Oldest football competitions

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The world's oldest football competition is a title claimed by many, but not supported by facts.

This is a list of school, club, national and international competitions, with factual evidence supporting their founding dates. The second list of competitions, reflects those that are now defunct.

Competitions[edit]

Years Date Competition Type First trophy awarded, years Original code Current code Location Notes
1858– 7 August Melbourne Grammar School-Scotch College Cordner-Eggleston Cup, 1989– schools fixture  ? experimental rules Australian rules football Melbourne, Australia
1858– 11 December Merchiston Castle School vs. The Edinburgh Academicals schools fixture ? Rugby Football Rugby Union Edinburgh, Scotland
1861–1876 December Caledonian Challenge Cup club trophy Caledonian Challenge Cup, 1861–1864 Melbourne Rules Australian rules football Melbourne, Australia [1] Later trophy donated by the Athletic Sports Committee before becoming the South Yarra Challenge Cup.
1871– FA Cup club trophy FA Cup
Original FA Cup trophy 1871–1897
Second FA Cup trophy 1898-1910
Current FA cup Trophy 1911-Present
Association Football Association Football England oldest surviving football competition in the world
1874– United Hospitals Challenge Cup club trophy United Hospitals Challenge Cup - 1874-present Rugby Football Rugby Union Surrey, England oldest rugby football competition in the world
1874– Scottish Cup national club trophy Scottish Cup 1874– Association Football Association Football Scotland oldest national trophy in the world
1875- Birmingham Senior Cup regional club knock-out cup competition 1875 to present ? Association Football English West Midlands oldest regional trophy in the world
1875–[2] BromsgroveKES schools fixture Siviter-Smith Cup, 1935– rugby football Rugby Union Bromsgrove/Birmingham, England Later trophy donated by Paul Siviter-Smith, a Birmingham businessman, who had sons at both schools.[3]
1876– 17 March Ulster Schools Cup cup tournament Schools Cup 1876- Rugby Union Rugby Union Ravenhill, Belfast, Northern Ireland 2nd oldest rugby union competition in the world
1877– Welsh Cup club league Welsh Cup, 1877- Association Football Association Football Wales
1877– 30 April South Australian Football Association club league Thomas Seymour Hill Premiership Trophy, ? Australian rules football Australian rules football Adelaide, South Australia oldest Australian rules football league and earliest governing body
1877– 17 May Victorian Football Association club league  ? Victorian Rules Australian rules football Melbourne, Australia most influential early governing body for Australian rules football
1879– Tasmanian Football League club league  ? Victorian Rules Australian rules football Hobart, Tasmania, Australia some discontinuity, most recently dormant between 2001–2008 and returns in 2009
1879– 10 March Calcutta Cup international challenge  ? Rugby football Rugby union England, Scotland competed for by the England and Scotland international rugby teams annually
1880– Cheshire Senior Cup county cup 1880- Association football Association football Cheshire, England Also includes teams from Greater Manchester and Merseyside, many from the historical boundaries of Cheshire.
1880– Bendigo Football League club league  ? Victorian Rules Australian rules football Bendigo, Australia includes the Castlemaine football club, second oldest football club in Australia
1883– Black Diamond Football League club league Black Diamond Challenge Cup, 1888– Australian Rules Football Australian rules football Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia [4][5] trophy donated to the league by Newcastle’s Richmond Tobacco Co. claims to be the longest running football trophy in Australia
1885– West Australian Football League club league  ? Australian rules football Australian rules football Perth, Western Australia
1887– All-Ireland Senior Football Championship inter-county cup  ? Gaelic football Gaelic football
1888– The Football League club league  ? Association Football Association Football oldest association football league
1888– Durand Cup Tournament Royal Scots Fusiliers, 1988- Experimental All India Football Federation Shimla, India Oldest football Tournament in India
1888– Broken Hill Football League club league  ? Australian rules football Australian rules football Broken Hill, New South Wales, Australia
1889– Currie Cup Regional Union Competition Currie Cup, 1889- Rugby Football Rugby Union South Africa Oldest surviving provincial/state rugby union competition in the world and oldest rugby union competition in the southern hemisphere
1889- Northern Football League club league  ? Association Football Association Football North East England Second-oldest association football league in the world after the English Football League.
1890– Irish League club league  ? Association Football Association Football Northern Ireland Third-oldest association football league in the world after the English Football League.
1890– Scottish Football League club league  ? Association Football Association Football Scotland Fourth-oldest association football league in the world. Formed one week after the Irish League.
1891–2001 Rovers Cup Tournament 1st Worcester Regiment Experimental Western India Football Association (WIFA) Bombay, India 2nd oldest football Tournament in India
1892– Brown Shield interprovincial knockout tournament Brown Shield, 1892 Association Football Association football New Zealand Originally the country's premier football trophy, now only contested sporadically,[6]
1893- IFA Shield Tournament Royal Irish Rifles Experimental Indian Football Association Kolkata, India 3rd oldest football Tournament in India
1895– Hong Kong Shield Tournament Association football Association football Hong Kong
1895– Rugby Football League/ Super League club league Rugby Football League Championship 1895- Rugby League rugby league England
1896– Challenge Cup club league 1896- Rugby League rugby league Europe
1896– Victorian Football League/Australian Football League club league Flag 1895-; AFL Premiership Cup, 1959– Australian Rules Football Australian rules football Victoria, Australia (national since 1990) premiership flag awarded since 1895. Now the game's premier competition and highest governing body.
1898– Yates Cup college league Canadian football Canadian football Ontario, Canada The Ontario University Athletics football trophy and oldest football trophy in North America, won by the Western Ontario Mustangs a record 28 times.
1901– New South Wales Suburban Rugby Union club league Rugby union Rugby union Sydney, Australia
1902– Copa del Rey club trophy Association football Association football Spain
1903– Sydney AFL club league Australian Rules Football Australian rules football Sydney, Australia
1904– AFL Queensland State League club league Australian Rules Football Australian rules football Brisbane, Australia
1908– NSWRL/National Rugby League club league Rugby League rugby league Sydney, Australia
1908– Queensland Rugby League club league Rugby League rugby league Brisbane, Australia
1908– The Ashes international challenge Rugby League rugby league Australia & Great Britain
1908– Anzac Test international challenge Rugby League rugby league Australia & New Zealand
1908– Hong Kong First Division League club league Football League football league Hong Kong
1909– Grey Cup Originally national club trophy; now national league "Rugby football" (early form of Canadian football) Canadian football Canada Now the championship trophy of the Canadian Football League.
1910– New Zealand Rugby League club league Rugby League Shield 1910- Rugby League rugby league Auckland, New Zealand
1910– Newcastle Rugby League club league Rugby League rugby league Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia
1911– Illawarra Rugby League club league Rugby League rugby league Illawarra, New South Wales, Australia
1912– Úrvalsdeild club league Association Football Association Football Iceland
1914– IUFU Collingwood Cup university trophy 1914- Association Football Association Football Republic of Ireland oldest football competition in Ireland
1914– Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup club trophy National Challenge Cup (1914); Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup (1999 -) Association Football Association Football United States oldest surviving football competition in the American continent
1920- Siam Cup Inter-insular fixture Rugby Union rugby union Guernsey & Jersey
1920- 31st of July 1920 Trinity College, Kandy - Royal College, Colombo Schools fixture Bradby Shield 1945 Rugby Union rugby union [Colombo and Kandy, Sri Lanka] Oldest continually played annual Rugby Union match between two schools.[citation needed]

Defunct competitions[edit]

Years Date Competition Type First trophy awarded, years Original code Current code Location Notes
1860– 26 December - interclub fixture - Sheffield Rules defunct Sheffield, England [7][8]
1867 only Youdan Cup club trophy Youdan Cup, 1867 Sheffield Rules defunct Sheffield, England
1868 only Cromwell Cup club trophy Cromwell Cup, 1868 Sheffield Rules defunct Sheffield, England
1882–? Northern Football Association club league  ? Victorian Rules defunct Launceston, Tasmania clubs included Launceston, City and Longford
1884–1984 Home International Championship international challenge Home International Championship, 1884–1984 Association Football defunct Home Nations (UK) oldest international association football competition

References[edit]

  1. ^ First contested in 1862 (a trophy was prepared for an 1861 match that was cancelled). The first Australian Rules competition and trophy History of the Royal Caledonian Society of Melbourne
  2. ^ Bromsgrove & KES Birmingham.
    • Thomas Winter Hutton, King Edward's School, Birmingham, 1552-1952, Blackwell, 1952. p. 148 "The first Bromsgrove game was in 1875, and 121 games have been played—two in a season at one period."
    • Henry Icely, Bromsgrove School through four centuries, Blackwell, 1953. pp. 69,99. "Rugby football, hitherto an unregulated and unsatisfactory game, was by 1875 a far better occupation for October half-holidays than wooding." "In the seventies the Rugby game was still twelve a side. There were School matches. KES, Birmingham, was an early fixture; SES, Oxford, was played for the first time in 1882."
  3. ^ Highbeam Research citing Michael Blair, RUGBY UNION: Refresher course in old values; King Edward's School Birmingham 0 Bromsgrove School 18 the Birmingham Post, 2 December 2002
  4. ^ "FOOTBALL.". Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954) (NSW: National Library of Australia). 12 May 1888. p. 6. Retrieved 10 May 2014. 
  5. ^ Australian Football 150 Years > Article > Football gold mined in coal country
  6. ^ [1]
  7. ^ Hallam FC
  8. ^ Sheffield FC