Newsletter #756

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Late editorial tonight, so contents will speak pretty much for themselves. A couple of good match reports on both Grimsby and the reserves so thanks chaps for those, some good opinion to mull over and the final part of Chris’ Why Blue.

See you all at Forest.

Next game: Nottingham Forest, away, 6.15pm Sunday 28 October

MATCH REPORT: MCFC 4 GRIMSBY 0

What an enjoyable match this was after the last three performances. We started off with a 4:4:2 formation, with Howey back from injury in place of Wiekens and Horlock in for Granville, otherwise it was the same team that played at Preston.

City kicked off attacking towards the North Stand and within two minutes Tiatto was sent down the left wing, beat a couple of defenders and crossed to feed the waiting Goat who hammered the ball into the roof of the net. This was just the start we needed to boost the confidence of players and fans.

On twenty minutes Pearce took a corner from the right and Howey was there to power in his first goal of the season. City had other good chances, with the Grimsby ‘keeper Coyne making some good saves from the Goat’s head and the hard-working Huckerby. Darren got his first goal on twenty four minutes; with two defenders around him he beat them and placed the ball between the ‘keeper and the near post.

Grimsby passed the ball around well but never had what it takes up front and could not control the speed of Huckerby. Weaver gave us the usual fright, kicking a back pass straight to a Grimsby player’s head but fortunately it went wide of the open goal.

The second half kicked off and we expected at least another three goals but it went quiet. Eyal replaced Ali B after an hour; I would love to see them play in the same team together. Grimsby won a free kick on the edge of the City 18 yard box, Goater headed it onto Eyal’s boot who volleyed it up to Huckerby in the centre circle. He beat his markers and hammered it into the net.

Paul Dickov replaced Goater after 76 minutes and Shauny Wright Wright Wright replaced Dickie Dunne with 10 minutes left. With his first bit of action young Shauny picked the ball up from Weaver’s goalline, raced the full length of the pitch with opposition in tow and won a corner; he really is an exiting player to watch.

It was pleasing to keep a clean sheet and Mettomo gets better with every match.

Derek Cooper (derekcooper@cwcom.net)

OPINION: GRIMSBY THOUGHTS

Some brief observations:

  1. Grimsby – Knocked the ball around well 10 yards either side of thehalfway line but were dreadful.
  2. Etuhu needs to have more confidence in making the occasional surgeforward, either with or without the ball. I know he’s probably been toldto stay in that defensive rôle but surely it would do his game good to bepositive once in a while. Horlock could have covered for him.
  3. After the first 20 seconds I couldn’t believe that Grimsby didn’t playbehind Dunne more often.
  4. Huckerby looks like he has a point to prove and is doing so. He’d doeven better if he got his head up a little quicker as so many opponentsare drawn to him and so creating space for others.
  5. The second half just seemed like a practice match and seemed to betreated so by the fans.
  6. ‘Grimsby at home , the sort of matches you’ve got to win.’ We did,there’s always hope – which is better than expectation as you can’t be tooshocked if things don’t go well.

Simon Barr (sjb.city@virgin.net)

MATCH REPORT I: SUNDERLAND RESERVES vs. MCFC RESERVES

My jinx at seeing City live continues as the reserves slumped to their second defeat on the trot. Note to all betting fanatics: put some money on Rotherham beating us on the 24th, unless someone is willing to pay me to stop at home! City lined up with a team full of defenders, players playing out of position and more right footed players than you could shake a stick at. It is quite remarkable that the first team seems unbalanced with too many left-footed players, whilst the reserves have too many right-footed players… what is the solution?

The line-up under the new revolutionary 4-4-2 formation was Nash, Mears (left-back), Ritchie & Day (centre half), Charvet (right-back), Shuker (left wing), Wright-Phillips & Colosimo (central midfield), Cooke (right wing), Mike & Toure (strikers). Sunderland lined up with many players with first team experience including Macho, Thome, Williams, Bellion, McCartney (N. Ireland international) and the 6 million pound striking duo of Laslandes & Medina. The match was played at Durham City’s ground and the pitch was immaculate. I was later reliably informed that the retired ex-Sunderland groundsman now looks after Durham City’s pitch.

City kicked off from right to left; for those people who know Ferens Park, this is from the point of view of someone stood opposite the big stand just in front of the seated garden area! It was noticeable from the start that City, although lacking in height were very mobile and quite tricky to pick-up. Shuker in particular had great joy down the left but his final ball needs a bit of work. The only problem was that with Shuker pushing up, Mears was left exposed at left back. With Bellion having acres of space to run into and with Mears being right-footed, Sunderland’s main threat came down the right side. If it wasn’t for Ritchie’s commanding performance in the air at centre half, it would have been more useful for Mears to be right back with Charvet in the centre. Anyway, City created a couple of chances with Shuker, Mike and Toure all flashing shots wide, whilst a cross by Bellion (from the right) was just missed by two onrushing Sunderland players. With Nash in goal, the majority of their efforts were easily thwarted though. I know that at this level it is easier to hear players, but Nash was constantly shouting at players (in a positive manner), which can only been good for the development of the younger players (no idea if Weaver does this, as Maine Road is a bit louder than Ferens Park). Half-time came with the scores at 0-0, with neither side looking likely to break the deadlock. With the moon moving from left to right over the stand and the stars shining bright, it was getting rather cold and both Mr Schofield and myself were hoping for a bit more entertainment to keep our hands warm.

Half-time saw Thome replaced by Byrne as he was looking to face Arsenal on Saturday, but it was Sunderland that broke the deadlock with the impressive Medina (Reid’s 3 million pound signing in the summer who has made 3 first team appearances, mostly as sub) crossing for Laslandes to head past Nash. The goal saw Sunderland bring on Kyle for Laslandes, presumably so the latter wasn’t too tired to be sat on the bench on Saturday. City were beginning to lose it in midfield, with Colosimo looking very uncomfortable in the middle, Shuker being caught out too far upfield and Cooke getting frustrated at the lack of balls in his direction. Nash nearly fumbled an easy shot into the net and just managed to scramble the ball out for a corner. A switch was needed and the impressive Ritchie was replaced by Dunfield, who had spent the interval smashing the ball over the wall until there was a danger they would run out of balls. With Colosimo switching to right-back, Charvet moved to centre half and City seemed to have a better balance. Charvet fed the ball to Cooke, whose excellent pass put Toure away but he took one too many touches and the defender managed to put the ball out for a corner. However, with little height in the box, Cooke’s resulting corner was easily cleared. Sunderland made their third substitution bringing on Reddy for Bellion, but to little effect. Cooke was again involved in another good City move as he fed Toure who drifted inside two defenders before placing his left foot shot just over the bar. Cooke was now beginning to run the game but his crosses really need someone as good as the Goat on the other end of them and the supply to him (Cooke) was at times quite poor. With the game drifting on, I decide to enliven proceedings by responding to the distant chants of ‘Blue Moon’ from the stand, to which I received a distant sound of clapping. More songs followed including ‘City, City’, ‘We love you City’ and ‘Blue Moon’ again to which a small boy near me start shushing me and Cooke muttered something as he ran past us. So 1-0 it finished to Sunderland, but City can’t really be blamed as they turned in a good performance with many plus points; it was just unfortunate that their Jonah had turned up to watch them!

The scores as always:

Nash 7 – Excellent command of the team in the first-half, had no chance with the goal.
Mears 6 – Made some good challenges but didn’t look comfortable at left back.
Ritchie 7 – Looked solid and made some excellent defensive headers and clearances.
Day 6 – Similar performance to Ritchie, although he isn’t quite as commanding in the air.
Charvet 6 – Looked better at centre-half when he suddenly realised that Cooke was playing on the right-wing.
Shuker 6 – Can run quickly with the ball but sometimes lacks the quality finish to earlier good work.
Wright-Phillips 7 – Ran and ran and ran. Some excellent dribbles to set City on the way, also isn’t afraid to track back and defend.
Colosimo 6 – Didn’t look comfortable in the middle of the park, but his switch to right-back caught some admiring comments from Sunderland fans around us.
Cooke 8 – Voted man of the match by Mr Schofield, so who am I to disagree! Unless we play 4-4-2 in the first team then I do feel he could and should do a good job somewhere else.
Mike 6 – Was well marked throughout and didn’t create too many chances.
Toure 6 – Doesn’t look happy and I felt should have played the ball more rather than attempting to create an opening for himself, but then again he is a striker.

Subs:
Murphy, Jordan, Whelan, Paisley – not sure they all warmed up at half time. Have to confess I only recognised Dunfield at half-time. Clive helpfully pointed out that Murphy was in goal!
Dunfield 6 – Held the ball up well but was often rushed into playing the ball and got an earful from Cooke for not holding on to it longer.

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

MATCH REPORT II: SUNDERLAND RESERVES vs. MCFC RESERVES

Popped along to see the reserves take on Sunderland at New Ferens Park (home of Durham City) last night… and bl**dy cold it was too! Went with James Walsh (who has so far seen City vs. Norwich, Wimbledon and Preston this season)… hence we lost. City lined up: Nash, Charvet, Day, Ritchie, Mears, Cooke, SWP, Colisimo, Shuker, Toure, Mike. Sunderland had one or two players you may have heard of – the ‘keeper Paulo put three past at Maine Road last season (Macho), Craddock, Lillian Laslandes (JR looked at him last year, bought by Sunderland in the summer) and their £3.5 million summer signing Medina from Argentina who, in typical Reidy fashion, hasn’t gotten a first team game yet.

The first half was edged by City in terms of possession. It took Sunderland 20 minutes to get into our final third. Nash was in commanding form – yelling his head off at his defence, claiming anything that came his way and kicking so well you began to think the game was being played on a mini pitch. We had a couple of good-looking cross shots (at the far end so I’m not sure who or how close) but Sunderland probably had the best chance of the half in the last few minutes – a cross from their right that two Sunderland players had a chance to get on to. Our defence looked pretty solid – Day and Ritchie were excellent, Charvet wasn’t pulling up trees but was competent enough, Mears looked a bit uncomfortable at left back though (have a suspicion that he’s right footed). Mears wasn’t overly helped by Shuker who is quick and uses width well going forward but is lightweight and tended to get sucked into the middle when we defended leaving a big hole in from of the full back. Midfield was OK but Colisimo, while good at tackling, seemed to take longer than his colleagues to pick his passes. The front two were feeding off scraps and it didn’t look like Toure was enjoying his evening much (up against Emerson Tome). Man-of-the-half: Carlo Nash.

Straight from the kick off in the second half Sunderland had a few minutes of sustained posession and after fifteen minutes they managed to get a goal (that overall they didn’t really deserve). Cross from the right and Laslandes nodded it past Nash. Laslandes was instantly subbed – don’t want any of that goal-scoring malarky in Reidy’s teams! City then subbed Ritchie and brought on Dunfield, who made a much better fist of being a midfield player (sharp passing, movement off the ball) than Colisimo had done. Nash almost let in a second in comical fashion – allowing a regulation shot to dribble through his hands, between his legs and agonisingly close to going over the line (has he been training with Weaver or what?). The rest of the game was pretty much all City – excellent creative work from SWP, Dunfield and, particularly, Terry Cooke who put Toure through into the area with slide-rule passes twice (one fired wide and one excellent saving tackle). Cooke was, however, looking pretty naffed off with life – having a go at Day for some of his distribution from the back and generally looking a bit exasperated. City came close to an equaliser on four or five occasions – Shuker having two chances, SWP one, Mike turning two defenders and firing just over the bar and Colisimo having a Pearce-esque free kick from the edge of the area after SWP had been hacked down. But it just wouldn’t fall for us. It was also noticeable that neither side seemed that keen to actually have a crack at goal – which on a wet, skiddy surface was a bit of a surprise. Lots of moves therefore ended when either sides’ passing didn’t quite match their ambitions. Man-of-the-second-half: SWP (would have been Terry Cooke but he gave up on too many balls – not that I blame him that much for his attitude though – he hasn’t had a proper game for a couple of years).

All in all, not a 1-0 defeat to get too worried about – Sunderland had some decent players out and City were the better team overall in terms of possession, passing, movement and chances. Neither side looked like they could finish.

Finally, Sunderland had a good crowd in – 1,500 or so, so a fine effort from the two City fans on the other side of the pitch from us singing away and James’ unselfconscious (if out of tune) response. But, James, please, please, please don’t come back to Maine Road!

Clive Schofield (c.h.schofield@durham.ac.uk)

OPINION: QUARTERLY REPORT

It is probably a surprise to most, me included, that we find ourselves in 9th place at this stage of the season, but time is on our side. City are still only 7 points behind the leaders, Palace and Wolves. Injuries and suspensions have still to kick in at these other clubs and when they do, are their squads strong enough to withstand the rigours of this notoriously compact division, where almost any team is capable of beating another at its best?

The Opposition:

Crystal Palace – Have come from nowhere, revitalised by a change in management and the cash of Simon Jordan. Remember, Bruce did a similar job with Huddersfield and he may yet go to Birmingham. They still have much to prove.
Wolves – Notorious chokers, but Jones has assembled a good squad of lower-Premiership quality, and I expect them to be there or thereabouts.
Norwich – Excellent home form so far. Again, possible question marks over their manager’s future and is their squad big enough? An injury to a vital players, such as Iwan Roberts, and they may struggle.
Coventry – Have sold a lot of players but are confident. Premiership experience may see them through.
Burnley – Paper thin squad and in the middle of a very lean patch… well organised by Ternant but squad of cast offs lacking in real quality.
West Brom – Have done well without their main two strikers from last season, Hughes & Roberts. Results and form not dissimilar to ours but do they have the strength in depth?
Birmingham – Finally shipped Francis, and may appoint Sir Joe. They have the players to steer them into the play offs.
Portsmouth – Wildcard. Prosinecki is true quality. May struggle for goals with Burchill injured but that lanky Crouch is bound to reap the havoc Kevin Francis and Ormondroyd always did against us.

On the whole then, above us are lots of teams like us. Those that will have good patches and bad patches. It won’t take much of a run of form to have us in the upper echelon, and conversely, and perhaps more unnervingly, the lower one too! Our quality should be good enough, but it wouldn’t be City if it wasn’t the hard way.

The Team:

The culture shock of 5-3-2 is obviously still having its effect on some. Howey, in particular, is looking lost at times. Dunne lost his place after his indiscretion but perhaps his habit of trying a few tricks (and them not coming off sometimes) is better suited to RWB, even if his bulk isn’t. Pearce was brought in as a leader but the alarming rate we have been shipping goals suggest that his effect as a captain has been overbalanced by the effect on the defences. One thing is for sure, with or without Stuart, the system will not change, so the players will have to adapt. At the moment they are too rigid in their positioning, none of them prepared to use the space handed to them by the opposition’s lone striker – particularly at home. I think you will see Keegan bring in ball playing defenders, those not adverse to striding forward in possession if they can. Mettomo has shown early signs of this, Wiekens looks more comfortable there and the rumours linking us with Dindelux are interesting… I bet he’s the same. If Howey et al cannot adapt to this then they will go. And they should.

Weaver is visibly growing in confidence and made two saves against Sheffield United that were the Weaver of two years ago. In the commentary against Preston, Alistair Mann remarked that he was a confident player. Perhaps, but you can be sure he is a confidence player, the more things go his way the better he becomes. He has hopefully made the adjustments to his lifestyle and if so, he can be as good as he wants to be. The natural talent is there, he just needs to work at it.

In midfield Keegan has been perhaps unlucky in that his only major close season purchase, Berkovic, has started just one game because of injury. When you build your planning around a unique talent, to lose that talent is a severe body blow. However, he was also lucky because Ali Benarbia simply dropped into his lap from nowhere. Without Ali, we’d be even lower than we are now. He has turned games with his passes and goals and inspired the likes of Wanchope. He is a different player to Berkovic, tending to pick the ball up in the opposition half rather than his own, which is why I feel that they can play together.

The emergence of Etuhu has been a real bonus and he looks to have the potential to anchor the midfield for many years to come. He tackles well, is strong on the ball and passes it simply but accurately. But what has happened to Tiatto? Seemingly believing his own publicity, Danny now shuns the simple pass to feet for a flick here, a long ball switching flanks there and a darting run down a cul-de-sac. Sometimes they come off but more often they fail. He needs to get back to basics – witness yesterday’s simple pass to Huckerby for the goal.

On the fringes, the likes of Horlock and Wright Phillips have done themselves few favours when being given their opportunity. Shaun has time on his side, but Horlock’s time could be up.

At wing back, Granville has been adequate, nothing more. Charvet looked superb against Watford and one suspects more than injury is keeping him out and Edghill was dreadfully unlucky after finding a manager who would play to his strengths. Specialist wing back may have to be found, Jason Wilcox the most likely candidate. Those clamouring for Terry Cooke have short memories. His dip in form started as soon as the ink on his permanent contract was dry. He is not needed or, it would seem, wanted by others. Rumours about his social life don’t help.

Attack is the first line of the defence, and currently this is where the real problems lie. Goater, despite his goals, is not playing well and Huckerby prefers to run from deep. City are desperate for a player who can collect and hold on to the ball for the few seconds it takes for the midfield to push up and support. At the moment, the ball bounces of various parts of Shaun’s anatomy back to the opposition and a chance to build is lost. The rate at which we give away possession, and thereby momentum, is disturbing, and whilst the thought of dropping Goater may be unpalatable, it should be considered. At the moment we are between two stools of using a big man to hold it up or balls behind the full backs for quick men to run onto. A striker should be brought in to complement whichever tactic we choose.

Since Wanchope pulled up injured, the only forward to come out of our games with any credit has been Wanchope. It has been highlighted just how important he is in collecting and distributing, creating the scraps that Feed the Goat, and the sooner he returns the better. Hopefully, it won’t be too late.

The season:

The next five games will see little gaps developing here and there in the league, where teams put runs of good and bad form together and pull away or get cast adrift. Only a few will subsequently escape the pigeon hole they find themselves in. I believe we need a striker from somewhere (what about Killen or even Mike?), natural wing backs and a centre half who likes to go forward. Otherwise, we may continue to go backwards in the short term at least.

Jonathan Haggart (haggart@clara.co.uk)

WHY BLUE? PART III

Those special days. Back to them. The first was March 15, 1947. The second was the Trautmann Cup Final of 1956. I went alone to Wembley – I was in the RAF at the time at North Weald in Essex, and an RAF mate got me a ticket somehow – sitting half-way between the Royal Box and the goal where City scored their brilliant first, and where Bert had his neck broken. I had been heartbroken the year before when City’s 10 men ran out of gas and went down to Newcastle 3-1, but had only seen that on a girlfriend’s b/w TV. Everything about that day in 1956 is as clear as that first day at MR in 1947. And it was Birmingham again. I’d never seen anything like it – the pageantry, “Abide With Me,” the huge, welling hope that this time we could do it, Wembley packed, its grass greener than seemed possible, the great new strip City wore, the 3 superb goals, the performance of the team overall, Bert’s terrible injury and the deeply touching way Dave Ewing, Bill Leivers, Roy Paul and the others protected him through the final 15 minutes as he staggered, barely conscious, around his goal. The sight of Paul holding the Cup over his head. I was nearly 20, but the tears were running down my face. It’s a day I visit often, and, as I type this, a photo of that day’s team sits on the wall in front of me. It is, in all my years of watching City, my favourite team. The Bell, Lee, Summerbee team I didn’t see as much of, though they were brilliant, and hadn’t seen it develop slowly the way I had the 1956 team. The 1956 team had balance, heart, skill, excitement, and the players were decent blokes, as well as fine players. I don’t recall Revie’s sourness the way others do – it never showed itself to me on the pitch – and the way City revolutionised English football by changing the traditional 3-2-2-3 “W” formation to the “M” with Revie, then Johnstone, as deep centre-forward serving 2 strikers, had defences at sea. It was a great year. And I recall a 5-0 win at OT in the mid-50s, too!

Incidentally, the two “half special” days I referred to at the start were at Anfield in a 5th round replay when I was standing in the Kop trying to keep quiet and City were saved in the final second by an unheard ref’s whistle as Billy Liddle’s drive beat Bert. The other was a semi-final at Villa Park when a brave diving header in thick mud from an exhausted Roy Clarke put us at Wembley. Two great days, but not in the same league as the big two I’ve described and which still fill my head so often.

I couldn’t be at Wembley for the 1969 Final – I was, from 1959 to 1962, in the United States (though I did come back each year and saw some matches), and from when I married (January 1st, 1963) until coming to Canada in 1969, in Glasgow and Cumbernauld in Scotland, only seeing City when we could afford, with our two new sons, to travel down to Manchester. My wife – from the USA – has only seen City once – in 1963, I think it was – and they put 8 past Scunthorpe, Derek Kevan running riot. She thinks, I suspect, that that should happen every match. Perhaps I should take her again to see if fate repeats itself! I have only, sad this is, seen City live twice in the past 32 years, since we came to western Canada – in the 1974-5 season when they beat Burnley 2-0 at MR with Colin Bell scoring a screamer from 25 yards, and in the Full Members’ Cup Final at Wembley in the mid-80s when we lost to Chelsea. That was the first time I’d ever seen hooliganism and mass fighting at a match in my life. And I’m glad. It wasn’t pleasant. In the 1970s and 80s, we’d get the scores in the papers here, and I always get a British Sunday paper on Monday to read reports, and we saw the Cup Finals each year on the day after the actual match, as they had to fly the film across the Atlantic! So I saw us get robbed, Hutchison, Villa, etc. It has become a lot better in the past 10 years, and I used to see all City’s Premiership goals, and, last season, quite a few live matches. So the City of the 1970s and 80s is not too well known to me, though I kept up as well as I could. I went into coaching over here when my sons started playing, and got great satisfaction from doing that, though people do say that goalies make lousy coaches! Both kids were fine young players and represented the city of Calgary in tournaments all over North America. One, a goalie (!), played for the Alberta Under-17 team that won the Canadian championship; the other, a tricky ball-playing forward or attacking midfielder, would have done so too except for bad shin-splints.

I’ve been back to MR several times in the past 8 years but have always missed City or not been able to get a ticket when I’ve been there. I always go to the shop and have a shield, mugs, pennant, transfer on my car, photos, etc. And with the good old red rose crest on them all, too – not the current one that I detest, as it looks very much like that of Milosevich’s Yugoslavia. I miss the sky blue shirts even more, mind you. I miss City hugely, though this twice-weekly e-mail is great, as are Talkincity, and, for comedy and soap-opera, Blueview. For football, the Internet is brilliant. The supporters are still the way they were when I was at MR, though much has superficially changed. I worry that the new stadium will not have the same atmosphere as MR but I can do nothing but hope about that.

Why Blue? Because I care very deeply. Because, apart from the special days I’ve talked about, there’s a whole lifetime of living and dying with City’s fortunes. There’s something different about being a City fan which is hard to put into words but which is tangible. It has to do with the fact that City’s highs are higher and their lows lower; that we must constantly reposition our feelings when we are City supporters; that they always do the unexpected; that the rollercoaster ride reflects very closely the ups and downs of our life’s rhythms, with all the griefs and joys we live with.

Why Blue? Because it’s too easy to support other teams – too ordinary, too comfortable. City fans are a special lot, with, I think, deeper feelings, more gut-deep loyalty, than fans of clubs which are more predictable and less demanding on the nervous system. We expect nothing from City, but hope for everything. We don’t brag all that much, but are deeply proud. We are intrigued, sometimes shattered and sometimes ecstatic, by the yo-yo of the club’s fortunes, always uncertain what to expect, incredibly and magnificently elated when they’re successful, fragile and upset when they fail us. The heart-monitor spikes higher and lower with City. The university theses being written, the many books, the affection for City round the country – accompanied by that shake of the head at how weird City is! – are partly due to this marvellous unpredictability, as well as to the supporters’ astonishing loyalty. Also, perhaps, to the mordant City humour, resigned, dark, of the gallows, yet deeply understood by all of us who follow the team. The “another 10 minutes and we’d have had them” after a 5-0 thrashing; the “Hey, we can’t go yet, there’s 2 minutes left” when we’re winning 3-0; the long-suffering, mournful voice I heard in a sudden quiet in the 50s, and shall never forget: “For Christ’s sake do summat, Sambrook, if it’s only p**s!” The laughter is a shared and profound reaction to years of what is never a dull and steady marriage between team and fans, but a wildly ecstatic or numbly negative love-affair, tempestuous, with no predictable outcome. Being a Blue – a real one and not just some anti-Rag yobbo – gives us membership in a very exclusive club. I’m more proud to support City than I can ever explain. I’m told the psychologists call what we go through with City “intermittent reinforcement” – all I know is that it’s one hell of a ride and once you’re on there’s no getting off.

My memories must seem as distant to most of you as when I heard boring old farts talking about Tilson and Meredith. And I know some of you have supported the team without ever having experienced the great cathartic satisfaction of seeing them win Cup or League or trophy, but we share the important things, and our lives, I know, would be inconceivable without City. I remember being amazed at the first white footballs – “The referee has called for a white ball” – the first floodlit matches, the seats going in Platt Lane end, the roof on the popular side, a scoreboard, slow as at an old village cricket ground, put at the north end, the orange ball for snow-covered pitches. The closeness, week after week, with my father, sitting in the stand talking about my school, life, football. His parking our first car (1935 Talbot) in the little car park behind the Platt Lane Stand with one narrow exit/entrance. Our great goalies. My heroes. So much. I feel privileged to have seen what I’ve seen and felt what I’ve felt, but not as privileged as I feel to have had City in my blood since that glorious day, the day Manchester’s post-war grey turned sky-blue, when my dad said those casual, unforgettable words – “Get your coat on, son – we’re going to a football match” – and changed my life forever.

Chris Wiseman, Calgary, Alberta (christopher382@hotmail.com)

RESULTS

Recent results from 23 October 2001 to 24 October 2001 inclusive.

24 October 2001

Crewe Alexandra       0 - 0  Stockport County       6,679
Sheffield Wednesday   3 - 1  Barnsley              21,008
Wimbledon             0 - 1  Coventry City          5,883

23 October 2001

Birmingham City       2 - 1  Gillingham            27,101
Burnley               1 - 0  Crystal Palace        14,713
Manchester City       4 - 0  Grimsby Town          30,797
Millwall              3 - 1  Bradford City         11,071
Norwich City          0 - 0  Portsmouth            19,962
Preston North End     3 - 0  Sheffield United      14,027
Walsall               3 - 2  Rotherham United       6,162
Watford               1 - 2  Nottingham Forest     16,355

League table to 24 October 2001 inclusive.

                             HOME          AWAY        OVERALL
                    P  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  GD Pts
 1 Crystal Palace  13  6  0  1 21  5  3  0  3 11 12  9  0  4 32 17  15  27
 2 Wolves          13  2  2  2  6  6  6  1  0 17  5  8  3  2 23 11  12  27
 3 Coventry City   14  3  1  2  7  5  5  2  1  9  4  8  3  3 16  9   7  27
 4 Burnley         14  4  2  1 20 14  4  0  3 11  8  8  2  4 31 22   9  26
 5 Norwich City    14  6  1  0 12  2  2  1  4  5 13  8  2  4 17 15   2  26
 6 Birmingham City 14  5  0  2 16  6  2  3  2  9 11  7  3  4 25 17   8  24
 7 Manchester City 14  5  2  1 20  8  2  0  4 14 16  7  2  5 34 24  10  23
 8 Nottm Forest    14  5  2  0 11  4  1  3  3  6  8  6  5  3 17 12   5  23
 9 Portsmouth      14  4  0  2 12  8  2  4  2 11 10  6  4  4 23 18   5  22
10 West Brom A.    13  4  0  3  8  4  3  1  2  8  8  7  1  5 16 12   4  22
11 Preston N.E.    14  4  2  1 13  5  2  2  3  7 13  6  4  4 20 18   2  22
12 Millwall        13  4  1  1 15  7  2  2  3  7  9  6  3  4 22 16   6  21
13 Wimbledon       14  2  3  2 12 10  3  1  3 12 11  5  4  5 24 21   3  19
14 Crewe Alex.     14  4  2  2  6  8  1  1  4  6 12  5  3  6 12 20  -8  18
15 Watford         13  4  2  2 17 12  1  0  4  4  8  5  2  6 21 20   1  17
16 Bradford City   14  4  0  3 18 14  1  2  4  5 13  5  2  7 23 27  -4  17
17 Sheff. United   15  2  3  2 10 10  1  4  3  4  9  3  7  5 14 19  -5  16
18 Grimsby Town    15  2  2  3  5  9  2  1  5 10 22  4  3  8 15 31 -16  15
19 Rotherham Utd.  15  1  4  2  7 10  2  1  5  9 14  3  5  7 16 24  -8  14
20 Sheff. Wed.     15  2  3  3 10 14  1  2  4  6 13  3  5  7 16 27 -11  14
21 Gillingham      13  3  0  3 13  8  1  1  5  6 14  4  1  8 19 22  -3  13
22 Walsall         14  3  2  3  8  9  0  1  5  6 15  3  3  8 14 24 -10  12
23 Barnsley        14  2  3  2 10 12  0  1  6  5 18  2  4  8 15 30 -15  10
24 Stockport C.    14  0  1  5  5 11  1  4  3 13 16  1  5  8 18 27  -9   8

With thanks to Football 365

MCIVTA FAQ [v1.5]

[0] MCIVTA Addresses


Articles (Heidi Pickup) : editor@mcivta.city-fan.org
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 #756

2001/10/25

Editor:


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