MARINE FOOTBALL CLUB - A BRIEF HISTORY
The Club are celebrating their 120 year anniversary in 2014-2015 season, having been formed by a group of local businessmen and former college students – taking its name from the hotel on the River Mersey sea front at Waterloo, seven miles to the north of Liverpool – where the founders met. They moved to their present ground The Arriva Stadium (formerly known as Rossett Park) in 1903.
Marine quickly made an impression on local football, winning numerous titles in the I Zingari League and the Liverpool Combination. Their greatest success as an amateur team in this period culminated in an F.A. Amateur Cup Final appearance in 1931/32, when they lost 7 – 1 to Dulwich Hamlet in front of a 22,000 crowd at West Ham United. In 1946 they went close again by reaching the semi-final.
In 1935/36 they moved to the all-professional Lancashire Combination and enjoyed limited success before moving to the Cheshire County League in 1969/70. In 1972 Roly Howard was appointed first team manager and completed 1,975 competitive games over a 33 year period before retiring at the end of the 2004/05 season. He was recognised by the Guinness Book of Records as the longest serving manager in world football as Marine enjoyed its most successful period winning some 30 trophies.
The Club relinquished its amateur status and became professional in 1974. Three Cheshire League Championships were won in five seasons before progressing to the Northern Premier League in 1979/80. They have twice been Champions (1993/94 and 1994/95) as well as twice being runners-up and have won the League Cup on three occasions (1984/85, 1991/92, and 2002/03).
Following the long period of management under Roly Howard, the club has since been managed by Alvin McDonald (2005-2009), Kevin Lynch (2009-2013) & Phil Brazier (2013-2014). Alvin qualified for the UniBond Premier play-offs in two seasons, losing to the eventual play off champions on both occasions. Kevin Lynch narrowly missed out on a play off place over his reign and Phil Brazier enjoyed his first season of football management, with the assistance of Peter Cumiskey & Robbie Lawton. 2014-2015 sees a new management team at the helm, Carl Macauley was appointed manager in summer 2014, having previously been manager at Conference North club Vauxhall Motors for eight years, and he is assisted by Gary Martindale & Anthony Wright. The new trio are keen to work on their success at their previous club, having brought in a new squad ready for the 2014-2015 campaign.
Marine’s best performance in the F.A. Cup was reaching the 3rd Round in 1992/3 when they lost 3-1 to Crewe Alexandra. Marine have also achieved ten first and two second round appearances in the FA Cup and have beaten two Football League Clubs (Barnsley and Halifax Town) in the competition. Marine have twice reached the semi-finals of the F.A. Trophy in 1983/84 and 1991/92 and have been winners of 13 senior county cups.
Marine have won the Liverpool Senior Cup seven times (most recently in 2008) and the Lancashire Trophy Challenge Trophy three times (most recently in 1999/00).
More recently, the club have twice won the accolade as Football Foundation Community Club of the Year in 2009 and 2010, as voted by readers of the Non League Paper and in March 2011, the club were awarded the FA Charter Standard Community Club award by the Football Association. In 2010, the club were awarded Club of the Year by outgoing league sponsors UniBond.
The club are looking to make continuing improvements to their Arriva Stadium base, two years ago new floodlights were installed at a cost of £70,000 and further improvement over the next few years is planned, with planning permission received for a new 130 seater stand and snack kiosk to be located at the Crossender Road end of the Stadium to balance out spectator facilities, details can be found at www.groundappeal.co.uk The Club are also looking to redevelop the front of the stadium, which is outdated and ageing.
Honours & awards can be found at www.marinefc.com