Southampton F.C. (The Saints)

Overview: Southampton Football Club is based in Southampton, Hampshire, England in 1885. They are called The Saints because they were founded as the church football team at St. Mary’s Church of England. They changed their name to Southampton F.C. in 1896 after winning the Southern League. In 1992, Southampton were one of the founding members of the Premier League but struggled against relegation for their first ten years before being relegated in 2005. It took them 7 years, and some financing woes to make it back to the Premier League. In 2015, they placed 7th in the Premier League, their highest ever rank. They have won the FA Cup once in 1976 and placed second in the First Division in 1984. The team is known for its successful youth academy, producing players such as Adam Lallana, Theo Walcott, Luke Shaw, and Gareth Bale.

Stadium: St. Mary’s Stadium: 32,689 capacity

Notable players:

Alan Ball, M, (1976-1980, 1981-1983)

Wayne Bridge, D, (1998-2003)

Peter Shilton, GK, (1982-1987)

Terry Paine, M, (1957-1974)

Mick Channon, F, (1965-1977, 1979-1982)

Matthew Le Tissier, M, (1986-2002)

Fun facts:

Southampton have sold 5 players to Liverpool since 2014

They have won the Southern League 6 times from 1896-1903

Theo Walcott became the youngest player to play for England in 2006

The team almost went bankrupt in the early 2000’s

Swansea City A.F.C (The Swans)

Overview: Swansea City AFC was founded in 1912 in Swansea, Wales as Swansea Town before changing their name to their current in 1969. They joined the football league in 1921 and were promoted to the Football League First Division 1981. In 2011, Swansea were promoted to the Premier League and in 2013 they won the Football League Cup-the 1st major trophy in the club’s history. For most of their time as a club, the team has done quite poorly and not participated in the top league. Once they were promoted to the Premier League in 2011, they became the first Welsh team to play in the top division. They have managed to stay in the Premier League since.

Stadium: Liberty Stadium, 21,088 capacity

Notable Players:

Wilfred Milne, D (1920-1937)

Alan Curtis, F (1972-1979, 1980-1983, 1989-1990)

Roger Freestone, GK, (1991-2004)

Wyndham Evans, D (1971-1985)

Gary Monk, D (2004-2013)

Robbie James, M (1973-1983, 1988-1990)

Fun facts:

They are the first Welsh team to play in the Premier League

Swansea is Wales’ second largest city

They are the only Premier League team not to have reached the final of the FA cup

They had a manager who lasted only 7 days, Kevin Cullis

They have had 3 managers this current season

Sunderland A.F.C. (The Black Cats)

Overview: Sunderland is based in the North-East city of Sunderland and was founded in 1879. They remained in the top league for 68 successive seasons before being relegated for the first time in 1958. They have won the top-flight First Division 6 times before it became the Premier League. They have won the FA Cup twice and the FA Community Shield once. After initial successes, Sunderland won their last major trophy in 1973. They have the 7th highest average home attendance of the 20 Premier League clubs. They have remained in the Premier League since 2007 and have since become one of the world’s wealthiest football brands.

Stadium: Stadium of Light, 49,000 capacity

Notable players:

Jimmy Montgomery, GK, (1960-1977)

Jermain Defoe, F (present)

Julia Arca, M, (2000-2006)

Niall Quinn, F, (1996-2002)

Fun facts:

Sunderland broke the record transfer fee 3 times in the 20th century

They broke the record for most points in the Championship (105) in 1999

One of the 1st clubs to enter the Football League in 1890

They have only spent 1 season out of the top 2 tiers of English Football