Manchester Spartans

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The Manchester Spartans were an American football club in Manchester, England. Founded in 1983 as the Northwich Spartans, they became Manchester Spartans in 1984, and were national champions in 1989 and 1990. They won the Eurobowl in 1990.[citation needed]

History[edit]

Formation and early seasons[edit]

The second oldest civilian team in Britain, they began as the Northwich Spartans in 1983 and came to Manchester a year later. In 1985, the first season of formally organized leagues in the U.K, the Spartans under George Aguado finished first in the Northern Division of the American Football League with a 10-2 record but lost to their neighbours Manchester Allstars in the first round of the playoffs.[1] In 1986 they again finished with a 10-2 record and this time won their first round playoff only to suffer a 35-7 defeat to Birmingham Bulls in the British American Football League semi-final playoffs. In 1988 they won more games than any other team in one season (15), but fell in the playoffs semifinals.[2]

First National Championship win[edit]

In 1989 (coached by Terry Smith - who also coached GB at the time), they won the 1989 Budweiser title where they defeated Birmingham Bulls 21-14.[3]

Under former Atlanta Falcons starter Roy Harris, the defense produced youngsters the calibre of LB's Martin Owen and Dave Egan and linemen Rick Hughes, Keith Marsh and Warren Billingham

Second National Championship win[edit]

In 1990 they were National Champions for the second time, NDMA Coke Bowl I, Manchester Spartans 27-25 Northants Storm.[4]

Champions of Europe[edit]

They entered the Eurobowl IV championship in 1990, where they defeated the Dublin Celts in the first round, and then triumphed 34-22 in the final against Legnano Frogs of Italy.[5]

Head Coaches[edit]

1984-1985 - George Aguado

1988-1990 - Terry Smith

1991 - Nigel Dias

1992 - Terry Smith

1993 - Terry Smith [6]

Highest attendance[edit]

They took part in a game with London Ravens that had the highest crowd for an English game: 13,000 - London Ravens vs Manchester (40-23, 20 September 1987) at Loftus Road [7]

Great Britain Spartans[edit]

Renamed Great Britain Spartans in 1994 after moving to Sheffield, the club took part in the only Football League of Europe

Notable former players and Internationals[edit]

Adewybo.I - offense captain, WR

Egan.D - defense captain, MLB

Boyle.B - special teams captain, KK

Harris.R - Also played for the Atlanta Falcons in the NFL, DL [8][9]

Frackelton, Derek - Liverpool born -Played for Northwich Spartans then Manchester Spartans from their first training session in 1982. Played Defensive Cornerback and Special teams kicker. Kicked off the first ever game between two UK squads, Manchester Spartans and London Ravens in Oct 1983. Was one of two sets of brothers in the Spartans side with brother Brian and the two Manchester brothers Ian and Ernest Obeng.[10]

Internationals[11]

1990 - LB John Parker

1990 - Les Jackson, Dave Samuels

1990 - Paul Bailey

1990 - Allan Brown

1991 - Mike Astle

Titles[edit]

Refs[edit]