This website is dedicated to the memory of a man who was not only a football legend in his own right, but also to the wonderful person and character, that he ultimately was. He was a man who scaled the heights of top class professional football in Britain and Europe, playing for arguably the most popular club of his era. Without doubt he suffered the agonies, and adversity of tragedy, and then played a major role in re-laying the foundation for what has gone on to become the biggest football institution in the world.
Even after his sudden and unexpected departure from Manchester United in 1962, Dennis was able to rebuild his career again, playing for what could only be termed as “an unfashionable club” – Stoke City. “Unfashionable”, Stoke City may well have been in relation to Manchester United, but when you look at the players with whom Dennis played alongside during his five years with the “Potters” at the old Victoria Ground, then it is very easy to understand why he considered this period during his life time, as one of the happiest times that he ever experienced.
After finishing playing in England, he played briefly in the North American Soccer League for the Baltimore Bays before returning to play for a short spell with Witton Albion in non-league football, and also had a successful season with Linfield in the Irish League, where he guided them to a league championship. He became a football coach and was briefly an assistant at Preston North End. However, it was an opportunity to coach in the United States of America which once again saw Dennis cross the Atlantic to start a new life, begin a new career, and become a leading role player in the progression, at all levels, of soccer in a country where soccer was a virtual non-entity.
His career as a player will be chronicled and statistically detailed on other pages, but the real story of the man is of the period between 1970 and 1999. It was during this 29 years era that he helped soccer gain a real foothold in the United States, from “grass roots” level, through to the top professional game. Much of Dennis’s work went un-noticed as he went about the business of coaching and teaching his trade in a quiet, diligent, and dignified manner, without seeking any personal recognition for himself. Dennis’s satisfaction came from seeing the tremendous joy that he brought to others as he passed on his own knowledge and experience of a game which he had given so much to, and which he loved so very much.
To those whose lives he touched, Dennis Viollet will always be remembered with so much love and affection, simply because of the person who he was. Unpretentious, modest to a fault, and a person who gave so much to others. As the line in a well known song goes; “Some gave some, but some gave all.” Dennis Sydney Viollet, was, without doubt, one of those who did give all.
To those of you who have found, travelled, or have been directed to this website, we hope that you enjoy the content, and that you will encourage others to visit it. We also hope that you will take the opportunity to record your comments, and share your memories and stories of Dennis, with us.