Wigan Athletic Football League players – A to Z – (Brendan O’Connell to Ian Purdie)

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O’CONNELL, Brendan
DOB: 12th November 1966
Other clubs: Portsmouth, Exeter City, Burnley, Huddersfield Town, Barnsley, Charlton Athletic, Rossendale United, Northwich Victoria (asst manager)

Brendan was signed by John Deehan from Charlton Athletic for the start of the 1997/98 season. He made his Latics League debut on the opening day of the League campaign, 9th August 1997. The game was a home encounter against Wycombe Wanderers and Latics won 5-2 with Brendan becoming the first ever Latics League player to score a hat trick on his League debut. However, despite the fairytale beginning to his career it was sadly ended after he had made just 17+0 League appearances, during which he scored 5 League goals, when it was discovered that he had a life threatening blood clot in his leg.

A successful operation ensured that Brendan fully recovered but his doctor advised him to quit playing professional football He was given the job of youth team coach for the following 1998/99 season and he held this post when Latics moved to the JJB Stadium the following season. By the start of the following 2000/01 season he was made manager of the reserves with Colin Greenall, who had previously held the post, promoted to first team coach. Brendan’s association with the club ended on Friday 2nd November 2001 when he was dismissed from his duties as reserve team coach.

His colleague, Colin Greenall was also dismissed as the first team coach on the same day. On Saturday 10th November 2001 he made his Non League debut, along with Colin Greenall, when he played for Uni Bond First Division side Rossendale United against Lincoln United. Both players agreed to play for the club on a match by match basis for the Stags’ chairman who was a good friend of Brendan’s.

His current whereabouts are unknown.

DOB: 29th November 1975
Other clubs: Northwich Victoria, Amazuka FC (South Africa)

Neil, who was born in Billinge, signed a pro contract with the club on 18th March 1993 after impressing in the reserve team. He made his Latics League debut on 4th May 1993. The game was against Swansea City at the Vetch Field and he was a substitute during the 1-2 defeat. He never really made the grade at Springfield Park and after making 11+4 League appearances without scoring, he was released at the end of the 1994/95 season.

O’KEEFE, Eamon

DOB: 13th October 1953
Other clubs: Stalybridge Celtic, Plymouth Argyle. Hyde United, Al Hilal (Saudi Arabia), Mossley, Everton, Port Vale, Blackpool, Cork City, Chester City, St Patrick’s Athletic, Cork City (manager)
Honours: England Semi Pro (1 cap), Republic of Ireland Under 21’s (4 caps), Republic of Ireland, (5 caps)

Eamon, a then club record £65,000 signing from Everton, was signed by Larry Lloyd on 28th January 1982. Eamon’s goals went a long way to ensuring that the Blues had won their first ever Football League promotion by the end of that season. He is fondly remembered for scoring the hat trick against Mansfield Town at Springfield Park on 8th May 1982 in the game in which promotion to the old Third Division was clinched thanks to a 3-1 victory. In total he made 56+2 League appearances, scoring 25 League goals before being transferred to Port Vale at the end of season 1982/83. In addition to his International caps, he also represented ENGLAND at Semi Professional level.

OLEMBE, Salomon
DOB: 18h December 1980
Other clubs: Nantes, Marseille, Leeds United, Al Rayyan, Kayserispor, FK Vojvodina, Larissa
Honours: (Cameroon 60 caps, 4 goals)

Salomon was signed on 4th September 2007 on a free transfer as a replacement for the departed Leighton Baines. He had been released from French giants, Marseille at the end of the previous season and had had trials at Derby County before Chris Hutchings stepped in after a failed attempt to sign Argentina World Cup star Diego Placente. He initially took a little while to work up to full match fitness and made his Latics Premiership debut on 6th October 2007 against Manchester United at Old Trafford, which resulted in a 4-0 defeat.

He made only 2+6 Premiership appearances for the club before being transferred to Turkish side, Kayserispor, in April 2008. He is currently (May 2011) plying his trade at Greek outfit Larissa, after a failed trial at Burnley.

DOB: 13th January 1958
Other clubs: Brora Rangers, Dundee United, Ross County, Fraserburgh, Montrose

Jim was signed by Ian McNeill from Montrose for the start of the 1980/81 season. Although a more or less permanent fixture in Fred Eyre’s reserve team he struggled to get into the first team squad. He made his Latics League debut on 13th September 1980 against Darlington at the Feethams. Not only did the Blues lose 1-3, but Jim himself was substituted with David Glenn coming on in his place. He was only to make 1 more substitute appearance for Latics at Springfield Park in a 1-0 victory over York City on 29th October 1980 before being released at the end of the season.

O’NEILL, Michael
DOB: 5th July 1969
Other clubs: Coleraine, Newcastle United, Dundee United, Hibernian, Coventry City, Aberdeen, Reading, St Johnstone, Clydebank, Portland Timbers, Boston Bulldogs, Glentoran, Ayr United, Cowdenbeath (asst manager), Brechin City (manager), Shamrock Rovers (manager)
Honours: Northern Ireland Under 21’s (1 cap),
Northern Ireland Under 23’s (1 cap),
Northern Ireland B (2 caps),
Northern Ireland (31 caps, 4 goals),
Auto Windscreens Shield winner 1999 (Wigan Athletic)
Irish Premier League winner 2003 (Glentoran)
Irish League Cup winner 2003 (Glentoran)
County Antrim Shield winner 2003 (Glentoran)
Leagiue of Ireland championship winner 2010 and 2011 (Shamrock Rovers) (as manager)
The Setenta Cup winner 2011 (Shamrock Rovers) (as manager)

Ray Mathias signed Michael from Coventry City on 18th September 1998 on a free transfer. This was Ray’s second attempt to sign the classy midfielder and he was well worth waiting for. Michael was a Northern Ireland International and had won 31 caps and scored 4 goals. He made his League debut against Macclesfield Town at Springfield Park on 19th September 1998 in a game that resulted in a 2-0 win for the Blues. In what was Latics’ last season at Springfield Park he made 35+1 League appearances without scoring and helped the Blues reach the play-offs

Things didn’t work out too well for him under the managership of John Benson at the JJB Stadium but he still managed 30 League appearances and scored a couple of League goals before being released at the end of the season. On Friday 18th August 2000 he signed a short-term contract with Scottish Premier League side St Johnstone. He is currently (December 2011) the manager of Northern Ireland.

DOB: 18th October 1976
Other clubs: Accrington Stanley, Blackpool, Southampton, Leeds United, Preston North End, Nottingham Forest, Oldham Athletic, Blackpool, Rochdale
Honours: Division Three play off final winner 2001 (Blackpool)
Championship play off final winner 2010 (Blackpool)

Brett was signed on a month’s loan from Southampton on 17th March 2005. Latics manager Paul Jewell had been after Bretts’ services for a while and this was his third attempt at signing him in this League campaign. Jewell had tried signing him from Blackpool in 2001 but ‘Pool boss Steve McMahon accepted Southampton’s offer of £1,750,000 despite a higher one of £2,000,000 from the Blues. Brett made his Latics League debut 19th March 2005 in a League game against Nottingham Forest at the City Ground. The game resulted in a 1-1 draw.

After making 5 League appearances and scoring two League goals his loan deal was extended until the end of the season. However, after playing just one more League game without scoring, he was recalled to Southampton by his manager, Harry Redknapp as the Saints hit rock bottom of the Premier League. Brett does however, enter the Latics history books as a squad member of the team that gained the club’s first ever promotion to the Premiership.

He is currently (January 2012) plying his trade on loan at Rochdale from Blackpool.  It was Brett’s goal that proved to be the winner in an exciting Championship play off final against Cardiff City at Wembley that took the Tangerines into the Premier League in May 2010.

ORMSBY, Brendan
DOB: 1st October 1960
Other clubs: Aston Villa, Leeds United, Shrewsbury Town, Doncaster Rovers, Scarborough, Waterford United (manager)

Brendan was signed on a non contract basis by Kenny Swain at the start of season 1994/95 He made his Latics League debut on 30th August 1994 against Chesterfield at Springfield Park. The Blues were beaten 2-3 and after the next game, a 1-2 defeat against Barnet also at home he never turned out for the club again. On leaving the club he coached at junior level before landing the Waterford United managers job.

A bit of Brendan Ormsby trivia – did you know that Brendan has a beer named after him? It is brewed by the Wold Top brewery and can sampled at Wold’s Spa Complex!

DOB: 25th February 1993
Other clubs, Manchester City, Twente Enschede

Filip, a Slovakian Under 21’s international striker, signed for the Under 21’s squad hot on the heels of Spanish youngsters  Guillermo Andres and Edu Campabadal.

The former Manchester City youngster arrived on a free transfer from Dutch Eredivisie side FC Twente.  He made an immediate impact for Latics on trial in early August 2012 when he netted the equaliser in the 2-2 pre season friendly draw with Stockport County at Edgley Park.

His first competitive game for the Blues was in a Capital One Cup third round game against West Ham United at Upton Park on 25th September 2012.  He was a last minute substitute in a 4-1 victory.  He is still to make his Premier League bow.

DOB: 11th July 1976
Other clubs: River Plate, Hurucan, Xerez, Bristol Rovers, Walsall, Queens Park Rangers, Nottingham Forest, Montpellier, Columbus Crew
Honours: MLS Supporters Shield winner 2008, 2009 (Columbus Crew)
MLS Cup winner 2008 (Columbus Crew)

Gino was Bruce Rioch’s first signing for the club when he arrived at the JJB Stadium from the Bescot Stadium on a Bosman free transfer after signing a one-year deal on Thursday 20th July 2000. He had left the Midlands club citing a lack of ambition as his reason for quitting. He had trial spells at Derby County, Dundee United and Bristol Rovers before Latics’ new manager got his man. Another bonus for Latics was that as he was a member of the European Union he didn’t need a work permit. Gino was injured for the start of the new season (2000/01) and he finally made his Latics League debut as a substitute against Peterborough United in a League encounter at the JJB Stadium on 12th September 2000 when he replaced Brian McLaughlin in the 86th minute. Latics won the game 1-0.

He appeared just once in the League Cup as a substitute, twice in the FA Cup, twice in the Leyland Daf Vans Trophy and he made just 4 League appearances before being released on 21st May 2001. Six other players, Carl Bradshaw, Darren Sheridan, Roberto Martinez, Gareth Griffiths, Stuart Balmer and Peter Beagrie also left on the same day.

He is now (Aug 2011) retired from the game and has helped to set up the Schelloto and Paul Soccer Academy which is based in Ohio.

DOB: 18th January 1964
Other clubs: Northwich Victoria, Stafford Rangers, Altrincham, Runcorn, Rotherham United, Rochdale, Doncaster Rovers, Chester City, Winsford United, Hyde United, Scarborough, Matlock Town, Telford United, Blyth Spartans

Don arrived at Springfield Park from Runcorn in March 1989, a couple of days after the sad dismissal of manager Ray Mathias. He spurned the chance to play semi professionally for England to try his luck in the Football League and he soon became a cult hero at Latics. He made his Latics League debut on 24th March 1989 against Gillingham at the Priestfield Stadium in a game that resulted in a 1-2 defeat. He spent three seasons at the club during which he made 62+12 League appearances and scored 15 League goals before moving to Rotherham United in August 1991. Don currently (January 2010) resides in Lutterworth in Leicestershire and works in the Warwickshire County Council’s finance department.

DOB: 29th July 1984
Other clubs: Deportivo Victoria, Deportivo Olimpia, Birmingham City, Tottenham Hotspur, Stoke City
Honours: (Honduras 76 caps, 5 goals)

Wilson was signed by Steve Bruce on 11th January 2008 from Honduras outfit Deportivo Olimpia. The midfielder, who had been on loan at Bruces’ former club, Birmingham City, signed a three and a half year deal and arrived at the JJB Stadium for a fee of £770,000. He made his Latics Premiership debut the following day in a crycial relegation six pointer against Paul Jewell’s Derby County at Pride Park, which Latics won 1-0 courtesy of an Antoine Sibierski goal.

He made 16 Premiership appearances without scoring by the end of the 2007/08 season, during which he became a firm crowd favourite. During the pre season he signed a new, improved contract much to the delight of the fans who feared that he and team mate Luis Antonio Valencia were bound for Manchester United.

However, he was only at the JJB Stadium until the following transfer window, he was snapped up by Tottenham Hotspur on 20th January 2009 for a club record fee of £14,000,000. His final game for Latics was against Manchester City on 17th January 2009 and his final Wigan Athletic career total was 37 Premier League games played, without scoring.  He is currently (Aug 2011) plying his trade with Stoke City.

PALADINO, Guiseppe
DOB: 29th August 1965
Other clubs: Everton, St Helens Town, Altrincham, Runcorn, Witton Albion, Ashton United, Stalybridge Celtic, FC United, Rossendale United, Congleton Town

‘Joe’, who failed to make the grade at Everton, was signed from St Helens Town in December 1990, on the advice of his former St Helens team mate Bryan Griffiths, amidst a goalkeeper injury crisis when Nigel Adkins had been injured during a game against Shrewsbury Town at Gay Meadow. Phil Hughes was also injured at the time and so Joe was signed until the end of the season. He made his Latics League debut on 23rd December 1990 against Brentford at Griffin Park in a game that the Blues lost 0-1. He had played 4 consecutive League games when Latics decided to bring back Tony Pennock from Stockport County, who then promptly made 2 League appearances before getting injured himself! Joe played the next League game against Reading at Elm Park before Phil Hughes returned to action. In total he made 7 League appearances before signing for Altrincham at the start of the following season.

He then had a spell with Runcorn and Witton Albion for whom he played in a FA Trophy Final.

He then swapped goalkeeping gloves for boxing gloves and reached the British top ten of professional heavyweight boxers before returning to the sport he loves in 1997.  He is currently (Sept 2011) the manager of Congleton Town.

DOB: 11th June 1971
Other clubs: Bournemouth, Everton, Ashton Town (asst manager)
Honours: FA Cup Final winner 1995 (Everton) Charity Shield winner 1995 (Everton)

Joe started his career at Springfield Park as a trainee and he signed a professional contract with the club on 1st April 1989 after he made his Latics League debut some seven months earlier. This was on 30th September 1988 in a 2-0 victory over Blackpool at Springfield Park. During a five year stay at the club he made 115+4 League appearances and he scored 6 League goals.  He was sold to Bournemouth for a fee of £35,000 which was fixed by a tribunal on 1st July 1993. Latics protested strongly even after the tribunal but there was nothing they could do once the figure had been set. Bournemouth sold Joe to Everton for £250,000 three months later and to add even more insult to a pretty bad injury the fee that the Cherries finally received rose to £800,000.

He is currently (24th February 2012) the assistant manager of local non league side Ashton Town and is employed as a fork lift truck driver.

A bit of Joe Parkinson trivia – did you know that to date (May 2011) he is still the only Latics trainee to ever go on and win a FA Cup winners medal?

DOB: 15th October 1969
Other clubs: West Bromwich Albion, Crystal Palace, Luton Town, Preston North End, Dundee United, York City, Oxford United,
Oxford United (caretaker/manager), Oxford United (asst manager), Oxford United (manager), Bristol Rovers (asst manager), Bristol Rovers (caretaker manager), Rotherham United (asst manager)
Honours: Northern Ireland Under 21’s (1 cap),
Northern Ireland B (3 caps),
Northern Ireland, (17 caps)

Darren was signed by Bryan Hamilton from West Bromwich Albion for the start of the 1989/90 season. He made his Latics League debut on the opening day of the season, 19th August 1989, against Blackpool at Bloomfield Road, a game that resulted in a 0-0 draw. The moment most Latic Fanatics remember him for was scoring of a last second equaliser against Coventry City at Highfield Road in a FA Cup third round game. He was a very accomplished central defender and it wasn’t too long before bigger clubs were watching him. And on 1st July 1992 Latics, being in financial difficulties, were more than glad to accept £225,000 for his services from Crystal Palace. In total he made 69+28 League appearances for the Blues during which time he scored 6 League goals.

Darren was appointed Oxford United manager on 14th March 2006. However, just eight days later U’s chairman Firoz Kassam sold the club to businessman Nick Merry and he immediately brought Jim Smith to the club as manager. Following Smith’s resignation
in April 2007 he became the manager again, only to be replaced by, yes you’ve guessed it, Smith, following his own sacking on 30th November 2008.

Darren is currently (June 2011) the assistamnt manager of Rotherham United after a short spell out of the game after being the caretaker manager of Bristol Rovers following the sacking of Paul Trollope on 15th December 2010 until 11th January 2011.

DOB: 4th April
Other clubs: Sunderland, Burnley, Stalybridge Celtic

Ian was signed by Kenny Swain from Burnley towards the end of the 1993/94 season. He made his Latics League debut on 19th April 1994 against Crewe Alexandra at Gresty Road. The game in which he came on as a substitute for Neil Morton resulted in a 1-4 victory for the Railwaymen. He was to make just 2+2 League appearances without scoring before being released at the end of the season.


DOB: 19th November 1963
Other clubs: Wolverhampton Wanderers, Charlton Athletic, Bristol City, Burnley, Rochdale
Honours: Republic of Ireland Under 21’s (5 caps),
Fourth Division Championship winner 1992 (Burnley),
Second Division play offs winner 1994 (Burnley)
Third Division Championship winner 1997 (Wigan Athletic)

John, who played for the Republic of Ireland U 21’s, was a £30,000 signing from Burnley in August 1995 and he made his Latics League debut on 19th August 1995 in a 2-1 win against Scunthorpe United at Springfield Park. During that season he made 41 League appearances and scored once and he was highly influential in Latics winning the Third Division Championship the following season. In total he played 68+3 League games, scoring 1 League goal before being transferred to Rochdale for a fee of £11,000 in July 1997.

DOB: 3rd September 1983
Other clubs: Leigh RMI

Ian started his career as a trainee at the club and at the start of his second year at the JJB Stadium he played two pre season friendlies against St Helens Town and Leigh RMI in the pre season of 2001/2002. He made his Latics League debut on 20th October 2001 when he played in the 2-3 defeat against Wrexham at the JJB Stadium. By the end of season 2001/02 he had played 4+0 League games for the club without scoring. He impressed manager Paul Jewell enough to offer him a one-year professional contract in May 2002 which he duly signed. Keiran Charnock and Paul Santus did likewise.

DOB: 10th April 1971
Other clubs: Stockport County, Hereford United, Yeovil Town, Rushden and Diamonds, Farnborough Town, Carmarthen Town, Newport County, Neath Athletic, Swansea City, Port Talbot Town, Aberaman Athletic

Tony was Stockport’s third choice goalkeeper when he joined Latics on loan after Latics had failed to persuade Pat Jennings to come out of retirement for the FA Cup. Nigel Adkins, Phil Hughes and Giuseppe Paladino were all injured and Tony played well in the game against Coventry City which resulted in a 1-1 draw. on 5th January 1991. He was kept on by the club as a result of his performance and made his Latics League debut against Grimsby Town at Springfield Park which the Blues won 2-0. The goalkeeping jinx struck again when Tony broke his thumb at Mansfield in the next game and was sent back to Edgeley Park. He returned to the club for a nominal fee during the pre season of 1991/92 but failed to establish himself as the club’s number one keeper. In total he played 10 League games for Latics but he is fondly remembered by the Springfield Park faithful.

He has managed the Welsh semi pro team and he took them to a very respectable second place in the Four Nations Semi Pro tournament in 2007.  He has also been the manager of Port Talbot Town.

DOB: 11th October 1965
Other clubs: Strasbourg, Lens, Caen, Ayr United, Walsall, Portsmouth, FC Bayeux

Jeff, real name, Jean Francois, arrived at the JJB Stadium when John Benson took over his existing Portsmouth contract on 30th November 1999. He made his Latics League debut against Brentford at the JJB Stadium on 18th December 1999, a game that resulted in a 1-0 win and the equalling of Latics’ all time unbeaten run of League games. In total he made 19+4 League appearances without scoring before being released and returning to France at the end of the League campaign.

DOB: 30th June 1969
Other clubs: Preston North End, Rossendale United, Horwich RMI, Leigh RMI, Southport

Andy arrived at Springfield Park after serving his YTS apprenticeship at Preston North End and playing once for the Deepdale outfit. He made his Latics League debut as a substitute on 27th October 1990 against Bradford City at Valley Parade in a game which Latics lost 1-2. In a five year stint at the club he made 131+25 League appearances for the Blues, scoring 20 League goals in the process. He was released at the end of the 1992/93 season.

PISCU, Adrian Lopez
DOB: 25th February 1987
Other clubs: Deportivo B, Deportivo La Coruna
Honours, Spain Under 19’s
Spain Under 21’s

Adrián López Rodríguez, aka Piscu, was signed on a free transfer from Deportivo La Coruna on 31st December 2010. He had Been training at the club since Augus

t whilst a contract dispute between himself and his club was concluded by FIFA who ruled that he had not legally signed a contract with the Spanish outfit during the summer.

His first game for Latics was a pre season friendly against Dundee United on 8th August 2010, but he had to wait until 5th March 2011 for his Premier League debut for the Blues.  This came against Manchester City at Eastrlands in a game which the Blues lost 1-0. Also making his debut during the game was young striker Conor Sammon.  By the end of season 2011/12 his Latics career consisted of 6+0 Premier League appearances without scoring.


DOB: 29th February 1972
Other clubs: Manchester United, Oldham Athletic, Bury, Lincoln City, Notts County, Gillingham, Brentford, Sunderland, Rotherham, Chesterfield, Ipswich Town, Burnley

Mike became Latics’ first signing as a Premiership club when they acquired his services for a fee of £150,000 on 30th June 2005. He played his first game for the club in a ‘behind closed doors’ friendly encounter against Elite 3000 during a Danish training camp on 20th July 2005. Latics won the game 5-0. He made his Latics League debut on 14th August 2005 against Chelsea at the JJB Stadium, a game that Latics lost 1-0. He went on to make 23+1 Premiership appearances and he was a member of the team that contested Latics’ first ever major Cup Final. In fact, he was instrumental in the Blues reaching the Carling Cup Final when he saved a penalty in the Semi Final, second leg game against Arsenal at Highbury.

However, the arrival of Chris Kirkland prior to the start of the following season saw Mike sitting on the bench and manager Paul Jewell decided to loan him out to Ipswich Town on 15th November 2006. However, after making just one appearance for the Tractor Boys, a 3-1 home win against Norwich City, he was recalled to the JJB Stadium on 23rd November 2006 when John Filan picked up a groin injury during a training session the previous day.

On 11th January 2007 he was loaned to Championship neighbours Burnley, making four Championship appearances for the Clarets before playing the last two games of the Premiership season. He signed on at the JJB Stadium for a further year on 20th June 2007, however, he was to add just one more appearance during season 2007/08 before signing another one-year deal for season 2008/09 and then another one for seasons 2009/10, 2010/11, 2011/12 and 2012/13!

As at the end of season 2011/12 he had played 31+5 Premier League games for the club.

DOB: 17th September 1968
Other clubs: Port Vale, Mansfield Town, Chester City, Northwich Victoria, Kidsgrove Athletic, Congleton Town (manager), Port Vale (youth team coach), York City (asst/manager)
Honours: Third Division play off winner 1989 (Port Vale)
Associate Members Cup winner 1993 (Port Vale)

Andy, who works on the family farm in Holmes Chapel and counts Robbie Williams among his mates, signed for Latics on a free transfer under the Bosman ruling on 27th May 1998 amid a storm of protest from the Port Vale fans. In what was Latics’ last season at Springfield Park he played during the pre season but suffered a leg injury and it was not until 28th November 1998 that he made his League debut for Latics against Preston North End at Deepdale in a game that resulted in a 2-2 draw. Andy was one of the goal scorers the other being Colin Greenall. However, he only made 20 League appearances and scored just 1 League goal by the end of the season. His luck was no better during the first season at the JJB Stadium and after making just 5 League appearances without scoring he was loaned to Mansfield Town on 22nd October 1999 until 20th November 1999 for whom he made 5 League appearances without scoring.

On returning to the JJB Stadium he was told by John Benson that he could leave the club on a free transfer. Nobody came in for him and on 5th February 2000 he was loaned to Chester City for the remainder of the season. Whilst at the Deva Stadium he played 16 League games without scoring as Chester were relegated from the Football League. The following season (2000/01) saw him put on the transfer list by Bruce Rioch on 10th September 2000 along with Alan McLoughlin, Brian McLaughlin and Neil Redfearn. He was transferred to Chester City on a free transfer on Friday 20th October 2000 signing a three year deal. In total he made 10+14 League appearances for the Blues, scoring once. Andy is currently (May 2011) the assistant manager of York City.

DOB: 2nd April 1969
Other clubs: Everton, Lincoln City, Scunthorpe United, Bury, Altricham, Macclesfield Town, Bangor City, Rhyl, Flint Town United, Conwy United, Rhyl, Total Network Solutions, Rhyl (coach), Chester FC (coach)

Gary was a regular in the Everton youth team before signing for the Blues in March 1991. He made his Latics League debut as a substitute for Don Page against Tranmere Rovers at Springfield Park, a game which resulted in a 0-1 defeat. He made a total of 57+27 League appearances and scored 17 League goals before signing for Bury for the start of the 1993/94 season.

He is currently (May 2011) the first team coach at newly formed Chester FC.

DOB: 7th March 1953
Other clubs: Larkhall Thistle, Aberdeen, Dundee, Motherwell, Portsmouth, Canberra Arrows

Ian goes down in the history books as the first player that Latics signed upon gaining election into the Football League. Not content with that little piece of history, he is also the scorer of Latics’ first ever successful penalty kick which came on 28th October 1978 against Northampton Town in a 2-0 victory. He made his Latics League debut during the Blues first ever Football League game on 19th August 1978 against Hereford United at Edgar Street which resulted in a 0-0 draw. He made a total of 54+1 League appearances, scoring 7 League goals before being transferred to Portsmouth in October 1979 for a fee of £20,000. In March 1981 he signed for Australian outfit Canberra Arrows and he eventually made Australia his home.

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