Cardiff City F.C.
|Full name||Cardiff City Football Club|
|Founded||1899(as Riverside A.F.C.)|
|Ground||Cardiff City Stadium,
|2012–13||The Championship, 1st (promoted)|
|Website||Club home page|
Cardiff City Football Club (Welsh: Clwb Pêl-droed Dinas Caerdydd) is a professional football club based in Cardiff, Wales that competes in the English football league system. The club is competing in the Premier League for the first time in the 2013–14 season. They play their home games at the Cardiff City Stadium, after moving from Ninian Park in 2009.
The club was founded as Riverside A.F.C. in 1899 and is the only club from outside England to have won the FA Cup, which they won in 1927. The club won the Football League Championship title in the 2012–13 season and were promoted to the top flight for the first time in 51 years. This followed two lost national cup finals, the 2008 FA Cup Final against Portsmouth and the 2012 Football League Cup Final against Liverpool, the latter being settled by a penalty shootout.
- 1 History
- 1.1 Early years
- 1.2 1920s "glories"
- 1.3 Further 1920s success
- 1.4 Decline
- 1.5 Post war
- 1.6 1960s–1985
- 1.7 1985–2000: A barren era
- 1.8 2000–03: Revival and promotion
- 1.9 2003–2013: Premier League chase, cup finals and promotion
- 1.10 Premier League (2013–Present)
- 2 League history
- 3 Rivalry
- 4 Stadium
- 5 Club logo history
- 6 Strips
- 7 Kit manufacturers and sponsors
- 8 Players
- 9 Manager history
- 10 Welsh Sports Hall of Fame
- 11 PFA Team of the Year
- 12 Records
- 13 Honours
- 14 Sources
- 15 External links
Riverside A.F.C. was formed in 1899 as a way of keeping players from the Riverside Cricket Club together and in shape during the winter months. 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. In 1905 Cardiff was granted city status by King Edward VII, and as a result the club put in a request to change their name to Cardiff City, but the request was turned down as they were deemed to be not playing at a high enough level. To combat this they arranged to join the South Wales Amateur League in 1907 and the following year they were granted permission to change the name of the club to Cardiff City.
Interest in the club began to rise during this time, but 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. Over the next two years Cardiff welcomed many of Britain's top sides to Cardiff, including Middlesbrough, Bristol City and Crystal Palace, with the matches being played at various grounds in Cardiff and nearby towns. The club would eventually move into their new ground, Ninian Park, in 1910. The club made its first signing the following year with the acquisition of Jack Evans from fellow Welsh club Cwmparc FC.
With the new ground in place, Cardiff joined the Southern League Second Division, and Bartley Wilson was quick to hire the club's first manager in Davy McDougall, who became player-manager. Their first match was a 2–1 defeat to Aston Villa, in which new signing Evans scored the only Cardiff goal. They went on to finish in fourth place in their first year in the league. They stayed in the division for the next decade, apart from when the league was suspended due to the outbreak of World War I.
The club's most successful period so far was the 1920s in which they finished runners-up to Huddersfield Town in 1924 in the old Football League First Division on Goal Average, followed by two FA Cup Finals in 1925 against Sheffield United and 1927 against Arsenal. The Final against Arsenal saw Cardiff become the only team to have taken the FA Cup out of England with a 1–0 victory over Arsenal. The final was also notable as it was the first to be broadcast to the nation by BBC Radio. Cardiff City and Swansea City are the only Welsh football clubs to have played at the highest level of English football. The last season they spent in the First Division was 1961–62.
Cardiff ended the 1914–15 season third in the Southern League table, before league football was suspended during the First World War. On the cessation of hostilities, Cardiff spent one final season in the Southern League, finishing fourth, before being invited to join the Football League Second Division as the strongest team in Wales, with the remaining Southern League clubs forming the new Football League Third Division.
On 30 August 1920, Cardiff City played their first Football League match at Ninian Park, when 25,000 supporters showed up to watch a scoreless draw with Clapton Orient. The first ever Football League victory for Cardiff City, at Ninian Park occurred only 5 days later, when Stockport County were beaten 3–0.
This early Cardiff City team showed more than enough class to match others in the League, and they were promoted to the top flight of English Football at the first attempt. In fact, the champions, Birmingham City, only pipped Cardiff City to the title on goal differential. The average gate for this season was 29,000. They also had a great run in the FA Cup reaching the semi-final stage, where they went out to Wolverhampton Wanderers after a replay.
Cardiff City now found themselves in the top tier of the Football League. On 21 January 1922, Len Davies scored the club's first ever top-flight hat-trick in a 6–3 win over Bradford City. Even though their first taste of top-flight football got off to a miserable start, recording only three points from the first seven matches, Cardiff City's form improved and they eventually finished in fourth position.
1923–24 has proved to be the best ever in the league for Cardiff City. After a dramatic season in which they and Huddersfield Town tussled for the Championship title, Cardiff went into the last game of the year, one point ahead of second-placed Huddersfield.
Huddersfield eventually beat their opponents on the day, Nottingham Forest by a scoreline of 3–0, meaning for Cardiff City to lift their first ever league title they would have to overcome Birmingham City. With the scoreline deadlocked at 0–0, Cardiff City were awarded a penalty. Top scorer Len Davies took the spot kick, however he missed from 12 yards and Birmingham held out for a draw, meaning Cardiff would have to settle for 2nd spot on goal average. Although having scored one more goal than Huddersfield during the season, Cardiff also conceded one more meaning they had a worse scoring-to-conceding ratio of 1.794 compared with Huddersfield's 1.818, which eventually meant Huddersfield would win the First Division championship in the 1923–24 season. If goal difference had been used, Cardiff would have been champions.
The following season was the first time Cardiff City appeared at Wembley Stadium (1925). In the first round of the FA Cup (then known as the English Cup), Cardiff City beat Darlington; this was then followed by a 1–0 home win against Fulham in round two. The Bluebirds then travelled to Meadow Lane in Round 3 where they defeated Notts County 2–0 before an epic Fourth Round tie between Leicester City almost dashed Cardiff hearts. With the scores locked at 1–1, Welsh international Willie Davies scored directly from a corner with the last kick of the game to send Cardiff through to the Semi-Finals against Blackburn Rovers. Cardiff City tore the Rovers defence apart and raced away with a 3–1 victory to set up a final against Sheffield United. After a dour final played out in front of 91,763 fans, the game was decided by England international Fred Tunstall who scored the only goal in a 1–0 victory for Sheffield United.
The 1926–27 season was Cardiff's worst performance in the top tier of English Football since they had entered via promotion six seasons prior. They had a fairly miserable time in the league, by their high standards, finishing in 14th position. However the 1926–27 season did not go down in the history books as another year in which Cardiff City ended it without a major trophy to show for their efforts. Cardiff entered the FA Cup competition in the 3rd round, where they met and defeated Aston Villa 2–1 at Ninian Park. Trips to Darlington and subsequently to Bolton Wanderers in the 4th and 5th rounds respectively, both finished with the same scorelines; 2–0 wins for Cardiff City.
In the Quarter-Finals, Cardiff met a youthful and promising side, in another away fixture, this time against Chelsea. A goalless draw was played at Stamford Bridge in front of a crowd of 70,184. The replay at Ninian Park was watched by 47,854. Having led 2–0 thanks to goals by Sam Irving and Len Davies, Cardiff City allowed Chelsea to get back into the fixture, and soon after half-time the scores were once again level at 2–2. As the tie began to look destined for another draw, Hughie Ferguson netted the winning goal from the penalty spot. At the Semi-Final stage, Cardiff City met Reading at Molineux and Cardiff ended up as comfortable 3–0 victors.
1927 FA Cup Final
On St George's Day, 23 April 1927, at Wembley Stadium in London, the FA Cup was taken out of England for the first time when Cardiff City beat Arsenal 1–0 in the Final, cult hero Hughie Ferguson scoring the only goal of the game.
In the 74th minute, collecting a throw from the right by George MacLachlan, Ferguson hurried a tame shot toward the Arsenal goal. 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 desperate attempt to retrieve the ball Lewis only succeeded in knocking the ball with his elbow into his own net. Ernie Curtis, the 19 year old centre-wing said of the goal:
|“||"I was in line with the edge of the penalty area on the right when Hughie Ferguson hit the shot which Arsenal's goalie had crouched down for a little early. The ball spun as it travelled towards him, having taken a slight deflection so he was now slightly out of line with it. Len Davies was following the shot in and I think Dan must have had one eye on him. The result was that he didn't take it cleanly and it squirmed under him and over the line. Len jumped over him and into the net, but never actually touched it."||”|
It is believed that this cup final attracted one of the highest audiences ever, as it was the first to be broadcast by BBC Radio. Captain Fred Keenor received the FA Cup trophy from King George V only 7 years after Cardiff City had entered the Football League and six seasons since they had been promoted to the top division.
Ferguson still features on the record books for Cardiff City, having scored five goals in the First Division fixture with Burnley on 1 September 1928. In fact, Ferguson's 32 goals in all competitions in 1926–27 stood until Robert Earnshaw overtook it in March 2003. He scored the first in the 2–1 victory over the Corinthians in the 1927–28 Charity Shield and his two goals won the Welsh Cup later that same season for Cardiff against Bangor; but despite a healthy return of 77 goals during his four seasons there his days at Ninian Park were numbered.
Further 1920s success
That FA Cup Final win was not the end of their cup exploits this season; they also won the Welsh Cup defeating Rhyl by a scoreline of 2–0, and would go on to win the Charity Shield after beating the Corinthians 2–1 at Stamford Bridge.
The following season, 1927–28, once again resulted in a top flight, top-six finish for Cardiff City. Having led the Championship for a brief spell during mid-season, their performances began to tail off, and they had to settle for 6th place.
In the 1928–29 season, Cardiff City were relegated from the First Division of the Football League, despite conceding the fewest goals of all teams in the division that year. However, this was only a sign of things to come for the Bluebirds, and after two seasons in the Second Division, they were once again relegated in 1931 into Division 3 South having played 42 league matches, and only managing to win 8. During this time in the lowest division of recognised league football; Cardiff City were once again able to show some promise, and in fact they recorded their biggest ever win in the Football League, when they destroyed Thames by a scoreline of 9–2. Results however continued to be below what was expected by the City faithful, and therefore in May 1933, Fred Stewart resigned after 22 years in charge of the club.
Bartley Wilson was chosen to replace Fred Stewart; however the results continued to be extremely disappointing, and in March 1934, Ben Watts-Jones, was given the opportunity to manage the club he had supported as a youngster. However, he was unable to turn the clubs' fortunes around by the end of the season; meaning Cardiff City were forced to apply for re-election after finishing bottom of the division. Watts-Jones remained in charge for another three years until he was replaced by Bill Jennings, a former Welsh international who had been brought to the club originally as trainer four years previous.
To add to the club's woes, in January 1937 the centre stand at Ninian Park was destroyed by fire. However; this caused the fans and club members to pull together, in order to save the club. Suddenly, there were signs that the worst was over both on and off the field. The teams' results began to improve over the next two seasons, and in turn; this meant that more fans were coming to Ninian Park in order to see their beloved team's revival. The 1938–39 season saw the debut of a resourceful Winger who would be a prominent member of future City sides, Billy Baker; however, a final league position of 13th in the division was not thought to be good enough by new chairman Herbert Merrett, and he appointed Cyril Spiers as secretary-manager to replace Jennings for the 1939–40 season. That season; Spiers set about changing the personnel, bringing in a number of new faces including Forward Trevor Morris from Ipswich and also young centre forward Wilf Wooller, a Welsh Rugby union International who was also to captain Glamorgan at Cricket. World War II caused the suspension of the Football League in September 1939; and this suspension continued until the 1947 Season.
They crowned as champions of Division 3 South and returned to Second Division in 1946–47 season. Finally they finished second level as runner-ups and returned to top level after 23 years in 1951–52 season.
Following the return of the Football League Cardiff chairman Sir Herbert Merrett established close links with Torquay United after being a regular visitor to a hotel owned by the Torquay chairman. The arrangement saw any players Cardiff thought not good enough would be offered to Torquay and Cardiff would get first refusal on any players who were thought good enough to make it in higher leagues. A number of players joined Cardiff from Torquay, the most successful being goalkeeper Phil Joslin, winger Mike Tiddy and forward Tommy Northcott. However the relationship became sour after Cardiff allowed Harry Parfitt to join the Devon based side in the understanding they could have him back when required. In 1954 Cardiff offered £2500 to bring him back but Torquay demanded £5000. Despite the Torquay chairman willing to let him return to Cardiff for £2500 several members of the clubs board decided to block the move until a higher price was agreed. Cardiff eventually paid the £5000 asking price but subsequently broke off ties with Torquay. Ginally Cardiff finished top level as second from last and relegated to second one in 1956–57 season.
During the 1960s Cardiff began qualifying for European competition for the first time through the Welsh Cup. Their first ever match in European competition was in the European Cup Winners Cup during the 1964–65 season against Danish side Esbjerg fB, winning 1–0 on aggregate over the two legs, the only goal being scored by Peter King. 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 Division Two. One high point at this time was the emergence of a 16-year-old striker named John Toshack who would go on to become an important part of the team for several years, along with his strike partner Brian Clark, before a high profile switch to Liverpool.
Two years later the club would go on to reach the semi-final of the Cup Winners Cup, the furthest any non top division club has ever gone in European competition (the record was eventually equalled by Atalanta in 1988). Wins over Shamrock Rovers, NAC Breda, and Torpedo Moscow set up a tie with German side Hamburg, whose squad contained a number of German internationals in the likes of Uwe Seeler. After a 1–1 draw in the first leg, just over 43,000 fans turned out at Ninian Park to watch Hamburg triumph with a 3–2 victory. Despite their defeat, the cup provided inspiration for the side and they managed to finish in a more stable 13th position, with their strike partnership of Clark and Toshack finishing the season with 39 goals between them. Defeats against FC Porto and Göztepe saw them knocked out in the opening rounds of the tournament during the next two seasons.
At the start of the 1970–71 season the club paid £35,000 to sign midfielder Ian Gibson from Coventry City to provide support for Clark and Toshack up front, but the strikeforce was broken up three months later when Toshack was sold to Liverpool for £110,000. The club paid £40,000 to bring Alan Warboys in from Sheffield Wednesday as a replacement but missed out on promotion by finishing third. Although the sale of Toshack did hamper the progress of the team, the club did manage to reach the quarter-finals of the Cup Winners Cup where they faced Spanish giants 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 clubs history when Brian Clark headed in to give Cardiff a 1–0 win. Despite going out after losing the second leg 2–0 the result would still go down in the clubs history. The club remained old Second Division except seasons of 1975–76 and 1982–83.
1985–2000: A barren era
Between 1985 and 1993, Cardiff were continuously in the lower two divisions of the league after being relegated to the Third Division. They were relegated to the Fourth Division once in 1985–86 season and were promoted to the Third Division in 1987–88 as runner-ups. Two years later they dropped into the Fourth Division for the second time. Cardiff won the new Division Three championship in 1993 but were relegated two years later, and in 1996 finished in their lowest-ever league position – 22nd of 24 in Division Three, with only Scarborough and Torquay United below them. They did better the following season, finishing seventh (although they lost in the playoff semi-final), but suffered a setback and slipped into the bottom half of the table in 1998. They finished third in Division Three in 1999 and won automatic promotion to Division Two.
Cardiff struggled in Division Two throughout the 1999–2000 season and were relegated in 21st place. They finished Division Three runners-up the following season and Lebanese businessman Sam Hammam joined the club.
2000–03: Revival and promotion
Having sold his interests in Wimbledon, Sam Hammam purchased control of Cardiff City in August 2000. Hammam quickly picked up where he left off with the Crazy Gang. Shortly after taking over at Cardiff, Hammam controversially pledged to get the entire Welsh nation to support Cardiff by renaming the club "The Cardiff Celts" and changing the club colours to green, red and white. However, after lengthy talks with senior players and fans, Sam Hammam decided that the best policy was not to change the name of the club; however the club crest was redesigned. This new design incorporated the Cardiff City bluebird in front of the Flag of Saint David; and featured the Club's nickname superimposed at the top of the crest. Lennie Lawrence guided Cardiff to promotion via a Division Two playoff triumph in 2003 against Queens Park Rangers Cardiff City finished in 6th position and played Bristol City in the Division Two playoff semi-finals. On 10 May 2003; Cardiff City beat Bristol City 1–0 on aggregate, having won the match at Ninian Park 1–0, and drawing the away leg 0–0 on 13 May 2003. Queens Park Rangers drew with Oldham Athletic away from home 1–1 on 10 May 2003, before claiming the advantage at Loftus Road on 14 May 2003; going through to the playoff final with a 2–1 aggregate victory.
On 25 May, the Cardiff Millennium Stadium hosted one of the most unforgettable play-off finals in history. Both Cardiff City and Queens Park Rangers had been set up with defence minded formations. The game was comparatively scrappy with only occasional glimpses of class shown by both sides. However after a nerve-wracking final, substitute Andy Campbell came off the bench to guide Cardiff past Queens Park Rangers with a spectacular lob after 114 minutes of play. The former Middlesbrough striker, who had replaced Robert Earnshaw in the second half, shrugged off Danny Shittu and then calmly lobbed Chris Day, the Queens Park Rangers goalkeeper to ensure Cardiff returned to Division One after an 18-year absence. Chances had been few and far between in normal time, but as both sets of players tired, the game opened up in those nail-biting final 30 minutes. No more so than when Day made a superb one-handed save from a Spencer Prior header after Graham Kavanagh's in-swinging free-kick.
2003–2013: Premier League chase, cup finals and promotion
The Bluebirds established themselves in Division One during 2003–04 season, finishing in 13th position. They struggled to a 16th position finish at the end of the 2004–05 campaign and ended the 2005–06 season with an 11th position finish.
After failing to get the new stadium plans agreed by Cardiff Council due to concerns over financial security in 2006, Hammam agreed to a takeover by a consortium led by new chairman Peter Ridsdale and including the lead developer of the new stadium, Paul Guy. However, the takeover was in doubt until 22 December 2006 with the club in threat of administration until the consortium agreed to pay Hammam's company Rudgwick an extra £500,000 and £90,000 to Hammam's brother. Ex-Wales rugby captain Mike Hall said after the deal was completed: "That was money which would have been spent on players. But instead it's gone into Sam's pocket. It was the only way the deal was going to be done. I know people say he's a complex character, but at the end it was total greed and self-interest. It was amazing, but football is a murky world."
The new ownership brought a degree of stability back to the club. After being £40 million in debt, most of which is still outstanding, Despite a promising start to the 2006–07 season, when Cardiff were early season pace-setters, a miserable run of form towards the end of the season was responsible for causing Cardiff to plummet down the table; finally finishing with 64 points and 13th position.
The Cardiff City manager, Dave Jones delivered a clear-out during the summer, with around 17 players being shown the exit door, either by contract termination, transfer to another club or no contract extension. Although their lack of top-class training facilities, an over reliance on Michael Chopra and a small squad eventually halted progress next season.
The club added several big name signings in the likes of Robbie Fowler, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and Trevor Sinclair for the 2007–08 season but a mediocre start to the season saw them hovering above the relegation zone by mid November, before they managed to pull themselves out of a possible relegation battle to become one of the form teams in the division by January as they sat on the brink of a play-off place, settling into a mid-table place by early March. The season was boosted by Cardiff reaching the semi-final of the FA Cup for the first time in 81 years after beating Middlesbrough 2–0 on 9 March. After coming through their semi-final against Barnsley with a 1–0 win at Wembley Stadium on 6 April with a goal from Joe Ledley, eventually losing 1–0 to Portsmouth in the final.
Throughout that season the club were involved in a court case with financial backers Langston over the repayment of a £31m loan taken out by former chairman Sam Hammam in 2004. The Langston Corporation claimed that the club had broken its agreement with the company and began legal proceedings in order to force Cardiff to repay the loan back immediately. In March the two parties attended a meeting at the High Court as Langston sought a summary judgement meaning that the club would be forced to pay back the loan without a full trial, but the claim was rejected by the High Court judge. During the procedures the club told the High Court it believed that former chairman Hammam was behind the company. Chairman Peter Ridsdale has called for talks with Langston in an attempt to prevent the case going to a full trial in the future.
After the FA Cup final, Cardiff have built on their success, nearly qualifying for the 2008–09 Premier League playoffs, finishing in seventh position in the Championship. During the January transfer window they kept hold of star players, such as £2M rated Joe Ledley and added Quincy Owusu-Abeyie, Chris Burke and Michael Chopra to the side. The £4m fee for Chopra dwarfed the previous record transfer fee paid by the club for a player which stood at £1.75m for Peter Thorne from Stoke City in 2001.
Before the 2009–10 season, Ridsdale travelled to the Far East to try to get a business deal which he promised would see Cardiff's debt problem dealt with, and creation of an academy in the Far East. No investment was forthcoming, but Malaysian businessman Dato' Chan Tien Ghee was an addition to the club's board. Having staved off a winding up order from HMRC under a payment agreement, in November 2009, Ridsdale offered a "Golden Ticket" scheme to fans, in that if they bought their 2010–11 season ticket before 6 January 2010, then they would not see a rise on prices for five years, and all monies raised would be spent on players in the January 2010 transfer window. However, on 27 January 2010, Ridsdale admitted he was eating humble pie, and that in addition to the "Golden Ticket" money not being spent on players, club assets would be sold to fulfil a £2.7M tax bill, and avert another winding up order. Cardiff finished the league as 4th and qualified to 2009–10 Premier League playoffs. They eliminated Leicester City in semi-finals but 3–2 lost the final to Blackpool and missed promotion to top level. Blackpool returned to it after 48 years.
Malaysian owners and club rebranding
Datuk Chan Tien Ghee (TG) took over as chairman on 27 May 2010 after a meeting on the same day. Tan Sri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun also investing and joining the board. TG confirmed that Dave Jones would continue as the Cardiff City manager. On 17 August Cardiff signed Wales captain Craig Bellamy on a season long loan from Manchester City, with the financial side being backed by the new owners. Despite the influx of Bellamy and several other loan players Cardiff were unable to achieve promotion, falling out of the top two and losing to Reading in the play-off semi-final. At the end of 2010–11 season, Dave Jones was sacked, and four days later former Wales rugby player, Mike Hall rejoined the board as part of a deal with PMG. On 17 June 2011, Watford boss Malky Mackay was appointed as manager of Cardiff. During his first season, Mackay had to rebuild the squad as he started with a few over ten players after the loan players from the previous season returned to parent clubs and several contracts expired. despite this he took Cardiff to the League Cup final, for the first time in the club's history. Then Cardiff played in their third consecutive play-off campaign, only to lose in the semi-finals against West Ham United, this time.
Cardiff changed their home colours to red and black as well as their badge from the 2012–13 season, in exchange for an investment plan from the Malaysian owners including a new training facility, stadium expansion and a transfer budget. They went onto to having their best start to a league campaign ever, whilst also breaking the club record of 9 consecutive home wins, when they won their tenth home game against former manager Dave Jones' Sheffield Wednesday side.
Cardiff topped the Championship with a 10-point cushion after 28 games of the season. On 1 March 2013, Datuk Chan Tien Ghee resigned his position as chairman to pursue other business opportunities. The club won the 2012–13 nPower Championship title and with it gained promotion to the Premier League for the first time.
Premier League (2013–Present)
On 18 August 2013, Cardiff played their first ever Premier League game away to West Ham United, losing 2–0. On 25 August 2013, Cardiff played their first home Premier League game against Manchester City, winning 3–2 with goals from Aron Gunnarsson and Fraizer Campbell (2).
- 1920–21: Football League Second Division (2)
- 1921–29: Football League First Division (1)
- 1929–31: Football League Second Division (2)
- 1931–47: Football League Third Division (3)
- 1947–52: Football League Second Division (2)
- 1952–57: Football League First Division (1)
- 1957–60: Football League Second Division (2)
- 1960–62: Football League First Division (1)
- 1962–75: Football League Second Division (2)
- 1975–76: Football League Third Division (3)
- 1976–82: Football League Second Division (2)
- 1982–83: Football League Third Division (3)
- 1983–85: Football League Second Division (2)
- 1985–86: Football League Third Division (3)
- 1986–88: Football League Fourth Division (4)
- 1988–90: Football League Third Division (3)
- 1990–92: Football League Fourth Division (4)
- 1992–93: Football League Third Division (4)
- 1993–95: Football League Second Division (3)
- 1995–99: Football League Third Division (4)
- 1999–00: Football League Second Division (3)
- 2000–01: Football League Third Division (4)
- 2001–03: Football League Second Division (3)
- 2003–04: Football League First Division (2)
- 2004–13: Football League Championship (2)
- 2013–: Premier League (1)
Cardiff City's most significant rivalries over the last 25 years has been with neighbours Swansea City and Newport County; though traditionally there is also plenty of ill-feeling between the club's supporters and followers of Bristol City, known as the Severnside derby, (and Bristol Rovers to a lesser extent). In April 2006, relationships between Cardiff City supporters and Swansea City supporters were not helped after Swansea won the Football League Trophy final against Carlisle United 2–1 in the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff. During their celebrations, Lee Trundle and Alan Tate brandished a Welsh flag with an anti-Cardiff obscenity written on it in huge black writing. As well as carrying the flag, Trundle was also seen wearing a T-shirt with an image of a Swansea City player urinating on a Cardiff City shirt. However there has been no violence at the development or youth level between Cardiff and Swansea, as usually they are poorly attended and more of a calmer atmosphere. The Football Association of Wales (FAW) said the images paraded at the match, which took place at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium on 2 April 2006, were "of an extremely offensive and insulting nature and such behaviour is totally unacceptable". After committing these deeds the two players in question were arrested by the Police on suspicion of section four public order offences, fined £2,000, and handed one match suspensions. Cardiff City was seen for many years as most likely to be promoted to the Premier League. Over several previous meetings between Cardiff City and Wolverhampton Wanderers, fighting has broken out between the two sets of supporters resulting in 17 arrests during one meeting alone. This led to the game which was held on 20 January 2007 being moved forward to 1 pm with no Cardiff City fans allowed to attend the match. This decision, which was taken by Wolves' chairman Jez Moxey, was met with widespread criticism from many supporter groups throughout the UK, including the Football Supporters Federation (FSF). A peaceful protest, organised by the FSF, took place in Wolverhampton on the day of the game and was attended by fans of many clubs who wished to show their opposition to such a ban. An FSF statement read: "We are appealing to all football supporters who can make it to be there to show their opposition to all away fan bans. It could be your club next. Time to reclaim the game!"
There has also been a significant amount of bad feeling between Cardiff and Leeds United, which stems from the FA Cup tie at Ninian Park on 6 January 2002, when Second Division Cardiff beat Premier League Leeds 2–1. Shortly after the late winning goal was scored, but before the full-time whistle had blown, Cardiff fans pelted the players, match officials and the away section with bottles and coins. Injuries were reported among women and young children, and Cardiff's then-chairman Sam Hammam walked around the edge of the pitch, gesturing to the crowd – an act Leeds fans saw as his gloating over their defeat. After the game, Cardiff fans spilled onto the pitch to celebrate and later there was a stand-off between rival fans outside the stadium, and a number of arrests were made. Three years later on 15 January 2005, Cardiff played Leeds at Elland Road in a Championship fixture, and a hardcore hooligan element amongst the Leeds fans saw this as an opportunity for revenge; again there was rioting, leading to a high profile court case two years later, in which several dozen so-called Leeds fans received banning orders.
Cardiff's first ground was at Sophia Gardens recreational park where they played from their founding in 1899 until 1910 when, due to the lack of facilities at the ground and the increasing amount of support for the club, Bartley Wilson contacted Bute Estate, who owned large amounts of Cardiff at the time, in an attempt to find land suitable for building a stadium. They eventually agreed on an area of waste ground on Sloper Road. The land was a former rubbish tip and required extensive work to get a playable surface, but with the assistance of Cardiff Corporation and volunteers the work was completed. The ground was originally to be known as Sloper Park but was instead named after Lord Ninian Crichton-Stuart, who was a large force in helping the club get the ground built, and became Ninian Park.
The stadium was built with one stand before the opening of another in 1928 which could hold 18,000 people to replace an earth embankment. The club record attendance in the ground is 57,893 which was achieved during a league match against Arsenal on 22 April 1953. The record stood for more than fifty years and was unable to be beaten due to the scaling down of the ground throughout the seventies and eighties due to safety fears which saw the ground capacity fall to 22,000. In its final year in use, the ground was the only one above League One level that still contained standing areas.
Cardiff City Stadium
In June 2009, Cardiff City completed a state of the art 26,828 seater stadium on the site of the now demolished old Cardiff Athletics Stadium. The project required the rebuilding of the athletics stadium, to be known as Cardiff International Sports Stadium, on the opposite side of Leckwith Road in Cardiff. This ground was deliberately built to house both Cardiff City FC & Cardiff Blues RFC.
The plan required the demolition of the Cardiff Athletics Stadium, and the council initially insisted that its replacement be built before the start of construction of the Cardiff City Stadium, which would allow the city to have a major athletics facility for the 11 months between the demolition of the old stadium and the building of a new athletics facility nearby. But developers said that the main infrastructure work including highway improvements, drainage, gas supply and electricity cables could be carried out in a way that would allow Leckwith to remain open until July 2007.
Construction began on the new Cardiff International Sports Stadium in January 2007, and that venue was opened in January 2009. The new football ground, officially named Cardiff City Stadium, opened in July 2009. On 8 May 2012, Cardiff Blues confirmed they would leave the Stadium to return to Cardiff Arms Park for the 2012–13 season and onwards.
Club logo history
When Riverside A.F.C. was formed in 1899, the club used a chocolate brown and gold checkered shirt. Since the club became known as Cardiff City F.C. in 1908 their Home Colours have consisted of a blue shirt and white or blue shorts and socks. However for the first nine years black socks were used. In 1919 Cardiff reverted to blue socks with a white hoop. In 1926 Cardiff used a turquoise blue with a white collar, until 1930 when the darker blue was re-introduced. In 1936 the club adopted white sleeves proven popular by Arsenal F.C.. For the next 20 years the club rarely changed their kit, just swapping between white and blue sleeves.
In 1959 Cardiff used white socks for the first time. In the 1965–66 season they used an all-blue strip for the first time, the following season they swapped back to white shorts and socks but keeping the same shade of blue. From 1975 they played in an all-blue strip with yellow and white vertical stripes. In 1983 Cardiff turned back to a blue shirt, white shorts and blue socks using this until 1992 before going all-blue again up until 1996.
In 2012 Cardiff changed their home kit colours from the traditional blue, white and yellow to red and black. The crest was also changed to one in which the Welsh dragon was more prominent than the traditional bluebird. The change angered fans, who expressed their opposition in news and social media as well as directly to management. Cardiff rugby player Jamie Roberts said on Twitter, "Cardiff City =Bluebirds, played in blue for yonks, synonymous with capital city club side..Red + dragon = synonymous with Wales as a country."
Kit manufacturers and sponsors
|1973–1985||Umbro||1973 – Nov 1983||—|
|Nov 1983 – Dec 1983||Whitbread Wales|
|Feb – Mar 1984||Superted|
|Mar – Apr 1984||Camilleri Roofing|
|1984–1985||Merthyr Motor Auctions|
|1992–1994||Bluebirds||1992–1997||South Wales Echo|
|2000–2002||Ken Thorne Group|
- As of 4 September 2013.
Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Out on loan
Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
- As of 6 October 2013.
Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Cardiff currently runs a highly successful youth academy, with a number of youth groups from ages seven to eighteen years. Recent players to come through the youth system include Wales internationals Joe Ledley, Chris Gunter, Aaron Ramsey, Adam Matthews, Darcy Blake and Declan John and, prior to the youth system being granted academy status, Robert Earnshaw and James Collins.
Notable former players
|Assistant Manager||David Kerslake|
|First Team Coach||Joe McBride|
|Goalkeeping Coach||James Hollman|
|Fitness Coach||Richard Collinge MCSP SRP|
|Senior Physiotherapist||Sean Connelly MCSP SRP|
|Assistant First-Team Physiotherapist||Adam Rattenberry MCSP SRP|
|Sports Scientist||Nilton Terroso|
|Club Doctor||Dr Leonard Noakes|
|Head of Recruitment||Alisher Apsalyamov|
|Chief Scout||Mark Stow|
|Opposition Analyst||Martin Hodge|
|Performance Analyst||Enda Barron|
|Recruitment Analyst||Graham Younger|
|Kit & Equipment Manager||Ian Lanning|
|Lew Clayton (caretaker)||1973||1973|
|Jimmy Goodfellow & Jimmy Mullen (caretakers)||1984||1984|
|Jimmy Mullen (caretaker)||1986||1986|
|Kenny Hibbitt (caretaker)||1996||1996|
|Kenny Hibbitt (caretaker)||1998||1998|
Football League 100 Legends
The Football League 100 Legends is a list of "100 legendary football players" produced by The Football League in 1998, to celebrate the 100th season of League football. Three former Cardiff City players made the list.
Welsh Sports Hall of Fame
The following have played for Cardiff City and have been inducted into the Welsh Sports Hall of Fame :
PFA Team of the Year
The following have been included in the PFA Team of the Year whilst playing for Cardiff City :
- 1976 Clive Charles (Third Division)
- 1988 Terry Boyle, Paul Wimbleton (Fourth Division)
- 1993 Damon Searle (Third Division)
- 1996 Carl Dale (Third Division)
- 1999 Jon Hallworth, Mark Delaney, Jason Fowler (Third Division)
- 2001 Josh Low, Robert Earnshaw (Third Division)
- 2002 Graham Kavanagh (Second Division)
- 2003 Graham Kavanagh, Robert Earnshaw (Second Division)
- 2004 Danny Gabbidon, Robert Earnshaw (First Division)
- 2006 Jason Koumas (Championship)
- 2007 Michael Chopra (Championship)
- 2009 Joe Ledley, Roger Johnson (Championship)
- 2010 Peter Whittingham, Michael Chopra (Championship)
- 2012 Peter Whittingham (Championship)
- 2013 Mark Hudson, Peter Whittingham (Championship)
- Club Record Attendance: 57,893 vs. Arsenal.
- At Ninian Park: 57,893 vs. Arsenal.
- At Cardiff City Stadium: 28,016 vs. Manchester Utd, 24 November 2013.
- Year Formed: 1899 (as Riverside A.F.C.).
- Previous Names: 1899 Riverside A.F.C.; 1902 Riverside Albion; 1908 Cardiff City.
- Previous Grounds: Ninian Park, Riverside, Sophia Gardens, Old Park and Fir Gardens until 1910.
- Record Transfer fee paid: £9,500,000, Gary Medel.
First Division/Premier League (As first tier)
- Runners-up: – 1923–24
Second Division/First Division/Championship (As second tier)
- Champions: – 2012–13
- Runners-up: – 1920–21, 1951–52, 1959–60
- Play-off Runners-up: – 2010
- Play-off Semi-finalists: – 2011, 2012
Third Division (South)/Third Division/Second Division/League One (As third tier)
- Champions: – 1946–47
- Runners-up: – 1975–76, 1982–83
- Play-off Winners: – 2003
- Play-off Semi-finalists: – 2002
Fourth Division/Third Division/League Two (As fourth tier)
- Winners: – 1927
- Runners-up: – 2012
- Semi-finalists: – 1966
- Semi-finalists: – 1968
Southern Football League Second Division
- Champions: – 1913
- Winners: – 1912, 1920, 1922, 1923, 1927, 1928, 1930, 1956, 1959, 1964, 1965, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1976, 1988, 1992, 1993
- Runners-up: – 1929, 1939, 1951, 1960, 1994, 1995
- Winners: – 2002
- Runners-up: – 1998, 2000
- Winners: – 1990, 1995, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006
- Runners-up: – 1992, 2005, 2008
- Runners-up: – 1971
- Winners: – 2008
- Collins, David (2002). Born Under a Grange End Star (Illustrated ed.). Wilmslow: Sigma Leisure. p. 126. ISBN 1-85058-787-6.
- Shepherd, Richard (2002). The Definitive Cardiff City F.C.: A Statistical History. The Definitive 17. Nottingham: Tony Brown. p. 124. ISBN 1-899468-17-X. OCLC 52143309.
- Lloyd, Grahame (1999). C'mon City!: A Hundred Years of the Bluebirds (Illustrated ed.). Bridgend: Seren. p. 288. ISBN 1-85411-271-6. OCLC 42366942.
- "The Foundations and early years". Cardiff City F.C. 17 November 2004. Retrieved 19 February 2008.
- McLean, Kirk. "Queens Legends: George McLachlan and the 1936 Overseas tour". Queen of the South F.C. Retrieved 14 April 2009.[dead link]
- The 1927 FA Cup (WMV) (Television news production). BBC. 23 April 1927. Retrieved 14 April 2009.
- You scratch my back..." The Cardiff City Miscellany pg.32
- ECWC Semifinal 1987–1988
- Atalanta History on Italian
- "The Scoular Years" Cardiffcityfc.co.uk Retrieved on 2 September 2008
- "Hammam accused of Cardiff 'greed'". BBC Sport (BBC). 23 December 2006. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
- McKenzie, Andrew (6 April 2008). "Barnsley 0–1 Cardiff City(FA Cup Semi-final)". BBC News. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
- "Cardiff chief rejects debt claim" BBC Sport Retrieved on 19 May 2008
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- "Thorne joins Bluebirds". BBC Sport. 13 September 2001. Retrieved 3 February 2009.
- "Jones hopes for £3m transfer pot". BBC News. 1 January 2010. Retrieved 28 April 2010.
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- "Cardiff 1–0 Sheffield Wednesday". BBC Sport (British Broadcasting Corporation). 2 December 2012. Retrieved 2 December 2012.
- "Cardiff City chairman Dato Chan Tien Ghee resigns". BBC Sport. 1 March 2013. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
- "Premier League promotion party starts at Cardiff City after 0–0 draw against Charlton Athletic". Daily Telegraph. 16 April 2013. Retrieved 17 April 2013.
- "Cardiff 0 Charlton 0". BBC Sport. 16 April 2013. Retrieved 17 April 2013.
- "Malky Mackay proud of Cardiff spirit in Championship title win". BBC Sport. 20 April 2013. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
- "WEST HAM 2 CARDIFF 0". BBC Sport. 18 August 2013. Retrieved 19 August 2013.
- "CARDIFF 3 MANCHESTER CITY 2". BBC Sport. 25 August 2013. Retrieved 25 August 2013.
- "Swansea insults disappoint Hammam". BBC Sport (BBC). 3 April 2006. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
- "BBC SPORT | Football | My Club | Swansea City | Swans pair arrested over insults". BBC News. 5 April 2006. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
- Cleaver, Sion. "Preview: Manchester City v Swansea City". Backpage Football. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
- "Wales | Call for Cardiff fans' ban U-turn". BBC News. 29 December 2006. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
- [dead link]
- From Sophia to SWALEC" cricketarchive.co.uk Retrieved on 2 November 2008
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- "Cardiff City & Blues Agreement". Cardiff City Football Club Official Site. 8 May 2012. Retrieved 10 September 2013.
- Moor, Dave. "Cardiff City". historicalkits.co.uk. Retrieved 2 December 2011.
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- Red rage! Cardiff ditch traditional blue kit in move that angers fans, Daily Mail, 6 June 2012
- "City and Puma Pen Five Year Deal". The Official Website of the Cardiff City FC. 10 September 2013. Retrieved 23 April 2010.
- "Cardiff City land 250k shirt sponsor". South Wales Echo. 11 September 2009. Retrieved 11 September 2009.
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- "Cardiff wear 'Malaysia' with pride". cardiffcityfc.co.uk. 17 June 2011. Retrieved 10 September 2013.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Cardiff City F.C..|
- Cardiff City F.C. Official website
- Cardiff City F.C. on BBC Sport:
- A collection of items relating to Cardiff City Football Club's historic victory against Arsenal in the 1927 FA Cup
- Cardiff City stats at Football Club History Database
- Cardiff City play-off record