Saturday, October 13, 2012

Floodlights were installed in 1956

Floodlights were installed in 1956, and officially switched on for a friendly match against Borussia Dortmund in 1957.[78] By the early 1960s a stand had been built at the Railway End to the same design as the Main Stand, roofs had been put on the Kop and Tilton Road End, and the ground capacity was down to about 55,000.[78] Sony VAIO VPCF13M8E/B battery

Resulting from the 1986 Popplewell Report into the safety of sports grounds and the later Taylor Report, the capacity of St Andrew's was set at 28,235 for safety reasons,[29][78] but it was accepted that the stadium had to be brought up to modern all-seated standards. After the last home game of the 1993–94 season, Sony VAIO VPCF13Z0E/B battery

the Kop and Tilton Road terraces were demolished – fans took home a significant proportion as souvenirs – to be replaced at the start of the new season by a 7,000-seat Tilton Road Stand, continuing round the corner into the 9,500-seat Kop which opened two months later.The 8,000-seat Railway Stand followed in 1999 – ten years later, Sony VAIO VPCM13M1E/L battery

this was renamed the Gil Merrick Stand, in honour of the club's appearance record-holder and former manager – but the Main Stand has still to be modernised. In 2012, the club website listed the stadium capacity as 30,009.[1]

In 2004 a proposal was put forward to build a "sports village" comprising a new 55,000 capacity stadium for the club, Sony VAIO VPCM13M1E/W battery

to be known as the City of Birmingham Stadium, other sports and leisure facilities, and a super casino. The project would be jointly financed by Birmingham City Council, Birmingham City F.C. (via the proceeds of the sale of St Andrew's) and the casino group Las Vegas Sands. The feasibility of the plan depended on the government issuing a licence for a super casino, Sony VAIO VPCF22M1E battery

and Birmingham being chosen as the venue,[81] but this did not happen. The club have planning permission to redevelop the Main Stand,[82] but club and council have continued to seek alternative sources of funding for the City of Birmingham Stadium project.

Birmingham fans consider their main rivals to be Aston Villa, their nearest neighbours geographically, Sony VAIO VPCF11M1E/H battery

with whom they contest the Second City derby. Lesser rivalries exist with fellow West Midlands clubs Wolverhampton Wanderers and West Bromwich Albion. According to a 2003 Football Fans Census survey, Aston Villa fans thought of Birmingham City as their main rivals, though this was not always the case. Sony VAIO VPCF13M0E/B battery

Birmingham's supporters are generally referred to as "Bluenoses" in the media and by the fans themselves; the name is also used in a derogatory manner by fans of other clubs.[84][85] A piece of public sculpture in the form of a ten-times-life-size head lying on a mound near the St Andrew's ground, Ondré Nowakowski's Sleeping Iron Giant, has been repeatedly defaced with blue paint on its nose. Sony VAIO VPCYB2M1E battery

Between 1994 and 1997 the club mascot took the form of a blue nose,[87] though it is now a dog called Beau Brummie, a play on the name Beau Brummell and Brummie, the slang word for a person from Birmingham.

A number of supporters' clubs are affiliated to the football club, both in England and abroad. Sony VAIO VPCYB3V1E battery

While an action group was formed in 1991 to protest against chairman Samesh Kumar,[31] the club blamed an internet petition for the collapse of the purchase of player Lee Bowyer in 2005,[89] and antipathy towards the board provoked hostile chanting and a pitch invasion after the last match of the 2007–08 season, Sony VAIO VPCY11M1E battery

relations between club and fanbase have never been so poor as to provoke the formation of an independent supporters' group. When the club was in financial difficulties, supporters contributed to schemes which funded the purchase of players Brian Roberts in 1984[91] and Paul Peschisolido in 1992. Sony VAIO VPCS12L9E/B battery

There have been several fanzines published by supporters; in 2010, two were regularly on sale, Made in Brum, first issued in 2000, and the longer-established Zulu.[92] The hooligan firm associated with the club, the Zulus, were unusual in that they had multi-racial membership at a time when many such firms had associations with racist or right-wing groups. Sony VAIO VPCF11S1E/B battery

The 2004 film Green Streetfeatures hooliganism surrounding a fictional match between West Ham United and Birmingham City.

The fans' anthem,[95] an adaptation of Harry Lauder's Keep right on to the end of the road,[96] was adopted during the 1956 FA Cup campaign. Sony VAIO VPCYB3V1E/R Battery

The Times' football correspondent described in his Cup Final preview how

the Birmingham clans swept their side along to Wembley – the first side ever to reach a final without once playing at home – on the wings of the song "Keep right on to the end of the road".

Player Alex Govan is credited with popularising the song, by singing it on the coach on the way to the quarter finaland when he revealed in an interview that it was his favourite. Sony VAIO VPCF23P1E Battery

In the build-up to the 1956 FA Cup semi-final with Sunderland I was interviewed by the press and happened to let slip that my favourite song was Harry Lauder's old music hall number "Keep Right on to the End of the Road". I thought no more about it, but when the third goal went in at Hillsborough the Blues fans all started singing it. It was the proudest moment of my life. Sony VAIO VPCF23N1E Battery

Small Heath F.C. became a limited company in 1888; its first share issue was to the value of £650.The board was made up of local businessmen and dignitaries until 1965, when the club was sold to Clifford Coombs.By the mid-1980s the club was in financial trouble. Control passed from the Coombs family to former Walsall F.C. chairman Ken Wheldon, Sony VAIO VPCY21S1E/L Battery

who cut costs, made redundancies, and sold off assets, including the club's training ground. Still unable to make the club pay, Wheldon sold it to the Kumar brothers, owners of a clothing chain.[30] Debt was still increasing when matters came to a head; the collapse of theBank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI) put the Kumars' businesses into receivership. Sony VAIO VPCY21S1E/G battery

The club continued in administration for four months until Sport Newspapers' proprietor David Sullivan bought the Kumars' 84% holding for £700,000 from BCCI's liquidator in March 1993.Birmingham City plc, of which the football club was a wholly owned subsidiary, was floated on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in 1997 with an issue of 15 million new shares,Sony VAIO VPCF24M1E battery

raising £7.5 million of new investment.[103] It made a pre-tax profit of £4.3m in the year ending 31 August 2008.[104]

In July 2007, Hong Kong-based businessman Carson Yeung, via the company Grandtop International Holdings Limited ("GIH"), which was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, bought 29.9% of the company from its directors. Sony VAIO VGN-NW21EF/S Battery

He became the largest single shareholder,[105] but his stated intention to take full control of the club came to nothing.[106] In August 2009, GIH announced a cash offer of £1 per share for the plc, confirming that they had "received irrevocable undertakings" from directors to accept the offer in respect of approximately half the shares at issue. Sony VAIO VGN-NW21JF Battery

When acceptances took their holding past the 90% mark, GIH re-registered Birmingham City as a private company with effect from November 2009,[108] and confirmed that the board of both the holding company and the club would comprise Yeung as club president, Vico Hui as chairman, and Michael Wiseman as vice-president. Sony VAIO VGN-NW21MF Battery

The holding company name was changed from Grandtop toBirmingham International Holdings (BIH) in December.[110]

Yeung was arrested in June 2011 and charged with money-laundering, and trading in BIH shares was suspended. Sony VAIO VGN-NW21MF/W Battery

As of May 2011, he was still the largest single shareholder, with 26.3% of the shares at issue.[2] Publication of financial results was repeatedly delayed,[112] and failure to submit accounts for the 2010–11 season by a March 2012 deadline resulted in the Football League placing the club under a transfer embargo. Sony VAIO VGN-NW21ZF Battery

As a result of issues arising from those accounts, which were published in June, Vico Hui resigned as chairman of both holding company and club.

Frank Womack holds the record for Birmingham league appearances, having played 491 matches between 1908 and 1928, closely followed by Gil Merrick with 485 between 1946 and 1959. Sony VAIO VGN-NW31EF/W Battery

If all senior competitions are included, Merrick has 551, less closely followed by Womack's 515 which is the record for an outfield player.[117] The player who won most international caps while at the club is Maik Taylor with 58 for Northern Ireland.[118]

The goalscoring record is held by Joe Bradford, with 249 league goals, 267 altogether, scored between 1920 and 1935; Sony VAIO VGN-NW31JF Battery

no other player comes close. Walter Abbott holds the records for the most goals scored in a season, in1898–99, with 34 league goals in the Second Division and 42 goals in total.[1]

The club's widest victory margin in the league was 12–0, a scoreline which they achieved once in the Football Alliance, against Nottingham Forest in 1899, and twice in the Second Division, Sony VAIO VGN-NW320F/B Battery

against Walsall Town Swifts in 1892 and Doncaster Rovers in 1903. They have lost by an eight-goal margin on five occasions, all in the First Division, beaten 9–1 by Blackburn Rovers in 1895 and Sheffield Wednesday in 1930, and 8–0 by Derby County in 1895, Newcastle United in 1907, and Preston North End in 1958. Sony VAIO VGN-NW320F/TC Battery

Their record FA Cup win was 10–0 against Druids in the fourth qualifying round of the 1899 competition; their record FA Cup defeat was 7–0 at home to Liverpool in the 2006 quarter final.[119][120]

Birmingham's home attendance record was set at the fifth-round FA Cup tie against Everton on 11 February 1939. It is variously recorded as 66,844 or 67,341. Sony VAIO VGN-NW35E Battery

According to the club website, the highest transfer fee received for a Birmingham player is £6.5 million from Liverpool for Jermaine Pennant in August 2006, while the most expensive player bought was Emile Heskey, who joined from Liverpool in May 2004 for a fee of £6.25m.

Inspired by Scottish international playmaker Johnny Crosbie and the captaincy of Frank Womack, Birmingham won their second Division Two title in 1920–21. Sony VAIO VGN-NW380F/S Battery

Womack went on to make 515 appearances, a club record for an outfielder, over a twenty-year career.[10] 1920 also saw the debut of the 19-year-old Joe Bradford. Signed from junior football in Leicestershire, he scored a club record 267 goals in 445 games, and won 12 caps for England.[11] Sony VAIO VGN-NW380F/T Battery

Birmingham failed to enter the 1922 FA Cup because secretary-manager Frank Richards forgot to send in the entry form.[12] Nine years later, manager Leslie Knighton led them to their first FA Cup final. Between semifinal and final Birmingham lost six of their nine league matches; Sony VAIO VGN-NW50JB Battery

opponents West Bromwich Albion were heading for promotion from the Second Division and full of confidence.[13] Bradford had played just once since the semifinal and only declared himself fit on the morning of the match.[14] Birmingham had a goal disallowed early on, then fell behind; Sony VAIO VGN-NW51FB/N Battery

Bradford – clearly nowhere near fully fit – equalised, but W. G. Richardson went upfield straight from the kickoff and scored.

Though Birmingham remained in the top flight for 18 seasons, they struggled in the league. Much reliance was placed on England goalkeeper Harry Hibbs to make up for the lack of goals, Bradford excepted, the other end. Sony VAIO VGN-NW51FB/W Battery

They were finally relegated in 1938–39, the last full season before the Second World War, when the club's record attendance of 66,844 was set, in the fifth round of the FA Cup against Everton.

St Andrew's was heavily bombed during the war, and the main stand burnt down, destroying the club's records, when a fireman used petrol instead of water to damp down a brazier. Sony VAIO VGN-NW70JB Battery

The club's current name of Birmingham City F.C. was adopted in 1943.[19] Harry Storer was appointed manager in 1945. In his first season the club won the Football League South wartime league and reached the semifinal of the first post-war FA Cup. Two years later they won their third Second Division title, conceding only 24 goals in the 42-game season. Sony VAIO VGN-NW71FB/N Battery

Bob Brocklebank succeeded Storer as manager in 1950. Though unable to prevent them being relegated, he and chief scout Walter Taylor laid the foundations for the club's successes of the 1950s. Brocklebank was responsible for introducing future England internationals Trevor Smith and Jeff Hall to the side, and for bringing in the likes of Peter Murphy, Eddy Brown, Roy Warhurst and Alex Govan. Sony VAIO VGN-NW71FB/W Battery

Arthur Turner took over as manager in November 1954 with the club mid-table in the Second Division. By the end of the season they had scored 92 goals, with all five first-choice forwards reaching double figures,[22] inflicted Liverpool's club record 9–1 defeat,and confirmed themselves as champions with a 5–1 win in the last game of the season away at Doncaster Rovers. Sony VAIO VGN-NW91FS Battery

Their first season back in the First Division saw Birmingham make their highest league finish of sixth place. They also reached the FA Cup final, losing 3–1 toManchester City in the game notable for City's goalkeeper Bert Trautmann playing the last 20 minutes with a broken bone in his neck. City won using the so-called "Revie Plan"; Sony VAIO VGN-NW91GS Battery

Don Revie might not have found the freedom to orchestrate the game had the "utterly ruthless"[25] Warhurst not missed the match through injury.[26] It was during this FA Cup campaign, in which all Birmingham's games had been away from home, that Harry Lauder's Keep right on to the end of the roadwas adopted as the fans' anthem. Sony VAIO VGN-NW91VS Battery

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