Aston Villa Football Club (AVFC) is an English professional football club based in Aston, Birmingham. The club was founded in 1874 by members of the Villa Cross Wesleyan Chapel in Handsworth and competes in the EFL Premier League, the top tier of English football. The club also has the Aston Villa Academy, which participates in the Premier League 2 Division 1 and U18. Villa also has a women’s side, which competes in the Women’s Super League.
Villa is currently owned by NSWE group, an Egyptian company owned by Egyptian billionaire Nassef Sawiris and his American counterpart Wes Edens. On July 20, 2018, they acquired the club from Recon group, owned by Chinese businessman Xia Jiantong, purchasing a controlling 55% stake in the club, and Sawiris took over as the club’s chairman.
Aston Villa’s current home is Villa Park and has a capacity of 42,749. The club previously played at Aston Park (1874-1876) and Wellington Road (1876-1897). Villa Park is the eighth largest stadium in England but the largest in Midlands and has hosted 16 England internationals at the senior level. The stadium has also seen 55 FA Cup semi-finals, which is the most in the competition’s history.
Colors, badge, and kit sponsorship
The initially proposed club colors were chocolate and sky blue shirts. However, the chocolate color was later replaced by claret, and they now wear claret shirts with sky blue sleeves, white shorts and blue trim, and sky blue socks with claret and white trim.
The club’s badge has changed over the years and has now is settled on a rampant lion with the club’s initials.
Like the club’s badge, the kit sponsorship has been passed from company to company over the years, with Umbro being the first supplier to have their logo on the kit. The kit is now manufactured by Kappa and sponsored by Cazoo and LT.
Fans and rivalries
Aton Villa have a large fanbase and support drawn from all over the Midlands and across the globe. Their arch-rivals are Birmingham City, with games between the two clubs referred to as the Second City Derby. However, some argue that West Bromwich Albion is Villa’s most significant rival. There is even a fan survey conducted in 2003 that proves the claim. The Midlands outfit also enjoys less heated local rivalries with Wolverhampton Wanders and Coventry City.
Villa became one of the first five English teams to win the European Cup in 1981-82. Besides that, the team has won the Football League First Division seven times, the FA Cup seven times, the League Cup five times, and the UEFA Super Cup once. They have also claimed the FA Community Shield once and the Intertoto Cup twice. They currently rank seventh in the all-time Premier League standings behind Man United, Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham, Man City and Everton.
Aston Villa are currently managed by the former Liverpool star and captain, Steven Gerrard, who was appointed mid the 2021-22 Premier League season following the sacking off Dean Smith on November 7 2021. Their ambition for the 2021-22 season is to finish in the top half of the table.