In 2007–08, they achieved promotion to the top flight of English football for the first time in their history by winning the Championship play-off Final at Wembley Stadium. Their highest league finish was in 2013–14, when they finished 16th in the table, a season in which they also reached the final of the FA Cup.
Hull City play home games at the KCOM Stadium, having moved there in 2002 after 56 seasons at Boothferry Park. Hull traditionally play in black and amber, often with a striped shirt design, hence their nickname, The Tigers.
Hull City Association Football Club was founded in June 1904; previous attempts to found a football club had proved difficult because of the dominance in the city of rugby league teams such as Hull F.C. and Hull Kingston Rovers. The club was unable to apply for membership of the Football League for the 1904–05 season and instead played only in friendlies, the first of which was a 2–2 draw with Notts County on 1 September 1904 with 6,000 in attendance. These early matches were played at the Boulevard, the home of Hull F.C. The club's first competitive football match was in the FA Cup preliminary round, drawing 3–3 with Stockton on 17 September, but they were eliminated after losing the replay 4–1 on 22 September. After disputes with landlords at the Boulevard, Hull City moved to Anlaby Road Cricket Ground. After having played 44 friendly fixtures the previous season, Hull City were finally admitted into the Football League Second Division for the 1905–06 season. Other teams competing in the league that season included the likes of Manchester United and Chelsea, as well as Yorkshire rivals Barnsley, Bradford City and Leeds City. Hull defeated Barnsley 4–1 at home in their first game and finished the season in fifth place.
Hull City and Grimsby Town were the only two professional teams which had official permission to play league football on Christmas Day because of the demands of the fish trade, but that tradition has now disappeared following the dramatic reduction of their trawler fleets in recent years. The following season a new ground was built for Hull City across the road from the cricket ground. Still under the managership of Ambrose Langley, Hull continued to finish consistently in the top half of the table. They came close to promotion in the 1909–10 season, recording what would be their highest finish until they matched it in 2008. Hull finished third, level on points with second placed Oldham Athletic, missing promotion on goal average by 0.29 of a goal. Hull regularly finished in the top half of the table before the First World War, but after the war the team finished in the bottom half in seven seasons out of eleven, culminating in relegation to the Third Division North in 1930.
Hull's greatest achievement in cup competitions until 2014 was in 1930, when they reached the FA Cup semi-finals. The cup run saw Hull knock out the eventual champions of the Second and Third Divisions; Blackpool and Plymouth Argyle respectively. They then knocked out Manchester City, to meet Newcastle United in the quarter-finals. The first game at St James' Park finished as a 1–1 draw, but in the replay Hull beat Newcastle 1–0. The semi-final match against Arsenal took place at Elland Road in Leeds, the game ended 2–2, and was taken to a replay in Birmingham. Arsenal knocked Hull out at Villa Park, the game ending 1–0.