2005–06 in English football

2005–06 in English football

The 2005–06 season was the 126th season of competitive football in England.


*The rebuilt Wembley Stadium was due to open in time for the FA Cup final in May. However, in August 2005, The Football Association reserved the Millennium Stadium as a backup, as there was some doubt whether Wembley would be ready. The doubts were confirmed on 21 February 2006, when The FA announced that the final would indeed be held at Millennium Stadium. On 31 March 2006 The FA confirmed that the new Wembley would not be opened until 2007.
*Two clubs opened new stadiums at the beginning of this season:
**Coventry CityRicoh Arena.
**Swansea CityLiberty Stadium.
*F.C. United of Manchester, formed by disgruntled Manchester United fans played their first competitive season, competing in the North West Counties Football League Division Two (level 10 of the English football league system), from which they gained promotion at the first time of asking. [http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_conf/4905488.stm BBC] .]
*Wigan Athletic, who earned promotion to the Premiership by finishing second in the Football League Championship, played their first ever season in the top division of English football and comfortably stayed up, staying clear from the threat of relegation all season.


*August 7 2005Chelsea claim the first silverware of the season when they beat Arsenal 2–1 at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff to win the FA Community Shield.
*August 26 2005- Liverpool F.C. win the UEFA Super Cup beating PFC CSKA Moscow 3-1.
*September 7 2005Northern Ireland take a historic 1–0 over England at Windsor Park, Belfast. Strengthening calls for Sven-Göran Eriksson's resignation.
*October 8 2005England defeat Austria 1–0 at Old Trafford, with the Netherlands' defeating the Czech Republic the same night, thus assuring England automatic qualification for the 2006 World Cup, either as the top team in their qualifying group or one of the top two second-placed European teams.
*October 12 2005 — England defeat Poland 2–1 at Old Trafford to finish top of their World Cup qualifying group.
*October 17, 2005 - Middlesbrough defender Abel Xavier is banned from all football after failing a drugs test.
*October 28, 2005 - Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott gives final approval for Brighton & Hove Albion to build Falmer Stadium, now scheduled to open in 2008.
*October 29, 2005 - Manchester United become the first team to score 1000 goals since the start of the Premiership in 1992-93.
*November 6, 2005 - Manchester United become the first team to beat Chelsea in 41 Premiership matches, with a 1-0 victory at Old Trafford, after a Darren Fletcher header.
*November 18, 2005 - Roy Keane leaves Manchester United by mutual consent, ending his 12-year association with the club.
*November 24, 2005 - Alain Perrin is sacked as manager of Portsmouth.
*December 3, 2005 - Harry Redknapp walks out of Southampton after being refused permission to discuss terms with Portsmouth over returning as manager.
*December 7, 2005 - Harry Redknapp is appointed manager of Portsmouth for the second time with a contract until the end of the season.
*December 22, 2005 - George Burley is appointed Harry Redknapp's replacement at Southampton.
*January 4, 2006 - Alexandre Gaydamak takes a 50% stake in Portsmouth alongside Milan Mandaric.
*January 8, 2006 - Burton Albion of the Conference National hold Manchester United to a historic 0-0 draw in the FA Cup Third Round, earning a lucrative replay at Old Trafford on January 18, 2006 which they lose 5-0.
*January 20, 2006 - The Premiership formally charges Portsmouth with "tapping up" Harry Redknapp.
*January 23, 2006 - The FA announces that Sven-Göran Eriksson will leave his post as England national coach after the 2006 FIFA World Cup.
*January 25, 2006 - Craig Levein is sacked as manager of Leicester City.
*January 30, 2006 - Phil Brown is sacked as manager of Derby County. Academy boss Terry Westley is appointed interim manager the next day, with player Paul Peschisolido acting as his assistant.
*February 2, 2006 - Graeme Souness is sacked as manager of Newcastle United, and Glenn Roeder was made caretaker manager with Alan Shearer his assistant manager.
*February 4, 2006 - Alan Shearer becomes Newcastle United's top goalscorer of all time, scoring his 201st goal for the club, against Portsmouth at St. James' Park, beating Jackie Milburn's 200 goal tally which had stood for 49 years.
*February 11, 2006 - Middlesbrough comfortably defeat reigning premiership champions Chelsea 3-0 at the Riverside Stadium - the first time ever José Mourinho's Chelsea have lost by more than a single goal.
*February 18, 2006 - Liverpool beat Manchester United in the F.A. Cup for the first time since 1921. The draw was a 5th round matchup.
*February 21, 2006 - The FA announce that the 2006 FA Cup final, set for May 13, will be held at Millennium Stadium, as the builders of the new Wembley Stadium are unable to assure that it will be ready for the match. They also announce that the national team's pre-World Cup friendlies originally scheduled for Wembley will instead be held at Old Trafford.
*February 21, 2006 - A Football League under-21 team, composed of players from the Football League's three divisions, beats a Lega Nazionale Professionisti under-21 team, composed of players from Serie B, 1-0 at the KC Stadium.
*February 26, 2006 - Manchester United defeat Wigan Athletic 4-0 at the Millennium Stadium to win the Carling Cup.
*March 6, 2006 - Mick McCarthy is sacked as manager of Sunderland after his team accumulated just 10 points in 28 matches, with Kevin Ball made caretaker manager for the remainder of the season.
*March 25, 2006 - Reading became the first side to be promoted to the 2006-07 FA Premier League campaign after drawing 1-1 at Leicester. It will be The Royals' first ever season in England's top flight.
*April 1, 2006 - Reading win The Football League after the combination of Reading defeating Derby County and Sheffield United being held to a draw means that Reading can not be overtaken.
*April 14, 2006 - Sunderland were relegated from the Premiership after a 0-0 draw with Manchester United at Old Trafford. This is the first relegation in the league.
*April 15, 2006 - Sheffield United became the second side to secure promotion to the Premiership after they beat Cardiff City while Watford and Leeds United only drew with Wolves and champions Reading respectively.
*April 15, 2006 - Accrington Stanley regained their Football League status 44 years after the previous club of the same name lost it due to bankruptcy, after they beat Woking to win the Conference title.
*April 17, 2006 - Sheffield Wednesday's 2-0 win at Brighton & Hove Albion ensured that the trio of Brighton, Crewe Alexandra and Millwall are all relegated from the Championship.
*April 17, 2006 - Alan Shearer plays his last competitive match against, rather fittingly, Sunderland, after a Julio Arca tackle tore his medial collateral ligament.
*April 20, 2006 - Altrincham of the Conference had 18 points deducted for fielding an ineligible player thirteen times. This points deduction relegates the club to the Conference North.
*April 22, 2006 - Carlisle United secured promotion to League One after a 1-1 draw at Mansfield while Leyton Orient were also held to a draw by the same scoreline at Lincoln City.
*April 22, 2006 - Walsall were relegated to League Two after losing 1-3 at home to Huddersfield Town and Rotherham United drew with Scunthorpe United.
*April 29, 2006 - Chelsea successfully retained their Premiership title after they beat Manchester United 3-0.
*April 29, 2006 - West Bromwich Albion are relegated from the Premiership after Portsmouth won 2-1 away at Wigan Athletic. Birmingham City are also relegated after Portsmouth's victory combined with their 0-0 draw with Newcastle United.
*April 29, 2006 - Charlton Athletic manager Alan Curbishley announces that he will resign at the end of the season, ending a 15-year long tenure as manager at The Valley.
*April 29, 2006 - Southend United secured promotion from League One after they drew 2-2 at Swansea City while Brentford also drew against Hartlepool United. Also in League One, Swindon Town are relegated to League Two after they could only draw 1-1 against Bristol City.
*April 29, 2006 - Northampton Town secured promotion from League Two after beating Chester City 1-0. Rushden & Diamonds were relegated to the Conference when they lost 2-0 away to Boston United and other results went against them.
*April 30, 2006 - Reading broke Sunderland's record for most points in any professional English league, beating Queens Park Rangers 2-1 to finish on 106 points.
*May 4, 2006 - Current Middlesbrough manager Steve McClaren signs a four-year contract agreeing to succeed Sven-Göran Eriksson as England head coach after the World Cup. The contract begins on August 1.
*May 6, 2006 - Southend United, after defeating Bristol City, become League One champions, while Colchester United secure the second automatic place to The Championship, they will play in the top two tiers in English football for the first time in their history after their promotion. Hartlepool United and Milton Keynes Dons are relegated to League Two.
*May 6, 2006 - Oxford United lose their league status after 44 years following a 3-2 defeat by Leyton Orient, who are promoted to League One.
*May 7, 2006 - Sunderland finish the season on 15 points, the lowest points total ever in top flight English football since 3 points for a win was introduced in the 1981-82 season.
*May 9, 2006 - Roy Keane's testimonial is played at Old Trafford, with Manchester United beating Celtic 1-0 thanks to a second half Cristiano Ronaldo goal.
*May 10, 2006 - Middlesbrough lose the UEFA Cup final 4-0 to Sevilla in Steve McClaren's last game in charge at the Philips Stadion in Eindhoven.
*May 11, 2006 - Alan Shearer's testimonial is played at St James' Park, with a Newcastle XI beating Celtic 3-2, with Shearer scoring the winning penalty.
* - Joe Royle leaves Ipswich "by mutual consent"
*May 13, 2006 - Liverpool won the 125th FA Cup final beating West Ham 3-1 on penalties after a thrilling 3-3 draw after extra time.
*May 16, 2006 - Lincoln City became the first team to lose four consecutive play-off competitions following a 3-1 aggregate defeat to neighbours Grimsby Town in the League Two semi-finals.
*May 17, 2006 - Arsenal lost in the UEFA Champions League final to Barcelona 2-1 in the Stade de France. Jens Lehmann was sent off controversially after fouling Samuel Eto'o and Ludovic Giuly put the ball into the back off the net.
*May 20, 2006 - Hereford United gain promotion to League Two after beating Halifax Town 3-2 in the Conference Playoff Final, after extra time.
*May 21, 2006 - Watford gain promotion to the FA Premier League after defeating Leeds 3-0 in the Championship play-off final.
*May 27, 2006 - Barnsley win promotion to the Championship after overcoming Swansea City in the League One play-off final. They won 4-3 on penalties after both sides remained level at 2-2 after extra time.
*May 28, 2006 - Cheltenham Town wins promotion to the League One by defeating Grimsby Town 1-0 in the League Two play-off final.
*June 2, 2006 - Billy Davies leaves Preston North End to become manager of Derby County.
*June 4, 2006 - Scarborough are relegated from the Nationwide Conference for a breach of league rules. They take Altrincham's relegation place.

National team

England qualified for the Football World Cup 2006, after finishing top of European Qualifying Group 6.

League tables

FA Premier League

Chelsea won the Premiership title by an 8-point margin after fighting off a late challenge by runners-up Manchester United. The other five European places went to Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham United and Blackburn Rovers.

Middlesbrough dipped seven places to 14th place in the final table, but did reach the UEFA Cup final - the first European final in their history. Also dipping seven places were Manchester City, who finished 15th, while Aston Villa slipped six places to 16th.

Sunderland were relegated with a Premiership record low of 3 wins and 15 points, while West Bromwich Albion and Birmingham City both hit the 30-point mark but were unable to avoid relegation. Portsmouth had spent almost the entire season in the relegation zone, but they stayed up after assuring their safety in their penultimate match of the season.

Football League Two

Carlisle United were another side who earned a second successive promotion, only two years after a relegation from the League that some predicted would see the end of the club. Northampton Town joined them, making up for two seasons of play-off disappointment, and Leyton Orient ended a decade in the bottom division by earning promotion on nearly the last minute of the season. The side that they pushed out of the automatic promotion places, Grimsby Town, lost 1-0 to Cheltenham Town in the play-off final at the Millennium Stadium.

Rushden and Diamonds failed to improve on the previous season, and paid the price with relegation to the Conference. Oxford United joined them, despite the return of manager Jim Smith, and became the first former winners of a major trophy to be relegated to the Conference.* Deducted 1 point for fielding an ineligible player

Non-League Football

Transfer deals

ummer transfer window

The summer transfer window ran from the end of the previous season until 31 August.

January transfer window

The mid-season transfer window ran from 1 to 31 January 2006.

"For subsequent transfer deals see List of English football transfers 2006-07"

End of season retirements

* Alan Shearer (Newcastle United)
* Dennis Bergkamp (Arsenal)
* Nigel Martyn (Everton)
* Muzzy Izzet (Birmingham City)
* Gareth Southgate (Middlesbrough)

Famous Debutants

* Theo Walcott appeared as a second half substitute for Southampton as they drew with Wolverhampton Wanderers on the opening day of the season. The 16-year old ended the season as part of the England 2006 World Cup squad and with Arsenal.
* Powerful defender Micah Richards breaks into Manchester City's side as a 17-year old, his first appearance being in a 1-0 defeat at Arsenal in October 2005.


*Noel Cantwell, 72, was a Republic of Ireland international at left-back during the 1950s and 1960s. He also captained Manchester United to F.A Cup glory in 1963. As a manager he led Coventry City to their only European campaign in 1969-70.
*Johnny Haynes, 71, former England and Fulham midfielder, who became the first English footballer to be paid £100 a week, died after suffering a brain haemorrhage at the wheel of his car which resulted in a head-on collision with another vehicle.
*George Swindin, 90, was a former goalkeeper of Arsenal in the immediate postwar years. He helped them win two league titles and one F.A Cup. After hanging up his gloves, he served Arsenal as manager but was less successful.
*George Best, 59, Northern Irish born striker who enjoyed the early and most successful years of his career Manchester United, died as a result of multiple organ failure three years after he underwent a liver transplant, the result of more than 30 years of heavy drinking. Personal problems meant that he played his last game for United at the age of 27, but he continued at various smaller clubs - including a brief spell with the Los Angeles Aztecs in America - until the age of 37. His death dominates news bulletins and his funeral is unusually shown live on the BBC.
*Ted Ditchburn, 84, former England and Tottenham goalkeeper.
*Mark Philo, 21, Wycombe winger, was killed in a car crash.
*Ron Greenwood, 84, former West Ham and England manager. He managed West Ham to F.A Cup glory in 1964 and Cup Winners Cup success a year later, as well as providing the 1966 England World Cup winning team with three key players. Greenwood later managed the England team, achieving qualification for Euro 80 and the 1982 World Cup before retiring from football.
*Peter Osgood, 59, former England, Chelsea and Southampton player, died of a heart attack while attending a family funeral. He was a key player in Chelsea's 1970 F.A Cup and 1971 Cup Winners Cup triumphs, and won another F.A Cup medal in 1976 with his next club Southampton.
*John Lyall, 66, former West Ham United and Ipswich Town manager, died of a heart attack. He completed his first season in management at West Ham with F.A Cup glory in 1975, winning the trophy again in 1980 and taking West Ham to their highest ever league position - third - in 1986. He was sacked when West Ham were relegated in 1989, but make a comeback the following year with Ipswich Town. Lyall took Ipswich into the inaugural Premier League as Second Division champions in 1992, and remained in charge for another two-and-half years before he was sacked in December 1994. Lyall never returned to management after his dismissal from Ipswich.
*Brian Labone, 66, former Everton captain who played in Harry Catterick's successful 1960s side, died of a heart attack. He helped them win the F.A Cup in 1964 and 1966 as well as the league title in 1963 and 1970. Labone was also capped 26 times by England between 1962 and 1970, but did not make the squad for England's victorious 1966 World Cup campaign.


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