Celebrity Fans

I spotted this photo as part of my research earlier. It’s from 1997 and, amongst others, it shows musician Liam Gallagher and actor Kevin Kennedy sharing a box at Maine Road. It’s a combination most would be surprised at seeing and all came about because of their support of Manchester City.

Over the years there have been many celebrities who have been proclaimed as fans of particular clubs. Some of these are known to have attended games before they became famous, others perhaps were not so familiar with ‘their’ club before they made their names.  In 2009 I compiled a list of those widely accepted as celebrity Manchester City supporters at that time or before.

Occasionally, some of City’s celebrity fans have been incorrectly claimed as supporters of other clubs.  The most significant of these is the artist LS Lowry.  Lowry was without doubt a supporter of City, however because of his interest in painting Salford scenes it has occasionally been claimed that he was a Red.  Fortunately, artist Harold Riley (himself a Red) has made this abundantly clear whenever the error occurs.  Lowry was a Blue!

The following list is not meant to be comprehensive, however I am keen to develop this list and create a more definitive list covering every era of City’s existence over time. If you have evidence proving additional celebrity City fans then please contact me via this website.

Please note each celebrity listed below is highlighted for one main claim to fame however they may be famous for other activities as well.  This is most obvious with musicians and actors (they have all acted in other areas).  Obviously, some of the celebrities listed here have passed away.

Badly Drawn Boy (Damon Gough) – Musician

Amanda Barrie – Actor, Coronation Street

John Beavan – Political advisor to the Daily Mirror in 1970s

Susan Bookbinder – Broadcaster

Mark Burgess – Musician, The Chameleons

Craig Cash – Actor & writer, Royle Family & Early Doors

Michael Croft – 1970s Television producer

Ian Curtis – Musician, Joy Division

Timothy Dalton – Actor

Howard Davies – Former Deputy Governor of the Bank of England

Lee Dixon – Former Arsenal footballer

Joe Donovan – Musician, Blossoms

Billy Duffy – Musician, The Cult

Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff – Cricketer

Liam Gallagher – Musician, Oasis

Noel Gallagher – Musician, Oasis

You can listen to my interview with Noel here:

Jimi Goodwin – Musician, Doves

Will Greenwood – Member of the England Rugby World Cup winning side

Graham Haberfield – Actor, Coronation Street & The Dustbinmen

Ricky Hatton – Boxer

John Henshaw – Actor who appeared in Early Doors

Bruce Jones – Actor, Coronation Street

Mike Joyce – Musician, The Smiths (provided significant support to the MCFC museum music exhibition)

Archie Kelly – Actor, best known for Phoenix Nights

Ben Kelly – Artist (staged an exhibition of his work at the City museum in 2009)

Kevin Kennedy – Actor, Coronation Street

Eddie Large – Comedian (lived on Maine Road as a boy)

Clive Myrie – Broadcaster, BBC News & Mastermind

Nick Leeson – Trader, held responsible for the collapse of Barings Bank

Sally Lindsay – Actor, Coronation Street

LS Lowry – Artist

Jason Manford – Comedian (his brother Colin worked as a tour guide in the MCFC museum)

Bernard Manning – Comedian

Johnny Marr – Musician, The Smiths

Tom Ogden – Musician, Blossoms

Steve Penk – Broadcaster

Mike Pickering – Musician, M People and legendary DJ

Mark Radcliffe – Broadcaster

Reni – Musician, The Stone Roses (wrote a wonderful poem on being a ball boy which was displayed in the City museum during 2007)

Marc Riley – Broadcaster

George Robey – Music Hall comedian (organised charity game to commemorate City’s 1904 FA Cup final win). Robey is proclaimed as a fan of many, many clubs.

Frank Sidebottom – Broadcaster

Mark E Smith – Musician, The Fall

John Stapleton – Broadcaster

Ben Thompson – Actor, Coronation Street

David Threlfall – Actor, Shameless

Rick Wakeman – Musician (though usually acknowledged as a Brentford fan)

Jez Williams – Musician, Doves

Andy Williams – Musician, Doves

Bob Willis – Cricketer

Bernard Youens – Actor, Coronation Street (played Stan Ogden and, along with the character Annie Walker, was part of the cast who attended a City game filmed for an episode broadcast on 29/11/1967) 

As I mentioned at the start this list was compiled in 2009. Many more names need to be added to this list.

Manchester City Chants

Chanting at football games is rarely documented correctly with many myths, rumours and stories developing over the years. This feature is designed to give a potted overview of the development of singing at City.

I explained about some of the chants in this talk recently:

Now, for subscribers is an 1800 word article on the history and development of chants at Manchester City:

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40 Years Ago Today (Yes, 40!) – ‘Illegal Jumping’, Alf Grey and Manchester City (Sorry!)

On this day (14th January) in 1981 Kevin Reeves had a goal disallowed for ‘illegal jumping’, according to referee Alf Grey, in the first leg of the League Cup semi-final against Liverpool at Maine Road.  

Afterwards manager John Bond claimed the referee would “never make a worse decision for as long as he lives.”  

When I interviewed Bond two decades later he was still fuming about the decision.

Even the Liverpool players, such as Souness. Phil Thompson and Alan Kennedy, believed it was a valid goal. This is even more significant as Kennedy was the player Reeves is supposed to have impeded when he jumped up to the ball!

Subscribers to http://www.GJFootballArchive.com can read an in-depth piece, with quotes from some of my interviews with those involved that night, such as John Bond, Kevin Reeves and the late Eddie Large talks about his post match discussion with Bill Shankly:


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