Newsletter #22

I am now sending the files using a transliteration table which converts from my Mac to us-ascii which although not without fault, hopefully gets rid of the strange characters which appeared whenever an ‘F’ was the first character on the line. I got some unexpected mail from Richard Meade who runs the United Web home page; he was very impressed with the objectivity of our reports on the derby defeat and even included a message to that effect on the United page! Judging by the report they have of the game (very brief indeed), I think we can congratulate ourselves on the extent and number of reports we get week in, week out in MCIVTA (thanks lads). Although I am not exactly an impartial assessor, I do feel that both the Web page and MCIVTA stand comparison with those of other Premier League clubs. There, something we can be proud of ๐Ÿ˜Ž

I was having a little problem with the news which kept changing on a daily basis! What I decided to do was keep it chronological. This means that what you read in the first news item is not necessarily the current situation, so read on! Doing it like this should however give you a ‘feel’ of what happened between MCIVTA issues.

This edition is going out to 62 people.

Next game Leicester City away Sunday 20th November (SKY)


The Daily Telegraph reported last Saturday that Manchester City were close to signing the Bulgarian World Cup midfielder Balakov for 1.6 million but I’ve not seen or heard anything more about it in the MEN or local radio. Also the Daily Telegraph is available on the WEB now, home page is but it is painfully slow to load.

Rob Clarke


This afternoon’s (14.11) early edition of the MEN has some interesting news about the injuries that we’d had to endure over the past couple of weeks.

  • TC is likely to test out his injured shoulder in a reserve team game tomorrow.
  • Dibble is now available for selection after serving his three match ban, so both could be pressing for their places back against Leicester.
  • Rösler and Curle were expected to make a return to full training today (a week too late ๐Ÿ™ )
  • Edghill and Phelan are out of training with hamstring injuries (is this nightmare of hamstring injuries about to return???)
  • Flipper is recovering after having stitches inserted into a leg wound after the derby.
  • Quinn and Kernaghan are away on international duty with Eire so we’ll have to see if they pick up any injuries.

Martin Ford


There are still several City names mentioned in the recent transfer speculation. The only worrying feature is that the players mentioned are expected to depart for pastures new, with no names in the pipeline to come in and replace them. So far, City players mentioned with transfers out are:

Vonk (400k) – Wolves
Griffiths (300k) – Birmingham, Burnley
McMahon (250/400k) – Sunderland, Wolves, Oldham (Manager)
Simpson (200k) – Stoke

Once again it’s all newspaper talk but I wonder if any of it is true? There are four experienced players on the (possible) move, raising over 1M (stlg). Do City really need to prune the current squad? If those four go it’s going to be left to the kids again should there be a spate of injuries.

I wonder if it’s Lee’s influence raising its head? When he first arrived he mentioned the fact that City’s wage bill was at its highest ever; since then we’ve seen players leave without being directly replaced.

It concerns me that even if we do enter the transfer market, will we be able to compete against the big clubs? How many players would come to Maine Road given the choice of elsewhere? City have got to start to rebuild their image, to an extent they have done with the attacking principles but until we can get on and win something (anything) it’s going to be a hard slog.

Martin Ford


Here’s some info from the Evening News (15.11).

Uwe Rösler has been working towards regaining full fitness all this week and could be back in first team contention for the Leicester game. However, it seems likely that Horton will stick by the Walsh- Quinn partnership.

TC came through a 3-1 reserve team victory last night and is pushing hard to get his goalkeeper’s spot back.

The long-running mystery over Mike Quigley may be partially resolved: he played in last night’s reserve game so it appears as though he’s still at the Academy (of Comedy ๐Ÿ˜‰ ).

Carl Griffiths scored twice last night, while being watched by Jimmy Mullen (Burnley’s manager), so his misery may soon be finished with a transfer to Turf Moor.

Also in Tuesday’s Evening News, the major talking point seems to be the rift that is opening up again between Horton and Phelan. Phelan wants a face-to-face meeting to clear the air after hearing (in the media) that Horton wasn’t impressed with his performance in the derby (like the rest of us who went). Nothing’s been heard since, but IMHO Phelan is talking himself out of Maine Road.

Martin Ford


Apparently Tony Coton suffered a recurrence of his shoulder injury in training and is not expected to recover until the new year. Edghill is doubtful and Phelan is out for Sunday’s game, as is Curle. City’s central defenders are therefore likely to be Vonk and Kernaghan, up against Julian Joachim, not exactly the slowest, most clumsy forward in the league!

Paul Howarth

Source: ITV Teletext 17.11.94

TC has injured his shoulder (again) in training. It looks like he’ll be out until the New Year.

Adam Joinson


A scan has revealed that Tony Coton has two misplaced discs at the top of his spine and will need a major operation to fix it. This is likely to keep him out of the side for the rest of the season.

The Mole


The injury is far worse than originally feared. TC underwent a two hour scan yesterday which revealed the extent of the injury. The problem lies in TC’s spine where the 5th disc is dislocated and the 6th is partially dislocated, but would probably fully dislocate with the first knock.

TC will have to undergo surgery to remove the two discs and it will then be at least three months before he can start any training. TC will have to see a leading neuro-surgeon (sometime next week) before the operation can go ahead. So, TC is looking at being out for basically the rest of the season even after surgery and a rest.

As for the rest of the team news, both Phelan and Edghill are struggling with their hamstring injuries picked up in the derby. Kernaghan could be in line for a recall if Curle doesn’t recover from his calf strain. This could mean that Vonk misses out, while Brightwell remains to partner SB or Curle. Rösler still looks like he could be back in the squad, if only on the bench.

Martin Ford


We have our first Finnish subscriber and I asked him how he came to support City. I’ve included his answer as it must be one of the most unusual I’ve heard! [Ashley]

How I came to support City?

The biggest ‘guilty’ one is my sister. In 1970 I was seven years old and a Finnish magazine offered English football club T-shirts for sale. There were six clubs available and my sister asked me to point to one team and she promised to order that club’s T-shirt. The team was City and I got City’s shirt and I was a happy boy. After that I started to follow City. Soon, I was such a City supporter that if City won it was a happy day and if they lost …

Nowadays my wife can read the result in my face, if City have won or lost!

Juha Kankkonen


I covered the match details, which gave an overall pessimistic impression of the game (City getting well and truly turned over), but at least we (fans) did have a couple of things to smile about (well that was until the 3rd goal went in)

  1. Uwe Rösler (Paul (anybody at the game) can you confirm, he was at the other end of the block to me?) actually taking his place in with the City fans in ‘L’ block. He appeared before kick off and got a hero’s welcome, with various fans getting a chance to get his autograph and meet the man personally (so I assume it was him). To his credit he sat there for most of the game and finally left with about 10 minutes to go, to another loud reception. My estimation of Uwe has further improved; I liked him anyway, but who else would sit in the fans and go through the heart-break with us? Nice one Uwe, hopefully he’ll be back soon.
  2. The look on the United fans faces in ‘K’ block when the City fans finished off the 18 years song. It was a total look of astonishment; nice to see them gobsmacked for a change. The United fans thought it was very funny to start the song off, but once us blues got to our feet and started singing it as well, it was a picture to see their puzzled expressions. It just goes to prove that we can and do take the mickey out of our own team.

Martin Ford


I run the Man Utd (boo hiss!) web page, and I’ve just set up a link to the reports from the City web page/mailing list. I just wanted to add that I think it was a very good report (better than our own!) and it makes a refreshing change to read rational reports which talk about football, without getting into personal insults (a fact which cautions against getting into it). After some of the reports I read on pages of other teams (regardless of whether we beat them or they beat us) it was nice to read one that discussed the match calmly!

Anyway, best of luck for the rest of the season – you do seem to be on a roll at the moment, so I’m sure Thursday was just a small blip, and you’ll be back on track again soon! If you want to check out the United report (although it’s very brief, and short on detail) it’s at URL

Thanks again,

Richard Meade

After I told him about further reports on the WWW page under MCIVTA, he wrote again: [Ashley]

I added links to the two MCIVTA issues – you do have very comprehensive information services! The Flixton Red report was very good reading; it must be difficult to write a match report which the derby opposition would want to read despite losing! I thought he did a good job, but I think more credit goes to the City reporters who were equally fair and diplomatic even though they were writing for their own partisan readership. I would like people to read these reports, but in the spirit in which the web is intended to be used, I’ve just highlighted the link to them more than is usual, rather than copying them to my own server. However, if there is no objection I would like to post them to the Man Utd mailing list, as a number of subscribers don’t have web access. Would this be ok?

Richard Meade


Spurs have appointed Gerry Francis as their new manager. He’ll be bringing in his own assistant, so Steve Perryman will be leaving.

Ray Wilkins has been appointed player-manager of QPR. He’s stated that nobody will be leaving the club until the end of the season but Les Ferdinand, unhappy at the goings-on at QPR, has stated that he wants a “discussion” with Wilkins when he returns from the England squad. England are playing a friendly against Nigeria at Wembley tonight (Wednesday).

Luton have refused permission for Aston Villa to talk to David Pleat about their managerial vacancy. Spurs were given permission to talk to him because they were a special case – Pleat had an “unfinished job” there and had great affection for the club. You may recall that Pleat left the manager’s position at Spurs several years ago as a result of an alleged kerb-crawling incident.

The following people have all been linked with the Oldham job at some time (there may be more I’ve forgotten about):

  • Graeme Sharp
  • Ray Clemence
  • Andy Ritchie
  • Steve McMahon
  • Roger Palmer


I now hear that Graeme Sharp is the new manager of Oldham, with Colin Harvey as his assistant.

Leicester City manager Brian Little is the current favourite for the Aston Villa job; the Leicester chairman has demanded 1.5 million pounds compensation if Little, who has 30 months of a 6 year contract to go, leaves.

The Welsh FA, still smarting after their 5-0 humiliation in Georgia, want Ron Atkinson to be their new manager.

No sign as yet as to what Mike Walker and Ossie Ardiles will be doing next.

Paul Howarth


Got this as a PS on a letter and I thought it pretty apt, so here it is [Ashley]:

When things are down, City supporters are faithful, I’m sure we are born with this quality.

Newsletter #22