Margate fat-fighting footballers shortlisted for national Man v Fat Award

Margate's Olympic Mayonnaise team

Margate men who are taking part in a national weight loss programme have been shortlisted as Team of the Year at the forthcoming MAN v FAT Football National Awards at the National Football Museum in Manchester.

In its first year together the Margate club’s Olympic Mayonnaise team have lost 154.5kg – or 24 stone 5lbs – between them.

“It has been a real team effort,” said coach Adam Ratcliffe. “We hit 26 percentage milestones between us, and four players became “BMI Bosses”, meaning they have achieved their healthy weight goal as defined by the NHS.”

The team is made up of 10 players, put together as a new team, with most not knowing each other and five completely new to the MAN v FAT programme.

“From day one, we just gelled, it felt like a family,” Adam said. “We backed each other; it was less about our own personal goals, instead, succeeding for each other as a group and the nine others relying on us.

“Olympic Mayonnaise really epitomises what MAN v FAT is all about and why it’s so successful. Having a team that works together, encourages, supports and pushes each other to a joint focused goal. This meant we were winning on the scales, on the pitch and in our health goals.”

There have been many highlights of the last year, says Adam, from success on the scales to success on the pitch.

“The biggest triumph may be our participation in the national “one million steps challenge” for Diabetes UK. We entered as a team, walked an average of 1.7million steps each and raised £2,345 for the charity.

“We originally entered as one of our teammates has had a tough struggle with his own Diabetes and we wanted to support him. It was a difficult challenge, but we all got through it as we pulled together, worked for each other and kept going.”

Nationally MAN v FAT Football currently has 8,200 players taking part in more than 150 leagues across the UK. The programme was created by Andrew Shanahan who, fed-up with traditional weight loss classes primarily aimed at women, decided to develop a programme that combines the beautiful game with achievable weight loss goals for men.

The total amount of weight lost by MAN v FAT players in the UK currently stands at more than 650,000 pounds. It is aimed at men with a BMI of higher than 27.5.

Before matches, the players are weighed, which is followed by a 30-minute game of six-a-side, with extra goal bonuses awarded to teams based on the amount of weight players have lost. Players receive additional support including healthy meal recipe ideas and tips on general fitness.

The winners of this year’s MAN v FAT awards will be announced at a special awards ceremony at the National Football Museum in Manchester on Saturday, June 1st.

The Margate club meets every Monday from 8.30pm at Margate Football Club, Hartsdown Road. More information can be found at