Southport

Southport Football Club is a semi-professional football club based in Blowick, Southport, Merseyside. They play their home matches at Haig Avenue, currently called the Merseyrail Community Stadium for sponsorship reasons, which has a capacity of 6,008 (1,660 seated, 4,164 standing). They are known by their nickname "the Sandgrounders". The club's main honour is winning the 1972–73 Football League Fourth Division Championship and they have won a number of titles in non-league football.

Founded in 1881, the club were members of regional leagues such as the Lancashire League, the Lancashire Combination and The Central League for many years until 1921 when they were invited to become a founding member of the newly formed Football League Third Division North. Southport held membership of The Football League from 1921 to 1978. They failed to gain re-election in 1978 and since then have been members of the Northern Premier League (1978 to 1993), the Football Conference (1993 to 2003) and then the Northern Premier League Premier Division for its final season (2003–04). Southport were transferred to the new National League North in 2004 and, since then, have played in either that division (tier 6) or the tier 5 National League. In 2017, Southport were relegated from tier 5 to tier 6 and currently (2017–18) they are again playing in the National League North.

Southport first participated in the FA Cup in the 1882–83 tournament. Their best performance was in the 1930–31 tournament when they reached the quarter-finals (last eight) but were then beaten 9–1 by Everton at Goodison Park. Southport had another good FA Cup run in 1965–66 when they reached the fifth round (last sixteen) and were beaten 2–0 by Hull City at Boothferry Park. Southport took part in the Football League Cup from 1960 to 1978 but never progressed beyond the first two rounds. The team reached the final of the FA Trophy in 1997–98, played at the old Wembley Stadium, but lost 1–0 to Cheltenham Town.