Day: April 3, 2008

The 1912 Overture

There are a couple of parallels between the FA Cup exploits of Cardiff City and Bansley. Both have won the FA Cup just the once, having lost the final two years previously. For Barnsley supporters, though the wait has been an even longer one – their one and only FA Cup win came in 1912. The two seasons prior to their win had been fairly tumultuous ones. In 1910, they had made the FA Cup final for the first time, losing 2-0 in a replay to Newcastle United after a 1-1 draw as a Second Division side. Their form collapsed the following season and, with the League only having two divisions at the time, they were forced to apply for re-election. The 1911/12 FA Cup run was a marathon one for them. They required a replay to beat Birmingham City in the First Round, and then having seen of Leicester Fosse and Bolton Wanderers, needed three replays to see off Yorkshire rivals Bradford City to set up a semi-final against Swindon Town. The semi-final, which was described by the Manchester Guardian as “brutal” also went to a replay, before a 1-0 win sent them to Crystal Palace for the final. Their opposition, West Bromwich Albion, had a somewhat smoother route to the final, beating Tottenham Hotspur, Leeds City, Sunderland and Fulham before beating Blackburn Rovers after a replay at...

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When Cardiff Won The Cup

Over the next couple of days, we’ll be looking at the previous FA Cup exploits of this year’s four semi-finalists, starting with Cardiff City, who take on Barnsley at Wembley on Sunday afternoon. It’s a myth that requires some deconstruction – over the last few days, certain quarters of the Welsh press have been building up the “Wales vs England” aspect of the match, echoing former owner Sam Hammam’s invocation of Welsh folklore and talk of Cardiff being the club representing “all of Wales”, talk which was made to the chagrin of Swansea City supporters, to say the least. The 1927 FA Cup run has very much been a part of that mythology, but it was somewhat less remarkable than some people might have you believe. The truth of the matter is that, whilst Cardiff’s run to the FA Cup final was an outstanding achievement, it wasn’t quite the major upset that one might expect that it was. Cardiff had been voted into the Football League in 1920 and went straight into Division Two, winning promotion at the first attempt. The following season they finished fourth in Division One, and in 1924 they almost won the Football League championship – level on points with Huddersfield Town, they lost out on goal average, when under current rules they would have won the league on goals scored. Their opponents in the...

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