Hull City A F C
Founded in June 1904 after previous attempts had failed. The town was dominated by the two rugby league teams, Hull FC and Hull Kingston Rovers.The club's first season was made up of friendly matches due to the date of it was founded. The club's first game 2–2 draw with Notts County on 1 September 1904 with a 6,000 crowd. There ground in those days was the Boulevard, which was shared with Hull FC rugby team and then moved to the Anlaby Road Cricket Ground.
Hull City joined the likes of Manchester United, Chelsea, Barnsley, Bradford City and Leeds City in the Second Division for the 1905–06 season. Barnsley at home, was their first game, which they won 4–1 and Hull finished the season in fifth place.
Hull City and Grimsby Town had permission to play league football on Christmas Day due to the demands of the fish trade. The following season a new ground was built for Hull City across the road from the cricket ground. Under Ambrose Langley, Hull usually finished in the top half of the table. They came close to promotion in the 1909–10 season, when they finished third, level on points with second placed Oldham Athletic, missing promotion on goal average by 0.29 of a goal. Hull did well until the war, finishing regularly in the top half of the table. After the war the team finished in the bottom half in seven seasons out of eleven, and were relegated to the third division in 1930.
On 31 August 1946, the club moved to Boothferry Park and in 1948 Raich Carter became player manager. In that year Hull signed the young Don Revie and won the Third Division Championship. Hull went back and forth between the second and third divisions over the next few years. One of Hull's distinctions was to be the first team in the world to go out of a cup competition on penalties, beaten by Manchester United in the semi-final of the Watney Cup on 1 August 1970. In 1981 they went down into Division 4 and By the early 1980s, Hull City were in the Fourth Division. In February 1982 Hull City under chairman Christopher Needler, son of much-loved former chairman Harold, claimed £9,000 was being lost every week. He took a decision to call in the receivers. Had the action not been taken, he insisted, City would have folded. Within 24 hours of taking control, the receivers had put all 18 senior professionals and a further five youth players up for sale. Manager, Mike Smith was sacked and Christopher Needler was bought out by Don Robinson, a Scarborough businessman.
Hull reached the Second Division in 1985 under player-manager Brian Horton and remained there for the next six years before going back down to the Third Division in 1991 under manager Terry Dolan. Hull finished 14th in the 1991–92 season, and moved to rebranded second division. Hull narrowly avoided another relegation, but over the next two seasons they achieved mid-table finishes. City had financial difficulties again and key players such as Alan Fettis and Dean Windass had to be sold off. In the 1995–96 season Hull were relegated to the Third Division.
In 1997 the club was purchased by former tennis player David Lloyd. He sacked Dolan as manager and replaced him with Mark Hateley, but Hull's league form was steadily deteriorating and relegation to the Football Conference was looking a distinct possibility. Lloyd sold the club in November 1998 to a South Yorkshire based consortium, but retained ownership of Boothferry Park. Mark Hateley was replaced by 34-year-old veteran player Warren Joycein November 1998, With the club at the foot of the table, he steered the club to safety.Hull City fans refer to this season as "The Great Escape". Despite his efforts, Joyce was replaced in April 2000 by the more experienced Brian Little.
They qualified for the Third Division play-offs in the 2000–01 season, losing in the semi-finals to Leyton Orient. They were locked out of Boothferry Park by bailiffs and facing the possibility of liquidation until a takeover by Adam Pearson eased the club's financial situation and all fears of closure were banished. He retained Brian Little and ploughed funds into the club, allowing him to rebuild the team. Hull occupied the Third Division promotion and play-off places for much of the 2001–02 season, but Little departed two months before the end of the season as Hull slipped to 11th place under his successor and was replaced by Jan Molby. He was sacked in October as Hull languished fifth from bottom in the league and replaced in December 2002 by Peter Taylor. Two months after his appointment, Hull relocated to the new 25,400-seater KC Stadium after being 56 years at Boothferry Park.
City were promoted from the Third Division (changed to League 2) to League One in 2003–04, and from the newly created League One, to the Championship League in 2004–05. Taylor left the club to take up the manager's job at Crystal Palace and Phil Parkinson came from Colchester as his replacement, but was sacked in December 2006 with Hull in the relegation zone, despite having spent over £2 million on players during the summer. Phil Brown took over as caretaker manager, and permanently in January 2007, and kept Hull from relegation. Brown brought veteran striker Dean Windass back to his hometown club on loan from Bradford City, and his eight goals helped secure Hull's Championship status as they finished in 21st place.
Adam Pearson sold the club to a consortium led by Paul Duffen in June 2007, stating that he "had taken the club as far as I could". Under Duffen and manager Phil Brown, City improved and in 2007 - 2008 they qualified for the play-offs after finishing in third place. They beat Watford 6–1 on aggregate in the semi-finals and played Bristol City in the Final on 24 May 2008, which Hull won 1–0 at Wembley Stadium, with Hull native Dean Windass scoring the winning goal. Their ascent from the bottom division of the Football League to the top division of English football in just five seasons was the third-fastest ever.