Swansea City AFC (Welsh: Clwb Pêl-droed Dinas Abertawe) is a Welsh football team currently playing in the Football League League One.
Nicknamed "The Swans", the club played from its formation in 1912 (as Swansea Town) until 1925 at the Vetch Field in Swansea city centre. In the summer of 2005, Swansea City moved to a new 20,532 all seater ground, the Liberty Stadium.
The early 1980's were Swansea's halcyon years, under the guidance of then player-Manager, John Toshack, the Swans gained promotion to the old First Division in 1981, winning 3 consecutive Welsh Cups and subsequently appearing in the UEFA Cup Winners Cup as well. However, as fast as Swansea rose up the Football League, a decline ensued just as quickly.
- FA Cup semi-finalists 1926, 1964
- Third Division champions 2000
- Third Division (South) champions 1925, 1949
- Fourth Division Play-Off winners 1988
- Welsh Cup winners 1913, 1950, 1961, 1966, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1989, 1991
- Welsh Cup runners-up 1915, 1926, 1938, 1940, 1949, 1956, 1957, 1969
- Welsh Cup semi-finalists 1914, 1920, 1923, 1925, 1931, 1935, 1962, 1963, 1965, 1970, 1980, 1984, 1985, 1994
- Football League Trophy winners 1994, 2006
- FAW Premier Cup winners 2005, 2006
- FAW Premier Cup runners-up 2001, 2002
- Welsh Youth Cup winners 2003
- West Wales Senior Cup winners 1923, 1925, 1926, 1927, 1930, 1934, 1949, 1950, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1965, 1966, 1975, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1994, 1995, 2002, 2003
- West Wales Senior Cup runners-up 1952, 2004
- Welsh Football League Division 1 champions 1925, 1926, 1934, 1935, 1936, 1951, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965
- Welsh Football League Division 1 runners-up 1914, 1923, 1924, 1927, 1933
- Welsh Football League Cup winners 1931, 1933
- Welsh Football League Cup runners-up 1926
- Football Combination (Reserve) Division 2 champions 1955, 1961
- London Combination (Reserve) Cup winners 1947, 1950
- Macbar (Reserve) Cup winners 1987
- Southern Football League (Reserves) Western Section champions 1925 (lost championship play-off to Eastern winners Southampton Res.)
- Biggest win 12-0 v Sliema Wanderers (Malta), European Cup Winners' Cup First Round First Leg, 15 September 1982
- Biggest win (League) 8-0 v Hartlepool, Football League Fourth Division, 1 April 1978
- Biggest defeat 0-8 v Liverpool, FA Cup 3rd Round Replay, 9 January 1990; 0-8 v Monaco (France), European Cup Winners' Cup First Round Second Leg, 1 October 1991
- Biggest defeat (League) 1-8 v Fulham, Football League Second Division, 22 January 1938
- Highest attendance (Vetch Field) 32,786 v Arsenal, FA Cup Fifth Round, 17 February 1968
- Highest attendance (Liberty Stadium) 19,288 v Yeovil Town, Football League One, 18 November 2005
- Lowest attendance (Vetch Field) 1,301 v Northampton Town, Football League Fourth Division, 18 September 1973
- Lowest attendance (Liberty Stadium) 5,321 v Rushden and Diamonds, Football League Trophy Second Round, 22 November 2005
- Highest final position 6th (Division One), 1981/82
- Lowest final position 22nd (Division Four), 1974/75
Notable Former Players
Four Swansea-born men were named among the Football League's 100 legends, to mark the 100th season of League football in 1998. All four began their careers with the club. They were Ivor Allchurch, John Charles (signed by Leeds before making his first-team debut), Trevor Ford and Cliff Jones.
Ivor Allchurch is the subject of the first statue to be placed at the Liberty Stadium. Funded by the club's Supporters' Trust, it was unveiled in October 2005 and stands outside the ticket office.
Many of Swansea's greatest players were part of the squad that, between 1978 and 1981, won promotion from the old Fourth Division to the old First Division under John Toshack, who now manages the Welsh national team. These included goalkeeper Dai Davies, fans' favourite Alan Curtis, the late Robbie James, winger Leighton James, Yugoslavian international defenders Ante Rajkovic and Dzemal Hadziabdic (now coach of the Qatari national team) and Nigel Stevenson.
More recent players include long-serving goalkeeper Roger Freestone, whose Swansea career came to an end in 2004 just a handful of games short of the club appearance record, and Lee Trundle, whose flamboyant skills and impressive goalscoring record made him a firm favourite. Frank Lampard had a spell on loan from West Ham in the 1995-1996 season playing 11 games and scored 1 goal for the Swans before heading back to Upton Park
Giorgio Chinaglia was born in Italy but grew up in Cardiff and made 6 appearances for Swansea before playing in Italy and the USA, becoming NASL's top scorer ever.
One of the more notable players of the modern game to have played for Swansea City, is Merseyside Born Lee Trundle. After scoring 85 goals in 183 appearances during 4 years at The Swans Lee moved to Championship Side Bristol City for an undisclosed fee believed to be around £1,000,000
Allchurch voted 'Cult Hero'
In 2005, BBC Match of The Day condcuted a poll by football fans around the country to name their clubs 'Cult Hero'. Viewers voted Ivor Allchurch as Swansea City's all-time 'Cult Hero', with 76% of the vote favoured towards Ivor, a tribute to who is unarguably, Swansea City's greatest ever player.
Alan Curtis and Robbie James, two other Swansea City legends, came second and third respectively.
Gentle Giant Immortalised
On May 5, 2007, an emotional unveiling of a permanent memorial to one of Swansea's favourite footballing sons took place. Family and friends of the late, great footballer John Charles gathered at the Liberty Stadium before the match against Blackpool to see the bronze bust installed at its permanent home. Even though Charles never had the chance to play a professional game for Swansea, it's is recognition to one of the greatest footballers Britain, and particular Swansea, has ever produced.
Swansea City and its supporters are unofficially known as the 'Jacks'. One explanation for this name is that during the 17th century, sailors from Swansea were extremely well respected and any 'Swansea Jack' was allowed to join the crew based simply on the town's reputation for great seamen. Many, however, believe that the name originates from the renowned life-saving dog Swansea Jack.
The club's somewhat flamboyant mascot is Cyril the Swan who was joined in 2005 by Cybil, a doyenne of equal opportunity. The couple were "married" on the pitch at the Vetch Field as part of the pre-match entertainment at the last league game to be played at the ground, a 1-0 win over Shrewsbury Town F.C. during the 2004/05 season.
On 10 January 2006, striker Leon Knight became the first Swansea City player to score a hat-trick on his début for the club since Bob Latchford in August 1981, in fact scoring his hat-trick during the first 27 minutes of the game against Milton Keynes Dons at the Liberty Stadium.
Leon Knight's second hat-trick for the club, in the final game of the 2005-06 season at Chesterfield on 6 May 2006, completed another first. As Lee Trundle had scored a hat-trick in the home game against Chesterfield on 29 October 2005, this was the first time that Swansea players had scored hat-tricks in both home and away League fixtures against the same opponents in the same season.
The Liberty Stadium hosted it's first competitive match against Premiership opposition when Reading visited in August 2007. The visitors won 1-0 thanks to a Leroy Lita goal in extra time, despite having 10 men for over an hour of the match.