Cork City Football Club was founded in 1984 by officials from previously-existing clubs like Cork United and Avondale United. They were immediately elected into the League of Ireland, where they have competed ever since. Despite their relative youth, the team have been able to achieve notable success in domestic competitions and have emerged as one of the league's biggest and most popular teams. They have a number of nicknames, including The Rebel Army and The Leesiders.
Although their rise to prominence has been rapid, between 2008 and 2010, the club endured severe financial problems and eventually, Cork City Investment FC Limited was issued with a winding-up order by the courts. In response, the club's supporters formed a new team, which initially competed in the country's second tier. In June 2010, they were able to successfully purchase the Cork City FC name and continue the club's legacy. They returned to the top tier at the end of the 2011 campaign.
In total, the team have been crowned as league champions on two occasions, with those title wins occurring in 1992–93 and 2005. In addition, they picked up the FAI Cup in both 1998 and 2007 and have won the League of Ireland Cup three times, with those successes coming in 1987–88, 1994–95 and 1998–99.
John Caulfield holds the club's record for appearances in all competitions, and he shares the goalscoring record with Pat Morley. Other notable former players include Dave Barry and Phil Harrington. All four players have since been inducted into the Cork City Hall of Fame.
The Leesiders play home matches at Turners Cross, which first opened in the late 19th century. The venue, which is nicknamed The Cross, is currently able to hold 7,485 people, although its record attendance was set at 12,000 spectators for a game against Dundalk in 1991.