Crystal Palace

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Nickname: The Eagles

Founded: 1905

Manager: Roy Hodgson

Stadium: Selhurst Park

Current league position: 13th

Last season’s finish: 14th

Current top scorer: Wilfried Zaha (9 goals in all competitions)

FFV’s one for the future: Eberechi Eze


Although their official founding date is 1905, the club claim to be a continuation of the original amateur Crystal Palace football club first established in 1861, which would make them the oldest professional football club in the world, after historians discovered a direct lineage through their ownership under the same Crystal Palace Company.

Both the amateur and professional clubs played inside the grounds of the Crystal Palace Exhibition building, with the professional club using the FA Cup Final stadium for its home games until 1915 when they were forced to leave due to the outbreak of the First World War. In 1924, they moved to their current home at Selhurst Park.

The amateur club became one of the original founder members of the Football Association in 1863 and competed in the first-ever FA Cup competition in 1871–72, reaching the semi-finals, but disappeared from historical records after the 1875–76 FA Cup.

Shortly after Crystal Palace returned to existence in 1905 as a professional club, they applied for election to the Football League, but were rejected and instead played in the Southern League. Palace did eventually join the Football League in 1920 and have overall spent the majority of their league history competing in the top two tiers of English football.

Since 1964, they have only dropped below the second tier once, for three seasons between 1974 and 1977. During their period in the top flight in the late 1980s and early 1990s, the club achieved their highest ever league finish of third place in the old First Division, now known as the Premier League, in the 1990–91 season.

Palace were unfortunate to miss out on qualification for the UEFA Cup at the end of that season due to the limited number of European places available to English clubs after the lifting of the UEFA ban caused by the Heysel Stadium disaster.

It was also during this period that Palace reached the 1990 FA Cup Final losing to Manchester United after a replay, but they won the Full Members Cup the following year beating Everton in the final.

The club became founder members of the Premier League in 1992. Following their relegation from the Premier League in 1998, Palace went into decline after suffering financial problems which resulted in the club going into administration twice in 1999 and 2010, but they recovered and returned to the Premier League in 2013 where they have remained ever since, and reached another FA Cup final in 2016, again finishing runners-up to Manchester United.

Credit: Crystal Palace FC
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