team, formed in 1867.
Sheffield Wednesday (AKA Wednesday or The Owls
) are the fifth-oldest football club
in the world. They were formed out of The Wednesday Cricket
Club, which itself was formed by Sheffield
shopkeepers - Wednesday was half-day closing
and therefore it was then that they had the time to play, hence the name of the cricket
, and later football, club.
Wednesday prospered in the football hotbed of Sheffield
, and joined the Football League
in 1892. The club won the FA Cup
in 1896 for the first time and followed up with triumphs in 1907 and 1935. They were the losing finalists in 1890, 1966 and 1993.
In the years preceeding both World Wars
, Wednesday were a dominant force in the game, winning the League title
in 1902-03, 1903-04, 1928-29 and 1929-30.
Since World War II
, Wednesday have had mixed fortunes. The 1950s
saw the club yo-yo between Divisions One and Two, while the Sixties
saw one of the best Owls teams ever come and go. The Seventies
were lean years, as Wednesday dropped into Division Three for the first time in their history, but battled back as the decade ended, and attained promotion back to the top flight under Jack Charlton
and Howard Wilkinson
The modern era has seen Wednesday remain a regular fixture among the top teams in the country, dropping out of the top division only once, in 1990, but returning only one year later, winning the League Cup
1-0 against Manchester United
on the way.
The team of the early '90s was on a par with both any Wednesday team in history, but also with any team in the country. Key players in the 1990-93 team included David Hirst
, Chris Waddle
, John Sheridan
, Roland Nilsson
, John Harkes
and Carlton Palmer
As the new Millennium
dawned, Wednesday found themselves in dire financial straits, and with debts approaching £12,000,000 the club suffered relegation from the Premier League
into Division One.
Wednesday play at Hillsborough
Stadium (capacity 40,000), the site of the 1989 Hillsborough Disaster
, in which 96 Liverpool fans lost their lives.
Wednesday's main rivals are Sheffield United
(AKA The Blades or The Pigs), Leeds United