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Club History

York City Team Photo 1959

Established in 1922, York City Football Club is a passionate, proud club with football and community spirit at the heart of everything it does. We aspire to welcome, support and represent our entire community. As well as a full-time professional men's first team, who operate under Steve Watson and his team, YCFC has a successful Ladies Team, Youth Team, Academy and Foundation.

The Foundation works to support the local community by providing sport and physical activity; educational; social and healthy lifestyle opportunities, ensuring that our contributions have a realistic opportunity of making a positive impact.



The present club was formed in 1922 and prior to their election to Division Three North of the Football League in 1929 played in the Midland League. They remained in the Northern Section until 1958 when they became one of the original members of the Fourth Division. (During the Second World War when the League was suspended from1939 until 1946 the club operated in the various wartime competitions). Over the next 45 seasons (1958-2004) the club won promotion six times. In 1958/59 and 1964/65 they moved up to the third tier only to suffer immediate relegation.

City again gained promotion in 1970/71 and in 1974 reached the Second Division (Championship) for the first and to date only time in their 91 year old history. In two seasons in the second tier of English football the club competed with Manchester United, Chelsea, Aston Villa, Sunderland, West Bromwich Albion and Nottingham Forest amongst others and in 1974/75 achieved their highest ever League placing when they finished 15th. The following campaign, however, they were relegated and by 1977 were back in the Fourth.

In 1983/84 they won their first major honour when they finished runaway Fourth Division champions with 101 points becoming the first club in Football League history to reach three figures.

City’s last promotion success in the League was via the playoffs in 1992/93 when on the club’s first ever visit to Wembley Stadium they beat Crewe Alexandra in a penalty shoot out.

On the other side of the coin City suffered relegation six times and over the years had to make seven applications for re-election back to the League. In 2004 the club finished bottom of Division Three (League Two) and dropped down to the Conference bringing to an end 75 years membership of the Football League. During that time they had spent two seasons in the second tier and 16 in the third tier.

In eight years in the Conference City reached the promotion play offs three times. In 2006/07 they lost at the semi-final stage and in 2009/10 went down to Oxford United in the final and then, on May 20th 2012, promotion back to the Football League was achieved when Luton Town were beaten 2-1 at Wembley. This latter game marked the club’s 4th appearance at the national stadium in four years and completed a league and cup double that season.

After four years back in the Football League, York dropped back into the Conference finishing in 24th place in League 2 in 2015/16. The following season City suffered a second successive relegation, after finishing in the final relegation place in the National League and will compete in regional non-league football in 2017/18 for the first time since 1929.


Cup History

Over the years City have earned themselves the title of “giantkillers” and when in the Third Division North reached both the quarter finals and semi-finals of the FA Cup.

En route to the 6th round in 1937/38 they defeated First Division clubs West Bromwich Albion and Middlesbrough before bowing out to Huddersfield Town in a replay at Leeds Road. The game against Town at York attracted Bootham Crescent’s record crowd of 28,123.

In 1954/55 City beat top flight clubs Blackpool and Tottenham Hotspur and in the semi-final drew 1-1 at Hillsborough against Newcastle United to become the first Third Division side to appear in an FA Cup semi final replay which was lost 2-0 at Roker Park. In the mid 1980’s the club twice reached the 5th round of the competition losing on each occasion in a replay to Liverpool.

In the Football League Cup they reached the quarter finals in 1961/62 and in the mid 1990’s beat Premier clubs Manchester United and Everton in successive seasons.

Whilst in the Conference City won the FA Trophy in 2011/12 beating Newport County AFC 2-0 at Wembley to lift their first major cup competition and were runners up in 2008/09. The Minstermen repeated the feat in 2016/17 when they defeated Macclesfield Town 3-2 to win non-league's premier cup competition for the second time under Gary Mills. The club have won the North Riding Senior Cup 11 times.


Clubman of the Year (Billy Fenton Memorial Trophy)

Named after the club’s flying left winger of the 1950s the trophy was first presented in 1973/74 and the first recipient was Phil Burrows. Over the years Gordon Staniforth, Keith Walwyn, John MacPhail, Jon McCarthy, Barry Jones and Alan Fettis won it twice and in 2013 Danny Parslow became the first player to lift the trophy for a third time. The current holder of the trophy is the Fans for their support during the pandemic.

Click here to view all previous winners.

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