FA Cup History: 1946 – 2007

Ossie Ardiles of Tottenham Hotspur and Clive Walker 1982 FA CupCheck early FA Cup history for interesting facts about the FA Cup, from 1881 when it was first played up to World War II.

From 1946 up to the 1970s

Once World War II was over, the FA Cup moved quickly into full swing. The 1946 Final saw Charlton Athletic forward, Bert Turner, make FA Cup history by scoring for both teams – scoring an own goal before redeeming himself with a goal from a free kick. Derby County proved too strong for Charlton Athletic and won the match 4-1.

Newcastle United emerged as the team to beat in the 1950s, taking the FA Cup three times. The 1950s also provided memorable moments for teams from the lower leagues. During the 1956-1957 tournament, third division Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic succeeded in toppling first division giants Wolverhampton Wanderers and Tottenham Hotspur before being put to the sword by Manchester United in the final round.

While many English football fans will remember the 1960s for England’s 1966 Football World Cup triumph, Tottenham Hotspur fans will look back fondly on this period as one that saw their club’s performance at an all-time high. Totthenham Hotspur won the FA Cup in 1961, 1962 and 1967.

The first 100 years of FA Cup history were celebrated in 1972. The following year produced the first FA Cup winner from outside the top league in four decades, when Sunderland beat Leeds United 1-0. Southampton repeated the feat in 1976 by winning a tight final against Manchester United 1-0.


The 1980s marked a low point for English football. Hooliganism and a series of stadium disasters resulted in English teams being banned from European competition. Although support for the latter stages of the FA Cup remained strong, crowds dwindled and poor stadium infrastructure came under the spotlight. However, this gloomy era was lit up by the red shirts of Manchester United, who won the FA Cup twice in 1983 and 1985.

1990s and the 2000s

The 1990s saw English football emerge from the shadows of the 1980s stronger than ever. Manchester United built on its form in the previous decade to take the FA Cup a record four times. Arsenal and Chelsea were left to divide the remainder of the spoils, with two FA Cup victories apiece.

In 2000, the old Wembley Stadium hosted its last FA Cup Final. For the next five years, the finals were held at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff while Wembley was demolished and rebuilt. Arsenal thrived in this new venue, winning the FA Cup three times.

The FA Cup was contested for the 126th time in FA Cup history in 2007. A crowd of close to 89,000 packed into the new Wembley Stadium to watch Chelsea beat Manchester United 1-0.

Check a full list of all FA Cup winners, and back your team for the FA Cup Finals.