1997–98 Football League

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The Football League
Season 1997–98
Champions Nottingham Forest
Promoted Nottingham Forest
Middlesbrough
Charlton Athletic
Relegated Doncaster Rovers

The 19971998 season was the 98th completed season of The Football League.

Champions Nottingham Forest and runners-up Middlesbrough won promotion back to the Premiership at the first time of asking. Charlton Athletic won the play-offs to end an eight-year absence from the top flight.

Reading were relegated in bottom place. They were joined on the last day of the season by Manchester City and Stoke City. The blue half of Manchester endured relegation to the third tier of the English league for the first time in its history, despite beating also doomed Stoke 5–2 away on the last day of the season, but neither fans took lightly to relegation, as mass football violence outside outshone the match. QPR, Portsmouth and Port Vale all won their games to avoid the drop.

Graham Taylor’s second spell as manager brought instant success as Watford won the Division Two championship. They were joined by runners-up Bristol City and playoff winners Grimsby Town.

Going down to Division Three were Brentford, Plymouth Argyle, Carlisle United and Southend United. Brentford had been losing playoff finalists just 12 months earlier, Plymouth had been promoted to Division Two just two seasons earlier, Carlisle were newly promoted and Southend had endured their second successive relegation.

Macclesfield Town finished runners-up in Division Three to gain their second successive promotion, a year after winning the Conference. They were joined by champions Notts County, who won the title by 17 points and became the first team since World War II to secure promotion in March, third-placed Lincoln City and playoff winners Colchester United.

Doncaster Rovers suffered an English league record of 34 defeats and won just four games to lose their league status. They were replaced by Conference champions Halifax Town, who regained their league status five years after losing it.

First Division[edit]

Football League, First Division
Season 1997–98
Champions Nottingham Forest (3rd second tier title)
Direct promotion to FA Premier League Nottingham Forest,
Middlesbrough
Promoted through play-offs Charlton Athletic
Relegated Manchester City,
Reading,
Stoke City
Matches played 552
Goals scored 1410 (2.55 per match)
Top goalscorer Pierre van Hooijdonk (Nottingham Forest), 29
Kevin Phillips (Sunderland), 29 [1]

First Division table[edit]

Pos Team Pld W D L F A W D L F A F A GD Pts Notes
1 Nottingham Forest 46 18 2 3 52 20 10 8 5 30 22 82 42 +40 94
2 Middlesbrough 46 17 4 2 51 12 10 6 7 26 29 77 41 +36 91
3 Sunderland 46 14 7 2 49 22 12 5 6 37 28 86 50 +36 90
4 Charlton Athletic 46 17 5 1 48 17 9 5 9 32 32 80 49 +31 88
5 Ipswich Town 46 14 5 4 47 20 9 9 5 30 23 77 43 +34 83
6 Sheffield United 46 16 5 2 44 20 3 12 8 25 34 69 54 +15 74
7 Birmingham City 46 10 8 5 27 15 9 9 5 33 20 60 35 +25 74
8 Stockport County 46 14 6 3 46 21 5 2 16 25 48 71 69 +2 65
9 Wolverhampton Wanderers 46 13 6 4 42 25 5 5 13 15 28 57 53 +4 65
10 West Bromwich Albion 46 9 8 6 27 26 7 5 11 23 30 50 56 –6 61
11 Crewe Alexandra 46 10 2 11 30 34 8 3 12 28 31 58 65 –7 59
12 Oxford United 46 12 6 5 36 20 4 4 15 24 44 60 64 –4 58
13 Bradford City 46 10 9 4 26 23 4 6 13 20 36 46 59 –13 57
14 Tranmere Rovers 46 9 8 6 34 26 5 6 12 20 31 54 57 –3 56
15 Norwich City 46 9 8 6 32 27 5 5 13 20 42 52 69 –17 55
16 Huddersfield Town 46 9 5 9 28 28 5 6 12 22 44 50 72 –22 53
17 Bury 46 7 10 6 22 22 4 9 10 20 36 42 58 –16 52
18 Swindon Town 46 9 6 8 28 25 5 4 14 14 48 42 73 –31 52
19 Port Vale 46 7 6 10 25 24 6 4 13 31 42 56 66 –10 49
20 Portsmouth 46 8 6 9 28 30 5 4 14 23 33 51 63 –12 49
21 Queens Park Rangers 46 8 9 6 28 21 2 10 11 23 42 51 63 –12 49
22 Manchester City 46 6 6 11 28 26 6 6 11 28 31 56 57 –1 48
23 Stoke City 46 8 5 10 30 40 3 8 12 14 34 44 74 –30 46
24 Reading 46 8 4 11 27 31 3 5 15 12 47 39 78 –39 42
  • Pld = Matches ; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points
  • NB: In the Football League goals scored (F) takes precedence over goal difference (GD).
Key
Football League Champions, promoted to FA Premier League
Promoted to FA Premier League
Participated in play-offs
Promoted to Premier League through play-offs
Relegated

First Division play-offs[edit]

  Semifinals
1st leg – 10 May; 2nd leg – 13 May 1998
Final at Wembley
25 May 1998
                     
3rd  Sunderland 1 2 3  
6th  Sheffield United 2 0 2  
    3rd  Sunderland 4 (6)
  4th  Charlton Athletic (pen.) 4 (7)
4th  Charlton Athletic 1 1 2
5th  Ipswich Town 0 0 0  

[2]

First Division results[edit]

Home \ Away[1] BIR BRA BRY CHA CRE HUD IPS MNC MID NOR NOT OXF PVA POR QPR REA SHE STP STO SUN SWI TRA WBA WOL
Birmingham City 0–0 1–3 0–0 0–1 0–0 1–1 2–1 1–1 1–2 1–2 0–0 1–1 2–1 1–0 3–0 2–0 4–1 2–0 0–1 3–0 0–0 1–0 1–0
Bradford City 0–0 1–0 1–0 1–0 1–1 2–1 2–1 2–2 2–1 0–3 0–0 2–1 1–3 1–1 4–1 1–1 2–1 0–0 0–4 1–1 0–1 0–0 2–0
Bury 2–1 2–0 0–0 1–1 2–2 0–1 1–1 0–1 1–0 2–0 1–0 2–2 0–2 1–1 1–1 1–1 0–1 0–0 1–1 1–0 1–0 1–3 1–3
Charlton Athletic 1–1 4–1 0–0 3–2 1–0 3–0 2–1 3–0 2–1 4–2 3–2 1–0 1–0 1–1 3–0 2–1 1–3 1–1 1–1 3–0 2–0 5–0 1–0
Crewe Alexandra 0–2 5–0 1–2 0–3 2–5 0–0 1–0 1–1 1–0 1–4 2–1 0–1 3–1 2–3 1–0 2–1 0–1 2–0 0–3 2–0 2–1 2–3 0–2
Huddersfield Town 0–1 1–2 2–0 0–3 2–0 2–2 1–3 0–1 1–3 0–2 5–1 0–4 1–1 1–1 1–0 0–0 1–0 3–1 2–3 0–0 3–0 1–0 1–0
Ipswich Town 0–1 2–1 2–0 3–1 3–2 5–1 1–0 1–1 5–0 0–1 5–2 5–1 2–0 0–0 1–0 2–2 0–2 2–3 2–0 2–1 0–0 1–1 3–0
Manchester City 0–1 1–0 0–1 2–2 1–0 0–1 1–2 2–0 1–2 2–3 0–2 2–3 2–2 2–2 0–0 0–0 4–1 0–1 0–1 6–0 1–1 1–0 0–1
Middlesbrough 3–1 1–0 4–0 2–1 1–0 3–0 1–1 1–0 3–0 0–0 4–1 2–1 1–1 3–0 4–0 1–2 3–1 0–1 3–1 6–0 3–0 1–0 1–1
Norwich City 3–3 2–3 2–2 0–4 0–2 5–0 2–1 0–0 1–3 1–0 2–1 1–0 2–0 0–0 0–0 2–1 1–1 0–0 2–1 5–0 0–2 1–1 0–2
Nottingham Forest 1–0 2–2 3–0 5–2 3–1 3–0 2–1 1–3 4–0 2–3 1–3 2–1 1–0 4–0 1–0 3–0 2–1 1–0 0–3 3–0 2–2 1–0 3–0
Oxford United 0–2 0–0 1–1 1–2 0–0 2–0 1–0 0–0 1–4 2–0 0–1 2–0 1–0 3–1 3–0 2–4 3–0 5–1 1–1 2–1 1–1 2–1 3–0
Port Vale 0–1 0–0 1–1 0–1 2–3 4–1 1–3 2–1 0–1 2–2 0–1 3–0 2–1 2–0 0–0 0–0 2–1 0–0 3–1 0–1 0–1 1–2 0–2
Portsmouth 1–1 1–1 1–1 0–2 2–3 3–0 0–1 0–3 0–0 1–1 0–1 2–1 3–1 3–1 0–2 1–1 1–0 2–0 1–4 0–1 1–0 2–3 3–2
Queens Park Rangers 1–1 1–0 0–1 2–4 3–2 2–1 0–0 2–0 5–0 1–1 0–1 1–1 0–1 1–0 1–1 2–2 2–1 1–1 0–1 1–2 0–0 2–0 0–0
Reading 2–0 0–3 1–1 2–0 3–3 0–2 0–4 3–0 0–1 0–1 3–3 2–1 0–3 0–1 1–2 0–1 1–0 2–0 4–0 0–1 1–3 2–1 0–0
Sheffield United 0–0 2–1 3–0 4–1 1–0 1–1 0–1 1–1 1–0 2–2 1–0 1–0 2–1 2–1 2–2 4–0 5–1 3–2 2–0 2–1 2–1 2–4 1–0
Stockport County 2–2 1–2 0–0 3–0 0–1 3–0 0–1 3–1 1–1 2–2 2–2 3–2 3–0 3–1 2–0 5–1 1–0 1–0 1–1 4–2 3–1 2–1 1–0
Stoke City 0–7 2–1 3–2 1–2 0–2 1–2 1–1 2–5 1–2 2–0 1–1 0–0 2–1 2–1 2–1 1–2 2–2 2–1 1–2 1–2 0–3 0–0 3–0
Sunderland 1–1 2–0 2–1 0–0 2–1 3–1 2–2 3–1 1–2 0–1 1–1 3–1 4–2 2–1 2–2 4–1 4–2 4–1 3–0 0–0 3–0 2–0 1–1
Swindon Town 1–1 1–0 3–1 0–1 2–0 1–1 0–2 1–3 1–2 1–0 0–0 4–1 4–2 0–1 3–1 0–2 1–1 1–1 1–0 1–2 2–1 0–2 0–0
Tranmere Rovers 0–3 3–1 0–0 2–2 0–3 1–0 1–1 0–0 0–2 2–0 0–0 0–2 1–2 2–2 2–1 6–0 3–3 3–0 3–1 0–2 3–0 0–0 2–1
West Bromwich Albion 1–0 1–1 1–1 1–0 0–1 0–2 2–3 0–1 2–1 1–0 1–1 1–2 2–2 0–3 1–1 1–0 2–0 3–2 1–1 3–3 0–0 2–1 1–0
Wolverhampton Wanderers 1–3 2–1 4–2 3–1 1–0 1–1 1–1 2–2 1–0 5–0 2–1 1–0 1–1 2–0 3–2 3–1 0–0 3–4 1–1 0–1 3–1 2–1 0–1

Source:[citation needed]
^ The home team is listed in the left-hand column.
Colours: Blue = home team win; Yellow = draw; Red = away team win.

First Division maps[edit]

Locations of the Football League First Division London teams 1997–1998

Second Division[edit]

Football League, Second Division
Season 1997–98
Champions Watford (2nd third tier title)
Direct promotion Watford,
Bristol City
Promoted through play-offs Grimsby Town
Relegated Brentford,
Carlisle United,
Plymouth Argyle,
Southend United
Matches played 552
Goals scored 1337 (2.42 per match)
Top goalscorer Barry Hayles (Bristol Rovers), 23 [1]

Second Division table[edit]

Pos Team Pld W D L F A W D L F A F A GD Pts Notes
1 Watford 46 13 7 3 36 22 11 9 3 31 19 67 41 +26 88
2 Bristol City 46 16 5 2 41 17 9 5 9 28 22 69 39 +30 85
3 Grimsby Town 46 11 7 5 30 14 8 8 7 25 23 55 37 +18 72
4 Northampton 46 14 5 4 33 17 4 12 7 19 20 52 37 +15 71
5 Bristol Rovers 46 13 2 8 43 33 7 8 8 27 31 70 64 +6 70
6 Fulham 46 12 7 4 31 14 8 3 12 29 29 60 43 +17 70
7 Wrexham 46 10 10 3 31 23 8 6 9 24 28 55 51 +4 70
8 Gillingham 46 13 7 3 30 18 6 6 11 22 29 52 47 +5 70
9 Bournemouth 46 11 8 4 28 15 7 4 12 29 37 57 52 +5 66
10 Chesterfield 46 13 7 3 31 19 3 10 10 15 25 46 44 +2 65
11 Wigan Athletic 46 12 5 6 41 31 5 6 12 23 35 64 66 –2 62
12 Blackpool 46 13 6 4 35 24 4 5 14 24 43 59 67 –8 62
13 Oldham Athletic 46 13 7 3 43 23 2 9 12 19 31 62 54 +8 61
14 Wycombe Wanderers 46 10 10 3 32 20 4 8 11 19 33 51 53 –2 60
15 Preston North End 46 10 6 7 29 26 5 8 10 27 30 56 56 ±0 59
16 York City 46 9 7 7 26 21 5 10 8 26 37 52 58 –6 59
17 Luton Town 46 7 7 9 35 38 7 8 8 25 26 60 64 –4 57
18 Millwall 46 7 8 8 23 23 7 5 11 20 31 43 54 –11 55
19 Walsall 46 10 8 5 26 16 4 4 15 17 36 43 52 –9 54
20 Burnley 46 10 9 4 34 23 3 4 16 21 42 55 65 –10 52
21 Brentford 46 9 7 7 33 29 2 10 11 17 42 50 71 –21 50
22 Plymouth Argyle 46 10 5 8 36 30 2 8 13 19 40 55 70 –15 49
23 Carlisle United 46 8 5 10 27 28 4 3 16 30 45 57 73 –16 44
24 Southend United 46 8 7 8 29 30 3 3 17 18 49 47 79 –32 43
  • Pld = Matches ; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points
  • NB: In the Football League goals scored (F) takes precedence over goal difference (GD).
Key
Division Champions, promoted
Promoted
Participated in play-offs
Promoted through play-offs
Relegated

Second Division play-offs[edit]

  Semifinals
1st leg – 9/10 May; 2nd leg – 13 May 1998
Final at Wembley Stadium
24 May 1998
                     
3rd  Grimsby Town 1 1 2  
6th  Fulham 1 0 1  
    3rd  Grimsby Town 1
  4th  Northampton 0
4th  Northampton 1 3 4
5th  Bristol Rovers 3 0 3  

[2]

Second Division maps[edit]

Locations of the Football League Second Division London teams 1997–1998

Third Division[edit]

Football League, Third Division
Season 1997–98
Champions Notts County (2nd fourth tier title)
Direct promotion Notts County,
Lincoln City,
Macclesfield Town
Promoted through play-offs Colchester United
Relegated to Conference Doncaster Rovers
Matches played 552
Goals scored 1431 (2.59 per match)
Top goalscorer Gary Jones (Notts County), 28 [1]

Third Division table[edit]

Pos Team Pld W D L F A W D L F A F A GD Pts Notes
1 Notts County 46 14 7 2 41 20 15 5 3 41 23 82 43 +39 99
2 Macclesfield Town 46 19 4 0 40 11 4 9 10 23 33 63 44 +19 82
3 Lincoln City 46 11 7 5 32 24 9 8 6 28 27 60 51 +9 75
4 Colchester United 46 14 5 4 41 24 7 6 10 31 36 72 60 +12 74
5 Torquay United 46 14 4 5 39 22 7 7 9 29 37 68 59 +9 74
6 Scarborough 46 14 6 3 44 23 5 9 9 23 35 67 58 +9 72
7 Barnet 46 10 8 5 35 22 9 5 9 26 29 61 51 +10 70
8 Scunthorpe United 46 11 7 5 30 24 8 5 10 26 28 56 52 +4 69
9 Rotherham United 46 10 9 4 41 30 6 10 7 26 31 67 61 +6 67
10 Peterborough United 46 13 6 4 37 16 5 7 11 26 35 63 51 +12 67
11 Leyton Orient 46 14 5 4 40 20 5 7 11 22 27 62 47 +15 66 [notes 1]
12 Mansfield Town 46 11 9 3 42 26 5 8 10 22 29 64 55 +9 65
13 Shrewsbury Town 46 12 3 8 35 28 4 10 9 26 34 61 62 –1 61
14 Chester 46 12 7 4 34 15 5 3 15 26 46 60 61 –1 61
15 Exeter City 46 10 8 5 39 25 5 7 11 29 38 68 63 +5 60
16 Cambridge United 46 11 8 4 39 27 3 10 10 24 30 63 57 +6 60
17 Hartlepool United 46 10 12 1 40 22 2 11 10 21 31 61 53 +8 59
18 Rochdale 46 15 3 5 43 15 2 4 17 13 40 56 55 +1 58
19 Darlington 46 13 6 4 43 28 1 6 16 13 44 56 72 –16 54
20 Swansea City 46 8 8 7 24 16 5 3 15 25 46 49 62 –13 50
21 Cardiff City 46 5 13 5 27 22 4 10 9 21 30 48 52 –4 50
22 Hull City 46 10 6 7 36 32 1 2 20 20 51 56 83 –27 41
23 Brighton & Hove Albion 46 3 10 10 21 34 3 7 13 17 32 38 66 –28 35
24 Doncaster Rovers 46 3 3 17 14 48 1 5 17 16 65 30 113 –83 20
  • Pld = Matches ; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points
  • NB: In the Football League goals scored (F) takes precedence over goal difference (GD).
  1. ^ Leyton Orient had 3 points deducted.
Key
Division Champions, promoted
Promoted
Participated in play-offs
Promoted through play-offs
New club in the league (see Macclesfield Town)
Relegated to Conference

Third Division play-offs[edit]

  Semifinals
1st leg – 10 May; 2nd leg – 13 May 1998
Final at Wembley Stadium
22 May 1998
                     
4th  Colchester United 0 3 3  
7th  Barnet 1 1 2  
    4th  Colchester United 1
  5th  Torquay United 0
5th  Torquay United 3 4 7
6th  Scarborough 1 1 2  

[2]

Third Division maps[edit]

Locations of the Football League Third Division London teams 1997–1998

Topscorers[edit]

First Division[edit]

Rank Player Club Goals
1 England Kevin Phillips Sunderland 29
= Netherlands Pierre Van Hooijdonk Nottingham Forest 29
3 England Kevin Campbell Nottingham Forest 23
= England Clive Mendonca Charlton Athletic 23
5 England David Johnson Ipswich Town 20
6 England Brett Angell Stockport County 18
7 England Paul Furlong Birmingham City 15
= England Marcus Stewart Huddersfield Town 15

Second Division[edit]

Rank Player Club Goals
1 Jamaica Barry Hayles Bristol Rovers 23
2 Canada Carlo Corazzin Plymouth Argyle 17
= England Kevin Donovan Grimsby Town 17
= England Mark Stallard Wycombe Wanderers 17
= England Ian Stevens Carlisle United 17
6 England Andy Cooke Burnley 16
= England David Lowe Wigan Athletic 16
8 England Peter Beadle Bristol Rovers 15
= England Paul Moody Fulham 15
10 England Lee Ashcroft Preston North End 14
= Netherlands Jeroen Boere Southend United 14

Third Division[edit]

Rank Player Club Goals
1 England Gary Jones Notts County 28
2 England Steve Whitehall Mansfield Town 24
3 Wales Darran Rowbotham Exeter City 21
4 Northern Ireland Jimmy Quinn Peterborough United 20
5 Wales Carl Griffiths Leyton Orient 18

See also[edit]

References[edit]

The tables below are reproduced here in the exact form that they can be found at The Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation website,[2] with home and away statistics separated. Play-off results are from the same website.

  1. ^ a b c "English League Leading Goalscorers". RSSSF. Retrieved 2010-10-31. 
  2. ^ a b c d "England 1997–98". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 2010-02-24.