The 1939–1940 season was the 65th season of competitive football in England. It was suspended in September after the outbreak of World War II.
World War II broke out early into this season. Shortly after war was declared, most competitions, including the Football League, were abandoned as the country's attention turned to the war effort. A few leagues, such as the Northern League, did manage to complete a season, but more than half of the teams were unable to fulfil all their fixtures and resigned.[ citation needed ]
Blackpool sat at the top the First Division table at the time the abandonment occurred. [ citation needed ]The FA Cup Extra-Preliminary Round was played, but with hostilities declared before replays took place, that competition too was abandoned. Entry fees received for the 1939–40 Cup were honoured for the next Cup in 1945–46.
Many footballers signed up to fight in the war and as a result many teams were depleted, and fielded guest players instead. Regional league competitions were set up. Appearances in these tournaments do not count in players' official records. The FA Cup was resumed for the 1945–46 season and The Football League for the 1946–47 season.[ citation needed ]
After the abandonment of the football programme, the league was split into ten mini regional leagues. A national cup competition was also held.
|Midland League||Wolverhampton Wanderers|
|West League||Stoke City|
|North-East League||Huddersfield Town|
|South League 'A'||Arsenal|
|South League 'B'||Queens Park Rangers|
|South League 'C'||Tottenham Hotspur|
|South League 'D'||Crystal Palace|
|South-West League||Plymouth Argyle|
|East Midland League||Chesterfield|
|Football League War Cup||West Ham United|
|2||West Ham United||18||12||1||5||57||33||1.727||25|
|1||Queens Park Rangers||18||12||2||4||49||26||1.885||26|
|2||Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic||18||11||2||5||52||37||1.405||24|
|9||Brighton & Hove Albion||18||5||1||12||42||53||0.792||11|
|2||West Ham United||18||10||4||4||53||28||1.893||24|
|2||Queens Park Rangers||18||10||3||5||38||28||1.357||23|
|5||Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic||18||8||2||8||40||41||0.976||18|
|10||Brighton & Hove Albion||18||2||4||12||30||65||0.462||8|
|2||West Bromwich Albion||28||18||4||6||87||51||1.706||40|
The 1945–1946 season was the 66th season of competitive football in England.
The Football League War Cup was an association football tournament held between 1939 and 1945. It aimed to fill the hole left in English football by the cancellation of the FA Cup during the Second World War.
The 1919–1920 season was the 45th season of competitive football in England, and the first following the end of World War I.
The 1915–16 season was the first season of special wartime football in England during the First World War.
The 1941–42 season was the third season of special wartime football in England during the Second World War.
The 1942–43 season was the fourth season of special wartime football in England during the Second World War.
The 1943–44 season was the fifth season of special wartime football in England during the Second World War.
The 1944–45 season was the fifth season of special wartime football in England during the Second World War.
The London War Cup was an English football competition held with the aim of helping to fill the gaping hole left in English football by the FA Cup's cancellation. It was one of several competitions held to provide football matches to entertain the public while the major competitions were suspended; others included the Football League War Cup and the Football League North Cup. Although called the London War Cup, teams from across the south of England took part.
The 1939–40 was the 67th season of competitive football in Scotland. It would have been the 50th season of Scottish Football League, but the outbreak of the Second World War on 3 September 1939 caused the suspension of the league after five rounds of games played in Division One, and four rounds in Division Two. The league was not officially competed for until the 1946–47 season but there were regional leagues played during these years.
When World War II was declared in 1939, it had a negative effect on association football; competitions were suspended and players signed up to fight, resulting in the deaths of many players.
The Wartime League was a football league competition held in England during World War II, which replaced the suspended Football League. The exclusion of the FA Cup in these years saw the creation of the Football League War Cup.
The 1945–46 season was Birmingham City Football Club's first season played under that name in nationally-organised football. The club had been called Birmingham F.C. since 1905, and the City suffix was added in 1943. Although the Football League did not resume until the 1946–47 season, the FA Cup restarted in 1945. Birmingham reached the semi-final, in which they lost to Derby County after extra time in a replay, played at Maine Road, Manchester, in front of 80,407 spectators. In league competition, Birmingham were champions of the first and only edition of the Football League South, taking the title on goal average from local rivals Aston Villa.