On 10 August, Burnley Football Club played their first-ever match as an association football club against local team Burnley Wanderers, winning 4–0. The team played the match in a blue and white kit, the colors of the former rugby club, at their home ground Calder Vale, which was also adopted from the rugby club. Burnley’s first competitive game was in October 1882 against Astley Bridge in the Lancashire Cup, that game ending in an 8–0 defeat. In February 1883, the club was invited by Burnley Cricket Club to move to a pitch adjacent to the cricket field at Turf Moor. Both clubs have remained there since, and only Lancashire rivals Preston North End have continuously occupied the same ground for longer.
Burnley endured a tense 1959–60 season in which Tottenham Hotspur and Wolverhampton Wanderers were the other protagonists in the chase for the league title. The team ultimately clinched their second First Division championship on the last day of the season with a 2–1 victory at Manchester City, with goals from Brian Pilkington and Trevor Meredith. Although the team had been in contention all season, Burnley had never led the table until this last match was played out. Potts only used 18 players throughout the whole season, as John Connelly became Burnley’s top scorer with 20 goals. The Lancastrians’ title-winning squad cost only £13,000 (equivalent to £300,000 in 2020) in transfer fees — £8,000 on McIlroy in 1950 and £5,000 on left-back Alex Elder in 1959. The other players all came from the Burnley youth academy. The town of Burnley became the smallest to have an English first-tier champion since it counted 80,000 inhabitants. After the season finished, Burnley went to the United States to participate in the inaugural international football tournament in North America, the International Soccer League.
Burnley have been champions of England twice, in 1920 – 1921 and 1959 – 1960, have won the FA Cup once, in 1913 – 1914, and have won the FA Charity Shield twice, in 1960 and 1973. They have been runners-up in the First Division twice, in 1919 – 2020 and 1961 – 1962, and FA Cup runners-up twice, in 1946 – 1947 and 1961 – 1962. The team also reached the quarter-finals of the 1960 – 1961 European Cup. Burnley are one of only five sides to have won all four professional divisions of English football, along with Wolverhampton Wanderers, Preston North End, Sheffield United and Portsmouth.
The team have played home games at Turf Moor since February 1883, after they had moved from their original premises at Calder Vale. The club colours of claret and blue were adopted before the 1910–11 season in tribute to the then Football League champions, Aston Villa; they are today nicknamed “the Clarets”, due to the dominant colour of the home shirts. Burnley’s current emblem is based on the town’s coat of arms. The team have a long-standing rivalry with nearby club Blackburn Rovers, with whom they contest the East Lancashire Derby.
1883 – Present / Burnley Football Club
1882 – 1883 / Rugby Club Burnley Rovers
Burnley is one of the oldest teams in the Football League. Founded in 1882, they were one of the 12 founding members of the Football League in 1888. Their nickname comes directly from the color of their kit, “The Clarets.”
Premier League / 2
FA Cup / 1
Premier League – FA Cup Double / 0
1883 – Present / Turf Moor
1882 – 1883 / Calder Vale
2015 – Present / Mike Garlick
*Blue is this team’s history