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Charlton Athletic FC

Charlton Athletic FC Information

Address:   The Valley, Floyd Road, Charlton, LONDON. SE7 8BL
Telephone: (020) 8333 4000
Fax: (020) 8333 4001
Founded: 1905
Stadium: The Valley
Website: www.cafc.co.uk

Charlton Athletic FC History

Founded in 1905, Charlton Athletic F.C. play at The Valley, in Charlton, southeast London.

Charlton were formed in June 1905 - as a boys club in an area of Charlton which is no longer residential - near where the London Flood Barrier is now. During their formative years playing at the Valley there was a lack of facilities at the ground. They often used to use a local fishmonger/fish and chip shop as a place to get changed for games. This is where Charlton's famous nickname is derived from "addick" as a corruption of Haddock the main ware of this particular shop. Others claim the fishmonger nailed a haddock to a board and made a noise during games by slapping the two together this seems some what far fetched.

After success as a boys, amatuer and semi-professional side, Charlton were elected to the Football League in 1921. They gained promotion to the First Division in 1936.

In 1937 Charlton finished runners up in the First Division ,in 1938 finished fourth and 1939 finished third. They were the most consistent team in the top flight of English football over the three seasons immediately before WW2. This continued during the war years and they won the "war" cup and appeared in finals. They remained in the First Division, being finalists in the 1946 FA Cup and winning the FA Cup in 1947. In this period of renewed football attendances - Charlton became one of only eleven English football teams to average over 40,000 as their attendance during a full season. The Valley was the largest football ground in the League, drawing crowds in excess of 70,000. In 1957, as their manager from 1932 Jimmy Seed was undermined by the then board, Charlton were relegated.

From the late 1950s until the early 1970s, Charlton remained a mainstay of the Second Division. Relegation to the Third Division in 1972 caused the team's support to drop, and even a promotion in 1975 back to the second division did little to re-invigorate the team's support and finances.

However in 1974 and 1975 the Valley, Charlton's home ground hosted "The Who" in concerts attended by over 75,000 people.

In 1979/80 Chalrton were relegated again to the Third Division winning immediate promotion back to the Second Division in 1980/81. Even though it did not feel like it; this was a turning point in the clubs history leading to a period of turbulence and change including further promotion and exile. A change in management and shortly after a change in club ownership led to severe problems and the club looked like it would go out of business.

In 1984 financial matters came to a head and the club went into administration, to be reformed as Charlton Athletic (1984) Ltd.

Away from The Valley

From the mid 1980s Charlton played at Crystal Palace's football ground, Selhurst Park, as the team's financial situation prevented much-needed refurbishment of The Valley. Winning promotion to the First Division in 1986 did little to aid the failing club.

In 1990, the club again faced relegation. That same year, club supporters formed their own political party in response to the London Borough of Greenwich's refusal to allow the proposed stadium refurbishment. The Valley Party won 15,000 votes and was able to force the council to approve plans to renovate The Valley.

The next year, Charlton left Selhurst Park for West Ham United's ground, Upton Park.

Return to The Valley

In 1992, at last, they returned to a new and improved Valley. Under the leadership of manager Alan Curbishley, Charlton returned to the top flight (now known as the Premiership) in 1998, only to be relegated again on the last day of the season.

They returned to the Premiership in 2000, where they look likely to remain for some time. After a poor start to the 2002/03 season, losing all of their first four home games, the team found its form with runs of four and five consecutive wins taking them up the table. Curbishley was rewarded for this success with the Manager of the Month award for February 2003. In the same month the players Scott Parker and Paul Konchesky (both graduates of the club's youth academy) were selected for the England squad for a friendly against Australia. While only Konchesky actually played in the match, it was the first time ever that two Charlton players had been picked in the same England squad.

While Charlton remains a club with a reputation for spending its money sensibly, the current squad boasts an encouraging blend of quality players from home and abroad. In January 2004 Scott Parker was sold to Chelsea in controversial circumstances for around 10 million, and in the following summer, many new players were bought, including the Danish international Dennis Rommedahl, Francis Jeffers and Danny Murphy from Liverpool.

Charlton became the first Premiership club to establish a formal youth academy in the United States; the club announced that it will open an academy in Tucson, Arizona in May 2005, and will eventually expand the academy throughout Arizona. Charlton already operates youth academies in Spain and South Africa, as well as in its London home.

Charlton Athletic FC Honours, Trophies & Awards


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