Newsletter #745

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An excellent game on Saturday saw us take all three points in a 3-0 victory against Birmingham, who we are due to face again in a few weeks’ time in the 3rd round of the Worthington Cup.

Ali B gave an inspiring performance on his début with the rest of the team responding accordingly, and young Etuhu made his long awaited home début to much acclaim. Tonight’s issue sees some excellent match reports, views, opinion, Michael’s news, Ken’s diary, an oldie but goldie joke, and requests.

Finally this issue goes out with special wishes to all our US based Blues – we’re thinking of you.

Next game: Coventry City, away, 7:45pm Wednesday 19th September 2001

NEWS SUMMARY

General News

Well you may have guessed but the Algerian we were linked with last week signed for us, and the rest is history. Ali Bernabia, 32 year old creative midfielder and less than 2 years ago the French players’ and sportswriters’ player of the year had a stunning début in the televised home victory against Birmingham on Saturday. Bernabia oozed class and had more than a hand in our first two goals.

City 3 Birmingham 0: The scoreline flattered Birmingham as KK made the necessary changes and with the exceptional début of Bernabia overshadowing the solid and competent début of Dickson Etuthu, the Brummies hardly spent any time in our half never mind chances on goal. The first was a poached effort from the Goat, which doesn’t do it any justice as those who saw the exquisite pass of Bernabia’s to Wanchope through a crowded box would realise that this was a class goal. Wanchope subsequently balanced himself before picking out the post with his delicate shot then the Goat saw his pickings and pounced – 1-0. Next goal was from a corner where Bernabia’s reverse pass to Tiatto left two defenders for dead, Tiatto had all the space in the world and put an inviting cross in for Richard Dunne to shin the ball home from 4 yards out. Dunne’s first ever club goal. The third was again from a corner with Dunne flicking on for the Goat to head home. Man of the match Bernabia has signed a two-year deal with us and Sunderland fans must be kicking themselves that Reidy didn’t offer a three-year deal. Then again we all know that Reidy wasn’t a fan of fancy dan footballing types, Michael Hughes anyone? Keegan said of the Algerian “You get the odd bargain player but, honestly, I have to pinch myself when I think we got him on a free. He simply talked with the football”.

Worthington Cup: Welcome back Birmingham City, as the Brummies have to return to Maine Road in the third round of the League Cup. The tie is scheduled for the week commencing October 8th.

Dale Friendly Back On: The previously postponed friendly against Rochdale will now be played later in the season. A date has yet to be announced. Various factors prevented the tie from being staged last November but Keegan has said that he will honour Joe Royle’s commitment to play the fixture. The tie was originally organised to mark the official opening of the Per Fit Windows Stand (catchy name!).

Ins, Outs and Rumours

Sunday reports have linked us with being close to tying up a deal with Blackburn Rovers’ Jason McAteer. The wing back is reported to have told friends that he is talking to City. McAteer apparently refused to play for Blackburn in last week’s cup tie against Oldham and it’s thought that Rovers’ boss Graham Souness will let him go on a free as long as a deal between City and McAteer can be agreed. The only stumbling block may be the player’s current salary, alleged to be £17,000 per week.

Terry Cooke could be on his way to Oldham in a £500,000 deal. Oldham recently failed to persuade John Oster to sign in a £750,000 transfer and Cooke is seen as the next on their list. Cookey hasn’t played a first team game for us since November 1999 and has so far failed to get a place on the bench this season, though he did feature in the recent friendly against The Latics.

Ex-Blues’ News

Jim Whitley is still clubless despite initially agreeing terms with Wrexham. The decision was thought to be down to the Wrexham board’s financial constraints imposed on manager Bryan Flynn; apparently the Whitley deal has been seen as a factor in Flynn’s decision to quit the Welsh outfit at the end of the season. Jim meanwhile is using his well known artistic talents to get by until he (hopefully) finds another club.

Michael Leafield (mplctid@aol.com)

CITY DIARY

There were plans to see Ian Bishop and Miami Fusion take on the Metrostars in New York again last Wednesday, but other things intervened. Anyway, here’s the news from long ago:

City Diary, 17-23 September

17 September:
In 1887 Ardwick F.C. played their first game, losing 4-2 to a Denton outfit called Hooley Hill. Frank Swift missed his first game in goal (1938) since his début in 1933, about 200 games previously; City lost 6-1 at home to Millwall. In 1996 City went to Lincoln in the League Cup, scored first through Uwe Rösler, and lost embarrassingly 4-1.

18 September:
0-0 at home to Fenerbahce in 1968 in in City’s one and only venture into the European Cup, with Mike Summerbee coming in from some stick from parts of the crowd.

19 September:
Tom Browell scored all four of City’s goals in a 4-4 draw with Everton in 1928. Jackie Bray got his first goal for City at home to Arsenal (lost 3-1) in 1931; he played until after the war and in the 1960s according to an advert in a Burnley programme he was running a sports shop in Nelson, Lancs. Imre Varadi had a hat-trick in the 3-0 home win over Stoke in Division Two in 1987. In 1959 City beat U****d 3-0, Joe Hayes getting two goals and George Hannah the other one.

20 September:
City beat Leicester Fosse (from the Roman road of that name?) 3-1 in 1902. Richard Edghill made his début at Wimbledon in 1993, a 1-0 defeat. City lost 1-0 at Barnet in the 1st round of the League Cup in 1994. In 1947 a record 78,000 for the Manchester derby came to Maine Road.

21 September:
City had a 3-2 win at Highbury in 1935, Toseland, Herd, and Tilson getting the goals. Andy Black scored three in City’s 7-2 win over Bradford Park Avenue in 1946. They lost 9-2 at West Brom in 1957, six goals going in the City net in the last half hour. In 1968 City went to Sunderland and won 4-0, Bell, Lee, and Summerbee sharing the scoring.

22 September:
It’s Tommy Hutchinson’s birthday (1947).

23 September:
It’s Richard Edghill’s birthday (1974). Paolo Wanchope scored – for Derby County – in the League/Worthington Cup tie at Maine Road in 1998, putting City out 2-1 on aggregate. George Heslop and Francis Lee scored in a 2-2 draw vs. Bologna in the Anglo-Italian Cup in 1970, City losing 3-2 on aggregate. This day also saw two famous Manchester derby matches: there was the 1961 game in which Nobbly Stiles scored for both sides, and with the game tied at two apiece Dave Ewing put his head to a cross and headed magnificently past the ‘keeper for the deciding goal – unfortunately the shot was Dennis Violet’s and the keeper was Bert Trautmann. There was also another derby on this date, in 1989: Oldfield two, Bishop, Morley and Hinchcliffe – 5-1, as they say in Germany.

Kenneth Corfield (kcorfield@berkeleycarroll.org)

MATCH REPORT LIVE: MCFC vs. BIRMINGHAM

City 3 – Useless Brummies 0

Well, who would have ever bet against City winning this one? After last week’s abject performance against West Brom it was a completely different side who turned up against Birmingham. Ali Benarbia and Dickson Etuhu both made their full débuts for City on Saturday – full line up was Weaver, Edghill, Granville, Pearce, Howey, Dunne, Tiatto, Benarbia and Etuhu, with Goater and Wanchope up front. The police were everywhere before the game, obviously expecting a return of the trouble that we had last time our nice friends from Birmingham came to visit, but as only a couple of coach loads had bothered to make their way up the M6 this time there were probably more police than Brummies. It really was a pathetic turn out from them; the kick off wasn’t that early and if I can make it from Essex they should have been able to make it from that concrete jungle they call home.

The minute’s silence was impeccably observed this time, not even the usual squawk of a mobile phone going off – there were a lot of American flags draped in various places around the stadium too. Our defence looked a bit shaky again in the first ten minutes – Weaver had to make a great save from a header from Horsfield early on. Edghill then came back to make a fantastic tackle in the penalty area, somehow scooping his foot around the ball from the left hand side of the attacker. If he’d mistimed it by a split second it would have been a penalty, so nice one Edgy – it’s good to see him playing well. From that moment on though we hammered ’em. We had chance after chance, most of them created by this strange Ali bloke on the right hand side. Now I’m not sure what he thought he was doing but he seemed to be under the impression he was there to play football. He kept doing all sorts of weird things – passing the ball to his team mates, getting into space ready to receive the return, asking for the ball to be passed to him then taking his time before passing it onwards… Hopefully his English won’t be good enough for a while yet to understand what he’s being told to do so he can carry on playing well! The first goal came after great work from him. A cross from him from the right reached Wanchope who shot and hit the post, only for Goater to be following up to wallop the ball home. We hadn’t quite sat down from that one (and my husband hadn’t finished typing in the “feed the Goat and he will score” text message that he was sending me from home) when it was 2-0. Benarbia was involved again – a short corner to Tiatto then a lovely turn from Tiatto to leave the defender for dead, followed by a stinging cross in that was met by Richard Dunne, of all people, at the near post. It was a classic centre half’s finish – he couldn’t duck low enough to get his head on it so he shinned it into the net instead! “Feed the Dunne and he will score” doesn’t have quite the same ring does it? Although Dunne’s hardly short of food from the size of him. We were expecting a re-run of the Crewe game at that point but no – just before the break it was 3-0 as Goater met Pearce’s corner for a simple goal. I tell you – if that Goat gets fed much more he’s going to get as fat as Ricky-boy.

Moaning Mike in front of us spent the whole of half time reminding us how we were 3-0 up against Birmingam last time we played them, only to end up hanging on for a narrow 3-2 win. Yah boo sucks, misery guts.

The second half wasn’t quite the spectacle the first had been, but there still could have been more goals. Goater should have had his hat trick when he took the ball in the area and skipped past three defenders with his back to goal, only to put a (for him) weak shot in for Kelly to save. Tiatto has borrowed Whitley’s shooting boots as he won’t be needing them for a while – I feel sorry for people in that block in the Platt Lane just above the goal slightly to the right hand side. They must have thought it was safe to sit there again with Whitley out of the team but not with Tiatto being as off target as he was on Saturday… Etuhu had a couple of chances too, both of which came when he ran through midfield onto a ball from Benarbia. He was running the game, really – it’s been a while since we’ve had someone with that sort of creative ability, and even longer since we’ve had someone who could come down to the same level as his teammates and play with them! He went off with about 15 minutes to go as he looked absolutely knackered, for Horlock – like for like switch there then… He did get a standing ovation from the crowd which was richly deserved. Dickov and Huckerby came on for Wanchope and Goater with a few minutes to go, and Dickov could have added a fourth. This one was from a ball through the middle from Etuhu for Dickov to run on to, but the ‘keeper just got there first. Shame. Birmingham did try to pressure us in the last few minutes but I can only remember Weaver making one save all half. They looked about as clueless as we had at the Hawthorns – and just to sum up how sad their fans are, they were singing “4-0 to the Albion” at us at one point! Can you imagine us doing that to anyone, celebrating a certain local rival’s win?! I think not…

In summary then, great débuts from both Benarbia (man of the match) and Etuhu. I think Etuhu’s performance got a bit lost in the after match praise for Benarbia which was a shame, he looks a good prospect. He’s big, strong, fast and can pass the ball – again things we’ve been missing in midfield. ITV Sport did say in their highlights program that he looked a bit like a young Vieira, which was odd as that was exactly what we’d been saying. If he ends up half the player that Vieira is then he’ll do fine. Benarbia’s performance was simply magnificent, right up until the moment he was subbed – even though he was obviously worn out in the second half he was still calling for the ball. He seemed to be able to create space for himself too, the way good players can – again something we’ve not seen too much of recently! I’m not sure how well he and Berkovic would play together though but I guess we’ll see that at some point soon. The rest of the team looked just like that – a team – unlike the collection of motley hoofers and roofers that we saw at West Brom. It must have done them some good to keep a clean sheet too.

One of the biggest cheers of the day came as we were leaving the stadium when the announcer told us all that we’d drawn Birmingham in the next round of the Worthington Cup. Come on though, this is City, I’ll go for a 2-0 Birmingham win for that one!

Sharon Hargreaves

MATCH REPORT TV I: MCFC vs. BIRMINGHAM

The solution is now obvious, we MUST sign a new ball playing midfielder every match, let him make his début and stand back and watch him pick up the plaudits. Yes, Ali Benarbia made his début in front of the ITV Sport cameras and left the same impact as Berkovic had made on his début against Watford. Both matches saw City stroll to a 3-0 win, but against Birmingham City, we had the points wrapped up by half-time. Keegan tinkered with the squad, bringing Dixon Etuhu and Benarbia into the starting line-up.

City kicked off from right to left (Platt Lane to North Stand) and early exchanges saw Weaver being brought into action with an excellent save from Horsfield at close range, but by 23 minutes City were ahead. Benarbia found the ball at his feet from an Edghill pass on the right of the box, turning his back on the defender he pushed the ball across to the middle where Wanchope deftly scooped the ball onto Kelly’s left-hand post from just before the penalty spot. Unlucky we thought, but no, in steamed the Goat and he was duly fed. Within a minute City were two up. A long range shot by Etuhu was deflected wide and from the resulting corner on the left Benarbia knocked it to Tiatto, Tiatto played it back to Benarbia and after receiving the ball again (with the Birmingham defence completely confused, in fact writing it I think I’m a bit confused) Tiatto threw a cross in and that well known Irish goalscorer Richard Dunne shinned it in for a 2-0 lead. At this point we were running them ragged, with Wanchope fluffing a one-on-one with the ‘keeper and flashing a header wide from another cross by Benarbia. With 3 minutes to go to half-time City increased their lead to three. Pearce took the corner from the right and his powerful cross was flicked on by the Brummie defender (under pressure from Dunne) and the Goat was fed with a simple cushioned header.

So 3-0 it was at half-time and City were cruising; this was probably the most complete performance we’ve seen this season. Second half started with City comfortably pushing the ball around but without creating too much. It wasn’t that they were sitting back, they just seemed in complete control of the situation. Tiatto had a couple of long range volleys (one which nearly decapitated one poor Birmingham defender), the Goat shot straight at the ‘keeper after Benarbia had held the ball up well in the box and Etuhu snatched a shot just wide from a Benarbia corner.

On 74 minutes Keegan brought on Super Kev for the superb Benarbia, Maine Road (and one Darlington front room) stood up and saluted a most impressive performance. Five minutes later Keegan brought on a straight swap, with Dickov and Huckerby replacing the Goat and Wanchope but neither was on the pitch long enough to make any immediate impact. So 3-0 it finished and Benarbia was voted ITV Sport man of the match; for those who didn’t see it Keegan accepted the award on behalf of Benarbia and informed the interviewer that “He’s foreign so he won’t understand about this. So if you don’t tell him and I don’t mention it, this [bottle of champagne] is going home with me” – You can’t help but love it, really love it.

Weaver 7 – One match saving save at the start, but had little to do, kicking has improved so it’ll be a push to see Nash getting his place back on this performance.
Granville 7 – Never convinced with him as a defender but going forward he fills the space well, just needs to improve on his crosses.
Howey 8 – Glad to see he had a solid performance in keeping with last season.
Dunne 8 – Goalscorer and solid defender in more ways than one.
Pearce 9 – Not being a centre-half it is noticeable who well he drifts from left to right and picks up behind Dunne and Howey, this has to be the major plus point of our 5-3-2 formation (or should that be 3-5-2 or 3-2-3-2?).
Edghill 7 – Similar to Granville, I’m not sure if playing wing backs makes them look better going forward than it doesn’t defending.
Tiatto 9 – A stunning performance from a player who seems well suited to a central midfield rôle, gives us the bite to counter the flair of others.
Etuhu 8 – A good, solid début, was impressive on and off the ball; can only improve from this point on.
Benarbia 10 – Untouchable. Imagine him and Berkovic in the middle, for a free transfer this must be the steal of the season. Hark I can hear the distant gnashing of teeth in Mackem-land!
Wanchope 8 – Worked tirelessly and seems to love the space provided at this level, links supremely with Goater and probably deserved a goal.
The Goat 9 – That’s 9 in 7 for the man who has one hell of an appetite.

Subs:
Horlock 6 – Didn’t really get into the game, but then again he was replacing the man of the match.
Dickov 5 – Hardly on long enough to create much.
Huckerby 4 – Seems out of sorts and didn’t run in on any crosses thrown into the box, but again he wasn’t really on long enough.
Murphy & Colosimo – unused subs.

James Walsh (James.Walsh@durham.gov.uk)

MATCH REPORT TV II: CITY vs. BIRMINGHAM

Well if City play like they did for the first 45 minutes every time they’re on ITV Sport then the subscription will be worth it. Three goals and lots of near misses made it one of the best halves of football I’ve seen in a long time – Birmingham weren’t bad either.

Benarbia was the main influence on the game, for long in the tooth City fans his style of play reminded me of Bobby Johnstone. Not a terrific amount of running about but able to stop, hold the ball and then find a City player both in space and in front of him. I’ll be intrigued to see how he plays with Berkovic.

Naturally Goater scored two by being in the right place at the right time and Dunne put one in off his shin. Up to that point Dunne had looked totally lost and seemed to be in a sort of Kit Symons spell when he couldn’t do anything right. He looked better after the goal and let’s hope that continues.

Weaver too made a couple of good saves and even managed to avoid giving the ball away too much with his kicking. Wanchope and Edghill both seemed to relish the service from Benarbia. Etuhu had a good enough début and looked confident enough.

Referee Jeff Winter – in my view he was poor, had a downer on Wanchope from the start and made one of the more incredible decisions of the season so far when Bragstad went for Benarbia with his foot head high, nowhere near the ball and well inside the penalty area. The question was will Bragstad be sent off as well as the penalty, but no an indirect free kick and not even a booking – two City players booked for comparatively minor offences. Not good enough and the football authorities have to find a way of improving the refereeing standards – Winter is one of the new professionals and really these guys need to be made publicly accountable. In this game it didn’t matter as City were good enough to play Birmingham and the referee but in games where the teams are evenly matched the referee will be the deciding factor.

ITV Sport – a bit better than the Burnley match.

David Lewis (d.lewis@au.sac.ac.uk)

MATCH VIEW: BIRMINGHAM

I have been a grateful subscriber to MCIVTA for many (Blue) Moons, but have never contributed. After attending the game on Saturday against Birmingham I wanted to throw in my tuppence-worth about the two new players on show.

I have heard and read a lot about Dickson Etuhu. Finally he plays. First half a little nervous. And for a big man, didn’t seem to think he would win a header! But gradually he overcame the nerves and settled, in the second period, although we had squeezed the life out of the game by then, he realized he can definitely play at this level – and above! He looked composed and worked really hard, and I’m glad KK gave him the full 90.

Ali Benarbia… well – what a waste of space. Joke! The guy is excellent. So many great touches, so much creativity! He tired a little second half but the reception he got says it all. Imagine him and Eyal – if ever fit – together. The Goat will be well fed! I am sure there will be many superlatives about this guy.

The best football I can remember from City for a long while. I was nervous before the start, as always, even saying I would be happy with a point after the 4-0! And with Birmingham playing well. But they were made to look awful! City were several classes above. Is Pearce only 39? Dunne and Howey looked (mostly) composed and in control. Tiatto was marvellous, Edghill, well is it the same guy? Granville was impressive on the overlap, shame about some of the crosses. Up front the Goat was the Goat, two more thanks very much! And Wanchope produced as ever some ridiculous skill and deserved a goal. I felt the boys were unlucky not to be about 5-1 up at half time (good save Nicky!) and I was a little disappointed with 3-0.

Just being greedy.

Nice in this division to have subs of the quality of Dickov, Huckerby and Horlock. But next year? Who knows?

All in all a fabulous first half display. Bring on the next lot!

Mike Bains (mikebains@themail.co.uk)

OPINION: BIRMINGHAM GAME

The rollercoaster ride continues with another, at times, breathtaking performance. There were many outstanding contributions but I have to pick out two.

1. Ali Bernarbia – this bloke is what we have needed for years, somebody to link up defence and attack but he appears to have much more than that. I know it was only part of one game but we saw ball skills, vision, precise passing ability, running off the ball, linking up play; I could go on may be he lacks a little pace but good players don’t need that.

2. Richard Edghill – I have to admit I like Edgy, he’s a good player who has lacked confidence, not helped by sections of the crowd. Yesterday he showed what he is capable of, largely brought about by having somebody to pass the ball to when he was in possession. Bernarbia was always available when Edgy had the ball and then encouraged the overlap with quality through balls. When was the last time that happened? You could see Edgy’s confidence growing as the game went on.

Bernarbia and Berkovic, my mouth’s watering at the prospects – I wonder if Kev would dare to play them in the same team! I hope so.

Dave Sterrett (Blueds@ctid1.fsnet.co.uk)

OPINION: DA ALI B SHOW

Anyone who witnessed the masterclass by Ali Bernarbi on Saturday and left wanting to know more about Kev’s super signing need only look on the web (the mass of info on his career in France underlines what a coup this was); here are some of the best bits: “In the country of Voltaire and Victor Hugo, Ali Bernarbia is a devoted high-speed motorboat” “at 1.71m (he) is smaller than Pele, but taller then Maradona (by) 4cm. With his 68kg, this squat player seems to have (his) feet stuck to the grass so much” “(his) protection of the ball is a wonder. And in spite of (his) small size compared to the defenders who mark him closely (he) registered goals of the head(!). This player who rakes during 90 minutes the ground, has a direction of anticipation and a not very common vision of play.”

Despite the problems of web translation from the French (he is also described as a “small drainage channel” (‘larron’ anyone?), this is definitely the player we saw bamboozle Brum on Saturday. Merci Kev!

Mark Barratt (mark.barratt@rchme.co.uk)

OPINION: SEASON SO FAR

So far, so good, well who knows!

Having experienced the Baggies away and Birmingham at home I guess within 7 days we have encapsulated years of supporting City. I thought of adding my depressive thoughts of WBA last week but having read Sharon Hargreaves’ superb report it seemed pointless. Suffice to say City were terrible. Was this the team who took the game to Burnley? And would have won even if Burnley had 12 men on the pitch!

So to a totally disorientating 12.30 kick off – I’m that old I still think that football starts at 3.00pm after 3 or 4 pints. Unusually we took our seats all too aware that we were going to watch a City game sober – not just a bit worrying but decidedly scary… could it be worse than the Hawthorns – surely not! Joking apart… what a difference a week makes!

Be honest how many of us knew of Ali Bernabia (probably spelt it wrong). What a playmaker and what experience. What I thought was really, really good was the way he talked to the other players, especially Edgy. Last year I wrote to MCITVA about the disgusting treatment Edghill received in the Coventry game I feel vindicated now he has returned and playing, in my opinion confident and assured football. OK he may never be the world’s best passer of a ball but this season well worth his starting line-up place.

The half hour in the first half after Nicky saved a header (should have been a goal… wasn’t thank God) was the best this season with Ali (whatever his second name is) showing magical skills and young Dickson strolling around with the confidence you would expect from a far more experienced player. The first half goals were inevitable against a team who will probably be competing against us for promotion. On Saturday’s performance the Brummies weren’t in it at all. I won’t give points for the players… it was b****y good from the back to the front.

And so to Coventry, full of high hopes and confidence. Must get a point at least. Perhaps the best bit of following City is that you never know what to expect. I hope driving home at 10.00pm on Wednesday I feel better than I did driving home from WBA!

Richard Cooper (Val.Cooper@nnc.co.uk)

OPINION: WORLD CHAMPION BLUE

Congratulations to Ricky ‘Hitman’ Hatton for successfully defending his world title on Saturday. He again wore his laser blue shorts with MCFC emblazoned on them, as he put his American opponent down four times before the fight was eventually stopped in the fifth. It was pleasing to see the blue shirts in the Manchester arena cheering on a true local hero. City win, Utd lose, Keane sent off, Hatton wins; what a great day!

Stuart Wells (stuart.wells@flight-refuelling.com)

OPINION: BLUE BLOODED

With the disaster over here and the appeal for blood donors, as a true City fan I had to do my duty.

I went to the blood bank in Richmond, Virginia. When I got there it was pretty amazing, the police directing traffic and the people who were already lined up to volunteer to give blood, I was told 4 to 5 hour wait; they advised come back.

I went back next day; I kept thinking “I hope a United player will get my blood – that will slow him down a bit”.

After a long wait it was my turn. I told the nurse “You are colour blind are you not?” She looked confused so I had to educate her (you know how it is if you don’t have a Coronation Street accent). I had to tell her my blood was not really red but Blue; she still looked confused. So I had to tell her I am a City fan and that there was another club that most Brits are not proud of called “Rags”.

The final thought is of course that if I help someone, even if it was a United fan, I would feel good about myself, for I do not hate United, I just dislike them with a passion (oh am I a cheat or what!).

Here’s to everyone with Blue blood! Cheers!

Come on you Blues! Ernie Barrow (BarrowLoyalBlue@aol.com)

OPINION: WALSALL CHANGE

Well, having asked why the Walsall match was brought forward I can’t say I’m that impressed by the reason. Moving it to avoid Yom Kippur I can understand, but it’s been the holiest day in the Jewish year for a long time (how long depends on whether you think Moses wrote the books of Moses) but certainly since before when the fixtures were announced! The reality is that in Berkovic the Blues have a good Jewish boy who’d not play, but perhaps the management should have twigged sooner.

At least one distant supporter has had best laid plans mucked up by the late call, arriving Wednesday for two games and now one will already have been played.

Steve Parish (steve@bloovee.freeserve.co.uk)

OPINION: WALSALL GAME

This may be a stupid question, but can someone please explain what the Jewish Day of Atonement ‘Yom Kippur’ has got to do with Manchester City FC and the re-arranging the game with Walsall from 25th September to 26th September?

Bill Hill (gacbill@hotmail.com)

OPINION: ASHAMED TO BE BLUE

I was at the Notts County match and was ashamed to be a City fan, No, not because of the poor performance (that was bad enough) but because of one so-called City fan who stood up and sang ‘going down like a hijacked plane’. What a mindless idiot (and the others in the stand who found this funny).

Neil Mathieson (neil.mathieson@ntlworld.com)

OPINION: THE GEST INDEX

No change in the first four this week, although West Brom continue their strong push.

Projected final positions based on results through Sunday September 16. The number in parentheses is their current league position.

01 Manchester City (6)
02 Birmingham (7)
03 Bradford (4)
04 Burnley (1)
05 West Brom (9)
06 Norwich (5)
07 Coventry (13)
08 Wolverhampton (8)
09 Grimsby (3)
10 Gillingham (12)
11 Nottingham Forest (14)
12 Preston (18)
13 Sheffield Wednesday (21)
14 Crewe (19)
15 Watford (10)
16 Barnsley (11)
17 Wimbledon (17)
18 Sheffield Utd (20)
19 Portsmouth (2)
20 Walsall (22)
21 Crystal Palace (15)
22 Millwall (16)
23 Stockport (24)
24 Rotherham (23)

Wallace Poulter (wpoulter2@home.com)

REQUEST: NUMBER PLATES

Does anybody know where in the North West you can buy plates that start with MC? This moniker must be in use somewhere. In fact just think of the plates that are available now for example MC 51 UTD…

Anorak a.k.a. Richard Mottershead (richardjohnm@hotmail.com)

REQUEST: THAMES VALLEY BLUES

Any Blues out there in the Thames Valley area heading up to Maine Road for the Walsall game on Tuesday 25th September? Willing to share all expenses etc.

Mail me at the address below.

Khalid Ahmed ( khalid.ahmed@wokingham.gov.uk)

BLUE HUMOUR

Becks is out for a drive in his brand new Porsche when suddenly his mobile phone rings. It’s Posh. ‘Darling,’ she says, ‘Listen to me, I’ve just heard on the news that some idiot is driving up the M6 the wrong way, causing havoc. Please be careful, Brooks and I are very worried!’

‘I’ll try’, replies the wise one, ‘but it won’t be easy – I’m on the M6, and it’s not just one car – there are hundreds of them!’

Boom Boom

Duncan Bennett (bennettd@oup.es)

WHY BLUE?

Simple… hate Man Ure, love City.

CTID, Mark Denton (mark.denton@baesystems.com)

RESULTS

Recent results from 12th September 2001 to 16th September 2001 inclusive.

15 September 2001

Manchester City       3 - 0  Birmingham City       31,714
Barnsley              2 - 0  Crewe Alexandra       10,976
Burnley               5 - 2  Walsall               14,019
Grimsby Town          0 - 0  Nottingham Forest      8,746
Portsmouth            4 - 2  Crystal Palace        18,149
Preston North End     1 - 0  Millwall              11,371
Rotherham United      1 - 1  Norwich City           6,099
Sheffield United      0 - 1  Coventry City         16,168
Watford               1 - 2  West Bromwich Albion  15,726
Wimbledon             1 - 1  Sheffield Wednesday    6,590
Wolverhampton Wndrs   2 - 2  Stockport County      20,742

14 September 2001

Bradford City         5 - 1  Gillingham            14,101

12 September 2001

Wimbledon             3 - 3  Portsmouth             7,138

League table to 16 September 2001 inclusive.

                             HOME          AWAY        OVERALL
                    P  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  GD Pts
 1 Burnley          7  3  0  1 13  8  3  0  0  7  2  6  0  1 20 10  10  18
 2 Portsmouth       7  3  0  1 10  6  1  2  0  6  5  4  2  1 16 11   5  14
 3 Grimsby Town     7  2  2  0  4  2  2  0  1  4  4  4  2  1  8  6   2  14
 4 Bradford City    6  3  0  1 13  5  1  1  0  3  2  4  1  1 16  7   9  13
 5 Norwich City     6  3  0  0  5  0  1  1  1  2  5  4  1  1  7  5   2  13
 6 Manchester City  6  3  0  0 11  2  1  0  2  4  8  4  0  2 15 10   5  12
 7 Birmingham City  6  3  0  0  8  1  1  0  2  3  7  4  0  2 11  8   3  12
 8 Wolves           6  1  2  0  5  4  2  1  0  5  3  3  3  0 10  7   3  12
 9 West Brom A.     6  2  0  1  5  1  1  1  1  4  4  3  1  2  9  5   4  10
10 Watford          6  3  0  1  9  5  0  0  2  0  4  3  0  3  9  9   0   9
11 Barnsley         7  2  2  0  7  4  0  0  3  0  8  2  2  3  7 12  -5   8
12 Gillingham       6  2  0  0  8  0  0  1  3  2  8  2  1  3 10  8   2   7
13 Coventry City    6  0  1  2  0  2  2  0  1  4  2  2  1  3  4  4   0   7
14 Nottm Forest     6  1  1  0  5  3  0  2  2  1  3  1  3  2  6  6   0   6
15 Crystal Palace   5  1  0  1  5  4  1  0  2  7 10  2  0  3 12 14  -2   6
16 Millwall         6  1  0  1  4  2  1  0  3  3  7  2  0  4  7  9  -2   6
17 Wimbledon        7  1  2  1  7  6  0  1  2  3  7  1  3  3 10 13  -3   6
18 Preston N.E.     6  1  2  1  4  4  0  1  1  2  7  1  3  2  6 11  -5   6
19 Crewe Alex.      6  2  0  1  3  3  0  0  3  2  8  2  0  4  5 11  -6   6
20 Sheff. United    6  0  3  1  4  5  0  2  0  2  2  0  5  1  6  7  -1   5
21 Sheff. Wed.      6  0  1  1  1  3  1  1  2  3  5  1  2  3  4  8  -4   5
22 Walsall          6  1  0  1  3  3  0  1  3  5 10  1  1  4  8 13  -5   4
23 Rotherham Utd.   6  0  2  1  4  5  0  1  2  3  7  0  3  3  7 12  -5   3
24 Stockport C.     6  0  0  2  0  3  0  2  2  6 10  0  2  4  6 13  -7   2

With thanks to Football 365

MCIVTA FAQ [v1.4]

[0] MCIVTA Addresses

Articles (Heidi Pickup)        : heidi@mcivta.freeserve.co.uk
News/rumour (Michael Leafield) : mplctid@aol.com
Subscriptions (Geoff Donkin) : subscriptions@mcivta.city-fan.org
Technical problems (Paul) : paul@city-fan.org

Comments concerning this FAQ should be sent to David Warburton using the address: mcivtafaq@warburton.org

[1] MCIVTA Deadlines

Deadlines for issues are nominally Monday and Thursday evenings.

[2] MCIVTA Back Issues and Manchester City Supporters’ home page

http://www.uit.no/mancity/ is the unofficial Manchester City Supporters’ home page. Created in 1994, it is the longest running of the Manchester City related web sites. Back issues of MCIVTA are also hosted on the site.

[3] Club Web Site

The official club web site can be found at http://www.mcfc.co.uk/

[4] Supporters’ Clubs

Manchester City FC recognises three supporters’ clubs: The “Official Supporters Club” (http://www.mancity.net/osc/index.html); the “Centenary Supporters’ Association” (http://www.callnetuk.com/home/sef/) and “The International Supporters’ Club” (http://www.mcfc.co.uk/extra/fanzone/isc.asp)

[5] Fans’ Committee

The Fans’ Committee operates as an interface between supporters and the club. It has its own website, http://www.mcfc-fans.com/ containing info about forthcoming meetings as well as minutes from previous gatherings.

[6] City of Manchester Stadium Progress/Web Cam

The latest information regarding the progress of our new home can be found at http://www.commonwealthgames.com/

[7] Match Day Broadcasts

Live match commentaries and archives of games, reports and interviews can be found here: http://www.mcfc.co.uk/comment.asp. An alternate live commentary service, hosted by Yahoo, is located at: http://uk.sports.yahoo.com/foot/audio/live/schedule/index.html. GMR Saturday Sport is also available live online between 1-3pm, and 4.45-6pm at http://www.bbc.co.uk/manchester/sport/index.shtml

[8] 01/02 Season Match Day Theme Tune

The music the teams run out to at Maine Road this season is “Nightmare”, by Brainbug, and is available on the Positiva label.

[9] Acknowledgements

Thanks go to John Arnold for providing the information regarding match day music and to Ian Bell for pointing out the alternate live match commentary service.


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]Heidi Pickup, heidi@mcivta.freeserve.co.uk

Newsletter #745

2001/09/17

Editor:


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