#FlashbackFriday - FA Charity/Community Shield: Part Two 1974 to 2016

(Part one covering all Charity Shield games from 1898 to 1973 can be found here)

For the 1974 Charity Shield game, the F.A. took drastic action in ensuring that their event avoided further devaluing. It was made compulsory for both the League Champions and FA Cup winners to participate and for the first time ever, the Charity Shield would now be played at the National Stadium at Wembley.  For Liverpool, this would be the first of eleven Charity Shield appearances over the next sixteen years.


The 1974 Shield game however would also be noteworthy for the fact that Bill Shankly had announced his retirement over the summer and this was to be his final game in charge, with Bob Paisley taking over after this game.  It meanwhile would be Brian Clough’s first game in charge of a Leeds United side he was previously critical of, on taking over from Don Revie who was appointed as England boss to take over from Alf Ramsey.  Clough offered Don Revie the chance to lead out Leeds one final time in the Charity Shield alongside Shanks, but Revie turned down the offer.

There are several sites on the internet – including Mail Online - which claim this to have been the first Charity Shield fixture to have been televised live in full.  There is however little evidence that proves this was the case (BBC Genome for instance only cites that MOTD highlights were shown at 10.15PM).  Having sought out the informed opinion of Kop followers via Liverpool fanzine writer Karl Coppack on Twitter, there doesn’t seem to be any Liverpool fans who remember it being shown live on TV.  It would however be a noteworthy first outing for the Charity Shield at Wembley.  In front of a record crowd of 67,000, Phil Boersma put Liverpool ahead midway through the first half. 


Boersma had started the game wearing the number twelve shirt, despite not being a substitute (this being the days before squad numbering, when the norm was for players to be numbered one to eleven).  In fact, strangely enough Leeds also started the game with a player wearing the number twelve shirt and had a number eleven missing.  On the hour came the big talking point after both Kevin Keegan and Billy Bremner were sent off for brawling (Leeds’s Johnny Giles however floored Keegan with a right hook but got away with a booking).  Ten minutes later, Trevor Cherry equalised for Leeds United.  At the end of ninty minutes, the game ended 1-1, however rather than the Shield be shared as was previously the case the F.A. deemed the matter to be settled by a penalty shootout.


All five penalty takers converted theirs, before Leeds United keeper David Harvey stepped up in sudden death and saw his kick fly over the crossbar.  Liverpool’s Ian Callaghan converted the winning penalty to give Liverpool the 1974 Charity Shield.  There were however further repercussions for Bremner and Keegan over their spat.  There had been growing concerns over hooliganism around the time and as a result both players were handed an eleven game suspension, as well as a £500 fine.  For Keegan, it was his second sending off in the week after being dismissed in a friendly at Kaiserslautern four days earlier.  Bremner’s absence however was to hurt Clough more, as Leeds United’s poor start to the season saw him axed from the job after just forty four days in charge.

Brian Clough entered something of a wilderness period before being appointed as boss of Nottingham Forest, in the meantime the club he walked out on a year prior, Derby County, went on to bag another league title under the tenure of a man whom Clough signed for the Rams himself - Dave Mackay.  In the Charity Shield, they went on to play FA Cup winners West Ham United at Wembley.  Highlights of the game would be covered by BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’.  Two first half goals for Kevin Hector and Roy McFarland gave Derby County a 2-0 victory.

After a year off, Liverpool would be back at Wembley for a Charity Shield meeting with FA Cup winners Southampton, after winning their first League Championship under Bob Paisley in 1975/76.  This game saw the record attendance for a Shield game increase further to 76,500, as well as highlights of the game covered by the BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’.  A goal for John Toshack five minutes into the second half secured a 1-0 win for Liverpool.

Liverpool retained their title in 1976/77, as well as winning their first European Cup.  A treble was prevented by a 1-2 defeat to Man United in the FA Cup Final.  This meant a re-run of the 1977 FA Cup Final three months on at Wembley in the Charity Shield with an another record attendance of 82,000 turning out for the game.  The match was Kenny Dalglish’s debut for Liverpool and the first game for Man United under Dave Sexton as manager.  Despite this, the two sides played out a 0-0 draw (newspaper reports suggested that the result didn’t do justice to the game, but there seems to be no footage of the game on any of the internet’s video sharing websites, despite the fact that the game was covered by the BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’).

A rare example of Liverpool’s non-involvement in the Charity Shield during the late 1970s came in 1978.  Despite retaining the European Cup, the League title went to Brian Clough’s Nottingham Forest in their first season back up in the top flight.  Their opponents would be Bobby Robson’s Ipswich Town, who pulled off a shock 1-0 win over Arsenal in the 1978 FA Cup Final.  Forest were at the time unbeaten throughout the whole of the calendar year – their last defeat being against Leeds United the previous November.  Highlights of the game would be covered by LWT’s ‘The Big Match’.  Forest’s class shone through as goals for Peter Withe, Larry Lloyd, John Robertson and two for Martin O’Neill gave Brian Clough’s side an emphatic 5-0 victory.

After winning the FA Cup in 1979, Arsenal appeared in the first Charity Shield since 1953.  Their opponents would be reigning League Champions Liverpool.  A new record attendance was set, as a crowd of 92,800 turned out for the event and highlights of the game would be covered by the BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’.  The Liverpool Post’s write up on the game went with the headline of ‘Liverpool in no mood for Charity’, as the Reds stormed into a three goal lead by sixty five minutes with goals from Kenny Dalglish and two from Terry McDermott.  Arsenal’s Alan Sunderland pulled back a consolation goal, but couldn’t prevent a 3-1 victory for Liverpool.

Twelve months on, Liverpool returned to Wembley for the Charity Shield after retaining the league title.  Their opponents were West Ham United, who defeated Arsenal in the 1980 FA Cup Final ten days after eliminating Liverpool in the Semi Final at the fourth attempt.  Highlights of the game would be covered by LWT’s ‘The Big Match’.  A goal from Terry McDermott after seventeen minutes gave Liverpool a 1-0 win to ensure that the Reds retained the Shield.

The 1981 Charity Shield would be the only one of the 1980s which did not feature one of the Merseyside Clubs.  Liverpool won the European Cup and the League Cup, but with a fifth place finish had their worst League performance in over a decade.  They also exited the FA Cup after a defeat to Everton in the fourth round.  The League title was won by Aston Villa, who faced Tottenham Hotspur in the Charity Shield – Spurs returning to Wembley after beating Man City in the FA Cup Final the previous May.  Highlights of the game would be covered by BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’.  In front of a crowd of 92,500, two goals apiece for Mark Falco and Peter With meant a 2-2 draw and the sharing of the Charity Shield.

Liverpool won back their League title in 1981/82, as well as defeating Spurs at Wembley to retain the League Cup – the latter side’s first ever defeat at Wembley.  Spurs in turn retained their FA Cup by beating QPR in the final after a replay.  This meant a chance for revenge against Liverpool in the Charity Shield.  Highlights of the game would be covered by LWT’s ‘Match of the Day’.  However a goal for Ian Rush meant a 1-0 win for Liverpool.  The Reds retained their title in 1982/83, while also making it a hat-trick of League Cup wins after defeating Man United in the final at Wembley.  United however won the FA Cup by beating Brighton and Hove Albion after a replay – winning only their second trophy in the fifteen years since their European Cup victory in 1968.

Over the summer, Bob Paisley retired as Liverpool boss.  Taking over at Anfield was another promotion from within the boot room in Joe Fagan.  United skipper Bryan Robson had missed the previous season’s League Cup Final, but more than made up for it by scoring both goals for United in a 2-0 win over Liverpool, which ensured Joe Fagan’s first game in charge ended in defeat.

Joe Fagan’s first season ended with a treble, which included a hat-trick of League titles, their fourth successive League Cup and beating AS Roma on their home ground on penalties to win their fourth European Cup.  Ironically, for the third year in a row, in the League cup Liverpool would defeat the side who would also go on to win the FA Cup.  After losing the first all-Merseyside final, Everton came back to win the FA Cup against Watford and bag their first trophy in fourteen years.  This set up a Charity Shield meeting with Liverpool at Wembley in August 1984 (the trophy now known as the General Motors Charity Shield after the latter company agreed a sponsorship deal with the F.A.).  This game would bring the first six figure attendance for a Charity Shield game, as 100,000 turned out for the game.  Highlights of the game would also be covered by ITV’s ‘The Big Match’.


A bizarre own goal from Bruce Grobbelaar meant that Everton started 1984/85 with a 1-0 victory. Everton went on to win the League title with ninety points, as well as taking the European Cup Winners’ Cup.  The season for Everton ended as it started, with a 1-0 win over Liverpool.  The Red half of the city finished the season trophy-less.  The biggest tragedy however would be the deaths of thirty nine spectators at Heysel Stadium in the 1985 European Cup Final, the fall out of which saw all English clubs banned from Europe for the foreseeable future.  This meant that Everton were also punished by not being able to participate in the European Cup.

Everton also lost the 1985 FA Cup Final to Man United, which meant that the two sides would be pitted against each other for the Charity Shield at the start of the 1985/86 season.  This game would be Gary Lineker’s debut for Everton, having signed from Leicester City to replace Andy Gray.  Goals for Trevor Steven and Adrian Heath (returning from injury having missed most of the previous season) meant a 2-0 win for Everton and the Toffees retaining the Shield. 

The game was covered by the BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’, however after this there would be no further coverage of English football until the following January, due to a dispute between the Football League and the Television companies over the amount to be agreed for showing television coverage.  TV cameras returned as the 1985/86 title race came to a thrilling conclusion, with Liverpool securing the title on the last Saturday of the season.  One week later, they became only the third side of the twentieth century to complete the ‘elusive’ Double.  As Everton were the holders of the Charity Shield, as well as the runners up for both the League and F.A. Cup, they were chosen to face Liverpool in the 1986 Charity Shield game.  This would be the first Charity Shield game to be shown Live in its entirety from start to finish, as it would be covered by ITV’s ‘The Big Match Live’.


Over the summer, Everton’s Gary Lineker finished the Mexico ’86 World Cup as top scorer and subsequently transferred to Terry Venables’s Barcelona to compete within European Competition (Barca having lost that year’s European Cup on penalties).  Now leading the line for Everton alongside Graeme Sharp, Adrian Heath gave Everton the lead on eighty minutes.  However, a last minute equaliser by Ian Rush for Liverpool meant a 1-1 draw and the sharing of the Charity Shield.

Everton would win the title back from Liverpool in 1986/87.  Coventry City meanwhile would defeat Spurs 3-2 in the F.A. Cup Final to win the FA Cup.  Everton would meet the Sky Blues at Wembley for the Charity Shield.  This game took place two weeks before the League season kicked off, as seven days later would be a Football League XI v the Rest of the World XI to commemorate the League centenary.  Also, over the summer, Howard Kendall left Everton to take over as boss at Athletic Bilboa.  His assistant Colin Harvey took over, with this his first game.  Once again, the match would be covered live by ITV’s ‘The Big Match Live’.  A goal for Wayne Clarke one minute before half time gave Everton a 1-0 victory and the fourth year on the trot in which the Toffees would either win or share the Shield.

Liverpool won the League title in 1987/88, but were denied the Double by a shock 0-1 defeat to Wimbledon in the 1988 FA Cup Final.  John Aldridge became the first person to miss a penalty in a Wembley F.A, Cup Final.  Despite finishing 1987/88 as the First Division’s top scorer, Liverpool moved to bring Ian Rush back to Anfield, after a solitary season in Serie A with Juventus.  Aldo therefore felt under pressure to show his effectiveness.  After Liverpool fell a goal behind to Wimbledon with a John Fashanu goal, two goals from John Aldridge gave Liverpool a 2-1 victory.

The 1988 Charity Shield game was not covered live on television, though highlights were shown on the BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’. Despite this, a crowd of just 54,887 turned out for the game – the lowest figure since the fixture was switched to Wembley with many empty seats visible from the footage.  This however was more a mark of Wimbledon’s small fan base, having been promoted from the Southern League just eleven years prior.  The Dons also sold off a few of their star names over the summer, such as Cup Final penalty save keeper Dave Beasent and centre half Andy Thorn who both transferred to Newcastle United.

Liverpool won the 1989 FA Cup against Everton, after the horrors of the Hillsborough disaster in the Semi Final.  Liverpool however lost out on the League title due to a last minute goal from Michael Thomas for Arsenal. 


Liverpool met Arsenal at Wembley for the Charity Shield (now sponsored by Tennents Lager), just two weeks after suffering a defeat to Arsenal in the Makita International tournament – also at Wembley.  In between, Arsenal headed to Miami to face Argentinian side Independiente.  Back at Wembley a week later, a Peter Beardsley goal gave Liverpool a 1-0 victory.

The game never featured live on TV (though highlights were covered by the BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’), but with an attendance of 63,149 was well below Wembley’s capacity.  Stuart Jones of the Times, seemingly forgetting how interest in the trophy was flat lining less than two decades prior, or the general dearth of public interest in the trophy before the 1960s said of the Charity Shield that: ‘whereas it was once an eagerly-awaited showpiece, it resembles in the modern age little more than another public training exercise for sides who are increasingly being invited to practise for the season in more lucrative and prestigious events on foreign fields’.

Liverpool won their title back in 1990 (what turned out to be for the final time).  Man United however won their first trophy under Alex Ferguson by winning the 1990 FA Cup.  The fixture would be shown live for the first time on Satellite Channel BSB.  Clayton Blackmore put United ahead in the last minute of the first half.  Six minutes into the second half, a penalty from John Barnes (booed throughout by the Man United fans for a poor showing at the Italia ’90 World Cup) equalised.  The match finished in a 1-1 draw with the Shield shared between the two sides.

In 1991, League Champions Arsenal met, FA Cup winners Spurs for the Charity Shield in what would be the first ever all-London Charity Shield meeting (and so far, only North London Charity Shield Derby).  The game would the first Shield match covered by Sky Sports, part of the BSkyB network formed as a result of a merger between Sky and BSB earlier in the year.  The game ended in a 0-0 draw, with Andy Cole coming on as substitute for one of his few very appearances for the Gunners during his time at Arsenal.


As the game was now to be covered by Sky, it was unlikely that the fixture could proceed without a victor being decided on the day.  To get their money’s worth out of a fixture involving the League Champions and the FA Cup winners, the Charity Shield had to become a marquee event and for both sides to share the trophy at the end of a draw was never going to suffice. From hereafter therefore, extra time and penalties would be introduced to settle a game if necessary.


On the eve of the birth of the premiership, the last Champions of the old First Division – Leeds United – took on FA Cup winners Liverpool in the Charity Shield at Wembley.  The star of Leeds’s championship run in, to pip Man United to the title, was Frenchman Eric Cantona who signed for the West Yorkshire side after first being lined up to sign for Sheffield Wednesday.  Cantona gave Leeds the lead midway through the first half.


Ian Rush equalised just before the half hour.  Tony Dorigo put Leeds ahead two minutes before half time.  Just before the hour mark Dean Saunders equalised.  Two goals from Eric Cantona in the final thirteen minutes gave Leeds a two goal cushion.  An own goal from Gordon Strachan in the last minute set up an exciting finish, however Leeds ran out 4-3 winners.

Eric Cantona returned to Wembley for the Charity Shield a year later as a member of Man United’s first title winning side for twenty six years.  Their opponents were Arsenal, who became the first side to win both domestic Cup trophies and this had been their fifth Wembley appearance in under four months.  Arsenal had also recently beaten Man United 2-1 in a friendly in South Africa, where beforehand both sets of players got to meet ANC leader and future post-Apartheid South African President, Nelson Mandela.


The needs of television had meant that the game had to kick off at 12.30PM in order to avoid clashing with Scottish League fixtures kicking off during the 3PM black out period.  Ironically, Deryk Brown of the Murdoch owned Sunday Times observed: ‘So, at least, the season is beginning as it will go on, at the mercy of television’.  Mark Hughes gave Man United the lead on eight minutes, before Ian Wright equalised five minutes before half time.  With no further scoring, the game became the first Charity Shield game to go to penalties in nineteen years (though George Graham at the time claimed he was unaware that a drawn match was to be decided in this fashion).


Ironically, like the 1974, the shootout would be settled by a penalty miss from a goalkeeper.  A Peter Schmeichel save from David Seaman meant that Man United took the Charity Shield, though Alex Ferguson gracefully bemoaned that the need for a penalty shootout was a ‘celebration of success’ and that he would have happily shared the trophy with Arsenal (Joe Lovejoy’s review for the Independent Newspaper referred to the Charity Shield as an ‘overblown friendly’)

Man United retained their premiership title in 1993/94, as well as winning the F.A. Cup.  The dilemma of who they were to face in the Charity Shield was solved by Premiership runners up Blackburn being chosen to play them at Wembley the following August.  Again, due to the needs of television, the game was moved to a Sunday.  Goals for Cantona and Ince gave Man United a 2-0 victory.   

Blackburn went on to steal the title from Man United in 1994/95, while Everton defeated Man United in the FA Cup Final in what turned out to be a rare trophy-less season for Alex Ferguson.  Blackburn met Everton for the curtain raiser to the 1995/96 season.  The attendance for this fixture had dropped to 40,149 – its lowest figure since 1973, during its temporary break from the League Champions v FA Cup winners format.  A goal from Vinny Samways gave Everton a 1-0 victory.

Man United won their second Double in three seasons and faced Premiership runners up Newcastle United in the 1996 Charity Shield.  It would be English football’s first competitive fixture since Euro ’96 and its effect would be seen from the enormous leap in the attendance figure, with a crowd of 73,214 the nearest to Wembley’s capacity since the days of all Merseyside Charity Shield games back in the mid-1980s.  Making his debut would be Euro ’96’s top scorer Alan Shearer, who signed for Newcastle – his home town club – for a record £15 Million, snubbing Man United again for the second time in his career, as he did with Blackburn Rovers in 1992.  There would also be Man United debuts for other Euro ’96 stars Jordi Cruyff of Holland and Karel Poborsky of the Czech Republic.


Man United however picked up from where they left off with a rampant 4-0 victory over Kevin Keegan’s side with goals from Eric Cantona, Nicky Butt, rising star David Beckham and Roy Keane.  Arguably, this may well be the first instance in which the Charity Shield would be as an opportunity to gain a psychological advantage over Premiership rivals for the season ahead.  Newcastle United however gained payback with a 5-0 thumping over United at St. James’s Park two months later.

In 1997, Chelsea lifted their first trophy for twenty six years with the FA Cup – competing in their first Charity Shield since 1970.  Their opponents would be Man United who retained their title in 1996/97.  Mark Hughes scored against his old club to give Chelsea the lead six minutes into the second half.  Six minutes later Ronny Johnsen equalised for United. The game went to penalties and misses for Frank Sinclair and FA Cup final hero Roberto Di Matteo meant a United victory on penalties.

In 1998, Arsenal won the Premiership and FA Cup Double.  Despite a rare trophy-less season for Man United, this would be their fifth Charity Shield appearance in six seasons by virtue of finishing as runners up to Arsenal.  This too would be David Beckham’s first game in England after his controversial sending off against Argentina in the France ’98 World Cup, where he became a convenient scapegoat for England’s early exit to an old wartime foe.  In turn, Becks received a great deal of stick from the opposition fans (a taste of what was to follow for the season ahead).


This would also be the first of four meetings between Arsene Wenger and Alex Ferguson over seven seasons.  As the pair developed a duopoly over English football during this period, it would go some way to inflating the importance of the fixture as a result.  In the first meeting between the two, Arsenal ran out comprehensive 3-0 winners, with goals from Marc Overmars, Christopher Wreh and Nicolas Anelka and went someway to raising fears at Old Trafford that Arsenal were about to usurp their dominance over the English game.

In some ways also, the rivalry spurred Ferguson and United on to greater things.  Despite Arsenal losing just four games all season and conceding just seventeen goals in the Premiership, they ended 1998/99 trophy-less.  As runners up in the Premiership, they would meet Man United again at Wembley for the last Charity Shield of the millennium.  Dwight Yorke gave Man United a first half lead, however second half goals for Nwankwo Kanu from the penalty spot and Ray Parlour meant a 2-1 win for Arsenal (the first time since 1973 that the Shield would be won outright by a side that were nether the reigning holders of either the League, or the FA Cup.

The final Charity Shield to be held at the old Wembley would be reigning Premiership champions Man United.  Famously, in 1999/2000 Man United withdrew from defending the FA Cup to compete in the World Club Championship in Brazil.  The first FA Cup winners of the new Millennium would be Chelsea, who met United at Wembley in the Charity Shield.  Goals for Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and Mario Melchiot gave Chelsea a 2-0 victory, however Blues boss Gianluca Vialli would only last a matter of weeks before losing his job.

While Wembley was being developed, the Charity Shield – much like with all of English football’s major finals – crossed over the River Severn to Wales, to be played at Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium.  The first Shield game played in Cardiff would be between Liverpool (who won a League Cup, FA Cup and UEFA Cup treble) and Man United who won a hat-trick of Premiership titles in 2000/01.  Liverpool’s brief trophy glut under Gerard Houllier continued, as first half goals for Gary McAllister from the penalty spot and Michael Owen gave Liverpool a 2-1 win.  Ruud Van Nistelrooy meanwhile scored for Man United on his debut.

Ahead of the 2002 fixture, the Charity Commission had claimed that the FA had breached Charity rules by failing to inform fans who the recipients of the proceeds of the fixture would be and so the fixture was to be rebranded as the FA Community Shield as a result.  Liverpool were trophy-less for 2001/02, but played in the 2002 Community Shield game due to Arsenal winning the Premiership and FA Cup Double and Liverpool finishing as Premiership runners up.  After winning the World Cup in Japan and South Korea with Brazil over the summer, Arsenal signed Gilberto Silva to partner Patrick Vieira in the centre of midfield.  Gilberto bagged the winner as Arsenal won their first Charity Shield this side of the Millennium. 

After missing their first Charity Shield for seven years, Man United returned in 2003 as Premiership champions.  Arsenal retained the FA Cup and so set up an earlier season head to head with Man United at Cardiff in August.  Future Arsenal player Mikael Silvestre put United ahead on the quarter hour, before Thierry Henry equalised five minutes later.  The only other noteworthy occurrence of the game would be Francis Jeffers’s sending off with eighteen minutes to go.  With no further scoring, the game went to penalties, with both Arsenal’s Jens Lehmann and Man United’s Tim Howard facing spot kicks on their competitive debuts for their respective clubs.  With misses for Giovanni Van Bronckhorst and Robert Pires, Man United took the Shield on penalties.

One month on, a controversial 0-0 draw at Old Trafford set in motion Arsenal’s season.  The Gunners went the entirety of the Premiership season unbeaten, winning the title.  Man United meanwhile won the F.A. Cup, setting up a meeting in the FA Community Shield in Cardiff in August 2004.  All of the scoring came in the second half, as Gilberto put Arsenal ahead on fifty minutes.  Alan Smith equalised five minutes later, however further goals from Jose Antonio Reyes and a Mikael Silvestre own goal meant a 3-1 victory for Arsenal.  Making his Arsenal debut that afternoon would be future Man United star Robin Van Persie.

The Wenger-Ferguson duopoly on the Premiership would be broken by the introduction of Roman Abramovich and Jose Mourinho, which led to Chelsea’s first League title for fifty years in 2005.  That same year, Arsenal won back the F.A. Cup after beating Man United on penalties.  The pair met in Cardiff the following August, leading to Chelsea’s first victory over Arsenal in all competitions this side of the millennium and a shift in power for London football.  Didier Drogba bagged two goals for Chelsea with a 2-1 win, while eighteen year old future Chelsea title winner Cesc Fabregas would be on target for Arsenal.

At the time, it was believed that the 2005 Community Shield would be the final one held in Cardiff, however building works on the new Wembley overrun, meaning that it would need to have been played in the Welsh capital for one year longer.  FA Cup winners Liverpool met a Chelsea side who retained their Premiership title.  John Arne Riise gave Liverpool the lead on eight minutes, before Andriy Shevchencko equalised for the Blues.  A Peter crouch winner ten minutes from time however gave Liverpool a 1-0 win.

The first major competitive football game played at the new rebuilt Wembley came in May 2007, with that year’s F.A. Cup Final.  A late Didier Drogba goal prevented a Double for Premiership winners Man United.  The first Charity Shield game at the rebuilt Wembley would be a rematch between the two sides.  In front of an audience of 80,731, goals for Ryan Giggs and Florent Malouda meant the game ended 1-1 and went to a penalty shootout. Three successful conversions for Man United’s Rio Ferdinand, Michael Carrick and Wayne Rooney, followed by three misses from Chelsea’s Claudio Pizzaro, Frank Lampard and Shaun Wright-Phillips meant that United won the shootout 3-0.

Portsmouth won their first major trophy for over fifty years by bagging the 2008 FA Cup.  Man United retained the Premiership title, setting up a meeting between the two sides in the Community Shield the following August in front of a crowd of 84,808.  The game ended 0-0 and went to a penalty shoot-out.  Misses for Lassana Diarra and Glenn Johnson meant a 3-1 win for United on penalties.

Man United would complete a hat-trick of Premiership titles in 2009, while Chelsea defeated Everton in that year’s FA Cup Final.  The final Community Shield game of the noughties therefore would be between the two sides, in front of a crowd of 85,896 (the highest attendance yet for the fixture at the new Wembley).  Two minutes into injury time, a Wayne Rooney goal meant a 2-2 draw, taking the Shield to penalties for the third year in a row.  Penalty misses for Ryan Giggs and Patrice Evra, while Chelsea would successfully convert all of their penalties meant a 4-1 shootout win for the Blues.

2010 brought a Chelsea Double (the last team to complete this feat to date).  Man United finishing as runners up meant a repeat of the previous season’s Shield game.  Goals for Antonio Valencia, Javier Hernandez and Dimitar Berbatov gave Chelsea a 3-1 victory, while Salomon Kalou would be on target for Chelsea.

Man City won their first trophy for thirty five years with the F.A. Cup in 2011.  It would result in their first involvement in the Community Shield for thirty eight years and their first as either League Champions or FA Cup winners for forty two years.  As Man United won their record nineteenth League title, it would result in the first all-Manchester Charity Shield game for fifty five years.  Man City took a two goal first half lead, however goals from Chris Smalling and Nani drew United level.  A second from Nani four minutes into injury time gave Man United a 3-2 victory.

Man City were back as Premiership Champions in 2012, meeting FA Cup winners Chelsea (who also won the Champions League) in an all-oligarch owned Community Shield.  The game however would not be played out at Wembley Stadium due to the ongoing Olympic Games in London and instead was played at Villa Park in Birmingham in front of a crowd of 36,394.  Goals from Yaya Toure, Carlos Tevez and Samir Nasri gave City a 3-2 victory, while Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic would be sent off.

Man United won their last Premiership title to date in 2013, as Alex Ferguson announced his retirement.  Everton’s David Moyes would be appointed in his place and in his first game for United meet F.A. Cup winners Wigan Athletic, who beat Man City in the FA Cup Final, but were relegated from the Premiership after losing to Arsenal four days later.  The game would return to Wembley Stadium again after a one year absence.  Two goals for Robin Van Persie gave Man United a 2-0 victory, however this would be the only trophy won during David Moyes’s period in charge at Old Trafford, having finished seventh in the Premiership.

Man City won the Premiership back in 2013/14, while Arsenal ended their nine year trophy drought after coming back from two goals down to beat Hull City 3-2 in the FA Cup Final.  The two met in the Charity Shield the following August.  Goals for Santi Carzorla, Aaron Ramsey and a superb strike from Olivier Giroud gave Arsenal a 3-0 victory.

Arsenal retained the FA Cup in 2014/15, while Jose Mourinho crowned his second coming at Stamford Bridge by winning the Premiership.  Arsene Wenger had failed to defeat Jose Mourinho in thirteen meetings, since his arrival in English football back in 2004.  Arsenal had also not beaten Chelsea since 2011, which included a 6-0 hammering at Stamford Bridge at the hands of Chelsea around a year and a half prior.  Arsene Wenger ended the Chelsea hoodoo with a 1-0 victory which resulted from a goal by Alex Oxlaide-Chamberlain.  What wasn’t known at the time was that it was the beginning of the end for Jose Mourinho at Chelsea, who after a run of poor form would be dismissed by Chelsea eight days before Christmas 2015.

The shock of the 2015/16 season would be Leicester City’s Premiership title win.  Man United won the FA Cup, though Louis Van Gaal’s inability to qualify for the Champions League for 2016/17 meant that he was dismissed by the Reds and replaced by Jose Mourinho.  The Community Shield at Wembley would be Jose’s first game in charge at Man United.  A goals for Jesse Lingard put United ahead, before Leicester equalised with a goal from Jamie Vardy.  Seven minutes from time however, a goal from Zlatan Ibrahimovic on his United debut gave Jose a winning start with a 2-1 victory.  A poor run of results for Leicester City meant the dismissal of boss Claudio Ranieri the following February.  

And so on to Sunday.  Arsenal’s defeat of Chelsea in the 2017 FA Cup final last May prevented a Chelsea Premiership and FA Cup Double.  Arsenal have experienced a summer of endless transfer speculation over Alexis Sanchez, as well as experiencing a 0-3 defeat to Chelsea in China, two weeks before the two sides meet for the Charity Shield, which might indicate that Arsene Wenger’s side aren’t ready to face a side that comprehensively won last season’s Premiership.  That said, no-one gave them a prayer at Wembley last May either and Arsenal are currently unbeaten at Wembley for their last eight visits.

As for the future of the Charity Shield, other European countries do have a similar fixture of League Champions up against Cup winners, usually referred to as the ‘Super Cup’. This Daily Telegraph article from 2014 argues the case for taking the fixture abroad in the pre-season, citing the example of the Italian and French counterparts – the Italian Super Cup was played in Washington DC as early as 1993 and has since been played in the Libyan capital of Tripoli, Beijing and Qatar; while the French Super Cup since 2008 has been exported on an annual basis to venues in Montreal, Tunisia, Morocco, Gabon and China.

Playing the Community Shield abroad is not an entirely unreasonable proposition and one with far more integrity than the 39th Premiership fixture proposal of a few years ago, which Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has in recent weeks claimed is ‘inevitable’ (though Wenger said the same of the prospect of a European Super League ahead of the 1998 Charity Shield, which nineteen years on looks no more likely to happen than it did then). However, while our ‘Super Cup’ equivalent has a veneer of ‘charity’ to it, the FA will probably not go to the trouble of exporting a fixture which they can’t rinse every last commercial ounce out of for private gain.


That said however, with a ‘traditional’ fixture like this, which seems to have shape-shifted its way through the last 109 years, though still make us think that throughout this time it has always had some sort of rigid traditional format, you can never really say never.

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*Published 4th August 2017