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Season finale at Deepdale for Internet ‘Orns

WIFC will close their 2014/15 campaign with a trip to the North West tomorrow, to take on the fans of Preston North End on their hallowed Deepdale turf. The match is being played as part of PNE manager Simon Grayson’s efforts to raise money for Prostate Cancer, with both teams making a contribution to the fund which currenty stands at over £20,000.

Deepdale will host the IFA teams of Watford and Preston tomorrow.

Deepdale will host the IFA teams of Watford and Preston tomorrow.

The game holds a further significance for the Preston supporters team, who celebrate their tenth anniversary in 2015. ‘Watford were our first ever opponents back in 2005 and as we celebrate this, our tenth year as an IFA side and our 50th year as a supporters team, it’s right and fitting that Watford will again be our opponents to mark this occasion’ explained PNE manager Steve Cowell. ‘We will follow the Watford boys back down the M6 as we make our way to London for Sundays League One Play Off Final V Swindon. To say we’re looking forward to this weekend is an understatement’ added Cowell.


Plenty of fresh faces on show for both teams in that initial 2005 meeting

For WIFC’s part, the game is a fitting end to one of the best seasons for years. Currently 3rd in the national league, the team is once again going from strength to strength as the Internet ‘Orns finish their 18th season of IFA football. ‘We are delighted to have been invited’ said WIFC’s Dave Messenger. ‘We’ve had many an enjoyable game with Preston since being their first opponents and are looking forward to another on the famous Deepdale turf tomorrow. It’s also a feather in the cap for our brilliant fixtures organiser Tom Beck, who has been instrumental in getting this game on.. our 24th of the season and we’re suitably delighted to have made the new mark for league games’.

Action from one of the many good games between the two sides

Action from one of the many good games between the two sides

The game will be the 12th meeting between the two sides since that 3-3 draw back in August 2005. The 2008 WorldNet final was the most memorable, as two regular IFA league sides contested the final of the IFA’s showpiece tournament for one of the few times in the history of the event. Preston won by the single goal, while Watford were left wondering what might have been had Paul Watt converted a second half penalty.

The huge 'what if' moment as Paul Watt lines up his spot kick in the 2008 Worldnet final

The huge ‘what if’ moment as Paul Watt lines up his spot kick in the 2008 Worldnet final

A full record of WIFC’s games against Preston is below.

Details of Simon Grayson’s fund-raising for Prostate Cancer can be found on the link below;

Date Comp Opposition Score Scorers
Season 05/06 IFA League Preston H D 3-3 Whittenbury, Murphy 2
Season 05/06 IFA League Preston A D 1-1 Soloway
Season 06/07 IFA League Preston H L 1-4 Karlsen
Season 07/08 IFA League Preston H W 3-1 Watt 2 (1 Pen), Murphy
Season 07/08 Worldnet Final Preston N L 0-1
Season 08/09 IFA League Preston H L 0-4
Season 08/09 IFA Cup Semi Final Preston N L 0-2
Season 09/10 IFA League Preston H L 2-4 Flanagan, OG
Season 09/10 IFA League Preston B H L 1-5 Fincham
Season 10/11 Worldnet Last 32 Preston B N W 2-0 Soloway, J Davis
Season 12/13 IFA League Preston A L 1-6 Mathers

4th win in 5 ends year on a high

WIFC finished another great year of IFA football with a 4th win in 5 games against a typically spirited Dagenham & Redbridge side at a frosty Met Police this Saturday. Ross Connor got the Internet ‘Orns off to a flier when he tapped in a Steve Eustice cross after just 5 minutes, and Connor doubled the lead with his 12th of the season soon after, when he finished sweetly following an excellent cross-field pass from Joel Moody. Dave Soloway completed the first half scoring when he scored his 4th in 3 games and 6th of the season from close range at the second bite of the cherry, following a good stop to his initial effort.

The second half saw more chances and it was Moody who scored the 4th, though the visiting keeper will feel he could’ve done better with the low strike. Soloway also had the ball in the net twice more though both were ruled offside. At the other end, with Tom Beck closing in on a first clean sheet, the visitors efforts were rewarded when Ben Bateman slice into his own net. WIFC restored the 4 goal cushion when Mark Brennan’s left foot finish completed the scoring.

Sterling effort shows team spirit is alive and well

ASKED to give all they had to deny a talented West Bromwich Albion side the room they craved to operate in, Watford IFC responded in quite magnificent fashion to manager Richard Walker’s instructions. No one personified the high-tempo pressing game which kept the scores locked at 0-0 for nearly an hour more than Stuart Nicholls – who led the way from the front alongside Ross Connor.

Richard Murphy and Rob Stone provided effervescence and top-notch graft in midfield while Matt Ainsley and Brad Simmons impressed in the full-back positions. Just before Boing FC notched their first of five high-quality second-half goals, Warren Flanagan – in WIFC action for the first time in over a year – enjoyed the host’s best chance when put clean through but slipped the ball just wide of a post.

It was one-way traffic once visitors Albion broke through but there were opposition compliments aplenty at full-time for a defiant WIFC display which epitomised the spirit and togetherness shown in recent weeks.

Man of the Match Stu Nicholls led from the front

Man of the Match Stu Nicholls led from the front


41. Matt Ladell


Position – Right Back/Right Midfield
DOB – 26/3/1996
Apps – 14
Goals – 0
Worldnets – 0
Debut v Barnsley Septmeber 2013

Matt is another of the players who, like Brad Simmons, is ridiculously close to being younger than WIFC itself – he was a mere 14 months old when the club started. Despite this, he’s been welcomed into the fold and has improved vastly since his debut, winning his first MOM award at Gillingham earlier this season. Now at Nottingham Uni, he also made a useful start to his stint with the WIFC pikey student mantle, eating a load of sauces to win some loose change in a pub before the Charlton game. Big things are expected on both fronts.

matt l

Matt’s Q and A

Describe yourself in a sentence
(They obviosuly don’t teach reading at Nottingham Uni, Matt didn’t answer this one. Idiot)

What was the first WFC game you went to and what can you remember about it
Can’t remember first game however first away game was Macclesfield in the third round of the fa cup. Won 2-0

Finest ever WFC memory
Finest memory was beating Leicester in the play offs

Worst away trip
Bristol City on a Tuesday night drew 0-0. Smith missed a penalty.

WIFC Playing highlight
Ipswich home

Favourite WIFC moment
London Cup final

All-time favourite Watford player

All-time favourite Watford XI (not the best players – your favourites)
Foster, Hodson, Dyche, DeMerit, Taylor, Smith, Buckley, Abdi, Young, Helguson and Forestieri.

Red shorts or black?
Black shorts.

14. Mike De Crescenzo

Position – Right Back/Striker
DOB – 26/3/85
Apps – 14
Goals – 1
Worldnets – 0
Debut v Southampton July 2014
Nicknames – Mikey, Speedy

Mike joined WIFC at the back end of the 2013/14 season with brother-in-law Ross Connor, and quickly got off the mark at Stevenage in his 2nd game. Since then, he’s been deployed more often at full-back and has given a series of solid displays, quickly becoming a regular and valued member of the squad.

Mike’s Q and A

Describe yourself in a sentetce
Speedy is a legend. ( so I’ve been told )

What was the first WFC game you went to and what can you remember about it?
Blackpool away Sept 2013 – being there for Ross connor bday weekend with the lads, that was a good weekend

Finest ever WFC memory
The double penalty save by Alumina and then the winning goal to get to Wembley.

Worst away trip and why
Not had one yet

WIFC playing highlight
My first goal at Stevenage

Favourite WIFC moment
Ed taking a tumble, but taking 5mins to fall over

All-time favourite Watford player
Tommy Mooney

Red shorts or black ?
Black shorts

Which actor would play you in ‘WIFC – The Movie’
Danny Dyer

13. Ross Connor

Position – Striker
DOB – 1/9/1988
Apps – 15
Goals – 14

Debut v Southampton – July 2014
Nickname – Rossco

With two goals on his debut, and 12 before Christmas in his first full season, Ross has got his WIFC career off to a flying start since making his debut in 2014. He also became the second WIFCer to have to leave the field to attend to his kids’ toilet issues in a game at Hampton, following in the illustrious footsteps of Ian Grinstead.


Ross’ Q and A

Describe yourself in a sentence
Tall, dark and devilishly handsome!

What was the first WFC game you went to and what can you remember about it?
It was during the 1998 season, but the only fixture I can remember from back then was the play off final win in ’99. A certain Nick Wright springs to mind…

Finest ever WFC memory
Without doubt the Deeney goal v Leicester. I was actually at the theatre with my fiancée when it took place and so never saw it live (I still curse her!). I managed to go the whole day without hearing the score, only to come home and watch it at midnight. I proceeded to turn off the tv when Cassetti gave away the pen and went to bed sulking. I was woken up by my fiancée the next morning who forced me to watch the end of the match. Safe to say I was probably the only Watford fan vigorously celebrating that wonderful goal the day after it happened.

Worst away trip and why
Have only been to a few. But purely because it was my birthday weekend, Blackpool away 13/14. All over them but couldn’t hit a cows arse with a banjo. Tom Ince comes off the bench to grab a late winner for them. Only highlight of the occasion, abusing Barry Ferguson!

WIFC playing highlight
I would have to say playing in my debut. Two goals from centre midfield, not a bad start!

Favourite WIFC moment
Purely because, if I didn’t laugh I would cry. 1 minute left to go against Bury, the game stands at 2-2 and I lay the ball across the goal for Ally Hill to tap into an empty net from less than a yard out, only for him to scuff it into the air for the goalkeeper, who had previously been sprawled on the floor, time to stand up, regain his composure and casually catch it with two hands. Shameful really.

All-time favourite Watford player
Fernando Forestieri

All-time favourite Watford XI (not the best players – your favourites)
Ben Foster, Nigel Gibbs Jay Demerit Gabriel Angella Paul Robinson, Tommy Smith, John Eustace, Almen Abdi, Ashley Young, Troy Deeney, Fernando Forestieri.

Red shorts or black?
Black. Period.

Which actor would play you in ‘WIFC – The Movie’
Kit Harrington.

57. Jerry Ladell

Position – On the touchline, failing that in the bar, failing that full back
DOB – 19/08/57
Apps – 5
Goals – 0
Worldnets – 1
Debut v Barnsley – September 2013
Nicknames – Matt’s Dad

Jerry made his debut alongside his son, Matt, as part of a fun bus trip to Barnsley in September 2013. He remembers us losing 3-2, when in fact it was 5-2 and that probably sums up his contributions quite well that day. All joking aside, Jerry has been a regular at the club since and has played a vital part in ensuring that Matt can make games. Jerry regularly runs the line and helped out as referee for our game against Northampton, awarding a final minute penalty against his son for good measure.

Jerry’s Q and A

Describe yourself in a sentence
An old git who should know better to be trying to still play football at 57 years old

What was the first WFC game you went to and what can you remember about it?
The first I can really remember is Liverpool 1967 3rd Round of the FA Cup – we drew 0-0 (lost the replay 3-1). I watched it from the roof of the Red Lion Garage!

Finest ever WFC memory:
Finishing runners-up to Liverpool in our first season in the old first division.

Worst away trip and why
Easy, Torquay 27 December 1977, won 3-2. I am reminded of the game every time I look in the mirror. I decided to try and head a brick away that was thrown by a Torquay fan, it smashed my nose to bits….

WIFC playing highlight
Injuring myself in the warm up of our first vets game up in Leeds during the summer – only managed 15 minutes play during the whole weekend, and those minutes weren’t very memorable!

Favourite WIFC moment
That’s still to come (I hope), other than that the 20/20 cricket at Headingley with the vets

All-time favourite Watford player
For ages it was Billy Jennings but then along came Heidar Helguson.

All-time favourite Watford XI (not the best players – your favourites)
M.Walker; D.Welbourne; W.Rostron; K.Eddy; I.Bolton; L.Taylor; T.Garbutt; J.Barnes; S.Scullion; H.Helguson & M.Vydra

Red shorts or black?

Which actor would play you in ‘WIFC – The Movie’
Got to be George Clooney – we have the same chiselled looks!

37. John Sitkowski


Position – Centre Midfield
DOB – 07/01/1992
Apps – 22
Goals – 1
Worldnets – 0
Debut v Southampton – June 2013
Nicknames – None as yet

John arrived at the club at the back end of the 2012/13 season, making his debut in our final game at home to Southampton. He’s since gone on to be a regular fixture in the side, opening his goalscoring account the following season v AFC Wimbledon when he rounded the keeper and took a few touches to make sure. John capped off a decent debut season by starting in the 2014 London Cup final and finished as runner up in the ‘Best Newcomer’ award.

John’s Q and A

Describe yourself in a sentence
Serious and always fashionably late.

What was the first WFC game you went to and what can you remember about it?
vs. Bolton in ’99 at Wembley. I can’t remember a lot but the Watford streaker gave me nightmares for weeks.

Finest ever WFC memory:
Play off semi final against Leicester. Pretty obvious choice, but to go from such a low feeling of conceding a penalty to go out of the play offs, to scoring and going to Wembley in a matter of seconds was incredible.

Worst away trip and why
I’ve only ever seen Watford lose once away, and that was the first leg of the play off semi final against Leicester.

WIFC playing highlight
Still yet to score, so I’ll go for starting in the 13/14 season cup final.

Favourite WIFC moment
I really enjoyed Barnsley away during 13/14 season. Fun bus antics and beating them 5-1 in the afternoon.

All-time favourite Watford player
Lloyd Doyley

All-time favourite Watford XI (not the best players – your favourites)
Foster, Doyley, Shittu, Demerit, Mariappa; Young, Abdi, Battochio, Adam Johnson, Mooney, Deeney.

Red shorts or black?

Which actor would play you in ‘WIFC – The Movie’
George Clooney


All the results from 2014/15

Overall Record

WIFC 14/15 Pld W D L GS GA GD
League 24 13 3 8 63 65 -2
Friendlies 2 1 0 1 3 3 0
Cup Games 4 2 0 2 4 3 1
TOTAL 30 16 3 11 70 71 -1
Goals Per Game 2.33 2.37
Leading Scorer
Ross Connor – 22
Leading Appearances
Richard Murphy – 27
Final League Position
Final English League Position
1st Round
London Cup
Group stages
Did not enter
Worldnet Vets
First Round

Results and Scorers

Date Comp Opposition Score Scorers
23-Aug-14 LGE1/LCGRP Stevenage H W 4-2 Hill 2, Soloway 2
30-Aug-14 LGE2 Northampton H W 5-1 Wenham, R Sterry, Moody, Connor 2
06-Sep-14 LGE3 Bury B H D 2-2 OG, Murphy
13-Sep-14 LGE4 Gillingham A D 1-1 Connor
20-Sep-14 LGE5/IFAC1 Kingstonian H L 2-10 Connor 2
04-Oct-14 FR WIFC Yellows v Whites H W 3-0 Jenkins, Connor 2
11-Oct-14 LGE6/LCGRP West Ham A L 2-7 Jenkins, Bateman
18-Oct-14 LGE7 AFC Wimbledon A H W 5-1 Hill, Moody, J Sitkowski, Murphy 2
01-Nov-14 LGE8 Stevenage A L 1-5 Connor
08-Nov-14 LGE9 Ipswich A W 1-0 Jenkins
15-Nov-14 LGE10 Hampton & Richmond A W 4-2 Soloway, Murphy (Pen), Connor 2
22-Nov-14 LGE11 WBA H L 0-5
29-Nov-14 LGE12 MK Dons A W 4-1 Soloway 2, Murphy, J Davis
13-Dec-14 LGE13 Dagenham & Redbridge H W 5-1 Connor 2, Soloway, Moody, Brennan
30-Jan-15 LGE14 Southampton A W 1-0 Connor
14-Feb-15 LGE15 Coventry H W 4-2 S Pullen, Connor 2, M Clarke
21-Feb-15 LGE16 Leyton Orient A W 3-0 Butterick, Connor, Walker
07-Mar-15 LGE17 WBA A L 1-2 Nicholls
21-Mar-15 LGE18 Ipswich H W 3-2 Simmons, Nicholls 2
28-Mar-15 LGE19 MK Dons H W 6-2 Hill, Connor 3, B Clarke 2
04-Apr-15 LGE20 Leyton Orient H W 3-1 B Clarke, Hill, Simmons
11-Apr-15 LGE21 Gillingham N L 2-4 Connor 2
18-Apr-15 LGE22 Hampton & Richmond H D 2-2 Myall, Connor
16-May-15 LGE23 West Ham H L 2-5 Pegram (Pen), S Pullen
23-May-15 LGE24 Preston A L 0-7
04-Jul-15 Worldnet Vets Stockport Vets N L 0-1
04-Jul-15 Worldnet Vets Pompey Bangers N W 1-0 Sheldon
04-Jul-15 Worldnet Vets Brentford Vets N W 3-0 Sheldon 2, McBride
05-Jul-15 Worldnet Vets Portsmouth Vets N L 0-2
Name 14/15 Apps
Richard Murphy 27
Ross Connor 23
Michael De Crescenzo 23
Tom Beck 23
Stuart Nicholls 21
Matt Ainsley 19
Ed Sterry 17
Ally Hill 16
Maurice Clarke 16
Dave Soloway 13
Brad Simmons 12
John Sitkowski 12
Dave Messenger 12
Julian Carrera 12
Rob Stone 11
Phil McBride 10
Ben Bateman 10
Richard Walker 9
Andy Myall 9
Joel Moody 8
Stuart Holdham 6
Jeremy Hinds 6
Dan Butterick 6
David Sitkowski 5
Ben Pegram 5
Matt Ladell 5
Mark Brennan 5
Simon Pullen 5
Matt Wells 4
Dan Willis 4
James Jenkins 4
David Morren 4
Richard Wenham 4
Pete Fincham 4
Marc Duffy 4
Ben Kelly 4
Laurence Wells 3
Ben Morrison 3
Jerry Ladell 3
Panos Fellas 3
Paul Withey 3
Ben Clarke 3
Richard Messenger 3
John Machin 3
Spencer Brown 3
Ben Sheldon 3
Ben Smith 3
Paul Watt 2
Martin Pollard 2
Jimmy Davis 2
Chris Pullen 2
Dean Maloney 2
Tom Goddard 2
Rob Sterry 1
Paul Whittenbury 1
Warren Flanagan 1
Steve Eustice 1
Micky Eales 1
Chris Dew 1
Leigh Harrington 1
Josh Freedman 1
George Spencer 1
Liam McGarry 1
Alan McTavish 1
Mark Jones 1
Cleveland Brandy 1
Tommy Twelves 1
Aaron Rhodes 1
Jaime Hipwell 1
Darren Everitt 1
Stuart Colley 1
Jake Colley 1
Alex Nursey 1
James Roche 1
Ryan Munson 1

Name 14/15 Gls
Ross Connor 22
Dave Soloway 6
Richard Murphy 5
Ally Hill 5
Stuart Nicholls 3
Joel Moody 3
James Jenkins 3
Ben Clarke 3
Ben Sheldon 3
Brad Simmons 2
Simon Pullen 2
Maurice Clarke 1
John Sitkowski 1
Ben Bateman 1
Phil McBride 1
Andy Myall 1
Richard Walker 1
Dan Butterick 1
Ben Pegram 1
Mark Brennan 1
Richard Wenham 1
Jimmy Davis 1
Rob Sterry 1

WIFC secure gritty draw

WIFC battled to a well-earned 2-2 draw against Bury B last weekend, extending the unbeaten run since the start of the season to 3 games for the first time since 2005/06. The home side got off to a dream start when a visting defender put through his own net under pressure from Ally Hill.

Goalmouth action from the draw against Bury B

Goalmouth action from the draw against Bury B

The visitors levelled through Jamie Sanders, who then doubled the lead before the break as both sides worked hard in warm conditions. After the break, WIFC worked for the equaliser and defended stoutly, getting their rewards when Richard Murphy finished from close range after some great work by Stuart Nicholls. There was still time for the Internet ‘Orns to almost snatch the win, when Ross Connor fed Ally Hill, who was denied at point blank range as the final whistle blew.

More goalmouth action

More goalmouth action

The new season continues at the weekend, as WIFC travel to Gillingham before moving onto Charlton for the Watford game.