Who are You?

Our supporters are the most important people at the club. Without supporters there is no football. Here you can read the stories of some of our members. How did they first start watching Wigan Athletic and join the Tics Tribe? Who are their favourite players? Best games, grounds visited for a game? Their highs and lows watching Wigan Atheletic? Tell by us your story by mailing to info@wafctsc.com and let us add you to this tribe page!

Jeff Rourke

"My first memories of Springfield Park were in the late 1950s/early 60s, climbing over the fence at the Shevington End and crawling about underneath the stand that was dubbed the “Old Codgers” Stand to find anything that had been dropped.

First game memory was one in September 1962 against Winsford that was abandoned due to the players brawling. The fans were not happy and gathered outside to confront the ref but he escaped across the pitch and over the wall at the St. Andrew's Road end.

There are so many more memories:


In 1963 - Being 3-0 up against Rhyl only to lose 5-4.

I was converted by Allan Brown's side. We won the 1965 Cheshire League title by 5 points with Harry Lyon scoring 66 goals to equal the club record and the team going 29 games without defeat (25 wins)

My biggest regret was having to miss the afternoon FA Cup replay against Doncaster in 1965 because the headmaster at school had warned us about going in the morning assembly – but then seeing the school janitor walk in the yard at 4pm with both hands held aloft.

Oddities - seeing a goal given for us against Hyde despite the ball going in via a hole in the net, and seeing a Harry Lyon own goal from near the half way line against Runcorn.

October 1966 and Man City officially opened the new £15,000 floodlights watched by 10,119

Latics were robbed in the FA Cup replay with Tranmere with the referee blowing for time with Alf Craig's shot on its way into the net. - cushions rained down from the stands.

A 52-year-old Stanley Mathews played for Port Vale in a friendly in January '68.

Scot Ian McNeill took over as manager in May ready for the newly formed NPL.


Ex-Liverpool and England star Gordon Milne becoming player-manager. and winning the 1971 title.

Tony McLoughlin setting a Latics individual record by scoring 7 goals in a 11-1 win over Darwen watched by only 742 fans.

The first foreign opponents to play at Springfield Park arrived in March 1970. Russian side Metallist of Kharhov made history and won the friendly 3-2.

The NPL crowd record of 8,107 was set on December 28th against runners-up Stafford. - missed this as I had to work but the first goal was later shown on tv.

Les Rigby's side reaching the 1973 FA Trophy Final at Wembley only to be robbed by an offside winning goal in extra time.

Brian Tiler's side of 74/75 were to win the NPL title with a record 72 points.

In season 77/78, a great FA Cup run was followed by the club gaining runners-up spot in the NPL and finally gaining Football League entry. having seen 5 Football League scalps in the FA Cup (namely Peterborough, Halifax, Shrewsbury, York and Sheff Wed)

Seeing Joe Hinnigan make history by scoring the first FL league goal

The Good Friday comeback against Port Vale winning 5-3 after being 3-0 down


Ex Liverpool centre half Larry Lloyd arrived as player-manager in March 1981. The following season, when 3 points for a win was introduced, he led the club to its first promotion by finishing 3rd in the table.

I personally got the Travel Club started after writing to club director Jim Bennett.

Bryan Hamilton took charge in February 1985, Latics ended the season by winning the Freight Rover Trophy at Wembley

New manager Ray Mathias performed miracles as Latics embarked on a glorious FA Cup run knocking out First Division Norwich City on the way before Leeds rode their luck in the Sixth Rd.

Latics finished in 4th position in the league and were paired against Swindon in the first play-offs who somehow managed to beat us 3-2 on aggregate.

Season 87/88 saw Latics visit Wembley again albeit in the Mercantile Credit Centenary Festival. This season saw Latics share their ground with Rugby League club Springfield Borough.


The home League Cup tie against Liverpool was played at Anfield following a decision that the visitors end wasn't safe.

Being relegated for the first time. Latics, under Kenny Swain were to finish 19th in the 3rd Division, their lowest in the Football League.

Dave Whelan bought the club in the summer.

Graham Barrow's side astounded the football with the signing of three Spaniards who would become known as the Three Amigos.

John Deehan took over in October '95. Latics finished the 96/97 season as Division 3 Champions taking the title on the new goals scored ruling.

Scarborough had been beaten 7-1 on March 11th to register Latics' biggest FL win and Graeme Jones was to bag an amazing 33 goals.

Ray Mathias returned as manager for the 98/99 season leading Latics to a Wembley victory in the Auto Windscreen Shield against Millwall on 18th April.

Stuart Barlow scoring the last ever Latics goal at Springfield Park which was to be demolished for housing.

My second home was the Supporters' Club – the best in the land. - had some great, late nights.

Favourite non-league players were King Harry Lyon and Ian Gillibrand while as a FL side, I liked both Peter Houghton and Colin Methven"

Neil Sherratt

"I started watching Latics in our first football league season, dad used to take me. Sadly, I can’t remember my first game. I have some memories of sitting at the side of the pitch and being in a wheelchair I would sometimes be invited to sit with the opposing manager on rainy days at Springfield Park.

First ever Latics hero was Tommy Gore, got mum to sew a red no 4 on the back of my blue and white striped shirt…still my favourite kit that one of the late 70’s/early 80’s era. Remember fondly, the promotion in 1982, was shown on tv after the game as fans congregated on the pitch, saluting Larry Lloyd and our promotion-winning hero’s. Got a memento of the day in the form of Eamon O’Keefe’s shirt, he was my favourite player of that era, so much so, having been unable to be Junior Latics mascot for a game v Bolton, I was invited to select a game to be mascot for and chose a game at home to Port Vale as O’Keefe would be in their team.

Got loads of memories of Springfield Park throughout the 80’s and 90’s but among all those, one of the things I’d love to be able to visit one more time is the legendary Supporters Club, a place full of character and great people, many of who still watch us and I still have the pleasure of calling a friend.

Moving to the DW has seen us as a club, move on to a different level, will never be Springfield Park though, that place will always be HOME, thankfully though, from a personal point of view, saw better facilities for disabled supporters. The DW has given us its fair share of memories in its almost 25 years it’s played in the history of Wigan Athletic, a few promotions, of course including that day when part 1 of Mr Whelan’s dreams came true and we got promotion to the Premier League, was in the boardroom following the game, which meant being in the company of the Chairman, who it’s safe to say, had indulged in the celebrations!

As well as Springfield Park and the DW, been fortunate enough to visit well over 100 grounds watching Latics, of those Villa Park is probably my favourite, it’s a modern, yet traditional stadium, love how everything round it is painted in claret and blue and if you’ve ever seen it, the outside of the Holte End is superb to look at. Only minus point is visiting disabled supporters are in the Villa end…though we do usually win there.

Finally, apart from Eamon and Tommy who I’ve mentioned earlier, some of my favourite players watching the lads include Tony Kelly, David Lowe, Bobby Campbell (they don’t make ‘em like Big Bobby anymore), Roberto Martinez, Sir Andrew Liddell, Arjan De Zeeuw, Jason Roberts, Nathan Ellington (we had some fun watching those 2 didn’t we) Mario Melchiot (how did we get him to play for little Wigan?), Jordi Gomez, Sir Ben (if only for THAT goal), James McArthur, Will Grigg and lots of others, far too many to mention.

Course, we can’t talk about Latics memories and not mention the day that none of us, fortunate enough to be there, will ever forget…11 May 2013, Wigan Athletic win the FA Cup…Mungo Jerry sang about that once didn’t they?

What a day it was, from travelling to the stadium from our Watford hotel, to game itself and the celebrations that followed in the hotel…we’ve all got our own memories we’ll treasure of that day, but besides the obvious ones, the goal, final whistle etc, one of my own favourite little memories is coming out of the ground, seeing a steward I’ve known from DW for years and a little exchange that went something like…him “are you having that”, me “yes”, him “do you believe it”, me “no!”….well what we’d just witnessed was too surreal for words, from the days of 1,800 at Springfield Park to FA Cup Winners and Europe!!

Only made one Europa League away game, Zulte Waragem at the Jan Breydel Stadium in Brugges. The whole day was fantastic, just madness seeing our club play in Europe and seeing over 2,500 Wiganers just having a great time in the city without a hint of bother was a fantastic memory…even the rain didn’t dampen our enthusiasm.

Anyway enough from me, Keep The Faith and Up The Tics"

Dave Lunt

Dave is a long standing Latics fan from the "good old days" of Springfield Park.

"My dad would take both me and my brother when we were in high school (which is too long ago lol) and the first game I recall was versus Luton Town in the league cup."

" My first favourite player, once I'd been going regularly and had enough frame of reference, was the left back Allen Tankard. Strong, tough, good tackler and solid in defence, plus he'd usually score a 35yd screamer once (or twice) a season.

I also have another hobby, I play the cornet in brass bands which keeps me busy, especially over Christmas.

Stephen Lloyd

"Born and bred in Springfield I started watching the Latics in the 1970-71 season in the Northern Premier League although my grandad had taken me to a couple of Cheshire league games before then. I went with lads from the Wigan Grmmmar School and later lots of members of the supporters club.

Springfield Park was always in my life, having gone to St Andrews school which literally was next to the ground. There was no way I could ever be anything but a Latics supporter.

My first away game was at Stafford in 1972-73 season, on Eavesways Coaches from Springfield down to the game and back. That was my first experience of the home team jeering us when we lost and that was not fun at all. I still do not like it one bit. Somehow I never warmed to Stafford Rangers, I do not think anyone did. They were kings of defensive football and offside traps when they came to Springfield Park. Omar Bogle would have met his worst enemies. One game they had done everything possible to bore a draw until the Latics got a very late goal to lead 1-0. A classic was Noel Ward's 1970s version of "game management" when he sat on the ball and waited for them. None of that corner flag stuff, just pure micky taking from our centre back. Magic!

Travelling on the coaches was great. I remember one of the players parents always with us back then – Micky Taylor’s I think. The group that travelled then I still see some of today at the DW and away games.

Back in the 1970s we tried a junior supporters club, and during Kenny Morris' testomonial year we ran a youth disco - under 18th - in the old supporters club bar. It was so succesful it ran for a few years, and there was northern Soul music played, just like our half times today. I worked in the then supporters shop and development office doing the books, anything to be involved. Those things set me up eventually as experience for my degree.

Living in Twickenham all home game are effectively an away game, but it is (almost always!) worth the journey up and back so I will not be letting my season ticket or seat go. Despite whatever train cancellations Avanti decide to throw at us.

Have Wigan, will travel! The Latics have followed me wherever I have travelled. They have always kept a link to home going.

When I became a student at North Staffordshire Polytechnic back in 1976 our forward Johnny Rogers signed for Port Vale within two days. When most freshers were partying on the first Friday as a student I was at Vale Park watching JR on his debut – a 2-1 win over Northampton and the winner scored by Derek Brownbill, who would soon be a Wigan player himself.

No internet in those days, so on football league election day 1978 I rang the Manchester Evening News Sports Desk from the student bar asking about any changes. I was told “Southport are out” and when they followed It with “Wigan are in” a long day of celebration began. That night I remember chatting to (probably lecturing if fair) Port Vale supporters in a pub called the “Dew Drop Inn”, telling them just how good Wigan were going to be. Not too suprising I never did revisit the pub. The 5-3 game against Vale, 0.3 down with 25 minutes to go, is still up there with the comeback wins of all time.

When work moved me to London in 1984 the first Saturday afterward the Latics were at Wimbledon. So just like Stoke my first weekend in a place was centred on the team. Amazingly the Tics went 2-0 up in the 90th minute and managed to throw it away. The game was 2-2 within three minutes and ended a draw.

With work I was fortunate enough to do a lot of travelling. The Premier League did help as I could see most Wigan games in a bar somewhere. I have watched the Latics live in hotels or bars in Mexico City, Calcutta, Mumbai, Delhi, Amsterdam, Singapore, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong. Once in Hong Kong the bar had Rochdale v Wigan Athletic on one screen and a Rugby league international from the DW on the screen next to it. It was a bit surreal.

Doing my notes after a day in the office I had the TV on in the hotel room whilst I typed. It showed a new Wigan siging in a cup tie for Tranmere scoring by charging down the keeper. I immediately messaged my wife and said "You'll like this Max Power kid" - and we did.

The “Lock Stock” bar in Singapore only had two screens, but one was dedicated to Wigan when I was there. To the point I took out half a dozen pies for the regulars to try at their request! Oddly they only asked once.

A special memory was a late night in a Bangkok hotel room, having worked all day in a data centre. I was sat with two laptops going. One for secure access to work, the other my personal one streaming the Latics commentary. It was in the 2013/14 season, in the championship then and nowhere to watch the game so audio had to do. Neil Rimmer gave me a shout out on the commentary which made working beyond midnight that bit easier! Cheers Neil.

Every era has had favourite players for me, no matter what league we were in, in my mind they’re all equals. I would pay just to watch Jordi Gomez, Denny Landzaat, Paul Clements (the wizard on the wing), Graham Oates, Micky Worswick for flair, characters like Johnny King, James Maclean and Paul Scharner, and so many others. Ian Gillibrand (our Bobby Moore), Lee McCulloch, Jason Roberts and Nathan Ellington, Graham Barrow, Mike Newell, Peter Eales, Tommy Aspinall, John Rogers, Will Grigg, Emerson Boyce, Neil Rimmer, Andy Liddel. The list just goes on. If I wrote the fill list this web page would be too big to load.

My favourite ground visited with the Tics has to be Newcastle United's St James Park if only for the vertigo and the buzz of the city. Exeter City's St James Park was pretty good with their fanzone area being superb. The ground I like least is Tottenham's White Hart Lane - as I was there for the 1-9 defeat and that took some getting over. Closely followed by Forest Green Rovers which I have visited without the Tics playing. It was cold, wet, windy, on top of a hill and the worst food I have ever had in a football ground. I also cannot miss out Old Trafford where any away supporter over 5 feet tall has no leg room and even less chance of getting a decision.

Why would I want to be anything but a Latics supporter? I have seen us in 6 divisions, all the major English finals (FA Trophy, League Cup, FA Cup, Play-off Final, Charity Shield and EFL Trophy with many sponsors), travelled to Russia, Slovenia and Belgium to see that same “small team” with the very big heart.

So many great memories with the club, with so many more to come.

No sporting achievements myself, but my photography is published in 33 countries so I'll take that for now!""

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