definition of Wikipedia
|Full name||Newcastle Falcons|
|Union||Rugby Football Union|
|Location||Newcastle upon Tyne, England|
|Ground(s)||Kingston Park (Capacity: 10,200)|
|2011–12||12th in English Premiership
(relegated for 2012-2013)
The Newcastle Falcons (formerly Gosforth FC/Newcastle Gosforth until 1996) is an English rugby union team currently playing in the RFU Championship, as of June 30, 2012. The club was established in 1877 and played under the name of Gosforth Football Club until 1990. The name was then changed to Newcastle Gosforth and the club began to play at Kingston Park stadium in Kingston Park, Newcastle upon Tyne. At the start of the professional era the club adopted its current name of Newcastle Falcons.
The Falcons have been the biggest and most successful club in northern England, with one Premiership and four domestic cups to their name. They also boast a number of home-grown former players such as World Cup winner Jonny Wilkinson.
The original Gosforth Football Club was founded in 1877 by a group of Old Boys of Durham School, in whose colours of green and white hoops the club played until the mid-1990s. The name Gosforth came from one of the suburbs of Newcastle upon Tyne. In 1955, the club moved to a new ground at North Road which was to be its home until 1990. During that time and particularly in the late 1970s Gosforth enjoyed tremendous success both on and off the field winning the John Player Cup in seasons 1975/76 and 76/77.
Gosforth supplied innumerable players to all counties over the years, to the North of England sides and to the full international and British Lions teams. These include Arthur Smith, Ray McLoughlin, Malcolm Young, Roger Uttley, Peter Dixon, Duncan Madsen, Dave Robinson, Richard Breakey, Jim Pollock and Colin White.
In 1990 the club name was changed to Newcastle Gosforth and they moved to Kingston Park. Gosforth Rugby Football Club continued as an amateur side working in partnership with Northumbria University. They currently play at the training ground of the Newcastle Falcons, Druid Park.
For the 1996/7 season the new name of Newcastle Falcons and the current black-and-white colours were adopted, after local businessman Sir John Hall had taken control and attempted to create a sporting club in Newcastle that would emulate the success of the Barcelona model. The four teams that made up the sporting club were the football team, nicknamed the Magpies, the Newcastle Eagles basketball team, the Newcastle Wasps (later Riverkings, Jokers, Vipers) ice hockey team and the Newcastle Falcons rugby union team.
Newcastle was the first fully "professional" club in the world. In 1995, Sir John Hall installed former Wasps’ captain, Rob Andrew, as his salaried Director of Rugby and saw the club earn promotion from the national Second Division to the Premiership. The following season, Newcastle became English champions at their first attempt. The following season Newcastle didn't play in Europe as English teams did not take part but they did go onto the Tetley's Bitter Cup final against Wasps which they lost 29-19.
Hall sold the Falcons for a 'nominal' sum in 1999 to current owner Dave Thompson and since then Newcastle have won two Powergen Cups: in 2001 the Falcons beat Harlequins F.C. 30-27; and 2004 the Falcons beat 37-33 against Sale Sharks. The following season the Falcons recorded their best ever Heineken Cup performance by winning their pool and progressing to a quarter-final tie against Stade Français in the Parc des Princes.
In August 2006 Rob Andrew left the Falcons to be in overall charge of the England set-up ahead of the 2007 World Cup in a wide-ranging role that encompasses all aspects of the professional representative game in England. John Fletcher succeeded Rob Andrew as director of rugby at Newcastle Falcons with immediate effect. Fletcher, a former England A centre, had been the club's academy boss and he headed up a team of Peter Walton, Steve Black and Bob Morton, with ex-Falcons prop Ian Peel taking over as acting academy manager.
On 11 March 2008, Fletcher and Walton left the club, officially by mutual consent, following Black who had left a couple of months earlier. Steve Bates took over as interim Director of Rugby until the summer of 2008 when the post was reviewed. Dave Thompson stated that nine years of underachievement were the reason for the departure of John Fletcher and Peter Walton.
Having said this, Bates guided the Falcons to a record-equalling run of seven consecutive Premiership defeats by April 2008 with home games against Leicester Tigers and London Wasps plus a season-concluding away trip to Worcester Warriors yet to come. Defeat in the ECC semi-final against Worcester Warriors on 25 April 2008 may well have sounded the death knell for Steve Bates' tenure as interim DoR. However, on Tuesday 20 May 2008 Steve Bates was confirmed as Newcastle's Director of Rugby on a full-time basis.
In November 2008 Chairman Dave Thompson put an end to speculation of a takeover of the club after rejecting 3 bids. He held talks with a number of different consortia and reportedly turned down one offer of a full take over as the bidding consortium wanted to relocate the club to Darlington. Furthermore, he said the speculation had led to instability in the club which was unsettling players and fans alike. On the pitch the Falcons reached another European Challenge Cup Quarter-Final going down to Saracens away from home and finished 10th in the Premiership.
After a disappointing season the pressure mounted on Steve Bates and on 4 May 2010, the club announced that Bates' contract had been terminated and he was being replaced by first team coach Alan Tait. The decision came after Newcastle went on an unbeaten run to quash any doubts of relegation largely due to an inspirational Carl Hayman. But a crushing home European Challenge Cup Quarter Final defeat by Cardiff Blues signaled the end of the Bates era.
Towards the end of the previous season Chairman Dave Thompson had to seek investment for the club due to increasing debts after the Nationalisation of Northern Rock - the clubs main sponsor. After months of speculation, it was announced that local businessman Semore Kurdi had purchased a 40% stake in the club in September 2010, easing the clubs financial difficulties. On the pitch in Alan Tait's first season the Falcons reached the Anglo-Welsh Cup final, losing to Gloucester 34-7. Despite this relative success the Falcons finished their worst ever Premiership season with just 23 points (4 wins), only escaping relegation thanks to the inferior points difference of Leeds Carnegie.
Newcastle Falcons play at Kingston Park which holds 10,200. Kingston Park is the smallest stadium in the Aviva Premiership even so the attendance has been in steady decline in recent years with an average crowd of 4,500. This is mainly due to the fact the Falcons have been fighting relegation and have sold many of their main stars, at the team's peak, the ground attracted sell outs frequently. Traditionally the South Stand is where the loudest fans stand and sing. The stadium has three modern stands - 1 open air standing, 1 enclosed standing and a main stand which is all-seater - but kept the original Gosforth stand with the green and white seating (Gosforth colours).
|Gosforth Rugby Strip.|
The team wears a black strip with a grey lining for home games and from the 2011–2012 season will wear a light blue strip for away games. Cotton Traders are the current strip providers. Previously, in the 2007/2008 season the Falcons were the only club in the UK to wear a kit designed by Nike, prior to this the strip providers were KooGa. During the years known as Gosforth the team played in green and white hoops.
|1997–1998 – Allied Dunbar Premiership||1st||38|
|1998–1999 – Allied Dunbar Premiership||8th||28|
|1999–2000 – Allied Dunbar Premiership||9th||20|
|2000–2001 – Zurich Premiership||6th||57|
|2001–2002 – Zurich Premiership||6th||56|
|2002–2003 – Zurich Premiership||10th||40|
|2003–2004 – Zurich Premiership||10th||40|
|2004–2005 – Zurich Premiership||7th||47|
|2005–2006 – Guinness Premiership||7th||47|
|2006–2007 – Guinness Premiership||9th||44|
|2007–2008 – Guinness Premiership||11th||37|
|2008–2009 – Guinness Premiership||10th||44|
|2009–2010 – Guinness Premiership||9th||37|
|2010–2011 – Aviva Premiership||11th||23|
|2011-2012 – Aviva Premiership||12th||32|
|Club||Played||Won||Drawn||Lost||Points For||Points Against||Points Difference||Tries For||Tries Against||Try Bonus||Losing Bonus||Points|
|2||Leicester Tigers (F)||22||15||1||6||647||475||+172||69||45||9||3||74|
|4||Northampton Saints (SF)||22||14||0||8||539||374||+165||51||31||5||4||65|
If teams are level at any stage, tiebreakers are applied in the following order:
|Green background (rows 1 to 4) are play-off places, and receive berths in the 2012–13 Heineken Cup. Blue background (rows 5 and 6) are clubs that do not make the play-offs, but will receive Heineken Cup berths. Red background (row 12) to be relegated if the champion of the RFU Championship meets the requirements for promotion. Updated 22 April 2012 — Current English Leagues
2012/2013 Note: Flags indicate national union as has been defined under IRB eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-IRB nationality.
||This list of "famous" or "notable" persons has no clear inclusion or exclusion criteria. Please help to define clear inclusion criteria and edit the list to contain only subjects that fit that criteria. (June 2012)|
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