1988–89 Football League

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The Football League
Season 1988–89
Champions Arsenal
Relegated Darlington

The 19881989 season was the 90th completed season of the Football League.[1]

No European qualification took place due to the Heysel Stadium disaster suspension in place.

Prior to the 1986–87 season membership of the Football League was dependent on a system of election by the other member teams. From 1986 that system came to an end, and instead, the club finishing last in the Fourth Division was automatically demoted to Conference. This season the casualty was Darlington.

First Division[edit]

Summary[edit]

A fiercely-contested title race went right to the wire, with the last games not being played until 26 May - six days after the FA Cup final - as the league season was extended following the Hillsborough disaster on 15 April, which claimed the lives of 95 Liverpool fans. Liverpool went on to lift the trophy in the second all-Merseyside FA Cup final in four seasons, and a strong second half of the season had taken them to the top of the league, needing only a draw at home to second-placed Arsenal to clinch the title. Arsenal, on the other hand, needed to win by at least two clear goals to beat the Merseysiders to the title, and that was exactly what they did - with a late goal from Michael Thomas ending their 18-year wait to be champions of England again.

There were no shortage of rivals for the title throughout the season. Millwall, in the First Division for the first time, frequently topped the table during the season's early stages and were consistently in the top five until well after Christmas, and still managed to finish 10th despite not winning any of their final 10 games. Norwich City, who also reached the semi-finals of the FA Cup, were strong contenders for most of the season and finished fourth. Third placed Nottingham Forest, who won the League Cup and the Full Members Cup (their first pieces of silverware since winning the European Cup in 1980) had a mediocre first half of the season before finding their form after Christmas, although they never looked like serious title contenders. Their East Midlands rivals Derby County were on the fringes of the title race for much of the season, and their fifth place finish was their highest for well over a decade.

Three teams who were among the pre-season title favourites failed to make an impact in the title race. Everton could only manage an eighth place finish, their lowest final position since 1982, although they did well in the cup competitions, finishing runners-up in the FA Cup and Full Members Cup. Tottenham, who had spent millions in the transfer market since Terry Venables became manager, were bottom of the table in late October but enjoyed an upturn in form during the second half of the season to secure sixth place in the final table. Manchester United continued to rebuild under Alex Ferguson, but a failure to convert draws into victories during the first half of the season and a run of bad results during the season's final stages dragged them down to 11th place in the final table, although a good run of form after Christmas had projected them into the fringes of the title race, and things went downhill after an FA Cup quarter-final exit.

The loss of Paul Gascoigne to Tottenham in the first £2million deal between English clubs gave Newcastle manager Willie McFaul a chance to spend heavily in the transfer market, but his signings failed to gel and he was sacked in October with the Tynesiders bottom of the First Division. His successor Jim Smith was unable to keep Newcastle up, and they went down in bottom place, while Smith's old club QPR finish a steady ninth under new player-manager Trevor Francis. John Lyall's 15-year spell as West Ham manager came to an end after relegation and the decision of the board not to renew his contract. The final relegation place went to Middlesbrough, who had enjoyed good form for a newly promoted side (and one which had been virtually bankrupt and in the Third Division in 1986) until a late slump send them straight back into the Second Division. Aston Villa narrowly avoided the drop after a similar downturn in performances during the season's final stages.

Final table[edit]

Football League, First Division
Season 1988–89
Champions Arsenal (9th English title)
Relegated Middlesbrough
Newcastle United
West Ham United
European Cup 1989–90 No qualifications[2]
FA Cup winners Liverpool
European Cup Winners' Cup 1989–90 No qualifications[2]
UEFA Cup 1989–90 No qualifications[2]
Matches played 380
Goals scored 926 (2.44 per match)
Top goalscorer A. Smith (Arsenal), 23 [3]
Biggest home win Luton Town – Southampton 6–1 (2 Jan 1989)
Biggest away win Millwall – Tottenham Hotspur 0–5 (29 Apr 1989)
Highest scoring Luton Town – Southampton 6–1 (2 Jan 1989);
Luton Town – Charlton 5–2 (2 May 1989);
Queens Park Rangers – Wimbledon 4–3 (8 Apr 1989);
Coventry –Middlesbrough 3–4 (1 Oct 1988);
Middlesbrough – Nottingham Forest 3–4 (22 Apr 1989)
Longest winning run Liverpool (9 games)
Longest unbeaten run Liverpool (18 games)
Longest losing run Southampton (5 games)
Pos Team Pld W D L F A W D L F A F A GD Pts Notes
1 Arsenal 38 10 6 3 35 19 12 4 3 38 17 73 36 37 76 Champions[notes 1]
2 Liverpool 38 11 5 3 33 11 11 5 3 32 17 65 28 37 76

FA Cup Winners

3 Nottingham Forest 38 8 7 4 31 16 9 6 4 33 27 64 43 21 64 League Cup Winners
4 Norwich City 38 8 7 4 23 20 9 4 6 25 25 48 45 3 62
5 Derby County 38 9 3 7 23 18 8 4 7 17 20 40 38 2 58
6 Tottenham Hotspur 38 8 6 5 31 24 7 6 6 29 22 60 46 14 57
7 Coventry City 38 9 4 6 28 23 5 9 5 19 19 47 42 5 55
8 Everton 38 10 7 2 33 18 4 5 10 17 27 50 45 5 54
9 Queens Park Rangers 38 9 5 5 23 16 5 6 8 20 21 43 37 6 53
10 Millwall 38 10 3 6 27 21 4 8 7 20 31 47 52 –5 53
11 Manchester United 38 10 5 4 27 13 3 7 9 18 22 45 35 10 51
12 Wimbledon 38 10 3 6 30 19 4 6 9 20 27 50 46 4 51
13 Southampton 38 6 7 6 25 26 4 8 7 27 40 52 66 –14 45
14 Charlton Athletic 38 6 7 6 25 24 4 5 10 19 34 44 58 –14 42
15 Sheffield Wednesday 38 6 6 7 21 25 4 6 9 13 26 34 51 –17 42
16 Luton Town 38 8 6 5 32 21 2 5 12 10 31 42 52 –10 41
17 Aston Villa 38 7 6 6 25 22 2 7 10 20 34 45 56 –11 40
18 Middlesbrough 38 6 7 6 28 30 3 5 11 16 31 44 61 –17 39
19 West Ham United 38 3 6 10 19 30 7 2 10 18 32 37 62 –25 38
20 Newcastle United 38 3 6 10 19 28 4 4 11 13 35 32 63 –31 31
  • Pld = Matches ; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points
  1. ^ English teams were banned by UEFA from its competitions from the season 1985–86 on until the season 1990–91 because of the Heysel Disaster in 1985, involving Liverpool fans.
Key
League Champions, excluded from the European Cup
FA Cup Winners, but excluded from the Cup Winners' Cup
League Cup winners, excluded from UEFA Cup
Relegated

First division Results table[edit]

Home ╲ Away ARS AST CHA COV DER EVE LIV LUT MUN MID MIL NEW NOR NOT QPR SHW SOU TOT WHU WDN
Arsenal 2–3 2–2 2–0 1–2 2–0 1–1 2–0 2–1 3–0 0–0 1–0 5–0 1–3 2–1 1–1 2–2 2–0 2–1 2–2
Aston Villa 0–3 1–2 1–1 1–2 2–0 1–1 2–1 0–0 1–1 2–2 3–1 3–1 1–1 2–1 2–0 1–2 2–1 0–1 0–1
Charlton Athletic 2–3 2–2 0–0 3–0 1–2 0–3 3–0 1–0 2–0 0–3 2–2 1–2 0–1 1–1 2–1 2–2 2–2 0–0 1–0
Coventry City 1–0 2–1 3–0 0–2 0–1 1–3 1–0 1–0 3–4 0–0 1–2 2–1 2–2 0–3 5–0 2–1 1–1 1–1 2–1
Derby County 2–1 2–1 0–0 1–0 3–2 0–1 0–1 2–2 1–0 0–1 2–0 0–1 0–2 0–1 1–0 3–1 1–1 1–2 4–1
Everton 1–3 1–1 3–2 3–1 1–0 0–0 0–2 1–1 2–1 1–1 4–0 1–1 1–1 4–1 1–0 4–1 1–0 3–1 1–1
Liverpool 0–2 1–0 2–0 0–0 1–0 1–1 5–0 1–0 3–0 1–1 1–2 0–1 1–0 2–0 5–1 2–0 1–1 5–1 1–1
Luton Town 1–1 1–1 5–2 2–2 3–0 1–0 1–0 0–2 1–0 1–2 0–0 1–0 2–3 0–0 0–1 6–1 1–3 4–1 2–2
Manchester United 1–1 1–1 3–0 0–1 0–2 1–2 3–1 2–0 1–0 3–0 2–0 1–2 2–0 0–0 1–1 2–2 1–0 2–0 1–0
Middlesbrough 0–1 3–3 0–0 1–1 0–1 3–3 0–4 2–1 1–0 4–2 1–1 2–3 3–4 1–0 0–1 3–3 2–2 1–0 1–0
Millwall 1–2 2–0 1–0 1–0 1–0 2–1 1–2 3–1 0–0 2–0 4–0 2–3 2–2 3–2 1–0 1–1 0–5 0–1 0–1
Newcastle United 0–1 1–2 0–2 0–3 0–1 2–0 2–2 0–0 0–0 3–0 1–1 0–2 0–1 1–2 1–3 3–3 2–2 1–2 2–1
Norwich City 0–0 2–2 1–3 1–2 1–0 1–0 0–1 2–2 2–1 0–0 2–2 0–2 2–1 1–0 1–1 1–1 3–1 2–1 1–0
Nottingham Forest 1–4 4–0 4–0 0–0 1–1 2–0 2–1 0–0 2–0 2–2 4–1 1–1 2–0 0–0 1–1 3–0 1–2 1–2 0–1
Queens Park Rangers 0–0 1–0 1–0 2–1 0–1 0–0 0–1 1–1 3–2 0–0 1–2 3–0 1–1 1–2 2–0 0–1 1–0 2–1 4–3
Sheffield Wednesday 2–1 1–0 3–1 1–2 1–1 1–1 2–2 1–0 0–2 1–0 3–0 1–2 2–2 0–3 0–2 1–1 0–2 0–2 1–1
Southampton 1–3 3–1 2–0 2–2 0–0 1–1 1–3 2–1 2–1 1–3 2–2 1–0 0–0 1–1 1–4 1–2 0–2 4–0 0–0
Tottenham Hotspur 2–3 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–3 2–1 1–2 0–0 2–2 3–2 2–0 2–0 2–1 1–2 2–2 0–0 1–2 3–0 3–2
West Ham United 1–4 2–2 1–3 1–1 1–1 0–1 0–2 1–0 1–3 1–2 3–0 2–0 0–2 3–3 0–0 0–0 1–2 0–2 1–2
Wimbledon 1–5 1–0 1–1 0–1 4–0 2–1 1–2 4–0 1–1 1–1 1–0 4–0 0–2 4–1 1–0 1–0 2–1 1–2 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 1988–1989

Second Division[edit]

Chelsea sealed an instant return to the First Division by sealing the Second Division title and gaining 99 points - the highest total in the club's history. Runners-up Manchester City, with a promising young side including Andy Hinchcliffe, David White and Paul Lake, returned to the elite after two seasons away as runners-up. Steve Coppell's rejuvenation of Crystal Palace finally paid off and five seasons and two near misses with promotion when they triumphed over Blackburn Rovers in the two-legged playoff final and overturned a two-goal deficit in the first leg which had looked to have ended the Lancashire side's 23-year absence from the First Division. Defeat in the semi-finals prevented an instant return to the First Division for Watford, while the other beaten semi-finalists Swindon narrowly missed out on matching the four-season rise from the Fourth Division to the First achieved earlier in the decade by Swansea and Wimbledon.

Despite the loss of manager Ron Atkinson to Atletico Madrid in October, West Bromwich Albion remained in the thick of the promotion race under new player-manager Brian Talbot and looked all set for promotion as late as February when they occupied second place, but a slump in form pushed them down to ninth place - not enough for even a place in the playoffs.

Final table[edit]

Football League, Second Division
Season 1988–89
Champions Chelsea (2nd title)
Promoted Crystal Palace,
Manchester City
Relegated Birmingham City,
Shrewsbury Town,
Walsall
Matches played 552
Goals scored 1465 (2.65 per match)
Top goalscorer Keith Edwards (Hull City), 26 [3]
Pos Team Pld W D L F A W D L F A F A GD Pts Notes
1 Chelsea 46 15 6 2 50 25 14 6 3 46 25 96 50 +46 99
2 Manchester City 46 12 8 3 48 28 11 5 7 29 25 77 53 +24 82
3 Crystal Palace 46 15 6 2 42 17 8 6 9 29 32 71 49 +22 81 [notes3 1]
4 Watford 46 14 5 4 41 18 8 7 8 33 30 74 48 +26 78
5 Blackburn Rovers 46 16 4 3 50 22 6 7 10 24 37 74 59 +15 77
6 Swindon Town 46 13 8 2 35 15 7 8 8 33 38 68 53 +15 76
7 Barnsley 46 12 8 3 37 21 8 6 9 29 37 66 58 +8 74
8 Ipswich Town 46 13 3 7 42 23 9 4 10 29 38 71 61 +10 73
9 West Bromwich Albion 46 13 7 3 43 18 5 11 7 22 23 65 41 +24 72
10 Leeds United 46 12 6 5 34 20 5 10 8 25 30 59 50 +9 67
11 Sunderland 46 12 8 3 40 23 4 7 12 20 37 60 60 ±0 63
12 Bournemouth 46 13 3 7 32 20 5 5 13 21 42 53 62 –9 62
13 Stoke City 46 10 9 4 33 25 5 5 13 24 47 57 72 –15 59
14 Bradford City 46 8 11 4 29 22 5 6 12 23 37 52 59 –7 56
15 Leicester City 46 11 6 6 31 20 2 10 11 25 43 56 63 –7 55
16 Oldham Athletic 46 9 10 4 49 32 2 11 10 26 40 75 72 +3 54
17 Oxford United 46 11 6 6 40 34 3 6 14 22 36 62 70 –8 54
18 Plymouth Argyle 46 11 4 8 35 22 3 8 12 20 44 55 66 –11 54
19 Brighton & Hove Albion 46 11 5 7 36 24 3 4 16 21 42 57 66 –9 51
20 Portsmouth 46 10 6 7 33 21 3 6 14 20 41 53 62 –9 51
21 Hull City 46 7 9 7 31 25 4 5 14 21 43 52 68 –16 47
22 Shrewsbury Town 46 4 11 8 25 31 4 7 12 15 36 40 67 –27 42
23 Birmingham City 46 6 4 13 21 33 2 7 14 10 43 31 76 –45 35
24 Walsall 46 3 10 10 27 42 2 6 15 14 38 41 80 –39 31
  • Pld = Matches ; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points
  1. ^ Crystal Palace won the play-offs and were promoted.
Key
Division Champions, promoted
Promoted
Participated in play-offs
Promoted through play-offs
Relegated

Second Division play-offs[edit]

Both the semifinals and the finals were decided over two legs.
The full results can be found at: Football League Division Two play-offs 1989.

Semi-finals
1st leg –21 May; 2nd leg –24 May 1989
Finals
1st leg –31 May; 2nd leg –3 June 1989
 
3rd  Crystal Palace 0 2 2  
6th  Swindon Town 1 0 1  
  3rd  Crystal Palace 1 3 4
  5th  Blackburn Rovers 3 0 3
4th  Watford 0 1 1
5th  Blackburn Rovers[notes2 1] 0 1 1  
  1. ^ Blackburn won on away goals after extra time.

Second Division results[edit]

Home ╲ Away BAR BIR BLB BOU BRA BHA CHE CRY HUL IPS LEE LEI MCI OLD OXF PLY POR SHR STK SUN SWI WAL WAT WBA
Barnsley 0–0 0–1 5–2 0–0 2–2 1–1 1–1 0–2 2–0 2–2 3–0 1–2 4–3 1–0 3–1 1–0 1–0 1–0 3–0 1–1 1–0 2–2 2–1
Birmingham City 3–5 2–0 0–1 1–0 1–2 1–4 0–1 1–0 1–0 0–0 2–3 0–2 0–0 0–0 0–1 0–0 1–2 0–1 3–2 1–2 1–0 2–3 1–4
Blackburn Rovers 2–1 3–0 2–0 2–1 2–1 1–1 5–4 4–0 1–0 2–0 0–0 4–0 3–1 3–1 1–2 3–1 0–1 4–3 2–2 0–0 3–0 2–1 1–2
Bournemouth 3–2 0–1 2–1 3–0 2–1 1–0 2–0 5–1 1–0 0–0 2–1 0–1 2–2 2–1 0–0 1–0 0–1 0–1 0–1 2–3 2–1 0–1 2–1
Bradford City 1–2 2–2 1–1 0–1 0–1 2–2 0–1 1–1 2–2 1–1 2–1 1–1 2–0 0–0 1–1 2–1 1–0 0–0 1–0 2–2 3–1 2–1 2–0
Brighton & Hove Albion 0–1 4–0 3–0 1–2 1–3 0–1 3–1 1–1 0–1 2–1 1–1 2–1 2–0 2–1 2–2 2–1 3–1 1–1 3–0 0–2 2–2 1–0 0–1
Chelsea 5–3 3–1 1–2 2–0 3–1 2–0 1–0 2–1 3–0 1–0 2–1 1–3 2–2 1–1 5–0 3–3 2–0 2–1 1–1 3–2 2–0 2–2 1–1
Crystal Palace 1–1 4–1 2–2 2–3 2–0 2–1 1–1 3–1 2–0 0–0 4–2 0–0 2–0 1–0 4–1 2–0 1–1 1–0 1–0 2–1 4–0 0–2 1–0
Hull City 0–0 1–1 1–3 4–0 1–1 5–2 3–0 0–1 1–1 1–2 2–2 1–0 1–1 1–2 3–0 1–1 3–0 1–4 0–0 1–0 0–0 0–3 0–1
Ipswich Town 2–0 4–0 2–0 3–1 1–1 2–3 0–1 1–2 1–1 0–1 2–0 1–0 2–1 1–2 2–2 0–1 2–0 5–1 2–0 1–2 3–1 3–2 2–1
Leeds United 2–0 1–0 2–0 3–0 3–3 1–0 0–2 1–2 2–1 2–4 1–1 1–1 0–0 1–1 2–0 1–0 2–3 4–0 2–0 0–0 1–0 0–1 2–1
Leicester City 0–1 2–0 4–0 0–1 1–0 1–0 2–0 2–2 0–2 0–1 1–2 0–0 1–2 1–0 1–0 2–1 1–1 2–0 3–1 3–3 1–0 2–2 1–1
Manchester City 1–2 0–0 1–0 3–3 4–0 2–1 2–3 1–1 4–1 4–0 0–0 4–2 1–4 2–1 2–0 4–1 2–2 2–1 1–1 2–1 2–2 3–1 1–1
Oldham Athletic 1–1 4–0 1–1 2–0 1–1 2–1 1–4 2–3 2–2 4–0 2–2 1–1 0–1 3–0 2–2 5–3 3–0 2–2 2–2 2–2 3–0 3–1 1–3
Oxford United 2–0 3–0 1–1 3–1 3–4 3–2 2–3 1–0 1–0 1–1 3–2 1–1 2–4 1–1 0–1 1–0 4–1 3–2 2–4 1–1 1–0 0–4 1–1
Plymouth Argyle 1–2 0–1 4–3 1–1 3–1 3–0 0–1 0–2 2–0 0–1 1–0 1–1 0–1 3–0 3–1 0–1 0–0 4–0 1–4 4–1 2–0 1–0 1–1
Portsmouth 3–0 1–0 1–2 2–1 1–2 2–0 2–3 1–1 1–3 0–1 4–0 3–0 0–1 1–1 2–1 2–0 2–0 0–0 2–0 0–2 1–1 2–2 0–0
Shrewsbury Town 2–3 0–0 1–1 1–0 1–3 1–1 1–1 2–1 1–3 1–5 3–3 3–0 0–1 0–0 2–2 2–0 1–2 1–2 0–0 0–1 0–0 1–1 1–1
Stoke City 1–1 1–0 0–1 2–1 2–1 2–2 0–3 2–1 4–0 1–1 2–3 2–2 3–1 0–0 1–0 2–2 2–2 0–0 2–0 2–1 0–3 2–0 0–0
Sunderland 1–0 2–2 2–0 1–1 0–0 1–0 1–2 1–1 2–0 4–0 2–1 2–2 2–4 3–2 1–0 2–1 4–0 2–1 1–1 4–0 0–3 1–1 1–1
Swindon Town 0–0 2–1 1–1 3–1 1–0 3–0 1–1 1–0 1–0 2–3 0–0 2–1 1–2 2–2 3–0 1–0 1–1 1–0 3–0 4–1 1–0 1–1 0–0
Walsall 1–3 5–0 1–2 1–1 0–1 1–0 0–7 0–0 1–1 2–4 0–3 0–1 3–3 2–2 1–5 2–2 1–1 1–1 1–2 2–0 2–2 0–1 0–0
Watford 4–0 1–0 2–2 1–0 2–0 1–1 1–2 0–1 2–0 3–2 1–1 2–1 1–0 3–1 1–1 3–0 1–0 0–0 3–2 0–1 2–3 5–0 2–0
West Bromwich Albion 1–1 0–0 2–0 0–0 1–0 1–0 2–3 5–3 2–0 1–2 2–1 1–1 1–0 3–1 3–2 2–2 3–0 4–0 6–0 0–0 3–1 0–0 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.

Second Division maps[edit]

Locations of the Football League Second Division London teams 1988–1989

Third Division[edit]

Wolverhampton Wanderers, spearheaded by high-scoring striker Steve Bull, clinched a second successive promotion - again as champions - as they ran away with the Third Division title just 12 months after finishing champions of the Fourth Division. Bull, who broke the 50-goal barrier in all competitions for the second successive season, then became one of the few players to be selected for the senior England side when he was capped for his country for the first time. Sheffield United clinched the second promotion place a season after relegation - the fifth time in less than a decade that their manager Dave Bassett had managed a promotion-winning team, following his four promotions with Wimbledon. The final promotion place went to playoff winners Port Vale, who returned to the Second Division for the first time since 1957.

Aldershot's two-season stay in the Third Division ended with relegation in bottom place after a disastrous season. Gillingham, who had almost won promotion two years earlier, as did Chesterfield, and a Southend side whose 54 points was a greater tally than any other team to suffer relegation in Football League history.

Football League, Third Division
Season 1988–89
Champions Wolverhampton Wanderers (1st title)
Promoted Port Vale,
Sheffield United
Relegated Aldershot,
Chesterfield,
Gillingham,
Southend United
Matches played 552
Goals scored 1495 (2.71 per match)
Top goalscorer Steve Bull (Wolverhampton Wanderers), 37 [3]
Pos Team Pld W D L F A W D L F A F A GD Pts Notes
1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 46 18 4 1 61 19 8 10 5 35 30 96 49 +47 92
2 Sheffield United 46 16 3 4 57 21 9 6 8 36 33 93 54 +39 84
3 Port Vale 46 15 3 5 46 21 9 9 5 32 27 78 48 +30 84 [notes4 1]
4 Fulham 46 12 7 4 42 28 10 2 11 27 39 69 67 +2 75
5 Bristol Rovers 46 9 11 3 34 21 10 6 7 33 30 67 51 +16 74
6 Preston North End 46 14 7 2 56 31 5 8 10 23 29 79 60 +19 72
7 Brentford 46 14 5 4 36 21 4 9 10 30 40 66 61 +5 68
8 Chester City 46 12 6 5 38 18 7 5 11 26 43 64 61 +3 68
9 Notts County 46 11 7 5 37 22 7 6 10 27 32 64 54 +10 67
10 Bolton Wanderers 46 12 8 3 42 23 4 8 11 16 31 58 54 +4 64
11 Bristol City 46 10 3 10 32 25 8 6 9 21 30 53 55 –2 63
12 Swansea City 46 11 8 4 33 22 4 8 11 18 31 51 53 –2 61 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup 1989–90
First round
13 Bury 46 11 7 5 27 22 5 6 12 28 45 55 67 –12 61
14 Huddersfield Town 46 10 8 5 35 25 7 1 15 28 48 63 73 –10 60
15 Mansfield Town 46 10 8 5 32 22 4 9 10 16 30 48 52 –4 59
16 Cardiff City 46 10 9 4 30 16 4 6 13 14 40 44 56 –12 57
17 Wigan Athletic 46 9 5 9 28 22 5 9 9 27 31 55 53 +2 56
18 Reading 46 10 6 7 37 29 5 5 13 31 43 68 72 –4 56
19 Blackpool 46 10 6 7 36 29 4 7 12 20 30 56 59 –3 55
20 Northampton Town 46 11 2 10 41 34 5 4 14 25 42 66 76 –10 54
21 Southend United 46 10 9 4 33 26 3 6 14 23 49 56 75 –19 54
22 Chesterfield 46 9 5 9 35 35 5 2 16 16 51 51 86 –35 49
23 Gillingham 46 7 3 13 25 32 5 1 17 22 49 47 81 –34 40
24 Aldershot 46 7 6 10 29 29 1 7 15 19 49 48 78 –30 37
  • Pld = Matches ; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points
  1. ^ Port Vale won the play-offs and were promoted.
Key
Division Champions, promoted
Promoted
Welsh Cup winners, qualified for Cup Winners' Cup
Participated in play-offs
Promoted through play-offs
Relegated

Third Division play-offs[edit]

Both the semifinals and the finals were decided over two legs.
The full results can be found at: Football League Division Three play-offs 1989.

Semi-finals
1st leg –21/22 May; 2nd leg –25 May 1989
Finals
1st leg –31 May; 2nd leg –3 June 1989
 
3rd  Port Vale 1 3 4  
6th  Preston North End 1 1 2  
  3rd  Port Vale 1 1 2
  5th  Bristol Rovers 1 0 1
4th  Fulham F.C. 0 0 0
5th  Bristol Rovers 1 4 5  

Third Division results[edit]

Home ╲ Away ALD BLP BOL BRE BRI BRO BRY CAR CHR CHF FUL GIL HUD MAN NOR NTC PTV PNE REA SHU STD SWA WIG WOL
Aldershot 1–0 0–3 0–0 0–1 1–3 4–1 0–1 1–1 2–0 1–2 0–2 0–1 0–0 5–1 2–3 2–2 2–1 1–1 1–0 2–2 0–1 3–1 1–2
Blackpool 4–0 2–0 0–3 2–2 1–1 2–2 1–0 1–1 1–2 0–1 4–1 2–1 1–1 3–1 0–1 3–2 1–0 2–4 1–2 3–2 0–0 2–0 0–2
Bolton Wanderers 1–0 2–2 4–2 2–0 1–1 2–4 4–0 0–1 5–0 3–2 2–1 3–1 0–0 2–1 3–3 1–1 1–0 1–1 2–0 0–0 1–0 1–1 1–2
Brentford 2–1 1–0 3–0 3–0 2–1 2–2 1–1 0–1 1–0 0–1 1–0 1–0 1–0 2–0 2–1 2–1 0–2 3–2 1–4 4–0 1–1 1–1 2–2
Bristol City 1–1 1–2 1–1 0–1 0–1 3–0 2–0 0–1 4–0 1–5 1–0 6–1 2–0 3–1 0–4 0–1 1–1 2–1 2–0 0–2 2–0 0–1 0–1
Bristol Rovers 2–2 1–0 2–0 1–2 1–1 1–3 0–1 4–1 2–1 0–0 2–0 5–1 0–0 1–1 2–0 2–2 1–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–1 3–2 0–0
Bury 0–1 0–0 0–0 3–1 2–1 0–0 1–0 2–1 2–1 3–1 1–0 0–6 0–1 0–1 1–1 0–0 1–1 2–1 1–2 3–1 1–0 1–1 3–1
Cardiff City 3–2 0–0 1–0 1–0 1–1 2–2 3–0 2–0 0–1 1–2 1–0 3–0 0–0 1–0 0–1 3–0 0–0 1–2 0–0 2–0 2–2 2–2 1–1
Chester 1–1 1–1 0–0 3–2 2–0 0–2 2–0 0–0 3–1 7–0 2–0 3–0 0–0 2–1 1–0 1–2 0–1 3–0 0–1 2–4 3–1 1–0 1–1
Chesterfield 2–1 0–2 1–1 2–2 1–0 0–3 1–2 4–0 1–2 4–1 3–1 1–1 1–3 1–1 3–0 1–2 0–3 2–4 2–1 2–1 2–0 1–1 0–3
Fulham 5–1 1–1 1–1 3–3 3–1 0–2 1–0 2–0 4–1 2–1 1–2 1–2 1–1 3–2 2–1 1–2 2–1 2–1 2–2 1–0 1–0 1–1 2–2
Gillingham 1–1 1–0 0–1 0–0 0–1 2–3 3–4 1–2 0–2 0–1 0–1 1–2 3–0 1–0 2–1 1–0 1–3 0–1 2–1 1–1 2–3 2–1 1–3
Huddersfield Town 2–1 1–1 0–1 1–2 0–1 2–3 3–2 1–0 3–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 2–0 1–2 3–1 0–0 2–0 2–2 3–2 3–2 1–1 1–1 0–0
Mansfield Town 1–1 0–1 1–1 1–0 2–2 2–1 1–1 2–2 2–0 3–1 3–1 2–1 1–0 1–1 1–1 0–1 0–3 2–1 0–1 4–0 0–0 0–1 3–1
Northampton Town 6–0 4–2 2–3 1–0 1–3 1–2 2–0 3–0 0–2 3–0 2–1 1–2 1–3 2–1 1–3 1–3 1–0 1–3 1–2 2–2 1–0 1–1 3–1
Notts County 4–1 1–1 2–0 3–0 0–0 1–0 3–0 2–0 2–2 4–0 0–1 1–2 3–0 2–1 0–1 1–4 0–0 3–3 1–4 1–1 1–0 1–0 1–1
Port Vale 3–0 1–0 2–1 3–2 0–1 1–0 1–3 6–1 1–2 5–0 3–0 2–1 2–0 1–2 1–2 1–0 1–1 3–0 3–3 2–0 2–1 2–1 0–0
Preston North End 2–2 1–0 3–1 5–3 2–0 1–1 1–0 3–3 3–3 6–0 1–4 5–0 1–0 2–0 3–2 3–0 1–3 2–1 2–0 3–2 1–1 2–2 3–3
Reading 3–1 2–1 1–1 2–2 1–2 3–1 1–1 3–1 3–1 0–0 0–1 1–2 2–1 1–0 1–1 1–3 3–0 2–2 1–3 4–0 2–0 0–3 0–2
Sheffield United 1–0 4–1 4–0 2–2 3–0 4–1 2–1 0–1 6–1 1–3 1–0 4–2 5–1 1–2 4–0 1–1 0–0 3–1 1–0 1–2 5–1 2–1 2–0
Southend United 1–1 2–1 2–0 1–1 1–2 2–2 1–1 0–0 1–0 3–1 0–0 2–1 2–4 1–1 2–1 1–1 1–1 2–1 2–1 2–1 0–2 1–2 3–1
Swansea City 1–0 1–2 1–0 1–1 1–1 1–2 1–1 1–1 1–1 2–0 2–0 3–2 1–0 3–1 1–0 2–0 0–0 1–1 2–0 2–2 2–0 1–2 2–5
Wigan Athletic 2–1 2–1 1–1 1–1 0–1 3–0 1–0 1–0 3–0 0–2 0–1 3–0 0–2 0–0 1–3 0–1 0–2 1–1 3–0 1–2 3–0 1–2 1–1
Wolverhampton Wanderers 1–0 2–1 1–0 2–0 2–0 0–1 4–0 2–0 3–1 1–0 5–2 6–1 4–1 6–2 3–2 0–0 3–3 6–0 2–1 2–2 3–0 1–1 2–1

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

Third Division maps[edit]

Locations of the Football League Third Division London teams 1988–1989

Fourth Division[edit]

Rotherham United sealed an instant return to the Third Division as champions of the Fourth Division, while runners-up Tranmere (who had been in the battle to avoid relegation to the Conference two seasons earlier) managed to climb out of the league's basement division after spending a whole decade there. The final automatic promotion place went to Crewe, who had spent 20 consecutive seasons in the Fourth Division and had to apply for re-election seven times, before the arrival of Dario Gradi as manager in June 1983 had overseen an upturn in fortunes at Gresty Road.

Promotion had seemed out of the question for Leyton Orient, when they stood 15th in the league on 1 March 1989 with barely a quarter of the season left to play. But an excellent finish to the season saw them rise to sixth place in the final table, and they triumphed in the playoffs to clinch the division's fourth and final promotion place.

Darlington were relegated from the league as the Fourth Division's bottom club, after a post-Christmas resurgence by Colchester after the Essex side appointed Jock Wallace as manager, and the league newcomers for 1989-90 were Conference champions Maidstone United.

Football League, Fourth Division
Season 1988–89
Champions Rotherham United (1st title)
Promoted Crewe Alexandra,
Leyton Orient,
Tranmere Rovers
Relegated to Conference Darlington
New club in the league Lincoln City
Matches played 552
Goals scored 1498 (2.71 per match)
Top goalscorer Phil Stant (Hereford United), 28 [3]
Pos Team Pld W D L F A W D L F A F A GD Pts Notes
1 Rotherham United 46 13 6 4 44 18 9 10 4 32 17 76 35 +41 82
2 Tranmere Rovers 46 15 6 2 34 13 6 11 6 28 30 62 43 +19 80
3 Crewe Alexandra 46 13 7 3 42 24 8 8 7 25 24 67 48 +19 78
4 Scunthorpe United 46 11 9 3 40 22 10 5 8 37 35 77 57 +20 77
5 Scarborough 46 12 7 4 33 23 9 7 7 34 29 67 52 +15 77
6 Leyton Orient 46 16 2 5 61 19 5 10 8 25 31 86 50 +36 75 [notes5 1]
7 Wrexham 46 12 7 4 44 28 7 7 9 33 35 77 63 +14 71
8 Cambridge United 46 13 7 3 45 25 5 7 11 26 37 71 62 +9 68
9 Grimsby Town 46 11 9 3 33 18 6 6 11 32 41 65 59 +6 66
10 Lincoln City 46 12 6 5 39 26 6 4 13 25 34 64 60 +4 64
11 York City 46 10 8 5 43 27 7 5 11 19 36 62 63 –1 64
12 Carlisle United 46 9 6 8 26 25 6 9 8 27 27 53 52 +1 60
13 Exeter City 46 14 4 5 46 23 4 2 17 19 45 65 68 –3 60
14 Torquay United 46 15 2 6 32 23 2 6 15 13 37 45 60 –15 59
15 Hereford United 46 11 8 4 40 27 3 8 12 26 45 66 72 –6 58
16 Burnley 46 12 6 5 35 20 2 7 14 17 41 52 61 –9 55
17 Peterborough United 46 10 3 10 29 32 4 9 10 23 42 52 74 –22 54
18 Rochdale 46 10 10 3 32 26 3 4 16 24 56 56 82 –26 53
19 Hartlepool United 46 10 6 7 33 33 4 4 15 17 45 50 78 –28 52
20 Stockport County 46 8 10 5 31 20 2 11 10 23 32 54 52 +2 51
21 Halifax Town 46 10 7 6 42 27 3 4 16 27 48 69 75 –6 50
22 Colchester United 46 8 7 8 35 30 4 7 12 25 48 60 78 –18 50
23 Doncaster Rovers 46 9 6 8 32 32 4 4 15 17 46 49 78 –29 49
24 Darlington 46 3 12 8 28 38 5 6 12 25 38 53 76 –23 42
  • Pld = Matches ; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points
  1. ^ Leyton Orient won the play-offs and were promoted.
Key
Division Champions, promoted
Promoted
Participated in play-offs
Promoted through play-offs
New club in the league
Relegated to Conference


Fourth Division play-offs[edit]

Both the semifinals and the finals were decided over two legs.
The full results can be found at: Football League Division Four play-offs 1989.

Semi-finals
1st leg –21 May; 2nd leg –24 May 1989
Finals
1st leg –30 May; 2nd leg –3 June 1989
 
4th  Scunthorpe United 1 0 1  
7th  Wrexham 3 2 5  
  7th  Wrexham 0 1 1
  6th  Leyton Orient 0 2 2
5th  Scarborough 1 0 1
6th  Leyton Orient 0 2 2  

Fourth Division results[edit]

Home ╲ Away BUR CAM CRL COL CRE DAR DON EXE GRI HAL HAR HER LEY LIN PET ROC ROT SCA SCU STP TOR TRA WRE YOR
Burnley 2–0 0–0 2–0 1–0 0–1 3–0 3–0 1–0 2–1 0–0 3–3 2–2 1–4 1–1 2–1 1–0 0–1 0–1 1–0 1–0 2–2 1–3 6–0
Cambridge United 2–1 3–2 3–1 1–1 1–3 0–0 2–0 4–1 2–1 6–0 2–1 2–2 2–3 2–1 2–0 1–1 2–2 0–3 1–0 3–0 1–1 2–0 1–1
Carlisle United 0–0 1–1 1–2 0–1 1–2 0–1 1–0 2–1 3–1 2–1 3–0 2–1 2–1 2–2 1–0 0–2 0–1 0–3 1–1 2–1 1–1 1–2 0–0
Colchester United 2–2 1–2 1–1 2–1 1–2 0–1 4–0 0–0 3–2 1–2 1–1 1–0 1–3 1–2 3–0 1–1 3–1 1–2 1–1 2–2 2–3 2–1 1–0
Crewe Alexandra 4–0 2–0 1–0 3–1 2–0 0–2 2–1 2–2 2–2 3–0 2–1 2–1 2–0 1–1 3–1 1–3 1–1 3–2 1–1 0–0 2–1 2–2 1–2
Darlington 1–1 1–1 2–3 1–2 1–1 1–3 2–2 1–1 0–2 0–0 0–0 1–3 2–1 2–2 1–2 1–1 2–1 3–3 1–4 0–0 1–2 2–1 2–2
Doncaster Rovers 1–0 1–1 1–3 3–1 0–1 1–0 2–1 2–3 1–4 1–0 3–2 1–0 0–1 2–3 1–1 1–0 3–1 2–2 2–2 1–2 0–0 2–2 1–2
Exeter City 3–0 0–3 3–0 4–2 1–2 2–1 3–0 2–1 4–1 2–1 3–1 1–1 0–1 3–1 5–1 0–0 1–0 2–2 2–2 3–0 0–1 0–2 2–0
Grimsby Town 1–0 4–0 0–0 2–2 0–0 0–0 5–0 2–1 3–2 3–0 1–1 2–2 1–0 0–0 1–3 0–4 2–1 1–1 2–0 1–0 0–0 0–1 2–0
Halifax Town 1–2 0–0 3–3 3–2 0–1 1–0 2–0 0–3 2–1 1–0 2–2 2–2 0–1 5–0 4–1 1–1 0–2 5–1 2–2 2–0 2–3 4–0 0–0
Hartlepool United 2–2 3–2 0–2 2–1 0–3 2–1 2–1 2–2 2–1 2–0 1–1 1–0 3–2 2–1 0–1 1–1 3–1 0–2 2–2 0–1 2–2 1–3 0–1
Hereford United 0–0 4–2 2–1 1–1 0–1 1–1 3–1 1–0 2–1 3–1 2–0 1–1 3–2 4–0 4–4 1–1 1–3 1–2 2–1 1–1 2–1 0–0 1–2
Leyton Orient 3–0 1–1 2–0 8–0 0–0 1–0 4–0 4–0 5–0 2–0 4–3 1–3 3–1 1–2 3–0 3–1 2–3 4–1 1–2 3–1 2–0 0–1 4–0
Lincoln City 2–3 3–0 0–2 1–1 2–2 3–2 3–1 2–0 2–2 2–1 0–1 2–0 0–1 1–1 4–1 0–1 2–2 1–0 0–0 1–0 2–1 4–3 2–1
Peterborough United 3–0 1–5 1–4 3–0 3–2 1–1 2–0 0–1 1–2 2–1 0–1 2–1 0–1 1–1 1–0 0–3 1–4 1–2 1–0 3–1 1–1 1–0 0–1
Rochdale 2–1 2–1 0–0 1–1 2–1 2–2 2–0 2–1 0–2 1–1 0–0 2–2 0–3 2–2 0–0 0–2 2–1 1–0 1–1 2–1 3–1 3–3 2–0
Rotherham United 3–1 0–0 2–1 2–0 1–2 1–2 3–0 0–1 1–0 2–0 4–0 6–0 4–1 2–0 1–1 3–1 1–1 3–3 2–1 1–0 0–0 2–2 0–1
Scarborough 1–0 2–1 0–1 0–0 2–1 3–2 2–0 2–1 2–3 3–1 2–0 0–2 0–0 1–1 2–1 3–3 1–0 1–0 1–1 5–2 0–0 0–3 0–0
Scunthorpe United 2–1 1–0 1–1 2–3 2–2 5–1 2–1 2–0 1–1 0–0 1–1 3–1 2–2 0–0 3–0 4–0 0–0 0–3 1–1 1–0 0–1 3–1 4–2
Stockport County 0–0 0–0 1–1 1–0 0–1 0–0 2–0 4–0 3–1 1–1 3–0 1–2 0–0 1–0 1–2 3–0 1–3 2–2 1–2 0–0 1–1 2–2 3–2
Torquay United 2–0 3–1 1–0 1–3 2–1 1–0 3–2 0–4 2–2 0–2 2–0 1–0 3–0 1–0 1–0 1–0 1–2 0–1 0–2 2–1 3–2 0–0 2–0
Tranmere Rovers 2–1 1–2 0–0 0–0 1–1 2–0 2–2 2–0 3–2 2–0 2–1 1–0 3–0 1–0 1–0 2–0 0–0 1–1 2–1 1–0 3–0 2–1 0–1
Wrexham 4–2 3–1 2–1 2–2 0–0 3–3 1–1 3–0 1–2 3–0 4–3 1–1 0–1 3–0 1–1 2–1 1–4 0–1 2–0 2–0 1–0 3–3 2–1
York City 0–0 1–2 1–1 2–0 3–0 4–1 1–1 3–1 0–3 5–3 2–3 4–1 1–1 2–1 5–1 3–3 1–1 0–0 1–2 2–0 1–1 0–1 1–0

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

Fourth Division maps[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "England 1988–89". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Archived from the original on 25 January 2010. Retrieved 2010-02-24. 
  2. ^ a b c English teams were banned by UEFA from its competitions from the season 1985–86 on until the season
    1990–91 because of the Heysel Disaster in 1985, involving Liverpool fans.
  3. ^ a b c d "English League Leading Goalscorers". RSSSF. Retrieved 2010-10-31.