Zürich tour squad 2000
A reprise of the creaking knees from PFFC's first European adventure
I will shortly announce the squad to Zürich, which has a strong emphasis on youth. The previous tour to Zürich in June 2000, held during Euro 2000, had less emphasis on youth but was the first ever PFFC Tour and demonstrated that British football teams can, after all, adapt to European conditions. So, as in many other ways, we set some trends. The conditions we adapted to on this particular tour however were mainly off the pitch (we lost the match 4-0). Still, it was a memorable trip, thanks to Stefan who will be our host once again on the forthcoming tour, (though will have a different role this time, as the following indicates). For some of our players, this was the swansong to their career; for others it was the first youthful toe-dipping into European waters. This tour closely followed our one and only league victory of 1999-2000, 3-1 against Heart of North London (Heart FM) in the Musical Association League.
Zürich 2000 squad
Rob Adams Goalkeeper
PFFC's first player of the year in that 1999-2000 season for his miraculous heroics between the sticks and the ability to quote Ibsen at advancing forwards. Still a regular player for the Legends and now divides his time between acting, working as a Speedway announcer and a youth cricket coach.
Tom Callaghan Right back.
This was to be the swansong for the 'loquacious Irishman' (in fact of dual English and Irish identity). One of the PFFC founder players way back in 1995 and a QPR supporter, he had some difficulties adapting to the squad system that was introduced later that year. Continues to teach history in London.
Geoff Andrews Left back
Player-manager at this time (he would go on playing regularly for another 3–4 months). Started the match at left back then advanced to left midfield in the second half. Helped plan a free kick move prior to the game but unable to carry it out in match conditions. Reeasonable post match speech.
Paul Kayley Centre-back (captain)
Had recently assumed the captaincy from Tony Batt, but missed PFFC's only victory. However, over the coming years, would be a very successful captain, lifting the Grafton Millennium League trophy twice in succession and winning PFFC's players player of the year. Now retired to his garden in Hertfordshire, but occasionally turns out for the Legends.
Simon Carmel Centre back
One of PFFC's most reliable players on and off the pitch during this 1999/2000 season, Simon made his mark as chief scout, bringing Cornish Al, Paul Kayley and Goober Fox into the team. Left during the following season to spend more time with his growing family and now teaches Sociology at Essex University.
Raj Chada central midfield
Came to PFFC through an advert in the New Statesman and it was always politics and football for PFFC's ball winning midfield engine. His politics didn't prevent an unlikely partnership with Cornish Al on and off the pitch. Turned down the PFFC captaincy after Kayley's departure to pursue his political career where he was briefly leader of Camden Council, before harshly shown the red card by the good people of the borough. Now married to Gita, he still turns out for the Legends and makes guest appearances at Jose's. Comeback still on the cards.
Tony Batt central midfield
Helped to get the team going again in the autumn of 1999 and was briefly captain. Play maker in the mould of his hero Robin Friday, he played in most positions during that difficult season. Great tour character and spent much of the time in a Portugese bar, which no doubt influenced his decision to emigrate to Portugal shortly after. Was PFFC's first webmaster.
Cornish Al Left midfield
Along with the Gaffer, Al is the only survivor of PFFC's first tour amongst the current touring squad. Then single, at post-match festivities he became well acquainted with an official of the Swiss airlines and in his pre-poetry mode was heard giving a long rendition of that famous number 'Vieira' ('he comes from Senegal, he plays for Arsenal..'). His off pitch exploits, where he was 'crease' to Raj's 'crumple', took them to various nightspots and into the living room of the wrong apartment. Described in Stefan's pre match profile as 'mercurial'.
Goober Fox Right wing
Played regularly during the season either as full-back or on the wing and was a key player in PFFC's only victory (where the crowd was heard to shout 'über-Goober'). Never played regularly for PFFC since, though featured in the Parisot tournament and has been on several tours as PFFC's Cultural Secretary, a role which has now extended to PFFC's webmaster. Did a memorable 'by-the-minute commentary' from his London flat when PFFC played in Paris in 2005, responding to the Gaffer's text messages and transmitting PFFC's 3-0 victory across the globe as it happened.
Danny Burke Striker
Was to be the last appearance too for the quiet spoken Fulham supporter and city banker, who gave PFFC good service in the twilight of his career. Along with his friend Tom Callaghan he was well into his forties by this time. A frequent traveller, he adapted easily to the new European climate.
Stefan Howald Striker
Yes, our Swiss host was still playing for us back then and was permanently based as a London correspondent in his Balham flat. A founder member of the club along with the Gaffer and Tom Callaghan, Stefan was already on his way to becoming a big legend and PFFC's 'Player of the Century', winning the first lifetime achievement award. Very proud to show PFFC his host city; only disappointed that we couldn't get one over his former and future team-mates.
Al Tepper Utility player
A larger than life character, Al Tepper was a great personality and made a major contribution to the team spirit of the club over the course of a difficult, at times traumatic, season. The influx of new players during the following season meant his chances were limited and he subsequently married and moved away, the happy memories of the tour still with him.
'Swiss Andi' Central Defender
Surprise call up for former PFFC player who had featured for the club between 1996–98 before returning to his native country. His nickname originated in the number of Andys at PFFC in the pre-Marco days. ('We also had 'Greek Andy' as well as 'Greek Steve' in the early years). A capable central defender in the style of Sami Hyypia, his second half appearance meant a welcome reunion with his former mates. Another PFFC journalist, he now works for Bloomberg. Don't be surprised if he turns up at the 2008 tournament.
'Swiss' Barry Newton Defender
A late call up for the Swiss based British defender, recruited to the team by the skipper. His second half debut was not enough to prevent defeat but he contributed to a solid team effort. After a couple of years playing in the North American Leagues he retired to open a pub in Dagenham. (Ok I made the last bit up).