Football World Championship

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The Football World Championship was a friendly game between the English and Scottish champions in the late 19th and early 20th century.

The first two winners were Hibernian (1886)[1] and Renton (in 1888)[2][3] both Scottish Cup winners (as the leagues had not been yet created at the time). 1887 English participants Preston North End were the only team to take part without winning a trophy to qualify, having been FA Cup semi-finalists the season prior. The 1895 match, notable for being the first to be played by the respective league champions, was won by Sunderland who beat Heart of Midlothian 5–3.[4] The Scottish and English leagues were pre-eminent in the world at that time, with the only league outside the UK being in Argentina.[5]

Hearts eventually won the World Championship title in 1902, beating Tottenham Hotspur 3–1. Unlike the 1895 contest, however, the format reverted to the FA Cup vs. Scottish Cup game.[6]


Year Winner Runner-up Score Date & Venue
1887 Scotland Hibernian England Preston North End 2–1 13 August 1887, Edinburgh.
1888 Scotland Renton England West Bromwich Albion 4–1 19 May 1888, Glasgow.
1895 England Sunderland Scotland Heart of Midlothian 5–3 27 April 1895, Tynecastle, Edinburgh.
1901–02 Scotland Heart of Midlothian England Tottenham Hotspur 3–1


2 Sep 1901, High Road Ground (now White Hart Lane), London;

2 Jan 1902, Tynecastle, Edinburgh.


England vs. Scotland club tournaments[edit]

International club tournaments[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Firsts Section: The Hibernian Historical Trust celebrate the milestones and records achieved by Hibernian Football Club. Hibernian Historical Trust. Recovered 17th Aug 2014.
  2. ^ “Renton FC, Champions of the World”, Scottish Football Museum, recovered 17th Aug 2014.
  3. ^ BBC - A Sporting Nation - Renton Crowned World Champions, BBC Scotland. Recovered 17th Aug 2014.
  4. ^ "Sat 27 April 1895 Hearts 3 Sunderland 5". Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  5. ^ "World Champions!". Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  6. ^ "Thu 02 Jan 1902 Hearts 3 Tottenham Hotspur 1". Retrieved 28 April 2013.