[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Wednesday, 24 October 2007, 19:35 GMT 20:35 UK
Stars mark team's 150th birthday
Fifa president Sepp Blatter and Sheffield Mayor Arthur Dunworth
Fifa president Sepp Blatter attended with Sheffield Mayor Arthur Dunworth
The world's oldest football club, Sheffield FC, has celebrated its 150th anniversary with a star-studded event in the city on Wednesday.

Fifa president Sepp Blatter headed a guest list attending a thanksgiving service at Sheffield Cathedral followed by dinner at the city's Cutlers' Hall.

He said it was something of which the "football world should be proud".

Former players Sir Bobby Charlton, Sir Tom Finney and Sir Bobby Robson were also due to have attended.

Sheffield FC, formed on 24 October 1857, is officially recognised by Fifa as the world's oldest football club.

It is one of only two clubs in the world to hold a Fifa Order of Merit - the other being Spanish giant Real Madrid.

It is about time that our club receives the attention it deserves for playing such a crucial role in developing a game
Richard Tims, Sheffield FC chairman

Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon and Inter Milan president Dr Massimo Moratti were also among the top names in football who were due at the anniversary dinner.

Next month, Inter Milan will play a friendly against Sheffield FC to mark the milestone - with Brazilian legend Pele as the guest of honour.

Sheffield FC old team
The world's oldest football club formed a team in 1857

Speaking before the event, Sheffield FC chairman Richard Tims said: "The anniversary of the world's first football club is a momentous occasion for the football world.

"We are therefore delighted that the world's leading figures in the game can attend this unique event.

"It's going to be a great day for Sheffield because everyone will be paying homage to the fact that club football was born here in the city.

"We feel it is about time that Sheffield and our club received the attention it deserves for playing such a crucial role in developing a game which is enjoyed by millions of people around the globe."

He hoped the Unibond Northern Premier League club's unique position in football's heritage would help secure its long-term future.

Mr Tims said: "We have two pieces of memorabilia which you cannot put a value on - an 1857 handwritten minute book containing the first laws of the game and the first printed version from 1859.

"These are the Holy Grail of football, the first record of the laws of the game and this is something the world should harness."

Potting shed birth of oldest team
24 Oct 07 |  South Yorkshire

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific