The beautiful game attracts millions of viewers every year. Football has one of the most loyal and dedicated fan bases who support and follow their teams far and wide.
Football is one of the oldest sports known, and its top teams have deep-rooted histories. This history is often represented through the clubs’ badge.
In our list of football teams with a bird in their logo, you will spot everything from Eagles, Seagulls, Blue Birds to a Swan, a Cockerel and a Canary.
10. Brighton and Hove Albion F.C.
Brighton is one of many football clubs across Britain that have “Albion” in their name. Albion is an old-fashioned name for areas in the UK with white cliffs.
Brighton also has a white Seagull on their logo and has done so since 1976. Many believe this to be symbolic of Brighton being a seaside town rich in Seagull population.
However, their official nickname, was in response to their main rivals Crystal Palace dawning the nickname of the “Eagles”. Ever since, Brighton and Hove Albion have worn a white Seagull on their club crest and called themselves the Seagulls.
9. Norwich City F.C.
Norwich City is nicknamed “The Canaries”. And as such, the club’s badge has a yellow Canary standing on a football.
They got their nickname because of the history of the Canary bird in Norwich. In the 16th century, refugees arrived in Norwich from lower European countries. They were nicknamed the Strangers and known for breeding Canary birds that they would sell to the local population.
Norwich also has the oldest known football chant, “On the ball, city”, which is traced back to the 1890s and is still sung by fans today.
8. OGC Nice
OGC Nice is a French football team currently playing in the French Ligue 1.
The coat of arms for the city of Nice has a Red Eagle in the centre. So when OGC Nice was established in 1904, they also put a red Eagle front and centre. The club’s nickname is “Les Aiglons”, which translates to The Eagles. The Eagle symbolises strength, victory, and pride.
Nice is one of the oldest and most decorated French Football teams. OGC stands for Olympique Gymnaste Club.
7. Swansea City A.F.C.
Despite being located in Wales, Swansea play in the English Football League. This is because the Swansea football team was formed before the introduction of the Welsh Football league. So the Welsh club had to join the English League when they were founded.
Despite being an active football club for over 100 years, Swansea has only had a Swan on their club badge since the 90s. It stems from the city’s coat of arms which also has a Swan embroiled in it.
The most recent Swansea City logo for the 2022-23 season has a white Swan with its wings spread, sitting on top of a castle.
6. Crystal Palace F.C.
Crystal Palace became a professional football club in 1905. However, they can claim ties back to 1861. Based in Croydon, London, they have two main nicknames, The Glaziers and the Eagles.
They adopted their Eagles nickname in 1973 when then-manager Malcolm Allison looked to revitalise the club and took inspiration from Portuguese side Benfica, who was one of the most successful teams in Europe.
Palace then changed their club’s logo in 1973 to represent their new club nickname. The club’s identity displayed an Eagle sitting on top of a football. Every new logo since Crystal Palace has kept this design.
5. Cardiff City F.C.
Like Swansea, Cardiff is a Welsh team currently playing in the English Football League. They were also founded before the Welsh Football League came into existence. And when it did, they decided to remain part of the English football system.
Founded initially as Riverside AFC in 1899, they changed to Cardiff City in 1908. They are the only non-English team to win the FA Cup.
Cardiff was nicknamed the Bluebirds in 1911 because of their blue tops and white shorts. This became the main nickname for the club, and they officially adopted it. However, the bluebird was not represented on their club logo until 1960, when a bluebird was placed in the centre of their crest.
The bluebird has been worn by Cardiff players since, apart from a controversial time between 2012-2015 when the club changed its logo to a red Welsh dragon.
4. Tottenham Hotspur F.C.
Tottenham Hotspur was founded by schoolboys in 1882. The Hotspur name goes back to the 1300s. Sir Henry Percy had a large effect on Northumberland, where the club was formed. He was nicknamed Harry Hotspur because of his actions in battle.
Tottenham adopted the Hotspur nickname as they viewed their playing styles of attacking football to be similar to the attacking style of Harry Hotspur in battle.
Harry Hotspur was fond of cock fighting. So, when the club was remodelling White Hart Lane stadium in 1909, a bronze Cockerel standing on a football was commissioned by a former player. And Tottenham has dawned a Cockerel on their logo since 1921.
3. Eintracht Frankfurt
Frankfurt is one of the oldest football clubs in Germany. The team was founded back in 1899, and since then, an Eagle has been their main symbol on the team crest.
The design and colour of the Eagle has changed on their logo several times, but the current design has remained the same since 1965.
Eintracht Frankfurt adopted the Eagle from the city’s coat of arms. It is a reference to the one-headed imperial Eagle of the 13th century. Their nickname is “Die Adler”, which translates to the Eagles.
2. S.L. Benfica
Benfica is a powerhouse in European football – they are one of the big three clubs in Portugal that have never been relegated.
Benfica’s football club badge has an Eagle positioned atop a shield. The Eagle stands for independence, authority, and nobility. This logo goes back to 1908 when Sport Lisboa merged with Grupo Sport Benfica to create the club we know today.
Before every Benfica home game, an Eagle flies around the Estádio da Luz and lands on top of the clubs’ crest and takes the place of where the Eagle image would be.
1. Liverpool F.C.
Liverpool is one of the most recognisable football teams in the world – and possibly the first football team with bird logo that fans think of. Established in 1892, they are one of the most popular teams in England and have a decorated history.
Their club badge is also very recognisable: the red emblem with the red liver bird and the writing “You’ll never walk alone”.
The Liver Bird is a mythical creature that sits atop Liverpool’s Liver Building at the height of the city’s skyline. The mythical bird is on the city’s coat of arms and is deeply associated with the city.
Liverpool’s club logo has always had some representation of the Liver Bird. In 1892 the club used the city’s coat of arms as its logo. In the 1940s, they had to change their logo; however, they kept the Liver Bird front and centre. It remains the focal point of the club’s logo and crest to this day.
Other Football Teams With Bird Logos
West Bromwich Albion FC – has a song Thrush bird
Sheffield Wednesday FC – known as the Owls, has a white owl on their crest
Bristol City FC – aka The Robins, for obvious reasons have a Robin red breast logo
Notts County FC – features a pair of Magpies on top of a football