Norwich City F.C. was formed after a meeting at the Criterion Café in Norwich on 17 June 1902 and played their first competitive match against Harwich & Parkeston, at Newmarket Road on 6 September 1902. They joined the Norfolk & Suffolk League for the 1902 – 1903 season, but following a FA Commission, the club was ousted from the amateur game in 1905, as it was deemed a professional organization. Later that year Norwich was elected to play in the Southern League. With increasing crowds, they were forced to leave Newmarket Road in 1908 and moved to The Nest, a disused chalk pit. The club’s original nickname was the Citizens, but this was superseded by 1907 by the more familiar Canaries after the club’s chairman (who was a keen breeder of canaries) dubbed his boys “The Canaries” and changed their strip to yellow and green. During the First World War, with football suspended and facing spiraling debts, City went into voluntary liquidation on 10 December 1917.
The song is in fact older than the club itself having probably been penned for Norwich Teachers or Caley’s FC in the 1890s, and used by clubs such as Swifians and Norwich CEYMS before being adopted by Norwich City. The writer of the song is often attributed to Albert T Smith who became a director of Norwich City when the club was founded in 1902, and the song was adopted by fans of the club. It is sung pre-match at Carrow Road and throughout the games that Norwich City play, home and away. Although the first use of the tune and song is disputed, it had been adopted by 1902 and it remains in use today in part if not the whole.
With a few minor revisions, notably adding the word “it” into the phrases “kick off” and “throw in”, what is currently sung is a modification of the original refrain:
:Kick it off, throw it in, have a little scrimmage,
- Keep it low, a splendid rush, bravo, win or die;
- On the ball, City, never mind the danger,
- Steady on, now’s your chance,
- Hurrah! We’ve scored a goal.
- City!, City!, City!
The club was founded in 1902. Since 1935, Norwich have played their home games at Carrow Road and have a long-standing and fierce rivalry with East Anglian rivals Ipswich Town, with whom they have contested the East Anglian derby 134 times since 1902. The fans’ song “On the Ball, City” is the oldest football chant in the world, written in 1890 and still sung today.
Norwich have won the League Cup twice, in 1962 and 1985. The club’s highest ever league finish came in 1992 – 1993 when it finished third in the top flight.
1902 – Present / Norwich City Football Club
The Canaries, Yellows
Norwich has a rich history, and they’re nickname originated from that history. In the 16th century when “The Strangers” (immigrants from The Netherlands) came over to England, they brought with them their pet Canary birds. The birds sang whilst the workers were at work, leading to them adopting the bird into the community. The historic story was brought through the club, and they’ve remained “The Canaries” ever since.
Premier League / 0
FA Cup / 0
Premier League – FA Cup Double / 0
1935 – Present / Carrow Road
1908 – 1935 / The Nest
1902 – 1908 / Newmarket Ground
1997 – Present / Delia Smith, Michael Wynn-Jones
*Blue is this team’s history