Newsletter #270

Welcome to an Ashley free Mcivta; the fact that we have, for the first time this season, won two games on the trot must surely be related to his absence, and should we now go on to beat Southend, I shall issue an APB to all ports and airports to watch out for him, and send him back to the States as soon as he is caught. Sorry Linda, but it is for the greater good!

We have a match report on last night’s game; some fevered opinions trailing in the wake of the great performance at Oxford, proposal to Gio, more memories of old songs (including a veiled reference to the famous “If I had the wings of a sparrow”!). There’s a review of the latest City mag, FHL’s State of the Nation speech, Paul Hince’s view on the squeakmeister’s recent utterings, and for the first time in too many months, an overall feeling of optimism. I think I speak for us all when I say “Thanks, Frank!”


[Articles for the next issue to me again (, then it’s back to Ashley]

Next game, Southend at home, Nationwide League, Saturday 8th February, 1997


CITY – WATFORD 3-1 FAC4 (Wednesday 5/2 1997):

City reached the Fifth Round of the Cup with what turned out to be a comfortable victory over Second Division opponents but there was a scare along the way. The game was played in typical cup-tie fashion, fast and furious. City tried to play the ball around a bit but lacked the composure shown in the second half against Oxford on Sunday. After some early Watford pressure, City started to assert themselves and win a few corners which Watford ‘keeper Kevin Miller (a target for City earlier in the season) flapped at once or twice. A corner led to the opening goal: Kinkladze’s in-swinger was flicked on at the near post and when Kit Symons knocked the loose ball goalwards, Neil Heaney deflected it into the net. Lee Crooks nearly made it two with a rasping 30-yard drive but Miller managed to push it away for another corner. At the other end, the only frights were an inswinging cross which Margetson left to go out for a goal kick and a free kick which he saved well at the foot of the post. Watford coped quite well with Kinkladze, closing him down very quickly and generally forcing him to pass rather than run at them.

The second half saw City stroke the ball around well and we looked to be in complete control apart from one or two long range efforts which Margetson dealt with easily. The game should have been over when Steve Palmer was sent off for striking Steve Lomas (right in front of the referee) and indeed City looked very comfortable. However, on a rare counter-attack City’s defence were caught waiting for a free kick which never came and Gifton Noel-Williams was able to waltz right through and equalise for the ten men. The visitors’ joy was short-lived though as Summerbee and Kinkladze passed the ball between themselves a few times before some neat footwork by the Georgian set up Buzzer to score with a low shot from 12 yards. Watford had been level for three minutes. Ten minutes later the contest was over as Rösler took advantage of a missed header and ran clear to score the third. He later went off with a bout of cramp but was warmly applauded by the fans for his efforts. Gerry Creaney came on in Rvsler’s place to demonstrate his new comedy routine. City played out the remaining minutes with some exhibition stuff, Kinkladze finding more space to show off against the depleted Hornets. He also got booked for a rash tackle!

(This was taken from the home page)

Paul Howarth (


CITY – WATFORD 3-1 FAC4 (Wednesday 5/2 1997):

Match report for Wednesday night, I’ll keep this short : –

We’re on are way to Wembley we shall not be moved
Just like a team who’s going to win the F.A. Cup
We shall not be moved!

Tony the tattooed donkey Hulme (


Yet another win, it’s all getting too much really. Another good performance as well, the team are playing much more as a team now, working for each other etc. The set pieces have improved beyond all recognition. Surely it isn’t just the return of Big Al that’s improved our corner defending so much, and we look like scoring from corners as well! The passing has also improved dramatically although we don’t exactly have the ball carrying defenders needed to bring it out from the back yet. This was the most worrying point for me when players like Ingram and Symons try to take on their attackers as they invariably lose the ball; just stick to passing it round them. Anyway, the team looked so much better than last time I saw them (Port Vale) that I reckon FC must have had them on the training pitch virtually 24 hours a day since he took over. Either that or he’s showing excellent man management skills.

The game itself wasn’t really a cut-and-thrust Cup tie as Watford never really looked in it. They played very defensively and you can see why most of their unbeaten run has come in draws, the number 9 never looked like scoring, he was crap. City didn’t play that well in the first half but deserved their lead and Crooks was unlucky with a screamer. Second half was better, nothing like a sending off to get the crowd going. Their equaliser was bollocks. A blatant foul on McGoldrick was ignored and the ref allowed play to continue and an easy goal. I think it was probably just as well city regained the lead quickly, and after that Watford were never going to score again.

The players:

Margetson – did everything he had to which wasn’t much. 6
Crooks – composed although there was no winger to test him. Tackling and distribution good. 7
Ingram – backs off far, far too much. Otherwise solid. 6
Symons – rock-like. Such an improvement and getting forward much better as well. 8
Kernaghan – again excellent except for passing which is woeful. 7
Lomas – played fairly well, nothing special. 6
McGoldrick – midfield or nowhere for Eddie. Also backs off far too much but otherwise ok. 6
Summerbee – again so improved. Still appears to lack some fitness but is finally justifying his team place. I noticed all the boo boys have gone now. So fickle. 8
Heaney – never understood why we bought him when we had Phillips, Brown and Beagrie to come back. Play one of the others instead. Pacey? I think not. Backs out of 50-50s as well. 5/6
Kinkladze – nowhere first half. Got more space when they went down to 10 men then played a bit. 6/7
Rösler – the other improved player, working so much harder. I think we still need a more consistent goalscorer though. 2 up front as well but then Kinky doesn’t fit in. 8

And finally the referee. It says on the programme that he has been appointed to the Premier League this season and he was definitely trying to make a name for himself. Unfortunately he was complete s***e (again). 3 ridiculous bookings, many bad challenges, handballs, pushes missed. About the only thing he got right was the sending off. What a t****r.

Last but not least, all these people who say why don’t we play Whitley all the time? I think he’s an excellent player, a star in the making, but he is only 17. He can’t be expected to play all the games, maybe half at most. The same goes for Crooks which is a shame as they both look decent players.

Thomas Bodey (


Paul Hince of the M(U)EN, on one Alan Ball (a.k.a. Captain Squeaky)

Before anyone gets worried about the article below I have rang Mr Paul Hince of the Manchester Evening News (at 14:02 on the 05 Feb 97) and got clearance.

So long as it is made clear that the following was penned by Mr Hince for the M.E.N. there is no problem, he also said that if anyone else wished to use any of his, or the M.E.N. articles it would be ok so long as they rang first on 0161-832-7200.

Now to the article. It appeared in the M.E.N. on Tuesday 04 Feb 97 in his own page and I feel says far better than I could how a lot of City fans feel about Captain Squeaky :-

A Sorry Performance

It’s been my experience in life that when you’ve made a right marble halls of a job you’ve been given, the best thing you can do is to go away, keep very, very quiet and hope that, in time, everyone will forget.

But obviously it’s not a lesson which Mr Alan Ball has taken on board. In fact, the former Manchester City manager seems hell bent on reminding everyone just how disastrous his spell was in the hot-seat at Maine Road.

For reasons best known to himself, Mr Ball accepted an invitation to be a studio guest on Granada’s Soccer Night last week, when he offered his opinions on Manchester City’s First Division match against Sheffield United at Maine Road.

Let me say straight off that Mr Ball is as entitled as the next man to express an opinion about Manchester City and their players. But what came out of his mouth didn’t sound like a balanced opinion to me or to the City fans who have written to or phoned this newspaper in their droves over the past few days. What those “opinions” came across as were the bitter, vindictive rantings of a man who seems to believe that the disaster which befell this once-great club during his time as manager was everyone’s fault but his own.

Mr Ball’s character assassination of Uwe Rösler, in particular, was scandalous. City’s German striker, it’s true, looked a very bad player while Mr Ball was in charge at Maine Road.

But he looked a very good player before Mr Ball arrived and he is starting to look a very good player again now that Mr Ball has gone. I wonder why?

Mr Ball may also have been correct in his assertion that some of the current Manchester City players aren’t up to scratch. He should know. For the players he was criticising were the ones that he kept. The quality ones were the ones he got rid of.

Mr Ball should do himself and Manchester City a favour. The next time he is asked to make any public comment about the Blues he should restrict himself to just two words – “I’m sorry.”

You may or not agree with the above as strongly as I do, but anyone who was unlucky to see this farce cannot fail to be moved against the “man”. Some of you will no doubt have MCITVAs with myself defending the man, but that shows that we can all look at something, but not see it.

Tony the tattooed donkey Hulme (

The Mole also forwarded the above article to mcivta; his ending comment was: “I couldn’t have put it better myself!”


So everyone appears to be slagging off AB for his comments after the Blades game; well here’s a different slant.

After joyously watching County demolish yet another Premier team and progress to a Cup semi(!) I decided to watch the City débâcle. After suffering the game first hand, I wanted to see just how bad the game was (edited highlights) and boy it was as bad as I could remember. Now onto AB’s comments; I’m sorry but I’d have to agree with him that City were appalling. As for everyone blaming him for the current situation, let’s remember that he left after what 4 games – that’s a long time ago, the other managers have had chances to ignite the promotion charge but no we still have to watch dire crap! City are under a different regime and AB’s comments certainly hit home. Rösler – should have got the killer touch, he’s supposed to be a big, bustling centre forward, why not show everyone you can hold off a challenge!

As for Elton Weasley, that’s what he’s there for, only doing his job, trying to cause a bit of controversy.

Let’s face facts, City were crap against the Blades (but a revelation against Oxford). A few spoken home truths might have finally made the team realise how bad they were (especially from one of their previous managers). As far as I’m concerned AB can slag off the team from now on if the resulting game is the same as Oxford!

Forgive and forget, maybe not. Just ignore the guy…

I wonder if this’ll stir up any replies?

Martin Ford (


Franny’s Third Anniversary State of the Nation speech

Francis Lee, speaking on the third anniversary of his takeover at City, spoke of his vision for the club’s future: “I would like to see us in the Premier League at the new Millenium Stadium. Our attendances are unbelieveable. We are getting better gates in our current position than in the Premiership last season. But there is a huge groundswell of City support who do not come to games. If we started to do really well then you could be talking about crowds of 35-40,000. We would then need a stadium big enough for such crowds. We have just got to start scoring goals and we are on our way. Frank Clark and his staff have got the players believing in themselves and they are really trying to get results.”

Referring to his first three years in charge, he said: “It has been a stormy three years. It has been very difficult off the field with a myriad of problems which have taken a lot of sorting out. Relegation was very hard to accept and that was followed by the poor start to the season. The First Division has been a culture shock to a few of our players. Everybody was tipping us as favourites to come straight back up but they have found it very difficult.”

Paul Howarth (


Like most people out there I am still amazed at our performance against Oxford last Sunday. I know we shouldn’t get too carried away at this point but it is a start, and we may have turned the corner at last. I’m not at all surprised that Clark has made a difference in such a short time. I spent 7 years in Nottingham and saw what he did to Forest during his short time in charge. Most of my friends in Nottingham were sad to see him go and they all thought his poor results this season were largely due to the boardroom problems. I’m sure Frank will get us back into the Premier League next season and we may have a good Cup run as well.

Now for the striker problem at Maine Road. Uwe does seem to be improving but I still think he is unsuited to Clark’s style of play. We need someone with pace who can break with the ball and play a holding rôle up front on their own. A big, strong guy who is also good in the air. I therefore think we should swallow our pride and buy back Sheron from Stoke. We never should have sold the guy in the first place, he is one of the highest scorers in Division 1 this season and was the highest scorer last season. I don’t know what other Blues will think of this suggestion but who else could we get?

Charles Pollitt (


Just want to add my delight at the Oxford result. I saw this on Central but it had me as excited as the last time we went to the Manor and won 4-2 after being 2-0 down. In that game Andy Hinchliffe went mental when the third went in – some of that spirit seemed to be present on Sunday.

Nicky Summerbee – loads of positive comments recently and we should keep geeing him up. Remember how Joe Corrigan and Whitey used to be hate figures before they came good? (and went bad again in Whitey’s case, but that’s another story…)

Martyn Hansen (


A lot of people I know had their doubts about City’s new manager Frank Clark but in the five games that he has been in charge the defence has gone from strength to strength.

Today against Oxford, apart from two wobblies, the defence looked more composed than I have seen them in many a year.

Alright the team isn’t the finished article but it’s a damn good start. With the defence composed, the midfield were able to concentrate on moving the ball forward and not worrying about losing possession.

Gio played like he was loving it and that hasn’t happened for a while and it was great to see. Uwe worked his heart out and a goal came to him at last. The crowd were in fine form also and to the tune of Blue Moon were chanting “Brazil…, it’s just like watching Brazil…”

All in all a great day to be a Blue (and well overdue).

Chris Murphy (100736.1371@CompuServe.COM)

OPINION – PROGRESS IV – All Hail the Kinkmeister

Georgi Stuns United

Best, Charlton, Keegan… they’ve all played at the Manor. But has anyone ever turned in a performance of such genius on that pitch as Manchester City’s Georgi Kinkladze? The little Georgian midfielder was spellbinding. The ball seemed virtually glued to his feet as he mesmerized Oxford’s players.

and so on, and on for two more pages. The Oxford Mail 3/2/97. The above article was accompanied by a full page photo of Gio.

As for my own comments. I was there. Are these guys the same ones I have been following around this season? A friend of mine down here came into my work today to tell me that in 25 years of going to Oxford he had never seen such a team performance before. The only criticism my Oxford supporting mates who went to the match have of the press is that they all made Rösler the man of the match. They like hard working players. They also appreciated how he was such a handful for Oxford’s competent backs. He gave Gio the space to operate in.

The best comment was from the City fans, when they started singing “What the F*** is going on?” It was nice to hear it sung with irony for the first time this season.

I was so proud of them I even uncovered my City shirt in the home stand. The locals just watched on in astonishment. Who were these guys?

John Wilson (


It was great to see us come good at last against Oxford on Sunday. Kinkladze was brilliant and even Rösler had a good game (unlucky not to have scored with a cracking header). We really made Oxford look very pedestrian, and we honestly looked Premiership standard.

I think the big difference is obviously Frank’s influence and although a lot of people got upset when he kicked out all the old bootroom boys (Book et al.), I believe we really needed a change. Perhaps the best thing Clark’s done however is to bring in a decent ‘keeper, and Tommy Wright is one of the best… let’s hope we can sign him full time – he kept us in the game early on at Oxford, which made all the difference (we would have been at least one down if Dibble had been in goal and it could have been a different story). The defence looked a lot more solid and I thought Symons and Big Al (`the lad’s a tryer’) looked good in the centre of defence. Ingram and Brightwell also looked pretty solid and Horlock had a good début.

`Buz off’ also did ok and I’m glad to see that he’s having a crack at goal. He was unlucky to see a blistering shot come off the bar but I still wish he’d go at people like his old man. I’d still like to see us play with two out-and-out wingers; we always look good with a lot of width but I love seeing Kinky pushing forward. We’ve definitely been playing him too deep and it’s such a waste, because all his inventiveness and creativity is best served around the opposition’s box.

Just a few other comments:- Was Heaney a good buy? Can’t make my mind up, especially as we have Beagrie and Phillips waiting in the wings. Do I like Brightwell as a full-back? I don’t think so (their goalscorer should have been picked up by him), although he is a useful player but maybe more in the middle of the park. What do we do about Uwe? I’ve always been a fan and his class showed on Sunday. I know he has his enemies however, and his commitment has been lacking for the most part this year; but I still rate him highly and believe we should keep him if possible.

Overall I was impressed by City’s commitment, organisation and tactical coolness. Clark has tightened things up at the back, which has given us a platform for better things. We were a class above Oxford and are a class above 90% of the Nationwide clodders. Play-offs here we come (crazier things have happened!).

Stephen Maddox

OPINION – PROGRESS VI – Where will it all end?


Well, it just goes to show that City can win on the telly! Not only that but they won in style too! If this keeps up I think Frank Clark (a.k.a. Baron Hardup, Droopy, etc.) will be booking his place in the hot seat for as long as he wants it. Am I dreaming or have I just woken up from a nightmare?

I guess I’m running before the team can walk, but… We are currently 11 points away from a play-off spot with 17 league games remaining this season. If we can play like that every week (or even half as well), then we have an outside chance of qualifying for the play-offs. It’s tough, but not impossible, to pull back 2/3rds of a point on the teams ahead of us every game (especially if we play like we did against Oxford). If we can string 3 or 4 consecutive league victories together then who knows – anything is possible!

Still, one swallow doesn’t make a Summer. City are well renowned for being crap immediately after a good performance. I just hope it isn’t a case of ‘After the Lord Mayor’s Show’ against Watford – especially as Graham Turnip’s team are on rather a long unbeaten run!

Richard Mottershead (


City Magazine Review: Volume 2 Issue 6

Issue 6

Oh what joy it was to receive the great mag; once again they totally confused me on the delivery date but what the heck! I ripped open the brown envelope and there it was… a sticker of Gio! Delight, joy, I danced around the office wondering where I was going to stick such a precious item; the Rag fan that was suffering a Dons hangover gave me his opinion (leave that to you to work out!) and I didn’t care!

The front cover photo would have done well being featured on the “Strangeways Footie Mag”; it’s Kit with his lovely new hairstyle! Inside, and once again the new owners have changed the style again, but kept the format much the same, different fonts etc… You still have the usual Maine Frames, Diary, Maine Events, Blue Notes and Blue Mail. One I am sure that is a new edition is the Blue Preview (am I wrong?)

For all you autograph hunters out there, there is a centrefold pullout of Maine Road with 11 blanks to get your autographs of the team; shouldn’t they have had a prize for the first to complete it and send it in? Shame! On the subject of compo’s there is one on the page prior to the pull-out. Too hard though, you get questions like: Nick Summerbee and Dad Mike both signed for City from which Club! – dough!

Onto the issues.

The diary is, as you may expect, full of the joys of Clark and well worth a read.

The first interview is with Tommy Wright Wright Wright. I am sure that this is also a first, having a big interview in the club mag with an on-loan player. The article is great and the more I read it the more I felt that this ‘keeper should be snapped up permanently before another club, including Forest, cotton (cotton not coton!) on to the fact that he is actually quite good! Two things that come out of the article for me are that Wright persisted with life and football after a serious injury when he could have quit, showing he’s a battler – what City need at the moment – the second being that he holds very high regard for Clark, and in what he says Clark comes across as being a great man-manager. Wasn’t that something that was seriously lacking in the 95/96 season?

The next interview brings you closer to Frank’s ever present “out of the limelight” men – Alan Hill and Richard Money – an interesting article where both of them are interviewed at the same time, with one answer after the other. I’m sure this is the technique used in girlie mags like Minx, where they ask Sharon and Tracy about the first time they had sex! The answers aren’t quite as stimulating here but my favourite was “This is the job in football at the minute. This club could be anything it wants to be. It’s another Newcastle waiting to happen” Let’s just hope with more trophies!

Next comes the article of the mag for me! If I’m quick I can just about rearrange the plans for my Summer wedding; Ross-on-Wye – pugh! Maine Road, I’m up for it, I know my dad will too, her side of the family? Ar, hadn’t thought of that.

Yes that’s right, apparently you can now stage a wedding at Maine Road. A crackingly hilarious article, I can just see it now meeting the girl/boy of your dreams at a City match, spending the next ten months travelling up and down the M6 following City and in the Summer getting married on the hallowed pitch! Well, if it brings the club some money, go for it. I can’t honestly see too many people jumping for it. Christine? Must read article

Kit Symons let himself in for another interview about his newly shorn mop; apparently the cut was so he can get a new start just like City under Clark. In the article it does broach other issues than his nuttercut. Worth a read.

The final interview/article is one that my father will enjoy reading – Roy “Nobby” Clarke; the guy oozes City and even though I wasn’t born when he was playing, the article shows why he is a City legend. What does strike me as amazing is that the guy didn’t make any real money out of his years playing for City, yet he gave his all for them; nowadays they get too much and do f*** all and whinge when it’s cold! Nostalgic City must read artcile

Photos to cut out and keep – Kit Symons, Ian Brightwell; I don’t personally think this is enough photos of our heroes – I know they have the pull-out bit this month but a few more posters wouldn’t go amiss, even though I wouldn’t put them up myself. Having said that, I do have a Gio poster on the wall beside my desk in the office.

Best Advert?

Don’t think anyone anywhere out of the advertising world has ever reviewed adverts so I had to do it, sorry. I saw a great T-Shirt ad from the City Store; on the from it says “I know I am… I’m sure I am…” Then on the back you’ve got “CITY till I die.” Good work fellas. The price is a staggeringly good £12.00 and is only available in X-L in limited quantities, so hurry… I won’t be cruel and make you buy the mag to get the number… 0161 226 6000. This will be the latest edition to my designer wardrobe!

That’s all for this month. I’ll do it all again next month. If there are any improvements or specific points you would like me to add/delete, just get in touch.

James Talbot (

KINKY I – Lay off!

The King that is Kinkladze

This is just a quick reply to Chris Murphy and Adrian Gibben who gave their opinion of Gio in MCIVTA 269, and anyone else who has put their unjustified tuppence worth in recently!

With regard to “Kinky”, or, as those who go to the games know him, Gio:

Put a flaming sock in it, at least until you have something constructive to say, which should incidentially be prefixed with the likes of: God, King, Genius, Wizard, Magician, Saviour, Beautiful, the bearer of my children (even though he doesn’t know it!).

City is a business as well as a football club. What I would like to put is the following. Would you see “Rover” selling their prize plans for a revolutionary car that runs on water because they had slipped down the sales league?

Would you bollocks! They would build it, and build on it to move back up.

Exactly what City should do. We have a gem – priceless in my opinion – so many people have bought season tickets just to see him play, people have bought videos of great goals he has scored, are wearing the T-shirts and got City noticed all over the world, get my drift? Why? Because he’s dazzled and delighted, taking away some of the unjusitfied publicity from those scummy neighbours of ours.

If we sell him, what will we get? £5m? Two average players witha good work rate? Great, sell him now!

Only joking; if we did, the two players in return would probably end up costing more over the term of their contracts, what with sign on fees, bonuses, salaries, etc.

A major point though is that these two workhorses are OK and fighting but suddenly there’s a drop in season tickets, and in merchandise, and oh, City go back to the shadows of publicity behind those scummy Red b******s.

That is my opinion!

We should keep the messiah and build on him because he is good for the club, but don’t think I feel he is bigger than the club. I know he isn’t.

P.S. if anyone videoed the Oxford game, could I buy a copy? Unfortunately Carlton didin’t screen it, and my sister went out without recording it! Tshk, I have to train her better in future, maybe a bung would have worked!

James Talbot (

KINKY II – Baby please don’t go

Can we all please stop this talk of selling Gio? I know there’s a strong argument in favour – that he’s worth about as much as the rest of the team put together and he probably wants to go anyway, but he was absolutely brilliant on Sunday. It is still possible (but pretty unlikely) that we could make the play-offs – we’re 11 points off sixth place and all but three of the teams in the top half of the table have played at least one game more than us. Now you’ll probably all say that’s all very well but we’re in the bottom half. On current form, I believe it’s still possible to get there. FC certainly seems to have improved the team and they haven’t played as well all season as they did on Sunday (although Oxford’s performance would have made any team look good). If this good run continues and we start winning more games, we could start climbing the table. This is a very mediocre division, and I don’t think there’s any team in it that City can’t beat if they play like they did against Oxford.

At last we have a manager who’s worked out what to do with Gio – give him a free rôle ahead of the midfield, as on Sunday. There’s still room for him in a side with two wingers and as we saw he can be very effective, especially now he’s started passing the ball more. In the unlikely, but still possible, event of City getting into the Premiership next season, we will need Gio. So let’s at least wait until the end of the season to sell him.

Sorry about all that. I know it’s unrealistic, it’s just that I haen’t yet got over City winning by three goals on a televised match, and I’m feeling optimistic for a change.

Let’s hope it continues on Saturday!

Julian Griffiths (


Hi, here’s something from the Derby County mailing list:

Wimbledon 1 Manchester United 0 (Home to QPR)

Made me smile when Alan Green said “it’s like a home game for Manchester United”, well of course it is you plank, it’s in London!

Dr. Andrew Thomas (


In his Chicago Blues posting, Dan Moss compares the legions of ManUre fans with the Glory Hunters in Chicago who have suddenly decided to be Green Bay fans (sound familiar?). Over the years, though, I would have to say that the best comparison would have to be with the Dallas Cowboys. Here are a few examples of why I say this:

  1. Both teams have, by far, the biggest percentage of intolerablefairweather “casual” fans, i.e. people with all the gear (replica shirt, keyring, Giggsy Bedspread etc.) but who couldn’t even find their way to theground if their life depended on it and whom even a mild probing of theirknowledge of the team’s history causes them to fall apart on the spot.
  2. Both continue to get away with the relentless fleecing of their own fans(I hear a brand new Lilac and Puce 14th strip should be available at OldTrafford by May for only 55 quid).
  3. Both glorify such complete and utter t***ers as Cantona, Keane, Schmeichel andFerguson/ Irving, Sanders, J. Jones and Lett.
  4. Both get more bad calls going their way than an OJ Simpson popularity pollin South Central LA.
  5. Both continued to live through the 70s and 80s in the denial state ofclaiming to be their country’s greatest team during those years when theyweren’t even close (see Liverpool/ Steelers and 49ers)
  6. Both missed out on the title two years ago but took home the honours theother three of the last four years (and the good news is that the Cowboysdidn’t make the Superbore this time. Could this be an omen?!?!)

Steve “The exiled Glossopian living in the Galapagos Island of Sport” O’Brien (


Well it’s been a while since my last posting (the Why Blue took it out of me and so did a few people), but here’s my latest ramblings.

Firstly old songs. The Why Blue from Jack Millington got me thinking about a few of the old songs from my younger days and I think my fave was the following :-

Back in 1963 we went to Division 2
The Srretford end cried out aloud it’s the end of you sky blues
Joe Mercer came
We played the game
We went to Rotherham
We won one nil
Then we were back into Division 1

Since then we’ve won the League
We’ve won the Cup
We’ve been to Europe too
And when we’ve won the League this year we’ll sing this song to you:

Ciiiittty (clap clap clap)
City (clap clap clap)

There was also the one about being a bird and flying over the Swamp but I’ll not put that one down as it would not make much sense with all the swear words taken out. What about yours? Maybe we could have a vote and get big Bernard Manning and Eddie (I almost played for City) Large to do a duet before the Cup final!

Now onto our new manager… may I be the first to start the out with Frank Clark movement! What is this man up to! How will I ever get my day out at Blackpool (they are in the 2nd division at this time) if this man keeps winning games! My God I have not become a City fan to start winning games! Think not just of me, but of all the poor lads and ladies who work at Maine Road. Just think of them if we continue on our upward march; bigger and bigger crowds, more people wanting to buy tickets and souvenirs from the shop, what are they going to do?

I’ve not jumped onto this bandwagon only to find out that someone has fixed the wheels, put a new engine in and finally got a driver who know where he is going (is that enough metaphors?). So join with me in the song :-

“All we are saying is give us Ball back”

Tony the tattooed donkey Hulme (

My favourite from the Championship era was the City version of Blaydon Races – especially the Kippax belting out:

“We’ll be walking down Maine Road,
To see Joe Mercer’s aces



So, we’ve had a festive break, the first team’s on the up, so does anyone fancy having another McVitee footie game one Sunday in the near future at the Armitage centre? Just amongst ourselves?

Martin Ford (


I know that sometime ago there was someone on MCIVTA from the ticket office (sorry but I cannot remember your name as I delete the MCITVAs after a couple of weeks) and I was hoping that they could answer me this question :-

I booked two season tickets at the ticket office in person on one card but was charged two booking fees: why? Only one set of forms had to filled in and signed, only one card had to be debited and I will be picking them up on Saturday, so no post.

If they could answer this one it would be of help as I’ve tried to get my head round it and can’t.

Yours, Tony “the big hole in my MasterCard account” Hulme (

WORLD WAR III (Starring Graham Kelly)

The gentlemen’s agreement was between the F.A. and the French F.A. for the next World Cup and EUFA said if we did not bid in for the World Cup we would be given Euro’96. So I say go get ’em boys, the gloves are off. The German F.A. is upset because they think their bid should be endorsed because they said they were going to bid first (or did’ems).

John Colburn (



According to the Daily Telegraph:

“Alan Ball, 51, out of work since being sacked by Manchester City, has emerged as a candidate for the job at Plymouth.”

Your Daily Telegraph Correspondent (


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The views expressed in MCIVTA are entirely those of the subscribersand there is no intention to represent these opinions as being thoseof Manchester City Football Club, nor of any of the companies anduniversities by whom the subscribers are employed. It is not inany way whatsoever connected to the club or any other relatedorganisation and is simply a group of supporters using this mediumas a means of disseminating news and exchanging opinions.

Jeremy Poynton,

Newsletter #270