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The League One is the third highest division of English football and is now referred as Sky Bet League One through sponsorship’s. The format we know as League One was formed in the 2004/2005 season.  The division consists of 24 teams and all teams play a total of 48 games throughout the season. The football season starts in mid-August and doesn’t finish till late May.

The aim for all teams playing in this division is to get promoted to the Championship. This is done through the two automatic places and the third has to go through a play-off system.  Teams that finish third to sixth will play each other in a playoff and this consist of a knockout style competition till there is one team left, and that team goes up a division.

The four clubs who have finished bottom of the league are relegated to League Two and are replaced by the top three clubs and the club who came up through the play-offs.

During the course of the 2015/16 season, the amount of supporters to attend live football in this league was 387,204. The average attendance for a League 1 game was 7,163.

By combining all of league 1 full stadium capacities they will hold on average 386,736 fans. Sheffield United has the highest stadium capacity in the league holding 32,702 thousand fans. Sheffield United also has the oldest stadium in the league and Brammall Lane has been opened since 1855. The newest stadium in the league is Northampton Towns Sixfields stadium which was improved 2014. Wimbledon football club has the smallest capacity in the league just holding 4,850 people.

League One is mainly broadcasted from Sky Sports, with Sky showing roughly 127 games over the course of a season. Sky Sports covers the local derbies within the league and the clashes between some of the bigger clubs who play within in the league. Channel 5 also offers a highlight show covering each weekend game over the season. Once the season is finished Sky Sports cover the playoff games and these games generate the biggest audience in the calendar year for League One.

League One has been shown in these countries throughout the world:

  • Australia
  • Sweden
  • America
  • Cuba


The total market value for League One is set at £121.44 million for the season 2016/2017. Bolton Wanderers have the biggest share of this value with £12.20 million. The club with the least is Bristol Rovers who has £2.78 million.

Most valuable player

Charlton Athletic is considered to have the most valuable player in League 1, with goalkeeper Declan Rudd, who is valued at £1.70 million. He is tied to the club until 2017. The value is generated from the potential of transfer, performance and age.


On average a player playing in League 1 will earn £67,850 a year before tax. So basically a player will be paid in the region of £2,000-£4,000 a week.

In a player’s contract, there will be an agreement between the individual and the club about what kind of bonuses a player will receive. The usual types of bonuses are for winning a game, signing on fee, for scoring a goal or keeping a clean sheet. By having a bonus it can potentially double a player wage.

Wages are also staggered according to the age of the player with the highest earners of the football club tending to be in the age range of 21 to 30. Also, wages within League 1 can be easily dropped if a club gets relegated down to the division below them.

 Record transfer

The biggest transfer to be accepted in League 1 came from Aston Villa in the start of season 2009/2010. The bid was for Leeds midfielder Fabian Delph and the total cost of this transfer was in the region of £8 million.

Luton Town spent the most on a transfer when they purchased Rowan Vine from Portsmouth. The transfer cost Luton Town £319,000 in season 2003/2004.

Transfer window

By combining both transfer windows in the current campaign, the amount of money spent by League One teams was in the region of £30,016,000 million.

Cash Prizes

All Clubs will receive money for winning league games from the Football League Association and will take a certain percentage from ticket sales. This money will be agreed before they play.

Players Records

The player to score the most during a League 1 campaign was Jordan Rhodes who scored 36 goals for Huddersfield Town in the year 2011/2012. Josh Morris who plays for Scunthorpe is currently sitting top of the scoring charts for the 2015/17 season.

The longest serving player currently playing in this league is Dean Lewington who has played for 14 years with Milton Keynes Dons.

The Oldest player to make an appearance in League 1 this season was 49 years old Michael Brown who played for Port Vale in October.  The youngest player to make an appearance in English League 1 this season is Callum Styles who,  at the age of 16, played for Bury FC.

Raphael, a defender for Swindon Town, currently has the worst disciplinary record for the 2016/17 season


Skybet League 1 has crowds that are much higher than their equivalent divisions in European countries.

The club which has the biggest support in the League is Sheffield United. Sheffield United has the highest number of season ticket holders in League 1 with a total of 14,053.

Most successful teams

Doncaster Rovers and Bristol City have both won League 1 four times in its current form. The club who has spent the longest time in this division is Oldham Athletic will have played almost 700 games by the end of the2016/17 season.