Learn more about the history of soccer.

Explained: No More Replays in the FA Cup

April 20, 2024

Now that the Football Association has done away with replays in the FA Cup, many are wondering why and what it means. We'll try to explain it here. The bottom line, as usual, is that it's all about money and power, both of which go together and flow from television. UEFA and the big clubs…

Copa América 2024: What is It, History, and How to Watch in the US

March 29, 2024

For the second time ever, the United States will host the Copa América. But what is the Copa América, how does it fit into the organization of world soccer, and what is the history of the competition? (Above image by CesarQuintt, CC0 via Wikimedia Commons) Looking for Copa América tickets? Fill out the form at…

a group of football supporters in an otherwise empty stadium

What is the Copa del Rey?

November 11, 2022

(Disclaimer: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning Groundhopper Guides may receive some compensation if you make a purchase after clicking one of these links.) The Copa del Rey, or King's Cup, is the domestic cup competition in Spanish football -- the equivalent of the English FA Cup, or the Coppa Italia or…

Match of the Day: A History and Appreciation

July 11, 2022

Match of the Day is as much a part of English football culture as Monday Night Football is to that in the United States -- in some ways, even more so, as it largely stands alone in its field, and it even draws us back into the past. Its music is recognizable to probably everyone…

Soccer in the Tokyo Summer Olympics

August 7, 2021

Groundhopper Guides has a look at soccer in the Olympics: the history, the men’s and women’s fields, and why you did not see "England" represented on either side in the 2020 Summer Olympics (which took place one year late due to Covid) in Tokyo, Japan.  Updated August 7 to include full Tokyo 2020 results. History…

Wembley Stadium Euro 2020

Euro 2020: What is It, History, and How to Watch in the US

June 9, 2021

The summer of 2021 will see, finally, the men's 2020 European Championships played out in several countries -- a year late because of the pandemic. But what are the Euros, how do they fit into the organization of world soccer, and what is the history of the competition? What is UEFA Euro 2020? The official…

Making History: Female Soccer Referees

June 3, 2021

The past three years in particular have seen many historical firsts in the appointment of female referees to take charge of men's football competitions. Groundhopper Alethea takes a look at the history of women officiating the men's game. (Photo at top: Stéphanie Frappart and her assistants Manuela Nicolosi and Michelle O'Neill before the UEFA Super…

fans in a stadium folding up a flag reading Chelsea Pride of London

Champions League Finals Featuring Two Clubs From the Same Country

May 25, 2021

The 2021 UEFA Champions League final between Manchester City and Chelsea was the eighth time two clubs from the same domestic league have faced off for Europe’s top team trophy. The UCL, which was previously called the European Cup, was first contested in 1956. It took over 40 years until we saw two teams from…

The Six Best FA Cup Finals Won by a Smaller Club

May 11, 2021

When Leicester City won the 2020-21 FA Cup title, we took a look at the six best FA Cup Finals where a smaller club won it all. Note that these aren't all "giant killings," because in one case the winning team was a big club just down on its luck, and in another the loser…

Premier League club crests title winners

English Soccer’s Dramatic Last Day of the Season

May 5, 2021

The last day of the Premier League season -- indeed, all of English soccer -- is one of the things that makes watching the game so much fun. Let's talk about why that is, and visit a few of the memorable last-day scenarios from years past. When Is the Last Day of the 2023-24 Season? The…

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