When you’re starting a football club, whether that be with brand new teams or by merging two together, choosing a good name for your club is one of the most important first steps you’ll need to take.
More difficult than it sounds, choosing a football team name is not as simple as settling on the first idea that comes to mind. Instead, make sure you put in the time and effort that such a big decision requires by reading through our guide on how to name a football team. We’ll be covering everything from popular football club names to the meanings of football team suffixes, giving you the best start possible for your own club name.
Choosing a football club name
When first thinking about how to name your football club, your mind likely reaches towards the location of your club. This is understandable as most professional football clubs in England take their name from the area they’re based in, with clubs including Newcastle United, West Bromwich Albion and Aston Villa standing as prime examples.
As all of these clubs have already proven, choosing your football club name using your home location is a great way to stir up some local pride. Not only does this help players identify more strongly with their home club, motivating them through training and matches, but it’s also a great way to bring local fans together and build up a dedicated fan base to support your club.
Of course, while location-naming is a popular choice among amature and professional clubs alike, there are plenty of football teams not named after a place. Take Arsenal F.C. for example; first established back in 1886 as ‘Royal Arsenal’, this professional football club took its name from the Royal Oak pub and the Arsenal munitions factory in Woolwich. While their name changed over the years, becoming Woolwich Arsenal in 1891 and just Arsenal Football Club in 1913, Arsenal’s club name has never lost the local flavour that inspired their founders almost 150 years ago, going to show that a club can be locally named without simply using the town or city name.
In Scotland, this non-location naming is even more popular, with clubs including Glasgow’s Celtic and Rangers, Dumfries’s Queen of the South and Edinburgh’s Heart of Midlothian all taking their names from other sources. So, if you’re looking to choose a football club name that isn’t location-based, you’ll be in the company of some of the biggest and oldest clubs in the UK.
Choosing football team suffixes
Have you ever wondered what caused a football club to choose between suffixes such as United, Albion and even Wednesday? Well, these seemingly simple and irrelevant football team suffixes, which likely haven’t attracted your attention before needing to choose a football team name for yourself, have a backstory. More than just a fun tag to round out a football club name, these terms tell those in the know more about the history of your club. So, if you’re in the process of naming your own club, picking the most relevant football team suffix is important.
While there are over 20 different football suffixes used in English football (a number which changes as new, uniquely named clubs establish themselves in professional leagues) we’ve put together a list of the most popular and famous football suffixes. From the common ‘United’ and ‘Rangers’, to the more unusual ‘Wednesday’ and ‘Wanderers’, there are plenty of football suffixes for you to choose from for your new football team name below:
Wanderers: Belonging to a group of football team suffixes meaning homeless, terms such as ‘Wanderers’ and ‘Rovers’ are traditionally added to football clubs which don’t have an established home ground. Of course there are professional clubs with these suffixes that do now have a home ground, but have kept the name as part of their rich history.
Academic: Commonly used as ‘Academical’ or ‘Académica’, clubs that take these football suffixes have their roots in academic institutions such as a university. Hamilton Academical or ‘The Accies’ is an example of a club with this football suffix in Scotland.
Collieries: Most commonly found in the North of England due to the region’s rich mining history, football team suffixes such as ‘Collieries’ and ‘Miners Welfare’ are chosen by teams giving a nod to the history of their town.
Days of the week: Football suffixes that are days of the week are very uncommon, with the most notable example in football today being Sheffield Wednesday. The apparent origin of this unusual choice was to mark the club as different from Sheffield United, the rival club from this city.
United: One of the most popular football suffixes in English football, ‘United’ is commonly used to signify that the club is formed as the result of a union of two clubs. Ittihad is another football suffix of this kind, as it translates to ‘the union’ from Arabic.
Albion: Used by clubs in England including West Bromwich Albion and Brighton & Hove Albion, this football suffix is simply used to represent the home country of the club. This is done through the suffix ‘Albion’, which is an archaic term for the UK.
Caledonian: Similar to the suffix ‘Albion’ being used by English clubs, ‘Caledonian’ is commonly used by Scottish football clubs to signify their own Scottish highlands heritage. The most famous example of this location-based football suffix is Inverness Caledonian Thistle F.C.
City: Another commonly used term for football clubs, football suffixes including ‘City’ and ‘Town’ are used to represent their home location. Popular examples for these football team suffixes include Manchester City, Leicester City and Luton Town.
Establish your new football club name with a team kit from Avec Sport
Making a name for yourself in the busy, competitive world of football is incredibly difficult, but the first step in the process is to do exactly that: make a name for yourself.
Once you’ve chosen your new football club name, designed or updated your club crest and selected your players, head over to our collection of football team kits. Here, you'll find our full range of base football kits which can be personalised with your team crest, name, any sponsors you have and even your players’ initials - letting you show off your new football team name properly.