Initially founded in 1897, the team was originally called Bristol South End, but changed its name after turning professional. At the turn of the century, Bristol City FC combined with Bedminster FC and joined the Football League in 1901. Their first match in the Football League was a 2-0 victory over Blackpool in September of that year.
In 1906 the club reached the top flight of English football and gained the nickname the "Bristol Babies". They finished that first season as runners up; to date the club's best ever league performance. A few years later, in 1909, they reached the FA Cup final, but were defeated. In 1911 Bristol were relegated from the top flight and would not return for another 65 years. The club is also noteable for a number of high-profile supporters, including John Cleese, Russell Crowe and Jenson Button.
Bristol City came close to extinction in the early 1980s, with three relegations sending them to the fourth tier and leaving them in financial ruin. The club was declared bankrupt and several high-profile players, known as the 'Ashton Gate Eight' accepted having their contracts terminated for half of their value. The club bounced back, winning the Football League Trophy in 1985-86, reaching the final again the following year and eventually winning the same trophy once more in 2002-03.
Bristol City have never played in the Premier League, the closest they came was in 2008 when they lost the Championship play-off final to Hull City Football Club in a tight, tense match 1-0.
Legendary former Bristol City players include former England international John Atyeo, who has the records for most appearances and most goals scored, Andy Cole, who went on to achieve huge success with Manchester United and Leroy Lita, who became an England U21 international while playing for Bristol City.
Since 1904, the club has played at Ashton Gate stadium, which had previously served as the home of Bedminster FC. The capacity of the stadium is 21,497, although for most Football League matches this capacity drops to around 19,500 to allow for segregation between home and away supporters. The club has recently announced plans to move to a new 30,000 seat stadium in the future.
Football League Trophy: