhile, successful sides of the s like Wolves started to decline, with relegation eventually coming in The decade was also less successful for the likes of Blackpool and Bolton Wanderers , who had been among the top sides of the early postwar years.
The captain of this side was Danny Blanchflower , who retired in , after which manager Bill Nicholson built a new side containing the likes of Jimmy Greaves and Terry Venables , which won the FA Cup in All three would go on to play a key role in an even bigger success for their country.
The English national side showed signs of improving with Alf Ramsey taking over as head coach following a respectable quarter final appearance at the FIFA World Cup.
Ramsey confidently predicted that at the next tournament, England would win the trophy, and they did just that. The three goals scored by Geoff Hurst within minutes, of which some are controversial, are the only hat trick to be achieved in a World Cup final to date.
Bobby Moore was the captain on that day, whilst Munich air crash survivor Bobby Charlton also played.
The Fairs Cup which was renamed the UEFA Cup in ended up being won by English clubs for six seasons in succession, with the final being held between two of them, Tottenham Hotspur and Wolverhampton Wanderers.
During this time, a number of different teams competed for league and cup success. Liverpool under Bill Shankly had won promotion in and soon after won the league title in , and again in , with an FA Cup in between; their neighbours Everton meanwhile had similar success, taking two league titles in and , and the FA Cup in The decade also saw the illustrious careers of many famous older players drawing to a close.
A year later, Arsenal became the second club of the century to win the double. The League Cup was shunned by a number of leading English clubs during the s, before the Football League eventually made participation compulsory for all member clubs.
The first winners were Aston Villa , still statistically the most successful club in English football at this point. Their local rivals Birmingham City won the third League Cup in - the first major trophy of their history.
The winners, Norwich City , had yet to even play in the First Division. The s was an odd decade in English football, with the national team disappointing but English clubs enjoying great success in European competitions.
They failed to qualify for the and World Cups, and also missed out on qualification for the final stages of the European Championships in and English club sides, however, dominated on the continent.
Altogether, in the s, English clubs won eight European titles and lost out in four finals; whilst from to English clubs won seven out of eight European Cups.
London clubs had enjoyed a strong start to the decade, with Arsenal and Chelsea winning silverware, while West Ham United won their second FA Cup in Arsenal reached the FA Cup final three years in a row from , but only had one win, also being beaten in a European final.
However, the dominant team in England in this period was Liverpool, winning league titles in , , , , , , and Players such as Emlyn Hughes and Alan Hansen helped Liverpool have a solid and reliable side, whose skill and talent was supported by a strong work ethic and the famous "boot room" identity.
The midfield was boosted towards the end of the decade by the arrival of Graeme Souness , and the early s spawned further new stars including high-scoring striker Ian Rush , talented midfielder Craig Johnston and skilful defender Steve Nicol.
Derby, led by Brian Clough and then Dave Mackay, were the only team other than Liverpool to win the league more than once in the s and also reached the semi-final of the European Cup in the —73 season, though they faded rapidly towards the end of the decade, going down in Forest, led by Brian Clough who had an infamous day stint at Leeds United after resigning at Derby , took over at the City Ground in January when Forest were a struggling Second Division side; in he took them into the First Division and they won the league title a year later, followed by two successive European Cup triumphs and also adding two League Cups.
Everton began the s on a high note as league champions in , but rarely featured in the race for the major trophies until they won the FA Cup under Howard Kendall in Aston Villa had bounced back from relegation to the Third Division in , winning promotion to the top flight in and a League Cup the same year, and again in They went on to win the league title and the year after won the European Cup, becoming the fourth English club to do so, beating Bayern Munich 1—0 in Rotterdam.
Between and Leeds had been the most consistent club side in English football, winning two league titles, as well as five runners-up places, had never finished outside the top four and had reached nine major finals, and 4 other semi-finals, as well as winning the FA cup in , however this success would end with the departure of Don Revie for the England national team , and apart from a final flurry in the European cup final, they won no more trophies and were relegated in However, they were promoted back the following season, and reached three cup finals in four years , and , though they only won the final.
On the other hand, their neighbours City struggled in the early s after doing relatively well in the s.
They were FA Cup runners-up in , but heavy spending on players who rarely lived up to their price tags did the club no favours and they were relegated in and again in , reclaiming their First Division status after two seasons on both occasions, although it would be more than 20 years before they began to seriously compete among the leading English clubs again.
Financial problems and the loss of key players meant they spent most of s and s bouncing between the First and Second Divisions. In , they only narrowly avoided relegation to the Third Division, but were promoted the following year.
Wolves, who had arguably been the best team of the s and were still a reasonable force in when they finished sixth and won the League Cup , suffered a spectacular decline which began in and ended in with three successive relegations that saw them in the Fourth Division for the first time.
They were not alone in suffering a relegation hat-trick; Bristol City had completed the first such humiliation in , though they were admittedly a far smaller club whose relegation in came after just four years in the top flight after an absence of 65 years.
Ipswich Town , managed by the former England forward Bobby Robson, re-emerged as a successful side in the s, winning the FA Cup in They finished runners-up again in , but Robson then departed to manage the England team and the successful side of the late s and early s was gradually broken up.
With vast amounts of money being spent on upgrading their Portman Road stadium, there was very little money for the Suffolk club to spend on new players, and they were relegated in Wolves were one of several once-great sides to endure a decline during the s and early s.
Huddersfield Town who complete the first league title hat-trick during the s were relegated from the First Division in and fell into the Fourth Division in , not winning promotion until Portsmouth league champions in and fell into the Fourth Division in as an almost bankrupt side, but climbed out of it in and within five years were looking capable of reaching the First Division for the first time since the s.
Derby County were league champions in and , but a rapid decline saw them fall into the Second Division in and the Third Division in , almost going out of business just before their second relegation.
Burnley , league champions as recently as , fell into the Fourth Division in , and with the introduction of automatic relegation from the Football League, narrowly avoided relegation to the Football Conference the highest division of non league football since its formation in in The period was also marked by some surprise FA Cup wins by lower-division teams over top-flight sides; these included Sunderland beating Leeds United in , Southampton beating Manchester United in and West Ham United beating Arsenal in They also came second in the league in and However, hooliganism continued to blight English football throughout the s and into the s, contributing to a fall in attendances, accelerated by the recession of the early s.
This spelled financial problems for a number of clubs, particularly those who suffered a decline on the pitch as well. In the space of a few years, some of the most famous clubs in English football were faced with the threat of going out of business.
This was the first national league to develop below the Football League, and was the beginning of a formalisation of the English football pyramid.
The re-election system saw Cambridge United elected to the league in , Hereford United in , Wimbledon in and Wigan Athletic in Cambridge reached the Second Division in and were a competent side at this level for five seasons before a terrible decline saw them fall back into the Fourth Division in , although they did enjoy a swift but brief revival in the early s which took them to the brink of top division football.
Hereford reached the Second Division after just four years of league membership, only to endure back-to-back relegations which pushed them back into the Fourth Division in After the dark days of the s, the English national team began to recover slowly in the early s.
He was succeeded by Bobby Robson in July England missed out on qualification for the European Championships , but the FA kept faith in Robson and he delivered qualification for the World Cup.
During the s and s, the spectre of hooliganism had begun to haunt English football. The Heysel Stadium disaster was the epitome of this, with English hooligans mixing with poor policing and an old stadium to cause the deaths of 39 Juventus fans during the European Cup final.
This led to English teams being banned from European football for five years, and Liverpool - the club involved - being banned for six.
Attendances also suffered throughout the league, with hooliganism and the recession being seen as the key factors. Teams in the north of England, the region with some of the worst unemployment rates nationally, suffered a particularly sharp decline in attendances, which did their financial position no favours.
Indeed, the mid s saw two former title-winning sides from the north of England - Burnley and Preston North End - relegated to the Fourth Division for the first time, and then come very close to losing their league status completely.
In , Wolverhampton Wanderers became only the second team in English football to suffer three successive relegations, dropping into the Fourth Division for the first time as well, although they were saved from closure for the second time in four years by a new owner.
Even when English teams were re-admitted to European competitions, it was not until that they regained all of their lost places.
And it took a while for English teams to re-establish themselves in Europe. The Hillsborough disaster , which also involved Liverpool, though not related to hooliganism but caused by bad policing, an outdated stadium and anti-hooligan fences led to 96 deaths and more than injuries at the FA Cup semi-final in April These two tragedies led to a modernisation of English football and English grounds by the mids.
Efforts were made to remove hooligans from English football, whilst the Taylor Report led to the grounds of all top level clubs becoming all-seater.
Match attendances, which had been in decline since the late s, were beginning to recover by the turn of end of the s thanks to the improving image of football as well as the strengthened national economy and falling unemployment after the crises of the s and the first half of the s.
They had only joined the league in Another team to make an improbably quick rise from Fourth to First Divisions was Swansea City , who had climbed three divisions between and They finished sixth in their first top division campaign, but were relegated the following year and in fell back into the Fourth Division, having narrowly avoided going out of business.
Watford had reached the First Division for the first time in and finished league runners-up in their first season at this level and were FA Cup runners-up a year later, but were relegated in A number of other small clubs achieved success at this time.
Charlton Athletic, who were forced to leave The Valley and ground-share with West Ham for safety reasons in , won promotion to the First Division in after an exile of nearly 30 years.
They defied the odds by surviving at this level for four seasons. Norwich City enjoyed even more success during this era. The Norfolk club went down to the Second Division in but that blow was cushioned by a League Cup triumph.
They returned to the top flight a year later and finished fifth on their comeback, also coming fourth and reaching the FA Cup semi-finals in , being in with a serious chance of winning the double with only a few weeks of the season remaining.
They reached another FA Cup semi-final in Oxford United, who had only joined the Football League in , reached the First Division in and lifted the League Cup the following season.
They went back down again in , the same year that Middlesbrough reached the First Division a mere two seasons after almost going out of business as a Third Division side.
Luton Town, who began the latest of several spells as a First Division side in , won the Football League Cup - their first major trophy - in at the expense of a much more fancied Arsenal side.
One fallen giant to enjoy something of a resurgence in this era was Derby County. They had been relegated to the Third Division in , just nine years after being league champions, but back-to-back promotions saw them back in the First Division in They emerged as surprise title contenders in —89 and finished fifth, only missing out on a UEFA Cup place due to the ban on English clubs in European competition.
But Derby were unable to sustain their run of success, and went down to the Second Division in After their three consecutive relegations and almost going out of business twice in four years, Wolverhampton Wanderers were beginning to recover by By , they had won promotion to the Second Division almost single-handedly thanks to the goalscoring exploits of striker Steve Bull , who became the first English footballer to score 50 or more competitive goals in successive seasons, and one of the few Third Division players to be selected for the senior England team.
Local businessman Jack Hayward took the club over in , and declared his ambition to restore Wolves to the elite on English football.
Bolton Wanderers, four times FA Cup winners, were relegated to the Fourth Division in , the same year that Sunderland fell into the Third Division for the first time in their history.
Both teams, however, won promotion at the first attempt. Sunderland returned to the First Division in but went down after just one season.
The title triumph was achieved with just one defeat from 38 league games. Leeds had finally won promotion back to the top flight in and under Howard Wilkinson they won the —92 league title.
Wilkinson is still the most recent English manager to win the league championship. However, the departure of Eric Cantona to Manchester United, amongst other factors, meant they were unable to make a regular challenge for the title following the creation of the Premier League , although they did survive at this level for 12 seasons and achieved regular top five finishes.
They achieved another triumph two years later, but had still gone without a league title since A terrible start to the —87 season cost Atkinson his job in early November, when Alex Ferguson was recruited from Aberdeen.
Further signings after this improvement suggested that the title was even closer for United, but a series of injuries blighted the side and they finished 11th in Despite failure to qualify for Euro the first major tournament since the appointment of Bobby Robson as manager , England continued to improve as the s wore on, losing controversially to Argentina in the World Cup and unluckily on penalties to Germany in the semi-finals of the World Cup , eventually finishing fourth.
Attendances rose from the late s and continued to do so as football moved into the business era. However, the ban on English clubs in European competitions from to had led to many English-based players moving overseas.
Ian Rush left Liverpool for Juventus in , but returned to Anfield the following year. Chris Waddle left Tottenham for Marseille in and stayed there for three years before returning to England to sign for Sheffield Wednesday.
After being appointed Rangers manager in , former Liverpool player Graeme Souness signed a host of English-based players for the Ibrox club. Even after the ban on English clubs in Europe was lifted, a number of high-profile players moved overseas.
Gary Lineker opted to complete his playing career in Japan on leaving Tottenham in , the same year that Paul Gascoigne moved to Italy in a lucrative transfer to Lazio.
The late s and early s saw the emergence of numerous young players who went on to reach great heights in the game. This era also saw many famous names hanging up their boots after long and illustrious careers.
By selling TV rights separately to the Football League , the clubs increased their income and exposure. Their success was made even more remarkable by the high number of players who came up simultaneously through their youth system, including brothers Gary and Phil Neville , Paul Scholes , Ryan Giggs and David Beckham.
This success continued in the new millennium. They finished second in and again in , but by the end of the decade had wallowed away to mid table.
Arsenal failed to mount a serious title challenge until , when they finished third, before finishing champions and FA Cup winners a year later.
Blackburn failed to sustain their success after the title triumph, and in they were relegated to Division One, although they won promotion two years later and won the League Cup a year after that.
A number of other teams challenged for the title in the early Premiership years. Aston Villa finished second in , but declined over the next two seasons despite a League Cup victory in They enjoyed a revival in , winning the League Cup and finishing fourth in the Premiership, and by had qualified for the UEFA Cup five times in seven seasons, though their continental form had been unconvincing.
Norwich City were surprise title contenders in —93 under new manager Mike Walker , leading the table at several stages before finishing third - and doing so entered the UEFA Cup for the first time in their history.
They achieved a shock win over Bayern Munich before being eliminated by Inter Milan , but were unable to keep up their good progress and in fell into Division One.
By the end of the decade, they had yet to make a Premiership comeback. Many teams that had succeeded in the s and s did not fare as well in the Premiership.
Liverpool were unable to dominate the decade as they had done in the s and s; after their title win, their only other trophies of the decade were the FA Cup in and the League Cup in ; they finished as low as eighth in and although they did finish sixth in the first season of the Premier League, they had spent much of that season in the bottom half of the table.
Everton fared no better; although they won the FA Cup in , beating Manchester United, they were involved in no less than three relegation battles during the decade and never finished higher than sixth in the league.
After a promising start to the decade which included two fifth-place finishes, Manchester City also fought relegation, but lost, slipping into the Division One in and Division Two in But two successive promotions saw them back in the Premiership for the —01 season.
Nottingham Forest were relegated from the Premier League three times, in when Brian Clough retired as manager , and , and unlike City have yet to return.
Arsenal began the Premier League with moderate league form a shortage of goals restricting them to 10th place but excellent form in the cups, as they became the first English team to win both domestic cups in the same season — beating Sheffield Wednesday 2—1 in both finals.
Under Wenger, they won the double in to become only the second team in English football to repeat this triumph - though, unlike Manchester United two years earlier, with an entirely different set of players.
This also made it harder for promoted clubs to establish themselves at the top flight. In , newly promoted Middlesbrough lost their top flight status after just one season, while Blackburn finished fourth and Ipswich finished 16th having occupied fourth place in February.
In , newly promoted Swindon went down after winning just five games all season and conceding goals. In , newly promoted Bolton Wanderers went straight back down, while Middlesbrough attained a secure 12th place they would have finished even higher had it not been for a dismal mid-season run of form which saw them endure 10 defeats from 11 games.
In , newly promoted Leicester City finished ninth and won the League Cup, while Derby County finished 12th, but Sunderland went straight back down.
In , all three newly promoted teams - Bolton Wanderers, Barnsley and Crystal Palace - were relegated straight back to Division One.
In , Middlesbrough attained an impressive ninth-place finish, but Charlton Athletic and Nottingham Forest were relegated.
Attendances were often restricted during the first two or three seasons of the Premiership, as clubs rebuilt their stadiums to comply with the requirement to be all-seater by the season, and most clubs were left with a lesser capacity than in the era of terracing.
Some clubs had fitted seating into their terracing as a cost effective short-term measure, but many clubs were often faced with sell-outs for matches due to a high demand for tickets, and began to further expand their stadiums or investigate the possibility of relocation.
In , newly promoted Middlesbrough moved into the new 30,seat Riverside Stadium after 92 years at Ayresome Park - this was the first new stadium in the top flight of English football since Manchester City had moved into Maine Road in Over the next few years, a number of other Premier League and Division One clubs moved into new stadiums.
The national team over this period varied in their success, failing to qualify for the World Cup but reaching the semi-finals in Euro 96 , losing on penalties to Germany at the semi-final stage.
They also achieved automatic qualification for the World Cup, losing to Argentina on penalties in the Second Round. Manager Graham Taylor had quit in November after failing to attain a World Cup place, and his successor Terry Venables left after the encouraging Euro 96 campaign due to off-the-field disputes.
His successor Glenn Hoddle took England to the World Cup, but was fired the following February after a controversial newspaper interview in which he suggested that disabled people were being punished for sins in a previous life.
His successor Kevin Keegan achieved the task of attaining qualification for Euro The trend for clubs to relocate to new stadiums accelerated throughout the s.
This was due to the requirement that all Premier League and Division One stadiums had to have all-seater stadiums by the start of the —95 season , although standing accommodation was still permitted at Division Two and Three stadiums, as well as non-league venues.
Into the 21st century, some clubs who initially redeveloped their old stadiums later decided to relocate, often after their success on the field had driven ticket demand to a level which the new capacities were unable to accommodate.
These include Southampton , Leicester City and Arsenal. As well as British and Irish talent, there were numerous foreign imports to the English game during the decade who went on to achieve stardom with English clubs.
The number of foreign players in the English game rose dramatically during the second half of the s following a relaxation of limits on foreign players, with clubs being allowed to field an unlimited number of players from EU member countries in domestic and European competitions.
Many experienced players whose careers began during the s were still playing at the highest level as the s drew to a close.
The decade also saw the illustrious careers of numerous legendary players draw to a close. In England, as in Europe in general, the early first decade of the 21st century saw the financial bubble burst, with the collapse of ITV Digital in May leaving a hole in the pockets of the Football League clubs who had relied on their television money to maintain high wages.
Although no Football League teams collapsed no team has done so since Maidstone United in , many entered administration, including Leicester City and Bradford City.
From the —05 , administration for any Premier League or Football League club would mean a point deduction. Most of the non-league divisions adopted a similar penalty.
Another club that faced financial ruin was Leeds United ; having reached the Champions League semi-finals in —01 they looked set for dominance on the domestic and European scene, but after failing to qualify for the competition the following season, they were unable to cover the loans they had taken out to fund their spending.
They were forced to sell their ground and lease it back and many of their best players. However, they have still yet to return to the Premier League more than a decade after being relegated.
Arsenal won a third Double in and clinched the title in without losing a single league game all season. In and , when they missed out on the title, they had the FA Cup as compensation.
United still managed to win another FA Cup in and the League Cup in , as well as league titles in , , and They won their first double of the league title and FA Cup in , during the first of two seasons under the management of Carlo Ancelotti.
Roberto Di Matteo guided Chelsea to their first European Cup in , also guiding them to glory in the FA Cup, but was later sacked after less than a year in charge.
Jose Mourinho later returned for a second spell as manager and guided Chelsea to another league title in Another League Cup followed in , but the biggest triumph of the decade so far was a Champions League win in , with a memorable comeback from 3—0 down against AC Milan in the final; Liverpool became the second club since the Heysel ban to take the trophy.
In , and Liverpool managed to finish second in the league, the closest they have come to ending their long wait for a league title. He achieved respectable results in international tournaments, going out to eventual winners Brazil in the World Cup , hosts Portugal in Euro , and Portugal once again on penalties in the World Cup having reached the quarter-finals.
Arguably due to pressure over the lack of actual victories in major tournaments, Eriksson announced his resignation prior to the World Cup.
Steve McClaren was selected by the FA as his replacement, and took over as manager on 1 August , on a 4-year contract. He was replaced by Italian Fabio Capello , who stayed for four years before resigning and being replaced by Roy Hodgson.
The —07 season saw Manchester United win the Premier League title for the first time in four years, with Chelsea finishing second their failure to win a third successive title compensated for in the shape of success in both domestic cups , Liverpool finishing third and Arsenal fourth, while Tottenham Hotspur, Everton and Bolton Wanderers achieved UEFA Cup qualification.
The gulf between the Premier League and Football League Championship was highlighted once again as two of the newly promoted teams Watford and Sheffield United were relegated, although Reading - the other newly promoted team, and playing their first top flight campaign ever - finished 8th and narrowly missed out on European qualification.
The race for promotion to the Premier League had a predictable finish as the two automatic promotion places were both taken by teams relegated a year earlier - Sunderland and Birmingham City.
Derby County took the third and final promotion places with a playoff victory at the expense of newly relegated West Bromwich Albion, while Wolverhampton Wanderers and Southampton who had both been in the Premier League a couple of years earlier were the losing semi finalists.
Narrowly missing out on a playoff place were Colchester United , who finished 10th in their very first season at this level and had been among the pre-season relegation favourites.
The most remarkable success story of the season, however, belonged to Harry Redknapp , who brought Portsmouth their first major honour for nearly 60 years in the shape of the FA Cup.
A year later they sealed promotion to the Premier League and slowly established themselves back among the elite.
Redknapp had been reviled by Portsmouth fans when defecting to their local rivals Southampton in November , only to return a year later after failing to save Southampton from relegation.
Hapoel Acre Hapoel Iksal. Hapoel Afula Hapoel Katamon. Hapoel Kfar Saba Hapoel Ashkelon. Campionato Nacionale Primavera 1. Chievo U Sassuolo U Inter U Sampdoria U Zebbug Rangers Gudja United.
Go Ahead Eagles Eindhoven. Roda Almere City FC. Achilles 29 W Ajax W. Newry City Glentoran FC. Concordia Chiajna FC Botosani. Gaz Metan Medias Astra.
Tercera Division, Group Fenerbahce U Goztepe U Osmanlispor U Balikesirspor U Umraniyespor U Boluspor U Premier League, Relegation Round.
Goytre United Cambrian Clydach. Afan Lido Port Talbot. Budaiya Al Hala Muharraq. Bidvest Wits Maritzburg United. Liga de Ascenso, Clausura.
Arabe Unido Tauro FC. Tauro FC Arabe Unido. Gimnasia La Plata Tigre. San Martin Tucuman Defensa y Justicia. Los Andes Gimnasia Mendoza. Atletico Rafaela Villa Dalmine.
Deportivo Espanol Tristan Suarez. Estudiantes de Caseros Defensores Unidos. Western Sydney Newcastle Jets.
The goalkeeper is also allowed to wear elbow pads because the surface is about as hard as a tennis court or basketball court. Jewellery is not allowed, nor are other items that could be dangerous to the player wearing the item or to other active participants.
The match is controlled by the referee, who enforces the Laws of the Game, and the first referee is the only one who can legally abandon the match because of interference from outside the field.
This referee is assisted by a second referee who typically watches over the goal lines or assists the primary referee with calls on fouls or plays.
The decisions made by the referees are final and can only be changed if the referees think it is necessary and play has not restarted.
In the event of injury to the second referee, the third referee will replace the second referee. The field is made up of wood or artificial material, or similar surface, although any flat, smooth and non-abrasive material may be used.
A rectangular goal is positioned at the middle of each goal line. Nets made of hemp, jute or nylon are attached to the back of the goalposts and crossbar.
The lower part of the nets is attached to curved tubing or another suitable means of support. In front of each goal is an area known as the penalty area.
The upper part of each quarter-circle is then joined by a 3. The line marking the edge of the penalty area is known as the penalty area line. The penalty mark is six metres from the goal line when it reaches the middle of the goalposts.
A penalty kick from the penalty spot is awarded if a player commits a foul inside the penalty area. Any standard team handball field can be used for futsal, including goals and floor markings.
A standard match consists of two equal periods of 20 minutes. The length of either half is extended to allow penalty kicks to be taken or a direct free kick to be taken against a team that has committed more than five fouls.
The interval between the two halves cannot exceed 15 minutes. In some competitions, the game cannot end in a draw, so away goals, extra time and kicks from the penalty mark are the three methods for determining the winner after a match has been drawn.
Extra time consists of two periods of five minutes. If no winner is produced after these methods, three kicks from the penalty mark are taken, and the team that has scored the most wins.
If it is not decided after three kicks from the penalty mark, it continues to go on with one extra kick from the penalty mark to each team at a time until one of them has scored more goals than the other.
Unlike extra time, the goals scored in a shoot-out do not count towards the goals scored throughout the match. At the beginning of the match, a coin toss is used to decide who will start the match.
A kick-off is used to signal the start of play and is used at the start of the second half and any periods of extra time. It is also used after a goal has been scored, with the other team starting the play.
If the ball goes over the goal line or touchline, hits the ceiling, or the play is stopped by the referee, the ball is out of play.
If it hits the ceiling of an indoor arena, play is restarted with a kick-in to the opponents of the team that last touched the ball, under the place where it hit the ceiling.
Unlike football, there is no offside rule in futsal. Attackers can get much closer to the goal than they can in the traditional outdoor version of football.
A direct free kick can be awarded to the opposing team if a player succeeds or attempts to kick or trip an opponent, jumps, charges or pushes an opponent, or strikes or attempts to strike an opponent.
Holding, touching or spitting at an opponent are offenses that are worthy of a direct free kick, as are sliding in to play the ball while an opponent is playing it or carrying, striking or throwing the ball except the goalkeeper.
These are all accumulated fouls. The direct free kick is taken where the infringement occurred, unless it is awarded to the defending team in their penalty area, in which case the free kick may be taken from anywhere inside the penalty area.
The position of the ball does not matter as long as it is in play but for a penalty kick, the ball must be on the outer line, perpendicular to the center of the net.
An indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team if a goalkeeper clears the ball but then touches it with their hands before anyone else, if the goalkeeper controls the ball with hands when it has been kicked to them by a teammate, or if they touch or control the ball with hands or feet in their own half for more than four seconds.
An indirect free kick is also awarded to the opposing team if a player plays in a dangerous manner, deliberately obstructs an opponent, prevents the goalkeeper from throwing the ball with hands or anything else for which play is stopped to caution or dismiss a player.
The indirect free kick is taken from the place where the infringement occurred. Yellow and red cards are used in futsal.
The yellow card is to caution players over their actions. If they get two, they are given a red card, which means they are sent off the field.
A substitute player is permitted to come on two minutes after a teammate has been sent off, unless a goal is scored before the end of the two minutes.
If a team with more players scores against a team with fewer players, another player can be added to the team with an inferior number of players.
If the teams are equal when the goal is scored or if the team with fewer players scores, both teams remain with the same number of players.
As of 7 May , according to a ranking based partly on the ELO system and partly on a form-based system, the top 10 teams are: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Ballgame-team sport, variant of association football. International futsal match between Argentina and Brazil in Comparison of association football and futsal.
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