Trust Events

CLASS OF '05: CHRIS PRICE Q&A

There are four days to go until Southport’s legends from 2005 return as Trust in Yellow hosts a reunion for the Conference North title-winning team.

That season is still remembered by supporters as one of the best ever seen, but how do the players look back on it?

Here, Chris Price, the captain of the championship squad, gives his take on that unforgettable season with a question and answer piece.

Chris, who was one of the first signings made by manager Liam Watson following his appointment in October 2003, saw first-hand the rebuilding job which resulted in Southport becoming champions.

You were a player when we won the league in 2005 and part of the coaching staff when we did it again in 2010, how did the two seasons compare?

When you are a player and you win the league you are so elated to have played a massive part in the success. As captain, you feel immensely proud of yourself and the whole team. You have experienced the total involvement of being on the front line. All of your hard work in training has paid off!

When you’re on the management side of things, the journey to success is completely different. You just hope that your coaching and support has inspired the players and you want to win the league for them and the management. You want the players to do their best and try to shield them from any criticism. Ultimately, when things go right or wrong, the management team are held responsible so you want to win for different reasons than when you are a player. I feel privileged to have experienced both sides of the game.

You were one of the first signings made by Liam Watson when he became manager. What was it like being part of the team that was built to win the league?

It was interesting as many players had to be moved on and others were brought in, so it was a combination of being excited and anxious when I first joined Southport. It was such a big club and had a massive fan base for Non- League level. It was a challenge that I relished. I didn’t know many of the players who were there and I knew I had to prove myself to them.

Liam had a strong strategic plan and wanted me to become his captain and get players on side to have the belief that our team could be successful. It worked!

What moments stand out for you from the 2005 season when we won the league?

Beating Droylsden away 3-1, when Steve Daly scored late on, was a highlight. So too was winning 5-0 at leaders Kettering Town when Sid Pickford scored a rather special volley I seem to remember!

Southport were neck-and-neck with Droylsden for most of the season. What do you remember about the end-of-season run-in and winning the league on the final day at Harrogate?

There was a confident but nervous buzz about the players as each game and result developed. I remember Haydn Preece greeted me as I stepped onto the coach to travel to Harrogate that morning and said: “Chris, are the players ready for this?” I assured him that between Liam and I, we had spoken to every player the night before and I stated: “Today we will become champions. I have every faith in this team.”

Who do you remember as being the other key players and characters in that team?

Terry Fearns was a sensational goal scorer and Farrell Kilbane was solid at the back. In midfield, Sid Pickford and Dominic Morley were both Mr Consistent. The whole team was full of character and spirit.

You’ve played for Liam a couple of times and worked with him a lot. What was he like as a manager and how did he get the best out of the team?

Liam was a fantastic manager and is still a true friend. He could relate to the players firstly as a coach and second as a father figure. He had a firm but fair approach. He was well respected and got the best out of everyone. He knew the strengths of the players and had high expectations of the team, as well as being nicknamed Statto!, Donny Osmond and Ed Miliband hee!

 

Chris will return to the Merseyrail Community Stadium, along with his former team-mates, for the Class of ’05 reunion on Sunday - and Trust in Yellow wants you to be there.

The reunion, hosted by the Trust, starts on Sunday with a match between the squad from 2005 and a team of supporters, kick-off 2pm. Entry to the game is £2 at the turnstile and supporters are asked to turn out in their numbers to welcome back the heroes of ten years ago. The reunion continues after the match in the Grandstand Bar, although this second part of the event has sold out.

As part of the build-up to Sunday’s reunion, we’ll have a piece from another member of the 2005 championship-winning squad and crowd favourtie, Kevin Lynch, at the end of the week.

Looking back on that season ten years on, there are also features with other players - Farrell Kilbane, Earl Davis, Terry Fearns, Jimmy Williams, Neil Robinson, plus manager Liam Watson - in a special 32-page souvenir programme produced for the reunion which looks back at the title-winning campaign. The programme is on sale on Sunday for £3

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2005 CHAMPIONSHIP REUNION THIS SUNDAY

This Sunday, Trust in Yellow hosts the ten-year reunion for the Conference North championship squad of 2005.

Any title-winning season is special, but for Southport fans the way in which Liam Watson’s team achieved promotion back then is remembered with particular fondness.

A decade ago, the Sandgrounders triumphed as an epic title race reached a thrilling conclusion, winning the league at Harrogate Town on the final day of a memorable campaign.

This week’s reunion is in two parts. The first sees Watson’s squad from 2005 take on a team of supporters at the Merseyrail Community Stadium, kick-off 2pm.

The reunion then continues in the Grandstand Bar with a buffet, quiz and Q&A session with the players.

Event tickets for entry to both parts of the reunion have sold out. However, fans can still come along to the match only for an entry fee on the day of £2.

The level of interest in the event has been superb and with there being so many crowd favourites within that squad, the Trust is hoping for a large turnout at the match to give the legends a warm welcome.

The Trust has also produced a 32-page souvenir programme which, as well as being a memento of the day, is also intended to be a record of the 2005 title-winning season and features an in-depth lookback at that campaign.

The programme includes contributions from manager Liam Watson and a number of players from within the squad. In the build-up to the reunion during the week, interviews with two members of that squad, captain Chris Price and Kevin Lynch, will be available to read on our website.

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REUNION PROGRAMME ON SALE SUNDAY

As part of this week’s reunion for the 2005 Conference North title-winning squad, Trust in Yellow has produced a souvenir programme.

The programme features a lookback at the championship season from ten years ago and also includes a section on the fans’ match which forms the first part of the reunion.

Unlike the title-winning seasons of 1993 and 2010, a souvenir brochure was never produced in 2005 to celebrate the success. So, as well as being a momento of the reunion day itself, the programme is also intended to be a record of that never-to-be-forgotten season.

It is a 32-page production, costing £3, and with only one page of adverts there is plenty to read.

The programme includes a feature-length interview with manager Liam Watson looking back on his first championship season a decade ago. There are also pieces from Farrell Kilbane, Earl Davis, Terry Fearns, Jimmy Williams and Neil Robinson who, ten years on, provide the story from inside the dressing room.

There is a season review from Jonathan O’Byrne and contributions from Geoff Wilde and Haydn Preece among others.

With only 100 programmes available for sale, it is a limited edition publication and will be on sale from 1pm on Sunday.

Fans who live outside of town and are unable to attend the reunion but would like a programme should e-mail fans@trustinyellow.com.

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MEET THE MANAGER WITH PAUL CARDEN ON AUGUST 1

Trust in Yellow will hold a Meet the Manager session with Paul Carden following Southport’s final pre-season friendly against Bolton Wanderers XI on Saturday August 1.

There is always a good attendance at manager events and once again all supporters are welcome to attend in the Grandstand Bar after the game.

Questions will be taken from the floor or, if you are unable to attend or would just prefer to do so, questions can also be submitted in advance by e-mail to fans@trustinyellow.com or by tweeting @trustinyellow.

The Meet the Manager session is part of the Trust’s new programme of events for the whole season which will be confirmed shortly. It begins with Churchtown Cricket Club’s Summer Bash on July 26 and also includes the 2005 championship reunion on August 2.

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CHURCHTOWN CC V TRUST IN YELLOW - SUNDAY 26TH JULY

Churchtown Cricket Club will hold a Summer Bash at the Rookery, Roe Lane, on Sunday July 26.

The main part of the event will be a cricket match between Churchtown and a Trust in Yellow XI in memory of Phil Carder, the long-serving Churchtown chairman and Trust treasurer, who passed away in January.

Play will start at 1.30pm and the match will be 20 overs a side. It is designed to be a fun day, with the bar at the Rookery open and there will also be food, music and a bouncy castle.

There are two pitches at the Rookery and the match will be played on the back pitch. The winning team will receive the Phil Carder Cup.

All supporters are welcome to attend.

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