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Game on in Manchester

By The Drum | Administrator

January 5, 2005 | 10 min read

When you think about it there are quite a lot of similarities between football and marketing services agencies. The best practioners are usually team players, those with real creative flair are among the most celebrated and, when you rise to the top of the game, you inevitably get yourself a flash motor - and, if you’re so inclined, a pretty flashy other half too.

It’s on these most tenuous links that we thought we’d bin the traditional ‘focus on’ feature and have a kick about with a new idea. Here you’ll find the cream of the Manchester ad and design talent lining up against one another to see which team has the silkiest of skills and the best finishing powers inside, and outside, the box. In a hark back to a more innocent, jumpers for goalposts age, you, the fans, will be the ones that decide which XI comes out on top.

Log onto , click through to the Demolition Derby link and let us know how you think the game will pan out - who will score, in what minute, why, whether there are any home goals etc etc. We’ll update you with a round-up of the commentary from the web-site in the next issue of the mag.

A quick note about the teams:

Goalkeepers are key financial figures. Their ability to safeguard the company while making sure nothing slips through is a pivotal skill. Defenders are account handlers - there to look after clients and make sure things are tight from the back. This allows the midfielders, represented by agency creatives, to work their magic and make things happen. Lastly, strikers for each team are made up of agency heads; mercurial players who’ll bang the ball in the back of the net and make sure their team never get relegated. Now, read on, don the sheepskins and give us the post match analysis!


1. Bev Hutchinson, Goalie,

The Chase

Hutchinson plies her trade week in, week out for The Chase. Team mate and fellow galactico Ben Casey comments: “Known throughout the business as a safe pair of hands, Hutchinson recently transferred from Hutchinson Leek for an undisclosed fee. A good communicator, organising the whole team from the back and quick off her line to get down to the feet of clients.”

2. Diane Law, Defender, Like A River

Just like other D. Law’s that have played in Manchester, a firm favourite with the fans. Like A River’s Rob Taylor says: “Remember Denis? Well, he was a pussy compared to this player. She can rise like a salmon and get stuck in at the same time. Perfect handling and distribution makes Diane the Law in defence.”

3. Adam Clyne, Defender, The Lab

The Lab went from strength to strength last year, with Clyne leading from the back. A team mate at The Lab remarks: “Clyno, as he is known to fans, is a sturdy, no-nonsense player. He has great potential to be captain, with skills in design, advertising and PR under his belt. That’s if he can stay off the booze and stop wooing tabloid journalists!”

4. Susie Stubbs, Defender, Hemisphere

“Stubbsy” may have turned 30 last week (apologies, Susie) but this rock at the heart of the Design XI defence has no intentions of retiring just yet. Despite the alarming announcement that her ambition is to “understand the offside rule”, Hemisphere boss Sue Strange confirms that Stubbs is adept when it comes to “tackling dodgy printers and demanding clients”.

5. Traci Gibbons, Defender, 999 Manchester

Speaking of this young starlet, Alan Bullock, MD of 999, comments: “A new January ‘transfer window’ signing for 999 Manchester, Gibbons has had an impressive career, including five seasons with Orange Plc. Gibbons has been brought in to expand 999’s marketing, strategy and business development tactics. A genuinely exciting prospect for the season ahead!”

6. Chris Lloyd, Midfielder, Dinosaur

Commenting on Lloyd, a Dinosaur team mate says: “Our pocket midfield dynamo keeps himself busy over 90 minutes and is the epitome of the hard-working, box-to-box player. Creativity in the centre of the park comes complete with nimble and fancy footwork that can break down the meanest defences in the business.”

7. Lindsey Gray, Midfielder, Like A River

After joining on a Bosman from UCL, Gray has helped Like A River win major honours at the Mobius Ad awards. Rob Taylor adds: “At the end of the day, Gray knows that design is a game of two halves but involves lots of extra time! She’s a hard-working, reliable team player who stays on her toes, keeps her eyes on the ball and sticks to the game plan.”

8. Dave Palmer, Midfielder, LOVE

Palmer’s creative firepower has helped secure LOVE wins with MonsterMob, Red Nose Day and Emap. LOVE guv’nor, Alistair Sim, says: “Palmer spent his formative years kicking cans around the shipyards of Newcastle whilst grooming sub-Waddle haircuts and longing to trade his boyish good looks for the granite-hewn beauty that is Beardsley. This Geordie midfielder proves that talent and goods looks ARE possible.”

9. Daren Newman, Midfielder, Funnel Creative

Newman has enjoyed an impressive 12-year career and is revelling in his chief creative role at Funnel Creative, where he has been for five years. Funnel’s Bill Green describes the playmaker as “a great organiser, who responds positively in what is a natural position to him. Recently back into the squad after suffering from strained ligatures.”

10. Ben Casey, Striker, The Chase

Casey is a proven goal-getter, having consistently achieved targets and raised the bar for the design community. Endorsing Casey’s selection, a senior boardroom figure at The Chase enthuses: “Casey is good with his head and likes to express himself. Winner of every piece of silverware in the game, he also has three caps (chairman, creative director and visiting professor).”

11. Martin Carr, Striker, True North

Completing the lethal partnership is Carr, whose True North netted more than most at the Roses in 2004. Ady Bibby at True North says: “From the same mould as Ginola, Cantona or Del Piero, Carr now sports the flowing locks that would turn any Serie A player green. Working hard to make it look easy, he is a good dribbler and a natural finisher, with a great eye for an opening.”


12. Iain Kerr, Goalkeeper, BJL

Success hasn’t slowed team BJL down and Kerr has a commanding presence to handle its finances. BJL’s Nicky Unsworth says: “It’s all about having a safe pair of hands, keeping your eye on the ball for the duration and making sure you’ve got all the angles covered. And one other thing – aiming for a well-balanced sheet at the end of every season. Kerr has the lot.”

13. Charlotte Fairhurst, Defender, Madhouse

If the Ad XI is going to have a chance of stopping the Design XI, they’re going to need a solid back four and in Fairhurst they’re on their way. Madhouse boss, Phil Rogerson, says: “Her ability to build strong client relationships, a keen commercial awareness and sound knowledge make her a key player on our team.”

14. Steve Rutter, Defender, AWA-MAP

Rutter is a key team member of newly formed AWA-MAP. Head coach Graeme Wood says: “Renowned for having his eye on the ball, Rutter’s expert handling always ensures a warm reception from clients. They respect his creative drive and the way he tackles difficult briefs with ease and confidence. Thinking outside the box, he creates countless opportunities.”

15. Abi Swainbank, Defender, CheethamBellJWT

In helping one of Manchester’s largest agencies remain at the top of its game, Swainbank will, no doubt, offer the Advertising XI a stability and security that is hard to find. Dave Bell of CBJWT remarks: “Abi is a first-class sweeper. Like Rio Ferdinand, she is direct and strong although has enough flair and creativity to build moves elegantly from the back. Quite simply, she strengthens the spine of any team.”

16. Claire Longfield, Defender, Radford Advertising

Aiming to stop any designs the opponents have of getting on the score sheet, Longfield is the archetypal sweeper – always there for her team mates to depend on. Katherine Warrington of Radford says: “As a Blackburn Rovers fan, Longfield knows the importance of a strong defence. She is committed and cool under pressure. Her great control and eye for an opportunity create openings going forward – a model professional with the trust of her team.”

17. Jim Stringer, Midfielder, Cicero

Stringer’s expertise has helped Cicero’s squad grow in 2004 and win accounts such as Software for Kids and Samsung. Cicero’s David Bailey states: “As head of copy, Stringer plays a key sweeper role in our team. He’s quick on his feet and can juggle incoming curve balls from all directions. Never shirking a tackle, he’ll use any manoeuvre to help drive us up the league.”

18. Richard Pearson, Midfielder, BJL

A team mate of goalkeeper Kerr, Pearson has helped BJL secure some important wins in a year that involved a change at boardroom level. A team mate says: “Well, it’s, like, you know, all about getting forward and popping up to score a spectacular whenever you can. If you want to pick up trophies you’ve got to be constantly creating chances. Especially outside the box. Pearson continues to do this.”

19. Phil Howells, Midfielder, Pravda

Wearing the Pravda colours with pride, Howells’ creativity has been pivotal to the agency winning the £2m Neilson Holiday’s brief. Pravda’s Simon Sinclair says: “Howells is a player of impressive craft and vision and has settled down nicely after his transfer North, following an early career at premiership clubs Still Price Lintas, JWT and Court Burkitt. Has picked up quite a few trophies in his career.”

20. Andrew Alty, Midfielder, And Partners

Completing the midfield for the Advertising XI is Alty, who, by co-founding And Partners in 2002, has demonstrated his ability to create and deliver from any situation. Commenting on Alty, a team mate says: “Eleven years demonstrating a perfect balance of creative flair and hard work has seen him pick up trophies on the world stage. Now winning more than his fair share of 50/50s on pitches as player/manager of his own successful team.”

21. Andy Cheetham, Striker, CheethamBellJWT

Cheetham’s trophy cabinet is already full and in 2004 helped CBJWT win the seven-figure briefs for Hammonds and Space Kitchens & Bathrooms. A team mate comments: “Often seen on a pitch running rings around opponents, this creative player has an enormous enthusiasm for the game. His willingness to go in hard for any creative challenge has enabled his team to make a surging run to the top of the JWT European Creative League table.”

22. Steve Antoniewicz, Striker, Citigate SMARTS

Aside from giving the printers a headache with squeezing his name onto the shirt, Antoniewicz is likely to give defenders trouble with his know-how. Antoniewicz also had the foresight to lure back Pete Martin from New York as creative director of Citigate SMARTS in 2004. Martin comments: “Never known to shirk from any challenge, Scotland’s ‘Suit of the Year’ has an easy manner, which belies a shrewd tactical mind and an eye for creative ideas that work in the real world.”


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