Chelsea v Manchester City
The FA Community Shield sponsored by McDonald's
Sunday 12 August 2012
Villa Park, Aston Villa FC
We may think of Wembley Stadium as a kind of ‘permanent’ home for The FA Community Shield but this prestigious match has actually had 19 different venues. To confirm the point Villa Park will host this year’s showpiece – for only the third time in history – because Wembley is being used for matches in the Olympic football tournament over the next few weeks.
There have been 89 Shield fixtures, with just one going to a replay. It was played at a neutral ground or at the home ground of one of the competing teams until it was brought to Wembley in 1974 as part of FA Secretary Ted Croker’s idea for match between the reigning Football League Champions and FA Cup Winners as a curtain-raiser to the new season.
The original Wembley hosted 27 consecutive Shields. The first finished in a 1-1 draw between Leeds United (League Champions) and Liverpool (Cup Winners), the Merseysiders winning 6-5 on penalties at the end of a feisty affair that saw two players red-carded. In the last, in 2000, Chelsea beat Manchester United 2-0.
Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium, which is also on Olympic duty this summer, staged the next six Shields. Then it came back to Wembley in 2007 and an 80,000 crowd at the new stadium saw Manchester United beat Chelsea 3-0 on penalties after a 1-1 draw. So The Shield’s ‘permanent’ venues have hosted 38 matches between them. What about all the other matches?
Seventeen other grounds have been used. The first was Stamford Bridge in 1908, when Manchester United met Queens Park Rangers in the first Shield, and the last ‘guest host’ was Manchester City’s former home at Maine Road in 1973.
The eight grounds which have hosted the fixture on just one occasion are St James’ Park (1932), Roker Park (1936), Burnden Park (1958), Turf Moor (1960), Portman Road (1962), Anfield (1964), Elland Road (1969) and Filbert Street (1971).
Nine grounds have hosted on multiple occasions and they are…
Stamford Bridge in 1908-11, 1923, 1927, 1930, 1950, 1955 and 1970 (=10 matches)
Highbury in 1924, 1934, 1935, 1938, 1948, 1949 and 1953 (=7)
White Hart Lane in 1912, 1920, 1921, 1925, 1951 and 1961 (=6)
Old Trafford in 1922, 1928, 1952, 1957, 1965 and 1967 (=6)
Maine Road in 1926, 1937, 1956, 1968 and 1973 (=5)
Goodison Park in 1933, 1963 and 1966 (=3)
The Den in 1913 and 1929 (=2)
Molineux in 1954 and 1959 (=2)
Villa Park in 1931 and 1972 (=2)
Villa Park, an iconic FA Cup Semi-Final venue, has had Shield matches that featured Arsenal v West Bromwich Albion (1931) and Aston Villa v Manchester City (1972). Cliff Bastin, the Arsenal winger with 21 pre-war England caps, scored the only goal of the contest in ’31 and Francis Lee’s penalty for City was enough to lift The Shield in ’72.
Chelsea v Manchester City