By: Ryan Ebeid, Sports Reporter, The Pawprint
With Christmas just around the corner, you may be wondering whether or not there are football games that take place during this holiday, well we have all the answers for you.
Premier League games do not get played during Christmas, with the last games being played on December 22nd, then continuing on December 26th.
This wasn’t always the case though, up until the 1950s, football was traditionally played on Christmas day.
In the old times, this was pretty normal for the football fans around the world, football was one of the few entertainments available for people. In the days before the television was invented, fans couldn’t lay at home on their sofa and watch their favorite team play. Instead they would wrap themselves in their new Christmas scarves and hats from Santa and went to their football team’s stadium to watch the game.
In 1888, Everton played two matches on Christmas Day, then another on Boxing Day. All three matches took place at Everton’s stadium. On Christmas morning, they played a Lancashire Cup tie against Blackburn Park Road, coming from losing to winning 3-2. Then in the afternoon they played an annual exhibition match against Ulster FC, winning 3-0, with their current goalkeeper at the time Charles Jolliffe scoring the third goal, which made the fans very excited, there was only 2,000 spectators which was a large crowd at the time. The Boxing Day match against Bootle was less amusing, because it was played in a shower of hailstones, and ending as a 0-0 draw.
As the Football League became more popular, clubs began to travel longer distances for Christmas Day matches. It was custom to play return matches on Christmas Day and Boxing Day against the same opponent, to ensure that paired-up teams had equal distances to travel.
In 1908, the return matches produced matches that had the same result but for the opposite team. Such as when Manchester City beat Chelsea 2-1 on Christmas Day, and Chelsea beat City 2-1 on Boxing Day.