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VMFC Vault

2000 / 2001

London tour 2001

Press Play to start slideshow. Click on an image to enlarge. 

The club in 2001

Ryan O'Connor


'Superfan' Michael

Dave Ward


Graham Liver

Steve Clayton


Keith Waterworth

Graham Goggins

Jez Ure

Andy Bates

Graham Goggins' 40th birthday

Simon Wheale

Graham Goggins & Simon Wheale


19/5/01: Annual Awards Ceremony

Village Manchester gathered for a select dinner at the Meridien Hotel to present this season's player of the year awards. A suit and tie affair (let down only by manager Tony Boys who exercised the manager's prerogative by wearing a pair of old jeans) with three course dinner was followed by the three awards chosen by players and manager for performances in the past season. Here are the winners...


  • PLAYERS' PLAYER OF THE YEAR 2001 KEITH WATERWORTH - Midfielder with 10 appearances and 6 goals this season. Played in Fort Lauderdale and Cologne. 

  • MANAGER'S PLAYER OF THE YEAR 2001 DAVE WARD - Captain with 10 appearances this season. Played in Amsterdam. 

  • SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR 2001 SIMON WHEALE - Defender with 6 appearances this season. Played in Fort Lauderdale and Cologne.


Midfielder Keith Waterworth carried off the Players' Player of the Year Award for the second time in three years. 'Young' Dave was rewarded for his fantastic performances at the heart of defence with the Manager's Award. Simon Wheale got into the winning habit before his Local Council elections with a Sportsman of the Year Award preceded by a recorded message by megastar and Village Manchester fan Jim Bowen. Too good a time was had by all. Keith's trophy disappeared in Essential at 3.45am only to be found 30 minutes later minus an arm. Efforts to retrieve the missing limb were in vain so he's now got a footballing version of the Venus de Milo. It later turned out that the same thing happened to Simon's trophy. Anyone with information on either missing arm should contact the website immediately - a reward will be given if traced.




Well what a busy year it's been for us wives working hard to support our men in their valiant crusade. You may think it's all visits to boutiques and gynaecologists, but you'd be wrong. The ability to sacrifice for a cause greater than oneself is what marks out a good football wife, and let me tell you all of us VMFC wives have it in spades. I know, for my part, I've gone without on many a Saturday night this season as the boys valiantly shot up the table. In fact that's all my husband's shot up all year. There's nothing gone in the back of my net.


So it was with great excitement that we looked forward to an 'upmarket' Awards dinner and the chance to slip into something spectacular. Granted, the price escalated this year but so did the sense of occasion. And my husband's a self-made man so we can afford it. I go without nothing (that I can hand the credit card over for).


As we swished into the Victoria and Albert Hotel my heart was overjoyed to see that so many of our single boys had become engaged since the end of the season. Some of us are getting on a bit now, though I'm still blooming of course, and I am very much looking forward to grooming the new girls for their future role in life. I'm sure I'm not being previous when I say I expect to be passing quite a few hours in 'Bride Be Lovely' this season fingering tafetta and chenille while our men are hard at it on the court.


The delightful oak-beamed function room was laid out a treat! Wall to wall style and it was so nice to see the boys turned out in all their finery for a change. With a silver wedding coming up for one of our older couples the room would be ideal for a good knees up and I'm sure we could get an organist squeezed into one of the alcoves. Plus, no steps, so a wheelchair can just glide over those acres of finest tufted shag for that all-important grand entrance!


My only disappointment of the evening, apart from at bedtime, was with the meal itself. I'd denied myself the complimentary Wagon Wheel at Toni and Guy in anticipation of a hearty spread, but I'm sad to say that I left as empty as I'd arrived. A football team does not run on a few Mozzarella balls and a leaf of lollo rosso you know! And, having never missed an episode of 'Ready, Steady, Cook' I am quite convinced that the chicken was older than most of Councillor Bridges' bedfellows.


And so the season ends, but the wives are still busy. We have the World Cup in London in August to prepare for... there are West End shows to book and outfits to buy for next season. Look out Bond Street here I come! I am still campaigning for us ladies to have our own little web page for you all to visit with a few tasteful erotic photos of each of us and our husbands' favourite recipes.


Mrs. Goggins is eager to be first, and though she is one of our larger ladies I think she will have the older visitors to this wonderful webpage growling like bears. And her recipe for Liver En Croute is quite spectacular! Mrs. Regan may also be letting you in on her little money making schemes for when she just has to have that new pair of heels. Don't miss that one ladies!


So that's about it for now then. Julia, get those quiches defrosted for next year love!

Players: the Manager's view
  • John Bridges: Reluctant keeper but playing well. Has a tendency to be put off by the cute young striker coming towards him! Nicky Weaveresque but doesn't let so many in!

  • Robert Harrison: Cool central defender with good positional sense compensating for lack of speed. Likes to think he has best legs in league and most likely to man-mark the mid-twenties striker. A Beckenbauer type who never panics under pressure.

  • Tony Whittaker: Tough tackling, tireless right back in the Gary Neville mould who likes to get forward when possible. Has a powerful shot.

  • Dave Warde: Talented young central defender who keeps the elder statesmen of the Village defence on their toes! A Wes Brown type talent with a little bit of Stam!

  • Dave Regan: Attacking right midfielder who has similar attributes to those of Nick Barmby. Tireless running and takes a good corner, good crosser of the ball and motivator. An adaptable player who is comfortable in a number of attacking roles.

  • Steve Clayton: Midfield playmaker with a good footballing head. Headstrong and committed, he reminds me a bit of Dennis Wise, an excellent passer who possesses a thunderous shot.

  • Keith Waterworth: Tireless central midfielder with an iron lung. When others are flagging he is still full of running. He scores, defends, has a Lee Bowyer/Edgar Davids style with a Vieira type tackle.

  • Simon Wheale: Man-marking maestro in the Steve Howey mould. Sticks to his man like glue!

  • Jez Ure: Tough-tackling midfield playmaker and team captain. A motivator who reminds me of a mix between David Batty and Thomas Gravesen, leads by example and never pulls out of a challenge. Always takes the refereeing decisions well.

  • Gary Poole: Dependable motivator with the loudest voice on the pitch! A Ronnie Johnsen type player who comes on and does his job.

  • Graham Liver: Left-sided defender with the slide tackle as his forte. A Robbie Elliott type with a thunderous shot who could talk for England!

  • Dean Fallowes: Striker I would compare to Kevin Phillips, tireless running, good finisher and good penalty taker. Always quick to give the referee advice and forms a deadly partnership with Matt.

  • Matt Haywood: Thierry Henry meets Ronaldo! Takes them on and plays them in. With an eye for the unexpected he's a natural goalscorer with good positional sense.

  • Ryan O'Connor: Like his namesake Giggs a handful for any defence, an excellent crosser of the ball and corner taker. Never shirks a tackle even though just recovered from a broken leg.

  • Graham Goggins: Muscle bound central defender/midfielder/goalkeeper. Supreme motivator with good positional sense, powerful header and nimble feet. Can scare the life out of his manager when playing around on the edge of our area but usually gets away with it. Keeps team mates on toes by playing balls out of defence shouting the first name that comes into his head! Tony Adams meets incredible hulk!

Player statistics 2000/2001
IGLFA World Championships, London 2001

Tony Boys reflects


Village Manchester travelled to compete in the 11th IGLFA World Lesbian and Gay Football Championships held at Chiswick West London. After an overly long opening ceremony on the Sunday night our squad left the Scala nightclub to take up residency at their accommodation scattered across London.


The opening match against Street Boys Munich was an 11a.m. kick-off the following morning. Munich proved to be intimidating both in stature and gamesmanship - the most unsportsmanlike of all the sides we met throughout the tournament would have pushed Greg Louganis hard had they been competing at their favoured sport. 1 - 0 up at half time through a Matty Haywood penalty Village where unable to take control of the game and eventually lost this opening encounter 2 - 1.


Each game lasted 25 minutes each way and after the nervous display of the morning it was against Arc En Ciel Paris that Village started playing their usual flowing football. At half time Village led through a Matty Haywood special - clean through on goal he finished with a shot low into the corner of the goal. Second half and the swirling wind changed to gusts towards the Village goal and Neil in the Village net put in a fine display. The result was put beyond doubt when Ryan O'Connor scored from close range. All things considered a satisfying start to the tournament against two good teams.


Day two and the morning fixture against London Apprentices was an English style encounter with Village grinding out a 2 - 1 victory. Ryan scored to bring the sides level and John Cassidy put the result beyond doubt scoring directly from a corner on the right.


That afternoon Village played in a very one-sided encounter against Absolutely Orange Holland. Village dominated but conceded a penalty in the first half which was saved superbly by Neil. In the second half , 90% of the play took place in the Dutch half but with Village putting together attack after attack Absolutely Orange held on for a undeserved 0 - 0 draw.


Day three and the morning encounter against Cream Team Cologne was a very tactical encounter with Keith marking their play- maker out of the game completely. Things were going very well until Neil suffered an horrific injury when rushing off his line to save. After sustaining a blow to his head he was rushed to hospital. Dave Warde deputised in goal and Village maintained their composure to fight out a 0 - 0 draw.


In the afternoon spirits were low due to the Neil's injury but Village took the lead in the first half against Hotlanta USA through Matty Haywood from close range.Village were well in control and in the second half spirits where lifted when Neil returned to the side-lines to watch with the final score remaining 1 - 0.


Day four and a game against the tournament favourites London Lions. It seemed as if Village had left their footballing heads in bed and deservedly lost 2 - 0. As the results of other games filtered through it became evident that Village were almost certainly through to the semi-finals and would probably be able to choose who they would face. This decision was unable to be made as soon as would have been liked due to matches suspended due to a heavy thunderstorm, but shortly before kick off against San Francisco Spikes we discovered that anything but a win would confirm that we would play our preferred opponents Cologne in the semi-final the following day. Fielding an under strength side with key players rested Village where able to lose 3 - 0 safe in the knowledge that we were through against the desired opponents with a preferable kick off time of 4p.m. giving maximum time for those injured to recover.


Friday afternoon and the nervous tension was almost too much to bear as Village took the field against their German opponents and after unfortunately falling 2- 0 behind at half time heads dropped and Village ran out 6 - 0 losers.


Saturday morning at 10 a.m. and it was a case of who was fit to play in the 3rd/4th Play off final against San Francisco. A spirited display led to a very tired and injured team running out 1 - 0 losers to finish in 4th place - our highest position in this competition.


Given that Village Manchester have a small squad and carried various injuries throughout the tournament the final position of fourth is one of which all involved can be proud. Jez Ure was his usual inspirational self in midfield throughout the tournament and showed his "never say die" attitude when playing as a lone striker in our last game when he could hardly walk! Neil in goal was a revelation and new boy Stuart performed admirably when featuring. Keith played a good tournament until his knee injury slowed his usual style and Matt scored two well-taken goals and a penalty. Ryan scored two and created many chances and John Cassidy scored our other goal from a corner and was solid in defence. Tony at right back was an inspiration and Darren played very well along with our captain Dave Warde in central defence. Dave Regan harried the opposition defence and Steve played well especially early on in the tournament. Robert Harrison came on and performed admirably especially in the last game against San Francisco. Simon Wheale played his usual part and Gary Poole and John Bridges can be proud of the parts they played in helping Village to fourth place. Last and by no way least a special mention to Andy Bates our physio and kit man for the tournament. His support was gratefully appreciated throughout. Thanks to him and to all those who gave their support from the sidelines on this rollercoaster ride which was the IGLFA Gay Football Championships - Thanks to you all. It all bodes well for the future of Village Manchester Football Club.

London squad
  1. John Bridges Goalkeeper, defender and teen-chaser Bridges, veteran of every previous world cup.

  2. Graham Goggins The club's founding father has played all over the pitch in his time - often in the same game. Played in every previous world cup...

  3. John Cassidy A big tournament player - ie. only plays in the big tournaments! Great left-sided defender/midfielder who'll be a great asset in London...

  4. Dave Warde One for the future, the club's youngest member with the oldest head. Played in Amsterdam but missed the last two world cups whilst concentrating on his education. His solid displays in defence last season contributed greatly to our success.

  5. Darren Horwell One of the VMFC's Yorkshire contingent - great defender with the ability to play the ball out of defence and get forward when needed. This will be his first world cup...

  6. Tony Whittaker Tony the Terrier is one of the club's best servants -always there come rain or shine..Never quits running and inspires everyone around him with his example. Veteran of Amsterdam and Fort Lauderdale.

  7. Ryan O'Connor Another new face for this tournament - burst onto the scene a couple of years back with goals galore and continued in the same vein last season after returning from a broken leg...Playing on the left but can switch to attack if needed...

  8. Jez Ure Inspirational midfielder who's been to all the past tournaments - brilliant header of the ball who gets in the tackles, passes the ball around and chips in with the goals. When he's on form so is the team...

  9. Stuart B New addition to the squad - so new I don't even know his surname...

  10. Keith Waterworth Midfielder who appeared in Fort Lauderdale and Cologne looking forward to a successful competition...

  11. Steve Clayton Skilful midfielder who joined the club last season and set about putting in the goals, setting em up and making his presence felt...

  12. Dave Regan Dave's the team's oldest head (literally)...He's played all over the pitch in his time and recently started a fruitful strike partnership with Matt.. This'll be his fourth appearance in the finals...

  13. Matt Heywood Young Matt will be playing in his first world cup and will be looking to fire in the goals in his usual manner. Expect him to be the tournament's top scorer!

  14. Robert Harrison Veteran and club 'eminence grise' Harrison has been around the world with VMFC and the menopause won't take anything away from his wholehearted performances...

  15. Simon Wheale The ankle snapper 'Catherine' Wheale has left many a defender battered and bruised over the past couple of seasons - his display against Amsterdam in last year's Cologne tournament epitomised Simon's superb ability to stick to his man...

  16. Gary Poole The club's enforcer with a Tony Adams style - marshalls the defence around him with a never-say-die approach... A great player to have in the side...

  17. Neill Brown One for the size queens, Neill shows there's more to him on the pitch than short shorts with his marauding runs down the wing...He'll be participating in his first tournament...

  18. Also travelling with the squad will be physio / kitman / supporter Andy

2000/2001 news

18th August 2001 

Village returns from the London 2001 IGLFA World Cup as the fourth best side in the World. The club achieved a best ever placing in the men’s first division. 


25 July 2001

VMFC will take a squad of 15 players to Oxford this weekend in the final pre-season friendly against Slade Farm United - the side we beat 5-0 earlier in the close season. This will be the final opportunity before the London 2001 tournament for manager Tony Boys to weigh up his options.


30 June 2001

Preparations continue apace for this year’s World Cup in London. Training has been stepped up, friendlies arranged and 17 players will travel to Britain’s second city!


30 June 2001

Village travel to Oxford for the first pre-season friendly and come away with a handsome 5-0 victory! Goals from Matt, Steve, Darren and Ryan seal a record-equalling victory against Slade Farm United. A further friendly is to be arranged before the World Cup in London.


25 May 2001

Defender John Bridges at the centre of a political tabloid catfight with supermodel! Village stalwart John Bridges this week found himself at the centre of a vicious war of words with glamour model and party animal Jordan - girlfriend of Man United star Dwight Yorke and his opponent in the forthcoming General Election. 


The campaign to be elected Member of Parliament for Stretford and Urmston turned nasty this week as Village Manchester defender John Bridges sniped at his supermodel opponent Jordan in the national press. Jordan, girlfriend of Manchester United star Dwight Yorke is campaigning with the slogan 'For a Bigger, Betta Future' and hopes to go all the way to Chestminster. In a dramatic twist Liberal Democrat Councillor Bridges appealed to intellectual heavyweight Victoria Beckham to support his cause. The Star said on Thursday that John Bridges 'made a desperate appeal for Posh Spice to support him and stop Britain's number one glamour model snatching his share of the vote.' Showing that years on the gay scene have stood him in good stead for a good bitching session he is quoted as saying 'I'm not a great fan of Jordan myself - I'm not sure her policies stack up.' But supermodel Jordan revealed she was concentrating on the same electoral age group when she said 'I know I've got a huge number of young supporters out there.' Bridges - a 24 hour party animal himself - will not take kindly to being branded 'stuffy' by the tabloid. We will post his response as soon as we have it…

3 April 2001

Village defeated by Club With Daft Name to postpone promotion until next season... Doesn't dampen the end of season celebrations in the Showbar, Churchill's, Via Fossa etc etc... Eleven team members told their next drink could kill... New President and venemous drag queen P. Wessex removes Steve's baseball cap for the first time to reveal horrific alopecia and has Keith in therapy with 'Big Ears' jibe...


29 March 2001

Sunday's promotion clash against Weasel Grove looms with Tony and Keith available for selection after injury... Liver unavailable and Matt out injured so expect changes... VMFC to descend on Hollywood Showbar for Peggy's Presidential inauguration (5pm or thereabouts...)


23 March 2001

Simon Wheale issues VMFC press release... matt sidelined for two months with ankle ligament injury as Tony and Keith race to be fit for final game against Weasel Grove. 





"Move over Manchester United, Village Manchester Football Club are on the march!" says Village Team Manager Tony Boys as the North of England's only gay football team, playing regular Sunday League matches, top the table of Manchester's Accountants League Second Division for the third week running. 


Village Manchester FC could be only a couple of weeks away from promotion if they continue the storming form that has seen them beat Manchester City Council 8-3, Adlingtons Accountants 5-2 and Price Waterhouse Accountants 1-0 in their last three games. 


Village Manchester's promotion push will set the team up as major challengers to London Stonewall FC's title of Gay World Cup holders when they defend the cup at the IGLFA (International Gay and Lesbian Football Association) Championships in London in August this year. 


Tony Boys added "Village Manchester is going from strength to strength as more players join the club and the standard and consistency of play is rising. We are determined to be successful, but we also want to be an open club to the gay community so that gay people interested in playing football feel that we are the club for them." 


Village Manchester's table-topping success coincides with the launch of the club's website. The website contains all the details of the club's history since being established in 1996, recent results and match reports, player profiles and contact details - plus a particularly venomous view of the Manchester gay scene. The VMFC website can be found at


19 March 2001

Village continue winning streak with 1-0 win to stay top... injury problems mount as Matt, Keith and Tony all hobble off - and Graham bares almost all for the VMFC website!


11 March 2001

Robert Harrison brings shame on VMFC losing at pool to Felicia, a 7 foot drag queen... VMFC refused entry to Churchill's due to overintoxication (David Regan calls the bouncer a gorilla)... Hollywood Showbar DJ Peggy Wessex made Honorary Club President... Oh, and VMFC demolish Adlington 5-2 to retain top spott!! Another quiet Sunday. 


Princess of pool - Felicia of the Hollywood Show Bar:

3 March 2001

Village trounce Manchester City Council 8-3! The boys done good! Manager Tony Boys sees his tactics pay off in an 8-3 thriller.

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