Newsletter #419

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This issue has three match reports and a matchview; 3 from Scarborough and 1 from Lancaster(!). The only news concerns a delay to the kit launch, this time due to the supplier rather than being down to the club. There’s also an update on BlueView from Sikpupi, quite a bit of opinion and another excellent Why Blue. This Why Blue is the last one I have in reserve, so please consider sending your own in.

The Cardiff game ended up a 0-0 draw, so plenty of consistency at home thus far!

Next game, Preston Tournament away, Sat/Sun 1st and 2nd August 1998

MATCH REPORT – ‘LIVE’ I

SCARBOROUGH vs. MANCHESTER CITY, Tuesday 28th July 1998

I now know why the South Koreans are trying to get the 2002 World Cup moved out of their rainy season; the Beverley 4 made the short drive up to Scarborough through a succession of flash floods – the only flash things we were to see all night – and made our way to the Stade de McCain (thanks for the advice Neil Towse; I see what you meant about the surrounding area) through an East Yorkshire impression of a monsoon, half expecting to find the game had been washed out. However, we got to the away supporters’ end to find the squad out on the pitch warming up and Blues milling around outside looking a bit bemused by the pricing policy – £10.50 on one gate, £5 on the adjacent one. When asked about this, the steward simply shrugged his shoulders, so being tight Yorkshiremen (1 naturalised) we paid our fivers and made for cover. I hope for Ray McHale’s sake he wasn’t banking on a big take from his testimonial match, as at one point we looked like we were going to outnumber the home supporters; nevertheless, the 1,000 or so Blues probably made more noise, albeit sporadically and in the noisiest cases beer-induced, than the locals and did their best to create a bit of atmosphere. One side of the ground was empty and the other might as well have been, so it was end to end in the crowd sense.

The line up in numerical order was Wright, Edghill, Tiatto, Crooks, Wiekens, Vaughan, Horlock, Pollock, Goater, Dickov, Bradbury (substitutions were numerous and I can’t remember exactly who subbed who but at various stages of the second half, Brown, Allsop, Jim Whitley, and Gary Mason came on for Bradbury, Horlock, Pollock and Dickov.

The first 20 minutes was a bit nervy and City, Bradbury in particular, were caught offside on numerous occasions. Scarborough never really threatened much, and seemed to want to get close to goal before shooting; consequently, Tommy only had one shot to deal with in the first half (which went in!). On 23 minutes, Pollock got the ball on the right of midfield, a long crossfield ball to Tiatto was pulled back into the centre for Bradbury, who went past the ‘keeper and put it back to Goater for a tap in. Two minutes later, Bradbury was put clear on the right and he finished well from the edge of the area. 2-0 and suddenly the Blues seemed more relaxed and were knocking it about with some composure using the full width of the (smallish) pitch. However, with half time approaching, a scrambled clearance in the City defence dropped nicely for a Scarborough player to bang it in past a diving Wright. As an aside I don’t want to read too much into this game but frankly Tommy’s kicking hasn’t improved much over the summer and I can’t believe he’ll be first choice given the reports I’ve been reading about Nicky Weaver.

Early in the second half, Goater got free of his marker and chipped the ‘keeper from inside the box but a defender managed to scramble it off the line; our end of the ground protested but Goater tried to score from the clearance so he must have felt it hadn’t gone in. On about 55 minutes, Allsop (on for Bradbury) got the ball down the left, went to the goal line and pulled the ball back into the area; the ball was partially cleared but it fell nicely for Horlock to fire home a deflected shot from about 10 yards. At the other end, they made a few more chances than they had in the first half, and Tommy tipped one over the bar. The substitutions seemed to disrupt the flow of the game and there was a feeling of playing out time, when with about 2 minutes to go, Goater (who’d been a spectator for much of the second half) again went down the left, cut back inside the defender and this time got his chip into the far corner (jokingly confirming with the referee that it had gone in this time!).

Final score: 1-4

So, I see City win for the first time in ages but I hope they we’re playing well within themselves as they didn’t exactly murder the opposition. True, a 4-1 win is better than a 0-0 draw, but if there were any 2nd Division managers watching, I doubt they’d be quaking in their shoes. Tiatto looks promising, Wiekens looked composed and effective, Pollock shouted and ran a lot (thanks for the ironic wave Jamie after the shot that went for a throw in!), but Vaughan looked cumbersome and Wright is a worry. Goater should do OK in the Division he knows well but Bradbury’s confidence needs a boost. In recent seasons we’ve done well pre-season and then fluffed the main event. I understand we’re the bookies favourites to win the Championship… me, I’d settle for second place and avoiding the lottery of the play-offs. If Scarborough is the real face of football, give me the 1st Division any day!

Geoff Donkin – Beverley Blue (Geoff@Donkin.Demon.Co.UK)

MATCH REPORT – ‘LIVE’ II

SCARBOROUGH vs. MANCHESTER CITY, Tuesday 28th July 1998

This is the third time I’ve seen Scarborough this year. Once against Cardiff (home win 3-1) and away against Torquay in the play-offs (lost 4-1). At home they impressed me as a workmanlike side, tidy with good teamwork. Less impressive against Torquay but who were flattered by opportunist goals from Rodney Jack.

City scored 4 goals: Goater 2, Dickov 1, and one from Bradbury. They had so much space that Goater was treated for agoraphobia at half-time. If Bradbury and Goater had not played ‘after you Claude’ in front of goal with the Scarborough defence at sea then more goals would have been certain – there were two disallowed and another 4 certainties missed. Most players didn’t get out of second gear because they didn’t have to.

Scarborough were a good Third Division outfit last season and very nearly were promoted to the Second Division. In other words they are probably a middling Second Division side in standard. This should have been a good test.

Overall Bradbury and Goater created openings easily – of the two Goater looks like a striker but Bradbury missed too many as usual. Midfield was not as aggressive as it would need to be in full competition and Horlock looked uninterested. Defence coped well with Wiekens and the two full backs competent defending and good going forward. It was what the score tells you – a superior away team outclassing a team from a lower division. The only deficiencies defensively were panic at corners (Wright in goal) and Vaughan’s lack of pace.

I saw nothing to worry about here and couldn’t agree less with those moaning fans who seem to rate all this seasons’s friendlies as a prelude to our forthcoming struggles with Juventus, Arsenal and Barcelona. This year I have actually seen Wigan, Millwall, Bournemouth, Walsall, Blackpool, Fulham, Gillingham, Northampton, Wycombe, Wrexham, Lincoln and Colchester play in league or cup competitions. City players on loan were to be seen and did well. In Lincoln vs. Exeter the only player on the Exeter side to cause Lincoln problems was Phillips. In Plymouth vs. Blackpool Conlon was the mainspring of the Plymouth attack when they defeated Blackpool. Only one of those teams would give City a decent game (Gillingham) and only one (Colchester) fills the image of tough ‘take no prisoners’ lower division side. We must never be complacent at City but honestly, most of these would struggle against the reserves (yes even with Clough and Brannan).

Weather: Heavy rain before match and during first twenty minutes – I thought it might be called off. Pitch immaculate.

Ground: McCain stadium overlooked by hills – one of the better ones in this division.

Attendance: I reckoned about 2,200 (1,000 City) which is a bit less than the normal 3,000 for Scarborough in the league.

City: Wright, Edghill, Tiatto, Crooks, Wiekens, Vaughan, Horlock, Pollock, Goater, Dickov, Bradbury
Subs: Alsop, Brown, Whitley, Mason

Peter Llewellyn (hw79@dial.pipex.com)

MATCH REPORT – ‘LIVE’

LANCASTER CITY vs. MANCHESTER CITY IX

It is rare that I get the opportunity to watch what was basically the City reserves have a run out so please excuse me if I get a little mixed up with one or two of the players. Anyway, Lancaster play in the Unibond league and the weather was good at kick-off. The pitch was in a reasonable state bearing in mind there has been non-stop rain in Lancaster for the last year (or at least it feels that way).

Anyway, City lined up (I think) as follows:

 

				M. Brown
N. Morley?		D. Morley	A. Fenton		A. Reilly
A. Porteus		J. Whitley	L. Crooks		M. Phillips
			B. Conlon	C. Greenacre

 

In the first half it was evident to me that this was going to be a friendly. There were very few crunching tackles (I think the only one really came from Whitley). City took a while to settle, partly due to the uneven bounce and partly due to some pressure from Lancaster. Greenacre looked quite lively and Conlon was his useful self, winning much in the air. Phillips got a lot of joy down the left side but his crosses were underhit for Conlon, and Greenacre is not tall enough to trouble the other defenders. Greenacre went up with the Lancaster ‘keeper for a long ball played from the back by Morley and came off quite badly with a punch to the head.

Lancaster basically packed defence and played a counter-attacking style, and following a misplaced pass by Dave Morley, a ball was played through the centre of the City defence. Morley raced back and made a timely challenge in the area, but the referee awarded a penalty. If you think that Division 1 ref’s were bad you should try this comedian! Anyway, the Lancaster City midfielder hit the ball hard and low but too near Brown who made a smart save. This seemed to ignite Lancaster and they had a bit more of the ball. Brown was lucky at one corner when he was reaching backwards fumbled the ball but it landed back in his hands. Greenacre had one further chance when a daisy cutter shot from Conlon hit him in the place that always brings tears to your eyes, yet he still managed to get a shot off, just wide.

Half time 0-0. Best player Phillips, worst Reilly.

The second half started very well. City launched a period of intense pressure, working the ball from flank to flank. Reilly seemed obsessed with trying to dribble the ball through players and then when that didn’t work, cursing himself. Phillips was hungry for the ball although I constantly had the feeling that it took too long to arrive at him. Phillips had his defender for pace and after 48 minutes turned him inside out and delivered a whipped in ball to the back post. Conlon was there. 1-0. This forced Lancaster to come out more and as a result Whitley and Phillips got much more space. Phillips again beat his man for pace, hit another cross in that the ‘keeper dropped and Conlon couldn’t believe his luck. He didn’t even bother to celebrate. 2-0. Various substitutions from both sides, Duff and Daley coming on for the disappointing Crooks and Porteous. Phillips now had a new marker; however, the boy lard (or someone resmbling him) was never going to be much of a challenge. Beating him for pace, he looked up ready to cross for Conlon again when Reilly came screaming for the ball. He hit the ball hard from about 20 yards and never troubled the ‘keeper as it ballooned over the crossbar and through my next door neighbour’s window. Lancaster had a couple of efforts when City’s centre backs tried to emulate Kinkaldze but City always looked favourites and after yet another cross from Phillips, Conlon was there for a good header. 3-0 final score.

Overall:

Brown 7/10. Smart save from penalty, looked dodgy on crosses. Constantly had to help tell Reilly where to be.
N. Morley? 6/10. Good defending, little going forward.
Reilly 2/10. Shocking.
D. Morley 7/10. Impressive at back. Tackled back well and unfortunate to give away penalty. Bit slow at delivering the ball.
A. Fenton 6/10. Little to do in shadow of Morley.
L. Crooks 5/10. Looked knackered after Scarborough.
A. Porteous 6/10. Unimpressive.
Jeff Whitley 8/10. Showed a lot of battle and won the ball and passed well.
M. Phillips 9/10. Classic left wing display. Put lots of crosses in. Some very good.
B. Conlon 8/10. Three good headers and timed a late run well. Delicate chip just wide.
C. Greenacre 7/10. Looked lively early on but bang on the head slowed him down. Got some good shots in and good link up play. Bottled some tackles.

Kev McMeeking (k.mcmeeking@lancaster.ac.uk)

MATCHVIEW – SCARBOROUGH

Making the decision at 5:30, in a Didsbury pub, to make the short(!) journey to Scarborough meant that arguments over who was driving were shortlived. Dave’s Fiesta wouldn’t make it as far as Whitefield and Phil would have to take the baby seat out; this meant that we had an hour and three quarters to make it to the seaside.

Stopping off to pick up an Evening News (with City team photo in the middle) further reduced the chances of getting there before half time. The legend ‘Manchester City 1998-99’ brought the response from Dave, “I thought that was how many players we had.”

After passing York, at about 7:15 our hearts sank when we saw the sign ‘Scarborough 45 miles’. We arrived at 8 O’clock, walked 3/4 of the way around the ground, finally settling into our white seats (Dave said he wasn’t going to sit on the red ones) in time to see Scarborough score their goal, due to a poor clearance by Vaughan or Crooks.

At half time it dawned on us that we’d be visiting grounds like this fairly soon. The match ball was sponsored by ‘Town Crier’ and the half-time raffle raised £16.53. It was hard to get enthusiastic about the game but here are a few thoughts.

  1. Edghill still has the ability to cross the ball as badly as RayRanson. He can beat a man but doesn’t get the ball in when he has thespace.
  2. We can’t mark from set pieces.
  3. Wiekens makes his ten yard passes look really stylish.
  4. Pollock has lost a couple of pounds.
  5. Vaughan is as slow as Dave’s Fiesta.
  6. Danny Tiatto looks O.K. at this level.
  7. Paul Dickov doesn’t.
  8. We couldn’t recognise some of the players.
  9. The fish and chips on the sea front were awful.

Goater scored a ‘goal’ that was a couple of yards over the line but the fact that it was not allowed doesn’t excuse his poor effort from the rebound. Horlock took his goal well, as did Goater for the fourth. Dickov and Tiatto were caught offside a few times too many but most chances were created with little chips over the defence, though laying the ball back to players in better positions was an option not taken, maybe because the heads were always looking down and not at what was around. I know it was only a friendly but …

The journey back (via the chippy) was spent on the following questions;
Can you name…

  1. 5 England players with ‘oo’ in their names.
  2. 2 players who had played in Manchester, Liverpool and North London derbies.
  3. 5 England players with an ‘x’ in their names.
  4. the player who scored 3 goals for three different teams against the same goalkeeper at Wembley in the same year.
  5. 4 City players with three letters in their surnames.
  6. 20 ex-City players who were in the Premiership (whatever that is) last season.
  7. 5 racecourses without any of the letters R A C E in their names.
  8. 3 Aussies who have played at Wembley.
Simon Barr (SBarr@holmshill.demon.co.uk)

RUMOUR – YOUNG KEEPER?

A strong rumour locally is that a local lad, and very highly respected teenage goalkeeper, called Robert Payne has signed for City from Wimborne Town (Wessex League). I know he has had trials for City in the past but can anyone confirm if he has signed? A big plus if he has!

Stuart Wells (wellss@flight-ref.com)

RUMOUR – KIT DELAY

Have heard that the new away strip is being put back to 6 August as there is some kind of chaos with the supply from the manufacturers! Saves me a trot down to the Arndale on Friday lunchtime to pick my reserved shirt up! It will cause chaos at the Blackpool game instead though! I’m sure someone else will have fuller details on this!

By the way, for those who don’t know, there is another size for adults this time – ZL which takes over as the biggest size from YL – must be the equivalent of XXXL, – makes those of us of a larger stature feel a bit more comfy!

Carol Darvill

Indeed, this is true, and this is what MCFC online have to say about it (thanks to TM for this):

Thousands of Blues fans have been left without a shirt on their back after suppliers Kappa have failed to deliver the new away kit on time. The new kit was to go on official sale this Thursday but Kappa has failed to meet the agreed delivery date leaving the Maine Road set up in a dilemma. The club has received only 25% of the original order, with no junior sizes available. It’s left thousands of fans disappointed and the directors of Manchester City angry and apologetic. The club is very concerned that this situation has arisen and we will be meeting with representatives of Kappa GB to discuss the implications. Kappa, who have only been supplying kit for the last year, have been swift to apologise in turn placing the blame on their suppliers. Due to the fact that we have been severly let down by our manafacturers the new away kit will not now be available in City Stores untill 6th August. We ourselves are very frustrated and annoyed by the service we have received from a long term and trusted supplier. All mail orders received by the club will be fulfilled except junior sizes which will be sent out next week.


BLUE VIEW – AN UPDATE

Firstly, and I suppose most importantly, I am glad to inform you all that Blue View is now finally safe for the forseeable future. How do I know? Simple, since my request on McVittee a few weeks ago for web space etc. I’ve been busy trying to sort out the things we require in order to keep Blue View online.

Bob Young has done brilliantly well collecting your contributions and received a great response. I also have had a lot of great offers of help and support from a variety of people. The bottom line though is this – we (Doug Bennett and myself) have now been offered everything we require in order to continue Blue View. The person who has saved (no other word for it really) us wishes to remain anonymous, at least for now, “Just a lifelong City fan in a postion to offer help” were the actual words he used. I’m off to Holland later this week and, on my return, Doug and I will be joining forces to start working on the New Blue View. I would like to personally thank all the people who have offered me web space, access, services, advice and support. If our once great football team show half as much commitment to the City cause as I’ve seen from some of you over the last few weeks, we’ll have the league won by Christmas.

More updates as and when … Regards and thanx

Steh a.k.a. The Sikpupi – www.sikpupi.demon.co.uk (steh@sikpupi.demon.co.uk)

KINKLADZE 2

I, like Darren, managed to watch the Ajax vs. Copenhagen friendly featuring our favourite Georgian, although I only knew the game was on because my hubby had insisted on watching the Tour de France highlights the night before and it was advertised. However, I had two slight problems. The first was that I had already booked my seat for the Sheffield Wednesday friendly and the second was that our video recorder had only just returned from major surgery and we had noticed that it was slightly crinkling the top of the tapes. So what was I to do? Do I waste £8 and miss the Blues at home or do I risk an unused tape in the recovering video and hope for the best?

In some ways I wish I had stayed at home as I froze my assets watching the 0-0 draw – this is July and it is supposed to be warm! Miraculously the video behaved itself and so I watched the first half when I returned after the game and would agree with Darren’s views on how Gio played – nice lay off to Arveladze for the goal. I managed to watch the second half last night having been told by an old mate Dave, a London Burnley fan, on Saturday afternoon after the London Branch’s AGM that Gio in fact scored. Hubby was not impressed but was appeased after I told him that the video would be finished in time for the Tour de France. The second half weather had taken a turn for the worse and it absolutely belted down. Gio was still on the left hand side and Copenhagen gave Ajax a couple of frights before Ajax scored a second. Then Gio got into the game a bit more and this time chipped the goalie beautifully for the third. Copenhagen pulled one back after some naff defending (looked familiar!) and Ajax wasted more chances before Benny McCarthy scored the fourth in injury time – the no.9 Simone missed another sitter, again a qualifier for “What Happened Next” where his shot clipped the heel of a flailing Copenhagen defender from about ten yards and flew over the bar! By this time Gio must have been substituted – I say that because I was in the middle of cooking a curry at the time and missed that bit! He had about ten minutes of running the defenders ragged just after his goal and on one familiar, mazy dribble was very unlucky with the shot as it seemed to clip the left hand post!

I too wish him luck for the new season and shall keep an eye out for the Ajax highlights – thanks for that Darren! – with a tape handy! I would love to see him back in the future but I doubt it if Joe Royle is still in charge.

Oh, by the way, back to City, is there any truth in the rumour that Cardiff have only sold 2 tickets for the friendly this Thursday? Will it warm up for the game or at least stop raining?! Also, will there be some sort of “programme”? Wasn’t too impressed at not being able to keep my collection up to date vs. Wednesday. Why are they scoring in away matches which I can’t get to and not at home?! Please lads, let me see a goal or four on Thursday, is it too much to ask? I could do with something to cheer about at the moment!

CTMGHTWOFO (City till my greying hair turns white or falls out!) – Carol Darvill

OPINION – CLOUGH

Marc Stein would like to see Nigel Clough playing in the side again. If Nigel Clough would play for 90 minutes who knows! A friend of mine who happens to be a Liverpool fan, told me when we first bought Nigel that during a game he hides; this is why Liverpool let him go – he is not a worker, he tends to be lazy, I hope he proves me wrong!

Ernie Barrow (EB2205@aol.com)

OPINION – YOUNG VERSUS OLD

I am distressed to read that Jeff Whitley may be on his way to Port Vale for a paltry £200k, as part of JR’s wage cutting plans. Surely there are more appropriate people to off-load?

There is precious little to be look forward to for for a City fan recently, but some of the players who’ve come through the youth team (Brown, the Whitleys) do give some grounds for optimism. And over the last ten years, the only City players worth shouting about have come through the ranks (Lomas, Edghill, Flitcroft etc.).

Maybe next time a City manager tries to attract highly-paid past-it players, they won’t be suckered into signing them on long-term contracts until they’ve proved themselves in Blue, thus saving the club from being crippled by funding the expensive lifestyles of many of City’s reserve team (i.e. Clough).

Chris Ffelan (chris.ffelan@blackburn.gov.uk)

OPINION – TICKET PRICES

I recently attended the Sheffield Wednesday friendly at Maine Road. I know there have been a couple of match reports so I wont bore you again, although I was impressed with Nicky Weaver. My point is about the prices the club charged for admission and the farce of actually gaining entry. It cost me £8 to get in and £5 for my son. To get a junior in you had to go to the ticket office and buy a ticket. However, once inside you could sit where you liked. The only point to this must have been to earn the ticket office staff some overtime! Secondly, as a season ticket holder who has just shelled out over £300 for his ticket, you would have thought the club could have made it free to season ticket holders. It wasn’t as if the place was heaving. The same applies to the kids’ tickets, why not make it a £1 or something to encourage youngsters into the club, because as we all know once hooked a lifetime of blind devotion follows. I’m sure the team would have preferred playing in front of a larger crowd. I wonder if you can get a comment from the club on this?

Simon Clapperton (simon0161@email.msn.com)

OPINION – FAIR PLAY

Joe Royle as set out his stall. He wants the first team and reserves to play in the same way, which sounds fairly logical. The chosen formation is with wingbacks, in a 3-5-2 ish set-up, with maybe a hard-working striker like Dickov playing behind the 2 main strikers (Goater and Bradbury), but in front of midfield.

I’ve read a few reports which comment on the lack of creativity in the side. Pollock and Horlock look like being in the centre of midfield; they’re both good players but lack flair. So where are our chances going to be created? Well the wing-backs will need to get crosses in, the midfielders will have to work hard and force the opposition into mistakes, that leaves pace and power up front, plus corners and free kicks. I can imagine we’d struggle to score against top class opposition but we’ll be difficult to beat. Hopefully there won’t be much class in Division 2. I’d love us to play with a 4-4-2, Philips on one side, Heaney on the other! But somehow I don’t think it’ll happen.

P.S. I bet Royle doesn’t sign Allsop. He sounds like a great prospect, but with such a big squad how can we take on another striker? It’s sad.

Tim Starns (oceansun9@aol.com)

OPINION – NEW KIT

I may be totally out of touch on this and as I’ve seen no griping on the subject I probably am. But… I went into the new improved City site with a view to buying a new shirt for my son and am appalled to discover that the new away shirt for a kid costs £35 – and £40 for an adult. And it’s made of cheap and nasty polyester (the rest of the kit isn’t listed for reasons I am unaware of).

This is a Third Division club (sorry but that’s the reality) acting like it’s still in the First Division. Where’s the humility? I fully understand the marketing imperative here – not to mention the obscene profit made from this junk – but has anyone inside the boardroom grasped the reality of the team’s relative position in the world of soccer?

I won’t be buying a shirt – at least not until they sell them for a price that is both reasonable and less of an insult to the club’s long-suffering fans. In a couple of months they will probably be down to a fiver. Then I’d be interested.

Chris Cobb (cobsun@intranet.ca)

OPINION – FACE IT…

After 23 years of watching City, I have finally given up, and I have not renewed my season ticket. I am sick to death of listening to the b******s that comes out of this Club and a lot of its fans.

Who gives a toss if 20,000 people turn up to watch this so called football team?

FACT :- This Club is now a DIV 2 (OLD DIV 3 !!) club.

FACT :- If this was a normal PLC, it would have been liquidated by now.

FACT:- This club is the worst run in the country at present.

FACT :- Nothing will get better next season.

FACT :- There is still worse to come yet.

FACT :- In 2 seasons time, this Club will still be in DIV 2, with an average gate of 13,000 people.

FACT :- The dream is over. The Club has gone.

So stop dreaming, and face the facts for once, City have died.

A very sad state of affairs, and I am afraid to say that it is the truth.

Maybe things might get better by 2005.

P.S. Let’s hope that the current squad is not year 2000 compliant, so we have to change the whole lot next year.

Simon (simon@orlando.u-net.com)

WHY BLUE?

For me it was part of the family tradition, my dad, grandad, uncles etc. were all City fans, so it was a forgone conclusion that I would be initiated unto the sky blue fold. My first recollection of visiting Maine Road is of being passed over lots of blokes’ heads until I was at the front of the crowd. This “pass the boy down” routine then became part of my life until “sod off, he’s too big” was the reply. I must admit that I don’t remember much else about this early period, save the occasional kick about with my cousin under the stands when action on the pitch didn’t hold the attention.

I’m happy to say I saw Frank Swift play, what a ‘keeper he was; his replacement, Bert Trautmann, was and is my all-time favourite City player and I got great delight watching the artistry and guile of Big Dave Ewing. There were also the ups and downs of promotion and relegation between 1st and 2nd Division but that was part of the charm of following City, no 2 matches the same.

I was delighted when having passed the 11+ exam the authorities decided I should go to Ducie Technical School. I could now walk to the ground when midweek matches were played, no floodlights then. On one occasion there was a cup replay against 3rd division Grimsby (I think); the City fans at the school, quite a few then including young Fred Eyre, legged it over after school to watch the end of the match. As the gates opened we asked those that were leaving what the score was: “5-1” came the reply, we cheered. “For Grimsby” was the next phrase; we went in but were unable to encourage City to any further efforts.

Playing soccer for school and 3 other amateur teams at weekends meant I could only get to matches very occasionally. Then it was into the music business, 4/5 nights a week any place in the country, for a few years. Emigration to Australia for 11 years where marriage and a family commenced. I did manage to see them in Sydney when they came out for an off-season tour of Australia and a subscription to “Football Pink” kept me abreast of the times. Now I reside in Ireland, in a village where Ballykissangel is filmed, but wherever I’ve been I’ve had to have my fix of Cityitis. Being connected to the Internet I can once again keep abreast of the times, so here’s another that wishes Doug Bennett et al the best of luck in getting “Blue View” back on our screens.

I have no idea as to why, after 50 years, that I still have this passion for City, I haven’t seen enough games to make a regular, I’ve never owned a season ticket (used dad’s when at home) but I was gutted when they went down to Division 1, and when it was down to Division 2 it was absolute devastation, though I’m still looking forward to next season. With just a small amount of luck City will start the winning habit, gain promotion to Division 1, keep the winning habit and go into the Premiership, passing the Rags on the way! We can all dream.

CTID, Frank Harrop the “Ballykea Blue” (fharrop@iol.ie)

BLUE HUMOUR I

A van driver used to amuse himself by scaring the s**t out of every Manure fan he saw strutting down the road in his scum uniform. He would swerve as if to hit them, and at the last minute, swerve back onto the road. One day as he was driving along the road, he saw a priest hitch-hiking. He thought he would do his good deed for the day and offer the priest a lift.

“Where are you going, Father?” he asked.

“I’m going to say Mass at St Joseph’s church, about 2 miles down the road,” came the reply.

“No problem,” said the driver, “Jump in and I’ll give you a lift.”

The happy priest climbed into the van and they set off down the road. Suddenly the driver caught site of one of the b******s on the pavement, and instinctively swerved as if to hit him, but just in time, remembering the priest in his van, swerved back to the road again, narrowly missing him.

Although he was certain that he didn’t hit him, however, he still heard a loud “thud”. Not understanding where the noise came from, he glanced in his mirrors, and, seeing nothing, said to the priest, “Sorry Father, I almost hit that Scum supporter walking down the road there.”

“That’s okay,” replied the priest, “I got the bugger with the door!”

Tony Hulme (T.Hulme@mmu.ac.uk)

BLUE HUMOUR II

A lifelong supporter died early last January and his wife rang the club to ask whether, if he was cremated, his ashes could be scattered in one of the goalmouths at Maine Road. A spokesman for the club very kindly explained that they had many such requests and it really was not possible to fulfil all of them. But, as he had been a supporter for many years, the spokesman had a suggestion. His idea was that the club would arrange for him to be stuffed and, as his season ticket was still valid, he could be placed in his seat complete with scarf, bobble hat etc. and he could then be there for the rest of the season. The wife thought this was a very good idea so the club made all the arrangements and propped him up in his seat wearing his City scarf etc. At half time at the Bury game in February he got up and walked out!

Ann Bennett (abennett1@portables1.ngfl.gov.uk)

WWW MANCHESTER CITY SUPPORTERS’ HOME PAGE:
http://www.uit.no/mancity/


MCIVTA ADDRESSES:
Contributions: Ashley – mcivta@tollbar.u-net.com
Subscriptions & Club Questions: Steve – sbolton@buxtonrd.u-net.com
Technical Problems: Paul – paul@city-fan.org


DISCLAIMER
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.


[Valid3.2]Ashley Birch, mcivta@tollbar.u-net.com
Newsletter #419
1998/07/30

Editor:

 

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