Sheffield FC’s earliest football rulebook sells for almost £900,000

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A SLIM, yellowed pamphlet prepared for Sheffield Football Club containing the earliest rules of football has sold for almost £900,000 at auction.

For full story and reaction see The Star tomorrow.

What do you think? Should Sheffield FC have sold off the rules book? Leave a comment below.

The printed 1859 rulebook is the only surviving copy and was accompanied by a handwritten draft of the regulations from a year earlier.

It was sold as part of an historic archive of the world’s oldest club - Sheffield FC - at Sotheby’s in London, fetching £881,250.

The rulebook is said to have been a “crucial step” towards the evolution of the modern game, and built on previous regulations.

The 11 rules say the two opposing sides must wear red or dark blue flannel caps, allow pushing and catching of the ball, but “holding” was forbidden.

The draft rules were contained in a minute book for the club, complete with revisions and changes.

The Sheffield archive, which also included early match reports, was bought by an anonymous bidder.

Chairman of Sheffield Football Club Richard Tims said: “We are delighted with the sale of this extraordinary piece of sporting history, the proceeds of which will allow Sheffield Football Club to develop its facilities and secure its future as the home of grassroots football.”