Also known as the
Tangerines, Blackpool FC was formed in 1887 but did not play
in the football league until 1903. Instead, the early years were
spent playing friendly games, against the likes of Kirkham, Marton,
South Shore, and Fleetwood Rangers.
In December 1899, fours years before joining the football league,
Blackpool and Shore Shores football clubs amalgamated, the new club
being known simply as Blackpool FC.
Life in the second division was not easy for Blackpool as the club
was often in debt and had few loyal supporters who
came to watch games week in week out.
However, the 1929/30 season saw Blackpool's luck change when the
team won promotion to Division One as champions. This stint
was short-lived and Blackpool found themselves back in the second
division within three seasons.
But in 1936/37 the club earned a place back in the top flight, where
they would stay for some 25 years.
Football league fixtures were abandoned during the Second World
War, but with the signing of striker Stanley Matthews, the
post-war years brought success, prosperity and supporters to Blackpool
In 1953 came the Tangerines’ most famous match when
the team won the FA Cup final 4-3 at Wembley despite going two goals
down against Bolton Wanderers. The game has since been dubbed the
‘Matthews Final’ in recognition of The Wizard of the
Dribble’s role in the match.
During these heydays supporters flocked to see the team play, at
home and away, making Blackpool the most popular visiting side in
the land in seasons 1950/51, 1954/55 and 1955/56. An average of
40,000 fans travelled the country during those seasons to watch
the Tangerines in action.
Sadly, Blackpool’s success did not last and the team were
relegated to Division Two in 1966/67, and since then there have
been highs and lows for the club. The Tangerines currently play
in Coca Cola League Division One, where they face teams such
as Oldham Athletic and Hartlepool.
Blackpool FC has occupied a number of grounds in the town, the first
being at the Royal Palace Gardens, where they played until August
1897 when the club moved to the Athletic Ground in Stanley Park.
These days they play at the Bloomfield Road Ground [map].