Newton Heath FC were an English football club who played throughout the 19th century. These days, they are more commonly known as Manchester United. The team were founded in 1878 when employees of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Company's Carriage and Wagon Works requested permission to form a football team. Initially, they played very few recorded matches until they applied for the Lancashire Cup for the 1883/84 season. However, they lost in the first round 7-2 to Blackburn Olympic.
The team decided to apply for the Manchester and District Challenge Cup from 1884. They reached the final six years in a row winning four and losing two. As a result, the team entered the FA Cup for the first time in 1886/87. They were drawn away to Fleetwood Rangers and drew 2-2. However, Newton Heath refused to play the extra time administered by the referee and were thrown out of the competition. This led to a self imposed exile from the trophy for three years.
In 1888, Newton Heath formed a league called ‘The Combination’. However, it was wound up due to financial difficulties just a season later. After this, the club decided to form the Football Alliance. In 1992, the Alliance merged with the Football League and divided into two divisions. Newton Heath began life in the top division with a bottom place finish. However, they stayed up due to winning a relegation play off against Small Heath, who were the division two champions. Nevertheless, they finished bottom the following year and were relegated after losing the play off to Liverpool.
Following this, the club struggled and failed to regain promotion. Financial difficulties started to arise and the club were quickly seeing their attendance figures drop. In 1902, John Henry Davies purchased the club for £2,000 and decided to rename them Manchester United.