Generally speaking, these days you only really tend to hear about club Christmas parties as and when they get called off by disgruntled managers who think that sapping yet more morale out their beleaguered players will be the key to hauling them out of the relegation mire.
Thankfully, December was a lot more carefree and festive back in the good old days, as this little collection of archive photos duly attests…
Oh, what japes! Liverpool’s players and directors blow up balloons in preparation for the club’s Christmas party, 1936
A snappily-dressed Pat Jennings, Alan Sunderland, Willie Young and Pat Rice gather the kids for a photo with Father Christmas Arsenal’s Christmas party, 1970
Emlyn Hughes is on Santa duty as he poses for a photo with his two children at the Liverpool Christmas shindig, 1974
Notoriously stern hardman Tommy Smith (back row, centre) comes perilously close to cracking a smile at the Liverpool Christmas party, 1974
Sammy McIlroy, Willie Morgan, Stuart Pearson, Gerry Daly and Lou Macari gussy up, throw on their chaps and cock their shotguns for Manchester United’s ‘Wild West’ themed Christmas party, 1974
Hopefully not a veiled comment on their form at the time, Roy McFarland (right) and a few of his Derby County teammates receive a Christmas turkey from Santa Claus, 1976.
John Gregory, then of Northampton Town, celebrates Christmas with a cigar, 1976
Manchester United players (Willie Morgan, Lou Macari, Alex Stepney and Sammy McIlroy are all in their somewhere as the Manchester United players celebrate Christmas with their families, 1975
After the debacle with the kids the year before, Manchester United obviously decided to have a more adult-orientated Christmas party in 1976
Knitwear-a-Go-Go: Manchester United trio Gordon Strachan, Bryan Robson and Sammy McIlroy don their finest glad-rags for Chrimbo, 1980