West Bromwich Albion quick review - season 2013/2014
West Bromwich Albion Football Club, also known as West Brom, The Baggies, The Throstles, Albion or WBA, are an English professional football club based in West Bromwich in the West Midlands. The club was formed in 1878 and have played at their home ground since 1900.
Albion were one of the founding members of The Football League in 1888 and have spent the majority of their existence in the top tier of English football. They have been champions of England once, in 1919–20, but have had more success in the FA Cup, with five wins. The first came in 1888, the year the league was founded, and the most recent in 1968, their last major trophy. They also won the Football League Cup at the first attempt in 1966. The club's longest consecutive period in the top division was between 1949 and 1973, and from 1986 to 2002 they spent their longest ever period out of the top division. The 2012–13 season is their seventh season in the Premier League since 2002.
The team has played in blue and white stripes for most of the club's history. Albion have a number of long-standing rivalries with other West Midland clubs; their traditional rivals have always been Aston Villa, but more recently their major rivalry has been with Wolverhampton Wanderers, with whom they contest the Black Country derby.
West Bromwich Albion's record victory was their 12–0 league win against Darwen on 4 April 1892. This is still the widest margin of victory for a game in the top-flight of English football, although the record was equalled by Nottingham Forest when they beat Leicester Fosse by the same scoreline in 1909. Albion's biggest FA Cup victory came when they beat Chatham 10–1 on 2 March 1889. The club's record league defeat was a 3–10 loss against Stoke City on 4 February 1937, while a 0–5 defeat to Leeds United on 18 February 1967 represents Albion's heaviest FA Cup loss.
The West Bromwich Albion Supporters Club has branches throughout the United Kingdom, as well as in Ireland, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Malta and Thailand. Albion's "club anthem" is The Lord's my Shepherd, a setting of Psalm 23. Supporters of the team celebrate goals by bouncing up and down and chanting "Boing Boing". This dates back to the 1992–93 season, when the team was promoted from the new Second Division. In recent years fans of the team have celebrated the end of each season by adopting a fancy dress theme for the final away match, including dressing as vikings in 2004 in honour of Player of the Season Thomas Gaardsøe. In 2002–03 Albion's fans were voted the best in the Premier League by their peers, while in the BBC's 2002 "national intelligence test" Test the Nation, they were found to be "more likely to be smarter than any other football supporters, registering an average score of 138".
Historically, Albion's greatest rivals have always been Aston Villa from nearby Birmingham. The two clubs contested three FA Cup Finals between 1887 and 1895 (Villa winning two and Albion one). More recently however, most Albion fans have begun to see Wolverhampton Wanderers as their main rivals – particularly between 1989 and 2002 when Albion and Villa were never in the same division but Albion were in the same division as Wolves for 11 out of 14 seasons. However with Albion and Villa being in different divisions for so many years, the rivalry has filtered out is less-heated as Aston Villa supporters consider Birmingham City as their main local rivals and not Albion despite geographical distance between the two clubs.
Albion and Wolves have contested the Black Country derby more than 150 times; their first major clash was an FA Cup tie in 1886. The rivalry came to prominence when the two clubs contested the league title in 1953–54, and during the 1990s it intensified to new heights among supporters, with both clubs languishing in Division One for much of the decade and only local pride at stake. Moreover, in 2002 Albion came from being 11 points adrift to overhaul Wolves to gain promotion. The rivalry was further heightened after the sides met in the play-offs in 2007. A 2004 survey by Planetfootball.com confirmed that the majority of both Albion and Wolves supporters consider the other to be their main rival. A less-heated rivalry also exists with Birmingham City, with whom Albion contested the 1931 FA Cup final, as well as a semi-final in 1968. Walsall are seen as lesser rivals, having played in a lower division than Albion for most of their history. The largest hooligan firm who associate themselves with Albion are known as Section Five.
Tony Brown holds a number of Albion's club records. He has made the most appearances overall for the club (720), as well as most appearances in the league (574), FA Cup (54) and in European competition (17). Brown is the club's top scorer in the league (218), the FA Cup (27) and in Europe (8). He is also the club's record scorer overall, with 279 goals. W. G. Richardson scored 328 goals for the club, but this includes 100 during the Second World War, which are not normally counted towards competitive totals. Richardson holds the club record for most league goals in a single season, scoring 39 times in 1935–36.
Albion's most capped international player, taking into account only those caps won whilst at the club, is Zoltán Gera. He has appeared 34 times for Hungary as a West Bromwich Albion player, earning 74 caps in total. Jesse Pennington is the club's most capped England international, with 25 caps. The highest transfer fee paid by the club is £6.5 million to Reading for Shane Long in August 2011. The record transfer from Albion to another club is that of Curtis Davies to Aston Villa in July 2008, for a fee of £8.5 million.
12/13 West Bromwich Albion Home Shirt
12/13 West Bromwich Albion Away Shirt
West Bromwich Albion 12/13 team squad
West Bromwich Albion