History of Aston Villa F.C. (1961–present)
Sun, 2019-May-26 02:15 UTC
Length - 5:43
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The featured article for Sunday, 26 May 2019 is History of Aston Villa F.C. (1961–present).
The history of Aston Villa F. C. from 1961 to the current season covers the fluctuating fortunes of the club during the 1960s and 1970s, the European Cup victory in 1982 and the present day EFL Championship club.
The late 1960s was a turbulent time for the club. The problems began when the club, under manager Dick Taylor, was relegated from the first tier of English football for the third time in 1967. Within two years, pressure from supporters led to the resignation of the board of directors. The club was then relegated to the Third Division. In the 1971–72 season, Aston Villa returned to the Second Division as champions with a record 70 points. In 1974 Ron Saunders was appointed manager, and by 1975 he led the club back into the First Division and into European competition. It continued to have much success under Saunders, winning the league in the 1980–81 season. Saunders' resignation halfway through the 1981–82 season came as a surprise, with the club in the quarter-final of the European Cup. He was replaced by his assistant manager Tony Barton who guided them to 1–0 victory over Bayern Munich in the European Cup final in Rotterdam. However, winning the cup marked a pinnacle, and the club fell steadily down the League standings over the next five years and was relegated in 1987. The club was promoted the following year, and achieved second place in the Football League in 1989.
Villa was one of the founding members of the Premier League in 1992 and finished runners-up to Manchester United in the inaugural season. The 1990s was a decade of inconsistency; the club had three different managers, and league positions were unpredictable, despite winning two League Cups. They reached the FA Cup Final for the first time since 1957 in 2000, but lost 1–0 to Chelsea in the last game to be played at the old Wembley Stadium. Villa's league position continued to fluctuate under various managers and, in the summer of 2006, David O'Leary left under acrimonious circumstances. Martin O'Neill arrived to a rapturous reception from team supporters. After 23 years as chair and largest shareholder, owning approximately 38% of the club, Doug Ellis decided to sell his stake to Randy Lerner, the owner of the NFL franchise Cleveland Browns. The arrival of a new owner and manager marked the start of sweeping changes throughout the club, including a new crest, a new kit sponsor and new players in the summer of 2007.
2007–08 saw Villa qualify for the Intertoto Cup. In the 2008–09 season they reached the group stage of the UEFA Cup for the first time in seven years. The first major final of the Randy Lerner era was the 2010 Football League Cup Final; Villa lost 2–1 to Manchester United. Martin O’Neill resigned before the 2010–11 season and was replaced by Gérard Houllier. After suffering from health problems, he was replaced by the former Birmingham City manager Alex McLeish. His contract was terminated at the end of the 2011–12 season after the team narrowly avoided relegation. On 28 February 2012, the club announced a financial loss of £53.9 million. Paul Lambert replaced McLeish in July 2012. Lerner put the club up for sale on 12 May 2014, with an estimated value of £200 million. In the 2014–15 season Aston Villa scored just 12 goals in 25 league games, the lowest in Premier League history, and Lambert was sacked in February 2015. Tim Sherwood replaced him and saved Villa from relegation in the 2014–15 season taking them to the 2015 FA Cup Final. He was fired in October 2015 and replaced by Rémi Garde who left in March 2016 with the club rooted in the bottom of the table. They were relegated from the Premier League on 16 April. In June 2016, Chinese businessman Tony Xia bought the club for £76 million. Roberto Di Matteo was appointed manager and was replaced shortly by Steve Bruce. In the 2017/18 season Villa lost the 2018 EFL Championship play-off Final at Wembley Stadium. In July 2018 Aston Villa were sold by Xia to Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens. They sacked Bruce and appointed Dean Smith.
This recording reflects the Wikipedia text as of 02:15 UTC on Sunday, 26 May 2019.
For the full current version of the article, see History of Aston Villa F.C. (1961–present) on Wikipedia.
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