Such was the eagerness of fans and casual observers to attend the final at the new national stadium that vast numbers of people crammed through the turnstiles into the stadium, far exceeding its official , capacity. The crowds overflowed onto the pitch as there was no room on the terraces. Estimates of the number of fans in attendance range from ,  to well over , The White Horse Final has the highest ever unofficial "non-racing" sports attendance in the world. That was until mounted police, including Police Constable George Scorey and his white horse, Billy , slowly pushed the crowds back to the sides of the field of play for the FA Cup Final to start, just 45 minutes late.
The official attendance is often quoted as , The match was a 2—0 victory for Bolton Wanderers, with David Jack scoring the first ever goal at Wembley. At age 38, he was making his third and ultimately his final attempt at winning an FA Cup medal. It was also the venue for finals of the FA Amateur Cup , League Cup except for the early years when this was settled on a home and away basis and in later years the Associate Members' Cup and the Football League promotion play-off finals in the early years of play-offs they were home and away fixtures.
The final of the Middlesex Charity Cup was also played there. Prior to the Wembley stadium, international football games had been played by England at various stadia. Most early internationals including the first ever international football match were played at The Oval , which opened in as the home ground of Surrey County Cricket Club and would in host the first Test match played in England.
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For the first 27 years, the only International England games played at Wembley were fixtures against Scotland, with other games played elsewhere until The first team other than Scotland to face England at the venue was Argentina. In and , it was the venue of the home matches of the Great Britain national football team for the qualification matches to the Summer Olympic Games against Bulgaria. It hosted nine matches, including the final , where tournament hosts England won 4—2 after extra time against West Germany.
Seven years later, Wembley was the venue for a specially arranged friendly between teams called "The Three" and "The Six" to celebrate the United Kingdom joining the European Union. The match finished to "The Three". In , it was the principal venue of UEFA Euro , hosting all of England's matches, as well as the tournament's final, where Germany won the UEFA European Championship for a third time after defeating the Czech Republic 2—1 with the first international golden goal in football history.
Germany had earlier defeated England on penalties in the semi-final after a 1—1 draw, with Gareth Southgate missing a penalty for England in the shoot-out.
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England's final two competitive matches played at the stadium resulted in 0—1 defeats for England to Scotland and Germany respectively. The first defeat was in the play off for the Euro qualifiers in November , but England still went through as they won the other leg 2—0 at Hampden Park. However, the final match at Wembley was the opening qualifier for the World Cup , and defeat prompted the resignation of England manager Kevin Keegan at the end of the match after just 18 months in charge. In all, the stadium hosted five European Cup finals.
The first two were final between Milan and Benfica , and the final between Manchester United and Benfica. In , it again hosted the final, between Ajax and Panathinaikos , and once more in , this time between Liverpool and Club Brugge , another in , when Barcelona played Sampdoria. It was also the venue for Arsenal 's home Champions League matches in —99 and — It has hosted an individual club's home matches on two other occasions, in , when Leyton Orient played two home Third Division South matches while their Lea Bridge Stadium was undergoing urgent remedial works;  and in —31 for eight matches by non-League Ealing A.
In March , Arsenal made a bid to purchase Wembley in hope of gaining a larger stadium to replace their Highbury ground, which had a capacity of less than 40, and was unsuitable for expansion. However, the bid was later abandoned in favour of building the 60, capacity Emirates Stadium , which was opened in The last club match of all was the Charity Shield , in which Chelsea defeated Manchester United 2—0. The last international match was on 7 October in Kevin Keegan's last game as England manager. England were defeated 0—1 by Germany, with Dietmar Hamann scoring the last goal at the original Wembley.
On that day, Tony Adams made his 60th Wembley appearance, a record for any player. In the France national rugby league team became the first French national team of any sport to win at Wembley. The final of the Challenge Cup was the last to be played at the stadium and was attended by 73, fans, with the annual fixture moving to other grounds Murrayfield Stadium , Millennium Stadium and Twickenham before returning to the new Wembley upon its completion in The Stadium also hosted the semifinals and finals of the Olympic hockey and football tournaments, the Prix des Nations event in the equestrian competition, and a demonstration match of lacrosse.
Motorcycle speedway first took place at Wembley in , and operated until the outbreak of World War II in , a few days before the World Championship Final was due to be held, but was cancelled as a result of the war. The Wembley Lions returned in and operated in the top flight until the end of the season winning a number of League titles. A short lived revival saw the Lions in the British League in the and seasons. The ashes for the speedway track were supplied by Richard Biffa Ltd who's operating base at the time was in Wembley Hill Road.
Richard Biffa later became Biffa Waste Services. Between and Wembley hosted all of the first 15 finals of the Speedway World Championship.
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It hosted another nine World Finals before the last one at Wembley took place in in front of 92, fans, just shy of the venue's record speedway attendance of 95, set at the World Final. With four wins, Sweden's Ove Fundin won the most World Championships at Wembley, winning in , , and The speedway track at Wembley Stadium was metres yards in length and was notoriously difficult to ride for those not used to it. Despite regularly being used for World Championship and other British championship meetings, Wembley long had a reputation as a track that was difficult to pass on which often led to processional racing.
Among those who never performed well there despite their credentials include World Champion Jerzy Szczakiel who won his title at home in Poland and two weeks later under difficult circumstances failed to score in the World Team Cup Final at Wembley , while others such as Ivan Mauger and Ole Olsen often seemed to find their best form at the stadium. The track itself was located inside of the greyhound racing track, but intersected the stadium's playing field at the corners. The pits were located in the tunnel at the eastern end of the stadium.
In Heat 6 of the World Final, Gundersen set the 4-lap record clutch start of As this was the last time the stadium was used for speedway racing, it remains the track record. Two meetings were held at Wembley in promoted by Trevor Redmond.
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Before the first meeting the Wembley groundsman threatened to resign over possible damage to the hallowed turf. The pitch was surrounded by wooden beams and little damage was caused.
Though the venue was not traditionally a regular host of rugby union matches, England played a friendly against Canada on 17 October , as their regular home stadium at Twickenham was undergoing redevelopment. Wales played their Five Nations and autumn international home matches at Wembley as Twickenham Stadium would not accommodate them while Cardiff Arms Park was being rebuilt as the Millennium Stadium in the late s a deal reciprocated for FA Cups during the construction of the new Wembley Stadium.
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In total there were seven internationals. Wembley was a regular venue for greyhound racing. It was the first sport Sir Arthur Elvin introduced to the stadium. The opening meeting was in Two of the biggest events in the greyhound racing calendar are the St Leger and Trafalgar Cup  [ self-published source ] Both were originally held at Wembley, the St Leger from until after which it moved to Wimbledon Stadium and the Trafalgar Cup from until after which it moved to Oxford Stadium.
In the famous greyhound Mick the Miller won the St Leger. The National Football League held nine preseason American football games at Wembley between and The Minnesota Vikings and the St. Louis Cardinals played the first game on 6 August From until the mids, hurling and gaelic football tournaments known as the "Wembley Tournaments" were held at Wembley Stadium to bring the Irish sports to expatriates in Britain at the time.
Several Gaelic football games were played in Wembley Stadium, most of them exhibition matches, most notably Kerry and Down in The stadium also staged women's field hockey matches in which England appeared in their annual match between and and then from to On 18 June , Wembley hosted a heavyweight boxing match between London native boxer Henry Cooper and American rising star Muhammad Ali in front of 35, spectators. On 26 May , in front of 90, people, Evel Knievel crashed while trying to land a jump over 13 single decker city buses, an accident which resulted in his initial retirement from his daredevil life.
As of April , the WWE considers this to be their fourth largest live gate in history behind only WrestleMania 32 which drew a reported ,, WrestleMania III which drew a reported 93, and WrestleMania 29 which drew 80, fans. Other charity concerts which took place in the stadium were the Human Rights Now! During Michael Jackson's Bad World Tour in , seven sold-out concerts were staged at Wembley which included five in a row, and two at a later date. Each concert had an attendance of 72, people.
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According to the Guinness Book of World Records , Jackson set a new world record with , people attending the seven sold-out concerts. He was given a special award by Wembley Stadium Officials for achieving this milestone. A further five sold-out concerts followed in during his Dangerous World Tour and his last three shows in during HIStory World Tour brought total ticket sales to over 1.
To date, this record has not been broken. Cecil Freeman Gregg's crime novel Tragedy at Wembley Methuen, sees his detective character Inspector Cuthbert Higgins investigate a murder at the stadium. The stadium features in the opening scene of the film The King's Speech The Olympic Marathon and the Stadium feature in the South Korean war film My Way , though the marathon is clearly filmed in Riga, rather than London, and the stadium standing in for Wembley has an anachronistic electronic scoreboard.
In the Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody the stadium was digitally recreated for the Live Aid scene. John Betjeman is shown standing in the Stadium in his BBC film Metroland , though, as John Bale has pointed out in Anti-Sport Sentiments in Literature: Batting for the Opposition Routledge, , he shows no real interest in Wembley's sporting connections, either here or elsewhere. In Nigel Kneale 's Quatermass , in which ancient stone circles turn out to be locations designed by aliens to harvest young humans, the Stadium is revealed to have been built on the site of a stone circle "the Sacred Turf they call it", says Professor Quatermass , "I wonder what's underneath?
In episode 11 of the 2nd series of the revived Doctor Who , the Doctor recalls visiting the London Olympics and says that he wanted to light the Olympic Flame.
There is a persistent myth that a small locomotive met with a mishap when Watkin's Folly was being demolished, or the Empire Stadium built, and was buried under what became the "sacred turf" though in some versions it is a carriage filled with rubble. When the Stadium was rebuilt no locomotive or carriage or stone circle From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Main article: FA Cup Final. Main article: Summer Olympics. Main article: Wembley Greyhounds. This section needs additional citations for verification.
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