Chelsea football club and the fight for professional football in first world war London

Assaf Mond*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


‘The football season of 1914-15 has opened under the shadow of the greatest and most momentous war in the history of the world’, wrote the editor of The Chelsea F.C. Chronicle, in the programme for the first match after war was declared. So far, the story of football in England during the First World War has been addressed only briefly in academic research. This article, however, presents the public debate about the abandonment of professional football from the cultural perspective - and through the war story of the Chelsea Football Club. I discuss the phenomena which I identified in the club’s programme - the use of war-euphemism in the discourse about football, and the fight against the calls for the cessation of the league—and argue that that was the way in which the urban community of Chelsea fought against the changes that the Great War had brought to the home-front.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)266-280
Number of pages15
JournalLondon Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2016


  • Chelsea Football Club
  • Euphemism
  • First World War
  • Football
  • Great War
  • Home-front
  • London
  • WW1


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