Football was introduced to San Sebastián in the early 1900s by students and workers returning from Britain. In 1904 they formed the San Sebastian Recreation Club and in 1905 they competed in the Copa del Rey. In May 1905 the San Sebastian Football Club was formed as a separate branch of the club. In 1909 they applied to enter the Copa del Rey but complications over registration permits saw them compete as Club Ciclista de San Sebastian. This team beat Español de Madrid 3-1 in the final.