'Oasis Play Cringle Park' is the intriguing title of a chapter in Alex Williams' autobiography You Saw Me Standing Alone.

The Gallagher brothers were still dreaming of a career in music when as youngsters they kicked a ball on a shale pitch in the Levenshulme park near their south Manchester home.

Noel remembers their encounters well, writing in the book: “Alex Williams is one of us. A local lad. City fan. I was born in Longsight so the training ground at Platt Lane was a short walk away. That’s where I first saw Alex.

“He wasn’t in the first team in those days. We used to clap him as he was out jogging up and down Stockport Road. He’d always shout back at us ... ‘You lot coming on Saturday?’ ‘Course we are mate.’

“I can still remember one evening at one of those five-a-side pitches that sprang up all over Longsight and Levenshulme in the early 80s me and the lads were playing a life and death game.

“The score was probably 13-15 when at 10 pm the lights went out and we called it a draw.


“It was only then we noticed Alex, who was now City’s No 1, leaning up against the fence clapping. ‘Good game lads...you lot coming on Saturday?’ ‘Course we are mate’. Like I say, Alex Williams… one of us.”

The autobiography reveals that Alex also crossed paths with Robbie Williams before the singer found fame with Take That.

Robbie’s dad, Pete, ran the Red Lion pub close to Port Vale’s ground when Alex played in goal for the Third Division club in 1986.

As a kid, Robbie would ask Alex if he could mind his car while he was at training, a cheeky request that would cost the Vale keeper a few bob to avoid his Sierra Cosworth getting the odd scratch!

Alex gladly obliged and did get an invite to a Robbie concert years later as a thank you.

* You Saw Me Standing Alone is published by Bucko Media Ltd, priced £15. Parts of the proceeds will be donated to City in the Community. Visit www.alexwilliamsbook.co.uk.

For more information about City in the Community, visit www.mancity.com/CITC.