4 December 2013
Now that 2013 is drawing to a close we thought what better time to look back at the year just gone.
by Rob McPherson
It was a quiet start to the year for the club as both teams were continuing to ply their trade in their respective leagues.
The first team were in regular action in the Manchester Accountants League and can be content with a decent league season that saw them finish 6th.
The second team had a difficult first season in the Manchester City Central League but produced some promising displays towards the end of the season that showed signs of encouragement for the future. It was the first time that the club had two teams in regular local action and is something that the club can rightly be proud of.
With the regular season over, the summer kicked into action and Village Manchester were busier than ever.
In June, Manchester held the GFSN Summer Get Together where many of the clubs affiliated to the GFSN came to play football and sample the delights of Canal Street. The Cup competition saw London Romans run out winners whilst in the Vase, Village's second team saw off Wolverhampton Harts to take home the crown.
The club then headed to Dublin to take part in the IGFLA European Championship. The club were the only team apart from the hosts (Dublin Devils) to have two teams in the competition and were eager to make an impression. The second team, supplemented with a number of Nottingham Ball Bois and Merseyside Marauders players, found times tough going - but it was a different story for the first team.
After knocking out fierce rivals Stonewall in the semi-final, the team came up against the hosts in the final. Goals from Pete Ransom and Jared Auckland saw Village take a two goal, but Dublin grabbed one back to make it a nervy ending. Village saw off the challenge and were delighted to be crowned IGFLA European Champions.
They continued the feel-good international factor with a steady display in the Outgames in Antwerp - finishing 4th in a tournament that saw stalwart Ransom play his last game for the club.
Following a successful summer, Village again got into the award winning mood with their End of Season Do. Ant Parkin and Jeremy Baker won the Player's Player and Manager's Player awards respectively for the first team whilst Rob McPherson (Manager's Player) and Jonathan Findlay (Player's Player) took the awards for the second team. Pete Ransom was given the Outstanding Contribution Award before making his way down to London.
Manchester Pride was up next and, as well as taking part in the parade and having a stall at the Lifestyle Expo, the club finally won the accolade they have been trying years to win - Taurus Bar's It's a Gay Knockout competition!
With a busy summer out of the way it was back to a new league season for both clubs. As usual, the first team took their place in Accountants League and started off impressively as they went six games unbeaten. November saw the team falter a little as they suffered their first league defeats and elimination from both cup competitions. The team however are in a promising position in the league and with a settled team they are well placed to kick on in the New Year and move themselves higher up in the league.
With the City Central League expanding to two divisions, the second team took their place in Division Two and have performed admirably in the opening few months of the season. A number of impressive victories have seen the team comfortably into the top half of the table - a table that is seeing a sizeable gap open up between the top four and bottom four.
The fact that the club has been able to regularly field two teams on a Sunday is thanks to the dedication of the players already at the club but also due to the influx of a number of new players. The club is always looking for new people to join the club and any additions can only strengthen the two teams and make them both even more of a challenge for opposition teams.