Billy Manuel

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Billy Manuel
Personal information
Full name William Albert James Manuel[1]
Date of birth (1969-06-28) 28 June 1969 (age 48)[2]
Place of birth Hackney, England
Playing position Left back, midfielder
Youth career
Chelsea
0000–1987 Tottenham Hotspur
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1987–1989 Tottenham Hotspur 0 (0)
1989–1991 Gillingham 87 (4)
1991–1994 Brentford 94 (1)
1994 Peterborough United 0 (0)
1994 Stevenage Borough (loan) 3 (0)
1994–1995 Cambridge United 10 (0)
1995–1996 Peterborough United 27 (2)
1996–1997 Gillingham 20 (0)
1997–1999 Barnet 31 (1)
1999–2000 Folkestone Invicta
2001 Horsham
2001 Grays Athletic
2001–2002 Tonbridge Angels
2002–2003 Bromley
2003 Windsor & Eton
2003–2004 Waltham Forest
2004–2005 Metrogas
Teams managed
1999–2000 Folkestone Invicta (assistant)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

William Albert James Manuel (born 28 June 1969) is an English retired professional football left back and midfielder, best remembered for his time in the Football League with Brentford and Gillingham.[1] His tenacious performances in midfield for Brentford led to the nickname 'Billy the Pit Bull'.[1]

Career[edit]

Gillingham[edit]

Manuel began his career in the youth systems at Division One sides Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, before dropping down to Division Three to sign for Gillingham on 10 February 1989.[3] His addition to the squad failed to help the struggling club avoid relegation to Division Four at the end of the 1988–89 season and Manuel remained at Priestfield for two more forgettable seasons before leaving in June 1991.[3] He made 97 appearances and scored four goals for the Gills.[4]

Brentford[edit]

Manuel moved back up to Division Three to sign for Brentford in a £60,000 deal on 14 June 1991, to bring stability to the left back position.[1][5] He made 45 appearances during the 1991–92 season and won the first silverware of his career when the Division Three title was clinched at the end of the campaign.[6] In the newly renamed Division One, Manuel moved into the midfield and impressed enough to be voted the Brentford supporters' Player of the Year at the end of the season, though it would end in disappointment with relegation straight back to Division Two.[1] New manager David Webb installed Manuel as captain for the 1993–94 season and moved him to left back,[1] though he gradually fell out of favour and was released in August 1994.[7] Manuel made 115 appearances and scored two goals during three seasons with Brentford.[1]

Peterborough United[edit]

Manuel signed for Division Two club Peterborough United on a short-term contract on 16 September 1994.[3] He failed to make an appearance before departing on 28 October.[3]

Stevenage Borough (loan)[edit]

Manuel joined high-flying Conference side Stevenage Borough on loan in late September 1994.[8] He made three appearances before leaving Broadhall Way.[8]

Cambridge United[edit]

Manuel signed for Division Two strugglers Cambridge United on a three-month contract on 28 October 1994.[3] He made 12 appearances before his contract expired.[3]

Return to Peterborough United[edit]

Manuel re-signed for Peterborough United on 28 February 1995, four months after leaving the club.[3] He made 35 appearances and scored five goals before leaving London Road for the final time on 25 January 1996.[3]

Return to Gillingham[edit]

Manuel rejoined Gillingham, then flying high in Division Three, on 26 January 1996.[3] He helped the Gills to promotion to Division Two with a second-place finish at the end of the 1995–96 season and made 11 appearances in 1996–97, before being released at the end of the campaign.[9] In both his spells with Gillingham, Manuel made 118 appearances and scored four goals.[3]

Barnet[edit]

Manuel dropped back down to Division Three to sign for Barnet prior to the beginning of the 1997–98 season.[3] He made 38 appearances and scored one goal before being released at the end of the 1998–99 season.[3]

Non-league football[edit]

Manuel dropped into non-league football in 1999 and signed for Southern League Division One East side Folkestone Invicta and helped the club to promotion to the Premier Division in his first season.[10] He was released as part of a cost-cutting exercise in December 2000.[11] He moved on to play for Horsham, Grays Athletic, Tonbridge Angels, Bromley, Windsor & Eton, Waltham Forest and Metrogas before retiring in 2005.[12]

Management career[edit]

While a player at Folkestone Invicta, Manuel was also the club's assistant manager.[12]

Personal life[edit]

After his retirement from football, Manuel spent a period living in the United States before returning to his native Hackney to run a pub.[13] He later worked in refurbishments.[14]

Honours[edit]

As a player[edit]

Brentford

Gillingham

Folkestone Invicta

As an individual[edit]

Career statistics[edit]

Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Gillingham 1988–89[4] Third Division 17 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 17 1
1989–90[4] Fourth Division 32 3 2 0 1 0 3[a] 0 38 3
1990–91[4] 38 0 1 0 1 0 2[a] 0 42 0
Total 87 4 3 0 2 0 5 0 97 4
Brentford 1991–92[6] Third Division 35 0 3 0 5 1 2[a] 0 45 1
1992–93[6] First Division 41 1 1 0 1 0 6[b] 0 49 1
1993–94[6] Second Division 18 0 0 0 2 0 1[a] 0 21 0
Total 94 1 4 0 8 1 9 0 115 2
Stevenage Borough (loan) 1994–95[8] Conference 2 0 1[c] 0 3 0
Cambridge United 1994–95[3] Second Division 10 0 2 0 12 0
Peterborough United 1994–95[15] Second Division 14 1 14 1
1995–96[15] 13 1 2 0 4 3 2 0 21 4
Total 27 2 2 0 4 3 2 0 35 5
Gillingham 1995–96[4] Third Division 10 0 10 0
1996–97[9] Second Division 10 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 11 0
Gillingham total 107 4 4 0 2 0 5 0 118 4
Barnet 1997–98[16] Third Division 19 0 1 0 3 0 1[a] 0 24 0
1998–99[17] 12 1 0 0 1 0 1[a] 0 14 1
Total 31 1 1 0 4 0 2 0 38 1
Career total 271 9 13 0 18 4 19 0 321 13
  1. ^ a b c d e f Appearances in Football League Trophy.
  2. ^ Appearances in Anglo-Italian Cup.
  3. ^ Appearance in Conference League Cup.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Haynes, Graham; Coumbe, Frank (2006). Timeless Bees: Brentford F.C. Who's Who 1920–2006. Harefield: Yore Publications. p. 100. ISBN 978-0955294914. 
  2. ^ Triggs, Roger (2001). The Men Who Made Gillingham Football Club. Tempus Publishing Ltd. pp. ptbc. ISBN 0-7524-2243-X. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n "Billy Manuel | Football Stats | No Club | Age 46 | 1987–1999 | Soccer Base". www.soccerbase.com. Retrieved 2 September 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "Gillingham FC Career Details". 
  5. ^ Croxford, Lane & Waterman 2013, p. 82-89.
  6. ^ a b c d Croxford, Mark; Lane, David; Waterman, Greville (2013). The Big Brentford Book Of The Nineties. Sunbury, Middlesex: Legends Publishing. pp. 477–479. ISBN 9781906796723. 
  7. ^ Croxford, Lane & Waterman 2013, p. 172.
  8. ^ a b c "BoroGuide | Stevenage Players | Billy Manuel". www.boroguide.co.uk. Retrieved 22 December 2016. 
  9. ^ a b "Games played by Billy Manuel in 1996/1997". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 2 September 2015. 
  10. ^ a b "Football Club History Database – Folkestone Invicta". fchd.info. Retrieved 2 September 2015. 
  11. ^ "Fifc latest". archive.folkestoneinvicta.co.uk. Retrieved 2 September 2015. [dead link]
  12. ^ a b "Billy Manuel's Career – UpThePosh! The Peterborough United Database". www.uptheposh.com. Retrieved 2 September 2015. 
  13. ^ "Where Are They Now? Brentford Division Three Champions 1991–92". The League Paper. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  14. ^ Street, Tim (27 April 2017). "Why former Brentford favourite wants to help players struggling with life after football". getwestlondon. Retrieved 27 April 2017. 
  15. ^ a b "Billy Manuel's Matches For Peterborough – UpThePosh! The Peterborough United Database". www.uptheposh.com. Retrieved 22 December 2016. 
  16. ^ "Games played by Billy Manuel in 1997/1998". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2016. 
  17. ^ "Games played by Billy Manuel in 1998/1999". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2016. 

External links[edit]