Walsall

Walsall Football Club is a professional association football club based in the town of Walsall, West Midlands, England. The team competes in EFL League Two, the fourth tier of the English football league system. The club's nickname, "The Saddlers", reflects Walsall's status as a traditional centre for saddle manufacture. Walsall moved into their Bescot Stadium in 1990, having previously played at nearby Fellows Park for almost a century. The team play in a red and white kit and their club crest features a swift. They hold rivalries with nearby Wolverhampton Wanderers and West Bromwich Albion, as well as farther away but more regularly contested rivalries with Coventry City, Shrewsbury Town and Port Vale.

The club was founded in 1888 as Walsall Town Swifts, an amalgamation of Walsall Town and Walsall Swifts. The club moved to the Football Alliance from the Midland Association the following year, before being invited to help found the Football League Second Division in 1892. They failed re-election in 1895, but were elected back into the Football League after one season in the Midland League. They failed re-election again in 1901 and this time spent two decades outside the Football League, primarily in the Birmingham & District League. Invited to help form the Football League Third Division North in 1921, they would remain in the third tier for the next 37 years before becoming founder members of the Fourth Division. Walsall won the Fourth Division title in 1959–60 and then secured promotion out of the Third Division the following season, though were relegated in 1963 and again in 1979.

Walsall won promotion out of the Fourth Division in 1979–80, but suffered two successive relegations after winning promotion into the Second Division at the end of the 1987–88 campaign. Promoted in 1994–95 and again in 1998–99, they spent four of the next five seasons in the second tier, punctuated by a successful third tier promotion campaign in 2000–01. Two relegations in three years left Walsall back in the fourth tier in 2006, but they secured an immediate promotion as 2006–07 League Two champions. Their first match at Wembley Stadium came in the 2015 Football League Trophy Final, which they lost to Bristol City, and they ended an 11-year stay in League One with relegation in 2019.

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Walsall