Football, Premier League

Aston Villa Football Club

Aston Villa FC (full name: Aston Villa Football Club) is an English football club based in the city of Birmingham in the metropolitan county of West Midlands. It was founded in 1874. It is one of the most frequent participants in the first English league, which it won 7 times. In 1982, he won the Champions Cup. Since the 2019/20 season, they have been active in the Premier League (the highest competition in England). Czech representatives Milan Baroš and Patrik Berger also played for him.

It plays its home matches at the Villa Park stadium with a capacity of 42,553 spectators.



Aston Villa Football Club was founded in March 1874 and its four Aston Villa founders were Jack Hughes, Frederick Matthews, Walter Price and William Scattergood. Aston Villa's first match was against local rugby union team Aston Brook St Mary. The stipulation of the match was that the first half would be played under Rugby rules and the second half under association rules. After moving to the Wellington Road ground in 1876, Villa soon established themselves as one of the best teams in the Midlands.

The 1899 Aston Villa team that won the First Division and Sheriff of London Charity Tournament (shared with Queen's Park) as well as numerous county cup honours. The club won their first FA Cup in 1887 and captain Archie Hunter became one of the team's first big names. Aston Villa proved to be the most successful English club of the Victorian era, winning at least five league titles and three FA Cups by the end of Queen Victoria's reign in 1901. In 1897, the year Villa won the Double, they moved to their current home Aston Lower Grounds. Supporters coined the name "Villa Park"; no official statement names the stadium as Villa Park.


Aston Villa won their sixth FA Cup in 1920, shortly after the club began a slow decline. Villa, at the time one of the most famous and successful clubs in world football, were relegated to the Second Division for the first time ever in 1936. This was largely the result of a negative defensive record: they conceded 110 goals in 42 games, including 7 goals from Arsenal's Ted Drake in an infamous 1-7 defeat at Villa Park. Like all English clubs, Villa were marred by the Second World War for seven seasons when the conflict prematurely ended several promising careers.

The team was completely changed under former player Alex Massimi for the rest of the 1940s. However, the team struggled in the league and were relegated two seasons later, but under the stewardship of manager Joe Mercer, Villa returned to the top flight in 1960 as Second Division champions. The following season, Aston Villa became the first team to win the English League Cup.


Mercer's forced departure from the club in 1964 signaled a period of deep uncertainty. The most successful club in England struggled to keep up with the changes in the modern game. Villa were relegated for the third time under manager Dick Taylor in 1967. The following season saw fans calling for the board to resign as Villa finished 16th in the Second Division. With debts mounting, Aston Villa's board, who were bottom of Division Two, sacked Tommy Cummings (manager in place of Taylor Taylor) and within weeks the whole line-up resigned under huge fan pressure. After much speculation, London financier Pat Matthews gained control of the club, who invited Doug Ellis as chairman. However, even the new ownership could not prevent Villa from being relegated to the Third Division for the first time at the end of the 1969–70 season. However, Villa gradually began to recover under former club captain Vic Crowe and in the 1971–72 season they returned to the Second Division as champions with a record 70 points. In 1974 Ron Saunders was appointed manager. His management proved effective as the club won the League Cup the following season and were promoted back to the First Division and European competitions at the end of the 1974–75 season.

Villa were back among the elite as Saunders continued to shape a winning team. This culminated in a seventh league title in 1980–81. In a major surprise, Saunders quit after the 1981-82 season and was replaced by assistant manager Tony Barton, who led the club to a 1-0 victory over Bayern Munich in the European Cup final in Rotterdam. The following season, Aston Villa were crowned European Super Cup winners, beating Barcelona 3-1 on aggregate. That was the peak, however, and the period that followed saw a dip in form, culminating in relegation in 1987. The following season, under Graham Taylor, the team were back among the elite and then finished second in the First Division in 1989–90.

Villa was one of the founding members of the Premier League in 1992 and finished runners-up to Manchester United in the inaugural season. However, during the rest of the 1990s, Villa went through three different managers and although they won two League Cups and regularly qualified for the UEFA Cup, their league positions were inconsistent. On February 27, 1999, Aston Villa FC was the last team to start a Premier League match with eleven Englishmen in the starting line-up. In the match against Coventry City FC, however, they ended up losing 1:4, when Dion Dublin scored from a penalty kick for the home side, and John Aloisi and George Boateng scored two goals each for the opponent.

Villa only reached the FA Cup final in 2000, but lost 1-0 to Chelsea in the last game played at the old Wembley Stadium. Aston Villa's position in the league fluctuated again and it all came to a head in the summer of 2006 when David O'Leary left suddenly. After 23 years as chairman, the largest shareholder Doug Ellis (approximately 38%) has finally decided to sell his stake in Aston Villa due to ill health. After much speculation, it was announced that the club was to be purchased by American businessman Randy Lerner, owner of the NFL franchise Cleveland Browns.

The arrival of new owner and manager Martin O'Neill marked the beginning of a new period of optimism at Villa Park in 2007, when major changes took place at the club, including a new sponsor and changes in staff. The first cup final of the Lerner era came in 2010 when Villa were beaten 2-1 by Manchester United. About a month later, in the semi-finals of the FA Cup, the team lost again, this time at Wembley at home to Chelsea 3-0. Just five days before the opening day of the 2010–11 season, O'Neill resigned as manager and was replaced by Alex McLeish over fan protests. McLeish's contract was terminated at the end of the 2011–12 season after Villa finished 16th and he was replaced by Paul Lambert. In February 2012, when the club announced a financial loss of £53.9 million, Lerner put the club up for sale at an estimated value of £200 million. In the 2014–15 season, still under Lerner, Aston Villa scored just 12 goals in 25 league games, the lowest in Premier League history, and this marked the end of Lambert in February 2015. He was replaced by Tim Sherwood, who helped the club to rescue and at the same time lead them to the 2015 FA Cup final. In the 2015-16 season, Sherwood was released, as was his successor Rémi Garde, but nothing helped and Ason Villa after 29 years in the elite relegated to a lower competition.


In June 2016, Chinese businessman Tony Xia bought the club for £76 million. Former Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo was appointed as the club's new manager, but was sacked after a poor start to the season. He was replaced by former Birmingham manager Steve Bruce. Bruce guided the team to fourth place in the 17/18 season, but lost 1-0 to Fulham in the 2018 EFL Championship play-off final. In October 2018, Bruce was dropped as the team won just once in nine games.

He was replaced by Brentford manager Dean Smith, his assistants were John Terry and Richard O'Kelly. Performances and results improved under Smith, with the team finishing in 5th place and reaching the play-offs again - helped by the club's record league game winning streak. They reached the 2019 EFL Championship play-off final, beating Derby County 2–1 to gain promotion back to the Premier League after a 3-year absence.

In their first season back in the Premier League, the team struggled in the lower ranks for most of the season, but managed to narrowly avoid relegation in the last game of the season when they stayed in the Premier League despite a 1–1 draw with West Ham United. The team started the 2020/21 season marked by the covid-19 pandemic in style, occupying the top ranks of the Premier League in the first weeks. Among the biggest successes and surprises of the opening rounds of the new season was a crushing 7-2 victory over reigning champions Liverpool FC.