Football Alliance

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Football Alliance
Number of teams12

The Football Alliance was an association football league in England which ran for three seasons, from 1889–90 to 1891–92.

Association football Team field sport

Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal.

England Country in north-west Europe, part of the United Kingdom

England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to the west and Scotland to the north. The Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south. The country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, and includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight.



It was formed by 12 clubs as an alternative to the Football League, which had begun in the 1888–89 season, also with 12 member clubs. The Alliance covered a similar area to the League, stretching from the English Midlands to the North West, but also further east in Sheffield, Grimsby and Sunderland. Some of the clubs which founded the Alliance had played in The Combination the year before, but that league collapsed as a result of the disarray and lack of organisation. The president of the Football Alliance was John Holmes, also the president of The Wednesday who were the first champions winning fifteen games out of twenty-two.

North West England one of nine official regions of England, UK

North West England, one of nine official regions of England, consists of the five counties of Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside. The North West had a population of 7,052,000 in 2011. It is the third-most-populated region in the United Kingdom after the South East and Greater London. The largest settlements are Manchester, Liverpool, Warrington, Preston, Blackpool and Chester.

Sheffield City and metropolitan borough in England

Sheffield is a city and metropolitan borough in South Yorkshire, England. Historically part of the West Riding of Yorkshire, its name derives from the River Sheaf, which runs through the city. With some of its southern suburbs annexed from Derbyshire, the city has grown from its largely industrial roots to encompass a wider economic base. The population of the City of Sheffield is 582,506 (mid-2018 est.) and it is one of the eight largest regional English cities that make up the Core Cities Group. Sheffield is the third-largest English district by population. The metropolitan population of Sheffield is 1,569,000.

Grimsby Seaport in North East Lincolnshire, England

Grimsby, also Great Grimsby, is a large coastal English seaport and administrative centre in North East Lincolnshire, on the South Bank of the Humber Estuary, close to where it reaches the North Sea. It ran the largest fishing fleet in the world by the mid-20th century, but fishing declined dramatically after the Cod Wars denied UK access to Icelandic fishing grounds, and the European Union parcelled out fishing quotas in waters within a 200-mile limit of the UK coast to other European countries, in line with its Common Fisheries Policy. Since then Grimsby has suffered post-industrial decline, although food manufacturing has been encouraged since the 1990s. The Grimsby–Cleethorpes conurbation acts as a cultural, shopping and industrial centre for much of northern and eastern Lincolnshire. Grimsby people are called Grimbarians; the term codhead is also used jokingly, often for Grimsby football supporters. Great Grimsby Day is 22 January.

At the end of the Alliance's first season, when Stoke dropped out of the Football League to be replaced by Sunderland, the Alliance accepted them as a new member. The following year, Stoke and Darwen, another Alliance club, were accepted into the Football League, taking its membership to 14 clubs.

Stoke City F.C. Association football club

Stoke City Football Club is an English professional football club based in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire. Founded as Stoke Ramblers in the 1860s, the club changed its name to Stoke in 1878 and then to Stoke City in 1925 after Stoke-on-Trent was granted city status. Stoke were one of the twelve founding members of the Football League in 1888. The team competes in the Championship, the second tier of English football.

Sunderland A.F.C. Association football club

Sunderland Association Football Club is an English professional football club based in the city of Sunderland, Tyne and Wear. Sunderland play in League One, the third tier of English football. Since its formation in 1879, the club has won six top-flight titles, a total only bettered by five other clubs, and has finished runners-up five times. The club has also won the FA Cup twice and been runners-up twice, as well as winning the FA Community Shield in 1936 and being finalists the following year. Sunderland have also been Football League Cup finalists in 1985 and 2014.

Darwen Football Club was an association football club from Darwen in Lancashire, North West England. The team, formed in 1870, was an early pioneer of professional football in Northern England, reaching the semi-finals of the 1880–81 FA Cup. They were a Football League member from 1891 to 1899. Darwen joined the Lancashire League in 1900 and remained in regional football afterwards. They last played in the First Division of the North West Counties Football League in 2008–09, when the club was wound-up. A successor team, A.F.C. Darwen, was founded soon after. Darwen played their home games at the Anchor Ground.

In 1892 it was decided to merge the two leagues, and so the Football League Second Division was formed, consisting mostly of Football Alliance clubs. The existing League clubs, plus three of the strongest Alliance clubs, comprised the Football League First Division.

The Football League Second Division was the second level division in the English football league system between 1892 and 1992. Following the foundation of the FA Premier League, it became the third level division. Following the creation of the Football League Championship in 2004–05 it was re-branded as Football League One.

The Football League First Division is a former division of the Football League and from 1888 to 1992, it was the top tier division in the English football league system. Following the creation of the Premier League, it became the second tier division. It was rebranded as the Football League Championship in 2004 and in 2016 adopted its current name of the EFL Championship.

Member clubs

Ardwick 189118922
Birmingham St George's 18891892
Bootle 188918922
Burton Swifts 189118922
Crewe Alexandra 188918922
Darwen 188918911
Grimsby Town 188918922
Lincoln City 189118922
Long Eaton Rangers 18891890
Newton Heath 188918921
Nottingham Forest 188918921
Small Heath 188918922
Stoke 189018911
Sunderland Albion 18891891
The Wednesday 188918921
Walsall Town Swifts 188918922

1 Elected to Football League First Division
2 Elected to Football League Second Division

Football Alliance champions

1889–90 The Wednesday
1890–91 Stoke
1891–92 Nottingham Forest

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Birmingham St. George's F.C. were a football club based in Birmingham, England. They were formerly known as Mitchell St. George's F.C., a merger of Mitchells and St. George's in 1881, changing to their new name in 1888. They were among the founding members of the Combination in 1888, finishing 10th out of 12, and provided the Combination with its president, Mr. H. Mitchell. The Combination disbanded after a season. They applied to become members of the Football League at the end of its first season but failed to gain membership; they received the most votes of the non-elected clubs, two behind Notts County. In 1889 they were founder members of the Football Alliance, also reaching the quarter finals of the FA Cup. The Alliance combined with the Football League in 1892 with Birmingham St. George's becoming the only member not to be accepted. As Aston Villa and Small Heath Alliance began dominating the Birmingham footballing landscape, the club disbanded in 1892 because of financial difficulties.

The 1889–90 season was the 19th season of competitive football in England. Preston North End were Football League champions for the second successive season while The Wednesday finished top of the newly formed Football Alliance. Blackburn Rovers won the FA Cup.

The 1891–92 season was the 21st season of competitive football in England.

The 1962–63 season was the 83rd season of competitive football in England.

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The Football League 1889–90 was the second season of English league football, with Preston North End being crowned as the champions for the second successive season. The clubs competing were the 12 original clubs which were the founders of the league the previous year. Unlike the modern system, two points were awarded for a win, with one for a draw and no points for a loss; this system was carried on until the 1980s when teams were awarded three points for a win.

The Football League 1891–92 was the fourth season of English league football, and the last season of the football league running in a single division. Sunderland were the winners of the league which was their first ever league success. At the beginning of the season Stoke had left the Football Alliance and rejoined the Football League. Darwen also joined from the Alliance but they conceded 112 goals and finished bottom.

The 1889–90 Football Alliance was the first season of the Football Alliance, an association football league which was set up in England as an alternative to The Football League, which had begun in the 1888–89 season. A proposal that the Football League be expanded to 24 teams was rejected, so a new league was formed to cater for those excluded. Twelve clubs were accepted for membership, the same number as in the Football League, and they were drawn from a similar geographical area, stretching from the Midlands to the North West, but also further east in Sheffield, Grimsby and Sunderland.

The 1890–1891 Football Alliance was the second season of the Football Alliance, an association football league which was set up in England as an alternative to The Football League, which had begun in the 1888–89 season.

The 1984–85 season was the 86th completed season of The Football League.

The 1992–1993 season was the 94th completed season of the Football League.

The 1891–92 season was Stoke's third season in the Football League.