The Varsity Football Match between the University football clubs of Cambridge and Oxford is one of the oldest ongoing fixtures in world football. The clubs first met in 1873 and have done so annually ever since (with breaks during the two World Wars).
The fixture is usually played at a neutral venue (formerly Wembley) and in recent years has coincided with The Boat Race. In 2016 the fixture was hosted at Craven Cottage, the ground of Fulham FC. The Varsity Match acts as the culmination of the season for both clubs, and players who make the match XI are rewarded with a much-heralded Full Blue.
The longevity of the fixture and the nature of the institutions represented mean the match is steeped in tradition. As is to be expected, the game is also played in a fiercely competitive spirit. The famous rivalry of the clubs has been extended in recent years to the league competition (BUCS) in which both clubs compete. It is the result of the Varsity Match, however, which tends to define the relative success of a season for players and supporters alike.
The overall record is testament to the tenacity of both teams and the enduring interest generated by the fixture:
Varsity Matches: 132
Cambridge Wins: 49
Oxford Wins: 51
Cambridge Goals: 205
Oxford Goals: 208