Professional Footballers start young
Rotary Club of Plimmerton
Category: Club Events
Category: Club Events
By Phillip Reidy
Chris began his career as a professional player with Manchester City aged 13 and was sent out on loan to Cardiff City, Blackpool, Scarborough, Northampton Town and Mansfield Town with a view to gaining experience.
As a sixteen year old it was a pretty daunting experience as it was a full time live-in arrangement. Duties were basic such as cleaning team boots, putting playing kit out and helping in the medical room. There was also a day a week of study to be undertaken and of course playing for either the A team or B team on Saturday. It was a world in which you grew up quickly.
After going through a stale patch Chris left Manchester City and joined Mansfield Town. Here he gained a new lease of life and became a prolific goal scorer with 58 goals for the club in three seasons. In August 2002 he was signed by Stoke City but managed only 9 goals in three seasons there.
He then moved to Tranmere Rovers where in four seasons he scored 53 goals. After his contract expired at Rovers he joined Wellington Phoenix where he played three seasons, helping the club to three consecutive finals series places before retiring as a player in 2012.
With an eye to the future Chris obtained his coaching badges while still playing and so became a player / coach for the Phoenix in 2011. When he retired from playing in 2012, he became Assistant Coach for the team.
Chris commented that being a football player had allowed him to travel and taught him that you need to work hard to get the most out of life. He also learnt that as you played at every level of football you needed to manage the inevitable roller coaster that went with it.
Next week Professor John Nacey will be addressing us on issues of the prostate. John has had a long standing clinical and research interest in prostate disease and has been a strong advocate for improving the health and well-being of New Zealand men.
There will be no weekly meeting at Mana Cruising Club on Tuesday 14 October as we will be enjoying an offsite visit to BNZ Harbour Quay Building at 60 Waterloo Quay (opposite the railway station). If you're coming, meet outside this building at 6.10pm. The visit will take approximately 1½ hours. No food will be provided, so either have an early tea at home or eat out afterwards. The kitchen at Featherston Bar & Grill on the corner of Featherston/Johnston Streets will be open until 9.00pm. Wives/partners are welcome. A ring around will be done to confirm numbers by 7th October.
Peter Jackson is looking for our club’s “High Vis” vests. If you still have one, please let Peter know.
A Melbourne Cup / Casino night will be held on 4 November. Allan Nichols needs 10 people to help as Croupiers. Please support Allan to help make this a great night.
Other Diary Dates
5-7 December 2014 - Rotary Institute District Conference
13 December 2014 (Evening) - Christmas Function at Rydges Hotel Wellington
28-29 March 2015 - Book Fair