Football is the most popular sport in the world and has been played across the globe for centuries. Have you ever wondered when the first Football game was played? Keep reading to find out all about the first-ever Football game, along with the first international and women’s matches.
Origins of Football
Before the first rules of Football were written down by Ebenezer Cobb Morley in 1863, Football was a sport largely played by unorganized groups of people. The sport itself has roots that travel as far back as Ancient China, Greece, and Rome, but its modern origins go back to England, where the sport we now know as Football was developed in the 1800s.
Since Football was largely an unorganized folk sport before Ebenezer Cobb Morley’s rules, it is hard to say when the first actual game of Football occurred. However, we can say that the first organized game of Football occurred after the official rules of the sport were first set down. Read on below to learn more about the first official game of what would become modern Football.
First Organized Football Game
The first organized Football game was played on December 19, 1863, in London, England, between Barnes Football Club (BFC) and Richmond Football Club (RFC), which ended in a 0-0 tie. This first game followed the “13 Original Rules of the FA”, which were written by Ebenezer Cobb Morley, who was the captain of Barnes Football Club and set up the game with Richmond. This first game gave the FA a good basis on how to improve the game’s organization, and this was a great benchmark for the progression of Football in general.
First International Football Game
The first international Football game was on November 30, 1872, between England and Scotland in Glasgow, Scotland. This first-ever international match ended in a 0-0 draw with over 4,000 spectators in the crowd. Leading up to this game, there were quite a few unofficial meetings between the two teams as impromptu games. However, this game was recorded as the first official one. International games were, and still are, composed of the best players from each nation. The price of admission for this first-ever international appearance by any team from around the world was one shilling, the British currency at the time.
First Professional Football Game
The first professional Football game was played during the 1885-86 season of the English Football Association. The year prior, the FA had sanctioned Preston North End for paying their players. The club admitted the charges but maintained that other clubs were doing the same. Under pressure to allow it, the FA legalized paying Football players before the start of the 1885-86 season. The Blackburn Rovers were the first team to register as a professional club in 1885.
First Women’s Football Game
The first professional women’s Football game took place in London, England, on March 23, 1895, at Crouch End Athletic Ground. This game became a very significant stepping stone for women in the world of sports as it received a major amount of publicity, with many papers reporting it and over 10,000 people in attendance as history was being made. This was the first-ever women’s Football game to be sponsored as well as officially sanctioned by a governing body, which was huge at the time. Reporters coined the game as “highly entertaining.” The game ended in a 7-1 win, with North beating South in the end.