History of West Ham United Football Club

West Ham United Football Club is an English professional football club from East London. The club is participating in the Premier League and plays its home games in London Stadium.

History and glory years

West Ham United was formed as Thames Ironworks FC in the year 1895. The first players worked at the Thames Ironworks & Shipbuilding Company Limited. Nine years after its foundation the club moved to the Boleyn Ground in Upton Park, where it played 112 years before moving to London Stadium in Stratford in 2016.

During their period at Boleyn Ground, West Ham United celebrated quite some successes. The club won its first big prize - the FA Cup - in 1964, followed by the English Supercup and European Cup Winners Cup in 1965. Those were the glory years for West Ham United, with legendary players like Bobby Moore and Geoff Hurst. In the mid 1970s and early 1980s West Ham United also impressed the nation with two FA Cup wins (1975 and 1980).

In the history of the Premier League (from 1992) West Ham United relegated a few times, but since 2012 the club is a regular member of the Premier League. It even qualified for an European club competition in 2021 for the first time in fifteen years.

West Ham Stadium
West Ham Stadium

The Academy of Football

The Academy of Football is known as one of the most successful talent-development programmes in Engeland. At the Academy the aim is to deliver players of excellence and fulfil their potential. This is driven by the three pillars: courage, respect and tenacity. The club’s youth development system was established by Ted Fenton during the 1950s and delivered plenty of international top-players throughout the years.

West Ham even contributed to the national squad of the Three Lions that became World Champions in 1966. The most memorable player of that team was club icon Bobby Moore, where also the Bobby Moore Stand is named after and who can also be seen on the famous World Cup Sculpture near the former home Boleyn Ground.

Supporters and rivalries

Anthem “I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles”. Fun fact: when the players come onto the pitch, bubble machines produce bubbles that rise into the stadium. The fans of the club are known as passionate fans. During the 1970s and 1980s they were notorious for the levels of hooliganism in their fan base. Nowadays West Ham United still have strong rivalries with other clubs. The most hot-tempered matches are against Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and Millwall.

West Ham London Stadium
stadium west ham


Since 2016 West Ham United has played their home matches at the London Stadium. This venue was used as a stadium at the 2012 Olympics and is located in the Stratford district. London Stadium has 60,000 seats during football matches, almost double the amount of the old West Ham United stadium Boleyn Ground. The interior of the stadium has been rebuilt a few times throughout the years to suit the needs of football fans better. Not only the fans of West Ham United sing in London Stadium. In recent years a lot of great artists have given concerts in the stadium.

The easiest and quickest mode of travel to games at London Stadium is by public transport. The quickest way to get to London Stadium is to walk from Stratford Station following the signposted routes.

West Ham nicknames

West Ham United is commonly known as The Hammers. They’re also known as The Irons, partly because of their origins as Thames Ironworks. Don’t be surprised if someone says ‘The Cockney Boys’, a nickname that refers to a certain type of Londoner. ‘Come On You Irons’ is typical West Ham United fans slang. The abbreviation COYI can be seen in the stadium or on the official social media accounts.

West Ham Supporters

Statistics and records

West Ham United has a great history. The club won a few prizes and developed a lot of well-known players. The Hammers won the FA Cup three times and the European Cup Winners’ Cup once. The last trophy they won was the UEFA Europa Conference League cup in 2023.

Every year, the fans of West Ham United choose The Hammer of the year. Trevor Brooking won the award five times. Once more than Bobby Moore, Billy Bonds and Julian Dicks. All West Ham legends who achieved a lot with the club. For example, Billy Bonds is the player with the most appearances in the leagues (663) and Bobby Moore is the most capped player (108).

The player with the most goals for West Ham United is Vic Watson. Between 1920 and 1935 he scored 326 goals. Watson is followed by Geoff Hurst, the player who scored a hat-trick in the World Championship final in 1966.

In 2019, West Ham United paid the highest transfer fee in the history of the club. Centre-forward Sébastien Haller moved to London for £45,000,000. One year before The Hammers paid their second highest transfer fee to sign Felipe Anderson for £34,000,000.
West Ham United’s record departure is the transfer of Dimitri Payet. The French midfielder joined Marseille for £26,000,000.

The Premier League match against Everton in 2019 had the highest league attendance ever. Exactly 59,988 people witnessed how the visitors defeated West Ham United.

Match tickets