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Morecambe: Club Connections

Posted by Lewis Tomlinson
Posted on Mon 19 Nov 2018
Posted in First Team

Jim Harvey

Jim Harvey is a much-loved figure at both the Globe Arena and The Shay. The Northern Irishman was player-manager for the Shrimps in 1994, before hanging up his boots and focusing solely on his managerial career. Harvey led Morecambe into the Conference in 1996. His side won the Conference League Cup in 1998, and finished second in the league in 2003, eventually losing on penalties to Dagenham & Redbridge in the playoff semi-final. Harvey left Morecambe in 2006, with his former assistant Sammy McIlroy taking over.

Harvey’s career at The Shay began when appointed as assistant to Darren Kelly on October 1st 2015. After Kelly’s sacking with Town in the relegation zone, Harvey stood in as caretaker manager and oversaw notable victories away at Gateshead and Lincoln, and was offered the job on a permanent basis. Despite not being able to keep Town in the National League, Harvey masterminded the famous FA Trophy victory in 2016, taking The Shaymen to Wembley for the first time in history and providing a memorable day for the club and the fans.

(Read more about Jamie Harvey in tomorrow night’s Shaymen Shout as part of our FCHT Heroes column)

AJ Leitch-Smith

Current Morecambe striker AJ Leitch-Smith was loaned by Crewe to Halifax for a month back in 08/09. Then 18, Leitch-Smith made 4 appearances for Town in the Evo-Stik Division One North under Jim Vince. Further loan spells at Newcastle Town, Icelandic club IBV and Curzon Ashton followed, before Leitch-Smith joined Yeovil Town. He has since also appeared for Port Vale, Shrewsbury Town and Dundee. The 28 year old signed for The Shrimps in the summer and has scored 5 goals so far this season, the last one coming against Yeovil on November 3rd.

Michael Duckworth

Another player to have turned out for both clubs is Town full-back Michael Duckworth. The reliable defender spent the back end of the 2016/17 season for The Shrimps on loan from Fleetwood Town and played 14 times for the club, before joining Town the following summer. Previously in his career, Duckworth has also turned out for Harrogate Railway, Bradford Park Avenue and Hartlepool United.

Mark Lillis

As a player, Mark Lillis is better known for his exploits with Huddersfield Town and Manchester City, but has had spells in both Halifax and Morecambe’s dugouts.

Lillis’ first managerial role came at The Shay, taking charge of during the 1999/2000 season and for the beginning of the 2000/2001 campaign, before being replaced by Peter Butler.

Lillis also spent four years at Morecambe as assistant to Jim Harvey’s successor, Sammy McIlroy, from 2006 until 2011, with the pair leaving by mutual consent after a disappointing 20th placed finish in League 2.

Lillis is currently the assistant manager of Chennaiyin in the Indian Super League.

Ryan Sugden

Another player who has turned out for both clubs is Ryan Sugden. Sugden appeared for Oldham, Scarborough, Chester and Burton before joining Morecambe in 2003, making 28 appearances and scoring four times for The Shrimps. He joined The Shaymen a year later and proved to be a popular a figure at The Shay, making 83 appearances for Town across 3 seasons, including in the 2006 Playoff Final. Sugden scored 22 times whilst playing for Halifax.


Read more posts by Lewis Tomlinson