Founded: 1874 Stadium: Villa Park (Birmingham), Capacity: 42,785
Aston Villa FC is based in Aston, Birmingham. Founded in 1874, they have played at their home ground, Villa Park since 1897. Aston Villa were one of the founder members of the Football League in 1888 and the Premier League in 1992. Villa are one of the English clubs to have won the European Cup in 1981-82. Aston Villa FC are still the major Club of England’s second largest city. They have a fierce local rivalry with Birmingham City. Their traditional club badge is of a rampant lion. Villa are supported by Prince William and David Cameron. The Scottish lion and the word “Prepared” have been part of the Aston Villa crest since the club’s foundation in 1874 and modifications have been few. The club chairman in 1894 William McGregor played an important role both for the club and for English football in general. McGregor had been enticed to Aston Villa in the first place by a strong connection to Birmingham’s Scottish community. McGregor was himself Scottish and felt a kinship with Villa, so in 1877 he chose to work for them. The Scottish identity assumed its greatest importance when he decided the lion from Scotland’s royal crest should be the emblem of Aston Villa. Thus for over a hundred years the Scottish national crest has symbolised one of England’s most successful clubs. bIn May 2007 a new badge was revealed which includes a star to represent the European Cup win in 1982, and has a light blue background behind Villa’s ‘lion rampant’. The traditional motto “Prepared” remains in the badge, and the name Aston Villa has been shortened to AVFC, FC having been omitted from the previous badge. The lion is now unified as opposed to fragmented lions of the past.