Historical Football Kits


English FA Cup Finalists 1980 - 1989

hillsborough memorial liverpoolDuring the 1980s two new names were added to the FA Cup, Coventry and Wimbledon while Queen's Park Rangers, Watford and Brighton all made their first appearances. Three finals in succession required replays between 1981 and 1983. Four times the cup went to London and three times it finished on Merseyside. The decade ended with an emotional triumph for Liverpool only weeks after the Hillsborough disaster in which 96 fans were crushed to death.


1979 - 1980

West Ham United 1 Arsenal 0

venue Wembley Stadium
date 10 May 1980

Another all-London final and yet another appearance for Arsenal in their yellow change shirts. West Ham took the initiative with a thirteenth minute goal and held out for the rest of a rather uninteresting game. The Hammers became the third Second Division side to win the FA Cup in eight years.


1980 - 1981

Tottenham Hotspur 3 Manchester City 2 (Replay after 1-1 draw)

venue Wembley Stadium
date 9 & 14 May

The first game at Wembley had little to recommend it, Hutchinson scoring at both ends to leave the scores level. The replay, played at Wembley for the first time, was a different story and has gone down as one of the great finals. Play flowed from the very beginning and the score was level at half-time. City scored a second four minutes after the interval with a penalty and with 20 minutes left, Garth Crooks equalised for Spurs. There followed one of the finest goals ever scored at Wembley. Tottenham's Argentine World Cup winner, Ricky Villa picked up the ball on the edge of the area: he dribbled past Caton, Ranson and then Caton for a second time before slipping the ball past the advancing Corrigan.


1981 - 1982

Tottenham Hotspur 1 Queen's Park Rangers 0 (Replay after 1-1 draw)

venue Wembley Stadium
date 22 & 27 May 1982

Another all-London final, another Second Division club and another replay. Spurs dominated the first game but there was no score after 90 minutes. Spurs took the lead in the second period of extra-time but Rangers, making their first appearance in the FA Cup final, equalised five minutes later. The replay took place at Wembley five days later and this time a penalty converted by Hoddle separated the sides. Rangers fought back and were the better side for the rest of the game but fortune was not on their side. They had a goal disallowed and later hit the bar but Spurs held on to retain the cup just as they had done in 1962.


1982 -1983

Manchester United 4 Brighton & Hove Albion 0 (Replay after 2-2 draw)

venue Wembley Stadium
date 21 & 26 May 1983

For the third year in succession a replay was needed to settle the final. Brighton, already relegated from Division One, put up a spirited display in the first game, snatching the lead after 14 minutes. United scored twice in the second half and seemed to made the game safe but Stevens scored an equaliser in the 87th minute. There was no score in extra time. In the replay, United's class showed and they demolished Albion with four goals.


1983 - 1984

Everton 2 Watford 0

venue Wembley Stadium
date 19 May 1984

For the second year in succession the final featured a team that had never appeared before. Watford had risen from the Fourth Division to the First under Graham Taylor's management and had high hopes of winning their first top level silverware. Everton were too strong for them, however, and with goals either side of half-time, they secured the cup. This was the first final in which teams were allowed to wear sponsored shirts.

Steve Flanagan adds that Kevin Richardson of Everton played in a long sleeved shirt without commemorative badge to cover a light-weight plaster cast on his arm


1984 - 1985

Manchester United 1 Everton 0 (Extra time played)

venue Wembley Stadium
date 18 May 1985

In 1985 Everton had won the League Championship and the European Cup Winners' Cup and were looking to retain the FA Cup for a unique treble. United, having been beaten 5-0 by Everton in the League, found themselves in the unfamiliar position of underdogs. The game was dull but erupted in the 78th minutes when the referee sent off United's Moran. United were spurred on by this incident and unleashed an all-out assault that culminated with a magnificent score from a 25 yard drive by Whiteside. Everton besieged the 10-man United for the last ten minutes but could not find a way through.


1985 - 1986

Liverpool 3 Everton 1

venue Wembley Stadium
date 10 May 1986

Everton's third consecutive FA Cup final appearance was a very special occasion, the first ever Merseyside derby. The 98,000 crowd was passionate and noisy and, at a time when fans were being segregated to prevent violence, fans mixed freely. Liverpool were League champions, Everton runners up. Everton dominated the early play but Liverpool gradually established their superiority with two goals from Ian Rush. The Blue's brief period as top dogs on Merseyside had come to an end.


1986 - 1987

Coventry City 3 Tottenham Hotspur 2 (Extra time played)

venue Wembley Stadium
date 16 May 1987

Coventry were appearing in their first FA Cup final while Spurs were looking for a record eighth win, having never lost in a final. The Londoners took an early lead and an avalanche looked on the cards. Coventry then equalised and Mabbutt later restored Spurs lead. Coventry then hit back and at 90 minutes the scores were level. Ironically, this fine match was won by a stroke of cruel luck. Spurs' captain Mabbutt stuck out a knee to block a cross in front of goal and the ball ballooned over Clemence in goal and into the net. For this match Coventry played in navy shorts instead of their usual white while Spurs unveiled their new kit for the following season, although the white shorts were replaced by navy ones when the new season started. Due to a mix up only half of the Spurs players wore sponsorship on their shirts.


1987 - 1988

Wimbledon 1 Liverpool 0

venue Wembley Stadium
date 14 May 1988

If Coventry had been unlikely winners last season, Wimbledon's triumph defied belief. Having risen from non-league obscurity to the top flight, the Don's approach was straightforward. Physical intimidation and long balls to fast forwards may not have pleased the purists but it was enough to embarrass technicality superior sides on more than one occasion. The Don's also did their homework and managed to stifle Liverpool's key player, John Barnes. Liverpool pressed hard in the first half and had a goal by Beardsley disallowed for offside. Then Sanchez beat the Liverpool defence to a high cross and his header looped over Grobelaar. Liverpool laid siege to the Dons but Beasant in the Wimbledon goal was having a superb game, even saving a penalty on the hour. Wimbledon absorbed everything that Liverpool could throw at them and another new name was engraved on the trophy.


1988 - 1989

Liverpool 3 Everton 2 (Extra time played)

venue Wembley Stadium
date 20 May 1989

Weeks before the final, 96 Liverpool fans were crushed to death during the semi-final at Hillsborough. There was no question on Merseyside that the final should go ahead and it was fitting that Everton should provide the opposition. The emotional occasion was graced by Liverpool playing magnificent football. Aldridge put the Reds ahead after four minutes and but for Neville Southall in the Everton goal, they could have had several more. With minutes left, Everton brought on Stuart McCall who promptly scored the equalising goal. Kenny Dalglish had kept Ian Rush on the bench for just such and emergency and now put him on in place of Aldridge. With fresh legs, Rush was able to dominate the Everton defence in extra-time and score the decisive goal.

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