Newsletter #960

A thumping 6-2 win over Bolton on Saturday from a game, which after 20 minutes had 1-1 written all over it. Goals from SWP (2), Anelka (2), Distin (1) and Reyna (1) and a rather harsh straight red card for SWP for a late tackle from referee, Mr Gordon Bennett, this following an earlier yellow for celebrating his first goal. Up until he left the pitch, SWP definitely man of the match, covering every inch of the pitch. However, some would argue that Jardell from Bolton gave a great performance, whilst appearing to audition for a part in Carry on Camping.

In Friday’s UEFA draw we were given another glamorous tie, this time against little known Klub Sportowy Groclin Dyskobolia Grodzisk Wielkopolski (Groclin) of Poland. Fortunately John has found some useful information on them for us.

No match report tonight, but we do have opinion on the Lokeren game and disappointing antics of some sections of the crowd, our strikers, website problems and John’s excellent preview of forthcoming opponents Chelsea, which I dare say will be harder than last Saturday’s game.

Next game: Chelsea, away, 3pm Saturday 25 October 2003.


The last time we scored six in the top flight prior to last Saturday was against Chelsea on 26 November 1977 when we beat them 6-2 at Maine Road. That provides a nice link to our record at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea, which follows.

City at Stamford Bridge 1907-2003

Premier League          W 1     D 2     L 3     F 6     A 13
Old Division One        W 8     D 16    L 24    F 56    A 82
Old Division Two        W 3     D 1     L 0     F 5     A 1
League Total            W 12    D 19    L 27    F 67    A 96
FA Cup                  W 1     D 0     L 0     F 3     A 0
League Cup              W 0     D 0     L 1     F 1     A 4
ECWC                    W 0     D 0     L 1     F 0     A 1
Grand Total             W 13    D 19    L 29    F 71    A 101
First Meeting              07/12/1907 Chelsea 2 City 2      50,000
Latest Meeting             22/03/2003 Chelsea 5 City 0      41,105
Last Win                   09/01/1993 Chelsea 2 City 4      15,939
Last Draw                  12/03/1996 Chelsea 1 City 1      17,078
Last Defeat                22/03/2003 Chelsea 5 City 0      41,105
Last Clean Sheet           22/11/1993 Chelsea 0 City 0      10,128
Last Failure To Score      22/03/2003 Chelsea 5 City 0      41,105
Biggest Victory            16/09/1978 Chelsea 1 City 4      28,980
Heaviest Defeat            22/03/2003 Chelsea 5 City 0      41,105
Most Goals In A Game       19/11/1960 Chelsea 6 City 3      37,346
Fewest Goals In A Game     Six Occasions Chelsea 0  City 0
Highest Scoring Draw       03/02/1937 Chelsea 4 City 4      11,620
Highest League Attendance  26/03/1948 Chelsea 2 City 2      64,396
Lowest League Attendance   20/09/1988 Chelsea 1 City 3       8,858 *

* Terraces closed.

John Clancy <johnny(at)>


I’m going to leave it to others to write in detail about the performance in Lokeren. Personally I thought we were dull, uninspired, uncommitted and that other than SWP, Sun and maybe one or two others, most of the team would have rather been somewhere warmer and closer to home for the evening.

But hey, I shouldn’t really complain (although I have heard from a very well placed source that there are major dressing room problems, with two groups forming, those that think Fowler will come good and KK should play him at every chance, and those that think he is just never going to do anything, and on top of that Barton, Berko and the Elk, are getting ever sulkier. Not good news… if it’s true!).

But, what I did want to talk about was the fans at the game.

Like everyone else, I found the Lokeren fans on the way to the game friendly and amiable. Other than the Belgian police, who had come dressed for third world war, the stewards (some of whom were ours) were helpful, but utterly useless at checking tickets. You could have waved a gas bill at them and you could have walked in.

I had the misfortune of being at the far corner of the temporary stand, right next to the Lokeren fans. Before the kick off they were helping us put our banners up, doing their rather ridiculous jumping and scarf waving chant, and generally the atmosphere was really good.

But after we scored, one of the many City fans in their stand obviously got a little too excited, and appeared to be the subject of a collective beating from the Lokeren fans (I am told this was picked up on the TV coverage). It seemed to take a very long time for any of the 20,000 Belgian riot police to bother to get him out of the stand.

By now, a gaggle of City idiots had started to gather below me and try to cross into the Lockeren Stand. After a few moments, from seemingly nowhere, a group of ‘City fans’ started to chuck seats at the police, who were now packing into the corner between the stands, and goading the Lokeren fans.

I use ‘City fans’ in the loosest sense, as none were wearing any of the c**p we buy in bucket loads from the City Store. A few were wearing England gear, and most either had those Burberry baseball caps or were wearing hooded sweatshirts, with the hoods pulled right up. I understand this is pretty regular hooligan gear. On the walk to the ground I had a little taste that something might happen. As I was following a group of people to the ground, the street, full of City fans, started to sing some of the classics (Naill Quinn’s Disco Pants, etc). When we began a chorus of ‘Uwe, Uwe Rösler’, I heard one of them shout to a mate to stop singing about a ‘f**king German’, before he broke into a chorus of ‘No Surrender’.

For at least a quarter of an hour these idiots, having failed to get onto the pitch, proceeded to throw plastic chairs at the police. Amazingly the police were rather restrained, and most of them just gave up.

I’d just like to thank the City fans who were close to all this, and who were telling the idiots to ‘sit down’. In fact, most of the far end of the stand started picking this up and began to shout/chant at the muppets to stop.

It was a pretty hairy moment but thanks to the pressure from the overwhelming majority of those at the far end of the stand, and the restrained reaction from the riot police, we avoided some serious trouble, and could go back to taking the p**s out of the Lokeren dancing, scarf waving jig.

All clubs have their share of idiots, and we are no exception. But I wonder how many other clubs can be assured that when things look like they might get out of control, they can rely on the sense and wisdom of the genuine fans to prevail?

It might have been 1-0 on the pitch, but a much more important score was Burberry Muppets 20 – City Fans 4,000.

Miles Webber <miles.webber(at)>


I’ve just returned from Lokeren via Gent. I thought the whole day (or 3 including nights in Gent) went down well. There was only a small scuffle just after we scored, but with the amount of Blues in there end it was only minor. A few Lokeren fans on the train back to Gent mentioned that this incident was started by Antwerp fans, but with being in the City end I am unsure if this is true. I arrived in Lokeren at about 4pm with both supporters mixing in bars, and typical City just having a good time, booze up and enjoying the experience.

I was, however, stood near the fence walker. He was also later in the game (with about 2 minutes to go, during the back pass in the area) bet 30 Euros to climb the 20 foot pole holding up the net behind the goal. He only managed to reach half way before sliding down like Fireman Sam. By not completing the task ended up with no cash, but a hand full of cuts off the barbed wire.

Next stop Poland for plenty of vodka.

Ross Young <ross.young(at)>


Isn’t it about time the long-suffering fans in the South Stand were given some sort of rebate on their season tickets? They’ve only witnessed four goals by City at their end in the seven competitive games to date.

Meanwhile, their counterparts in the North Stand have seen the net bulging right in front of their very eyes no fewer than 16 times as a result of City efforts.

What is behind this discrepancy? Could it be the visiting fans getting behind the opponents to such great effect that their defenders are galvanised into greater effort when defending the south end? Could it be that the goalie at the north end always has the sun in his eyes?

No, it’s neither of these. Quite simply, it’s because City have attacked the South Stand end in the first half of every game to date and that they don’t start playing properly until the second half.

So come on, Sylvain or KK; give the South Stand fans value for money. Either the captain must elect to attack the North Stand end in the first half or the manager must give his half-time team talk before the match!

John Clancy <johnny(at)>


They play in Grodzisk Wielopolski, a small town about 30 miles south west of Poznan in Poland and 125 miles east of Berlin.

For them to beat Hertha Berlin on Wednesday night must have been quite something despite Hertha being the only club in the Bundesliga without a win so far this season. In the qualifying round of the UEFA Cup they beat a Lithuanian team called Atlantas.

They were formed in 1922 and their full name is Klub Sportowy Groclin Dyskobolia Grodzisk Wielkopolski. However, they like to be known as Dyskobolia which sounds much more welcoming to party animal City fans. Regrettably though the capacity of their ground of the same name is only 6,000.

They traditionally play in green shirts with black shorts although they appear to have played in all white on Wednesday against Hertha, who they beat 1-0 on aggregate with an 84th minute winner. They currently lie fifth in the Polish league having won four, drawn two and lost two.

Their website had a link to the City home page within hours of the draw being made as you can see:

John Clancy <johnny(at)>


Just had a peek at the City site on – well it is Friday afternoon after all.

It’s got Sylvain Distin beckoning the loyals to be more vocal at Bolton – suggesting that in terms of adjusting to our new stadium, it’s not been as easy as many thought, and in terms of atmostphere we ‘need to raise the roof’, to get behind the team. Well in my honest opinion the Club is to blame for the sink in singing.

Basically when we moved to the new ground, the AA, BB (where I sit), and CC sections of the old Kippax were shifted to the opposite end of Eastlands. So what you have in effect is all the Kippax Choir ‘singers’ if you can call ’em that, nowhere near the away fans.

I personally think this was a bad move in terms of hymn practice, as I know all the Blues around us really enjoy a good old sing song, but when you are so far away from the opposition supporters, the requirement to sing louder and prouder does seem to be lost a little.

Of course the North Standers do an OK job, however – you’ll never take the Kippax.

I’m not suggesting that the atmosphere is bad when everyone’s belting out Blue Moon – just when our boys need a quick lift or, some very lesser set of fans need a quick put down, so as to be reminded of who they’re actually dealing with!

Not dead sure why the actual ergonomics of the layout needed to be changed. Perhaps it’s best route for the away fans to get out of the ground to get to the public transport etc., I dunno. All Change everyone?

Just one other thing – let’s start singing the “We are City from Maine Road” chant – because, of course – we are…

Joel Perry – Ex Kippax <j.perry(at)>


OK Now I’m getting mad, OK idea if you live outside the UK and you local TV stations don’t show Premier League football or any other English football, but for those of us who like to tune in via the website to listen to the match commentary it’s still an OK idea, but upon browsing the website tonight I see that from Saturday (18th Oct 2003) are to start charging for this pleasure. This really annoys me as I’m sure it will annoy a lot of other people who use this service. City now wish to charge people for effectively listening to the radio (which I might add is free in the UK, unlike a TV license); if I stayed in the area then I could turn on the radio and have it for free but if I want to listen to it via my computer I have to pay through the nose for it (I also thought that’s what advertising on the radio helped pay for).

After all some or most of the subscribers to this very newsletter will probably stay abroad so will use this feature to listen to the game. The ‘VIA THE ALPS’ part of the MCIVTA acronym is probably the most important giveaway. I just can’t help feeling with this new moneymaking idea, cr*ply made kits sold at extortionate prices, a ticket system to confuse even Albert Einstein and many other stupid ideas along the same vein that some people within the City upper management just can’t help throwing one of those cups we got for the last cock-up in the works and get more money out of us fans, allegedly, who just want to get on with supporting the club and listening to our beloved City.

And on the subject of tickets, can someone explain in a nutshell how someone who stays in Scotland so has to plan ahead for sake of getting time off work, doesn’t earn a lot so therefore not be able to get to see every game, get a ticket to see one or two games a season? Do I need a swipe card? Do I need a Citycard? Do I need to have a psychic ability? Do I need to somehow need to get some of these loyalty points (how does someone in rack them up?)? Do I spend loads of money getting down to Manchester on the off chance someone outside the stadium is selling a couple of tickets? There’s just so much conflicting info out there that it’s hard to work out which is which.

Anyway to finish off, I’ve just heard a new soccer scandal, apparently Sophie-Ellis Bextor was found dead in the apartment of a French footballer, the police are calling it ‘Murder on Zidane’s Floor’.

Gareth Croke <garethcroke(at)>


It was reported on Sky Sports News that Anelka wants Champions’ League Football, and soon. He says there are four top clubs in the Premier League MUFC (Evil Empire), Arsenal. Chelsea, and Liverpool, and that it will be hard for City to compete.

Could this be a cry out for help up front? So far Growler Fowler, Bambi (Wanchope) and Jon Macken have failed to produce.

Anelkastar needs not only someone who can play up front with him, but able to score some goals and take the pressure off Anelka. We have until the window opens for one of the three strikers to prove himself.

If this does not happen City will have to get another striker, not only to win the games, but to keep our star striker at Manchester City. Anelkastar no longer has that bad boy image thanks to Kevin Keegan, but we cannot blame him for wanting to be where his talents should be, in the Champions’ League.

Manchester City can still be that club, he likes City, and he likes Kevin Keegan, and of course the Manchester City fans.

As City fans I think we will all agree we really don’t care if it’s Fowler, Wanchope, or Macken, as long as the job is done, otherwise better start looking around. This is just my opinion for what it’s worth.

In the game versus Bolton the rest of the team said to Anelkastar we want to play in the Champions’ League with you, at City, brilliant performance.

Come on you Blues!

Ernie Barrow <britcityblue(at)>


It looks like Nicolas is off unless we get Champions’ League football and are more consistent so as I say it looks like Nicolas is off. Looking forward to a long, hard winter.

Greg Lonergan <GregL(at)>


A couple of rows behind me sits the Robbie Fowler Hatred Commitee. Every time he touches the ball, he’s c**p.

Now I don’t know if I was watching a different game on Saturday but I thought Fowler did well against Bolton. It seems that they want Fowler to run like a gazelle all around the pitch, but this has never been his game; even in his glory years at Anfield he was a six yard box poacher not a winger, though he never seems to get the chance to get in the box.

On Saturday Macca was playing it to his feet and he was laying it off then moving into space, which is more his game, not punting high balls into corners and expecting him to win flick ons or skin full backs. It came to a head when Fowler played a clever ball to Sunny on the edge of the box only for him to cut inside instead of out (the first time he’s gone inside all season) and the ball went out for a goal kick. I’m not knocking Sun Jihai either because I thought he had a great game on Saturday (although Mark Delaney at Villa if the money is there in January?), I just think Fowler could do with the supporters behind him not abusing him.

Rob Baxter <sandyfraser(at)>


I’m surprised nobody mentioned it in MCIVTA 959, but I for one was embarrassed by the penalty we received at Lokeren. For KK to say it was fortunate was disingenuous at best. I’ll take it because we’ve had enough go against us. But I cannot condone what looked like an obvious dive. Yes there was contact, but there was also something like a two second interval before Paulo went down from what I can only imagine was a sniper’s bullet. It was pure Rude Van Easydrop, and think what we would, nay will, be saying when he does it against us.

Come on Blues, we’ve enough to do without giving ammo to the snipers.

Dave Kilroy <davekil(at)>


I would really like to know if anyone as heard anything of Ali Benarbia. He was a fantastic player and since he left the club for some Arabic side I have heard nothing. It seems ages ago since Ali, The Goat and Division 1 Champs.

City Till I Die, Alan Fox <alan(at)>


I can`t seem to get into MCFC`s official site… does anyone have the same problem?

If Kevin gives Eyal a game maybe we will get a game or two on TV over here!

[see below Antony, Adrian has some news – Ed]

Antony – Isreal <finkcity(at)>


Had quite a response from you all regarding problems with the website and sent a message to the club. The following response came in acknowledging the problem from Ian Howard and I would encourage anyone with problems accessing the site to email him as requested without delay (contact either myself or McV for the address).

Thank you for your e-mail. For anyone with problems connecting to the site, can I ask that they e-mail me their own e-mail address and a daytime telephone number. Together with Sky Sports we are trying to pin down the technical reason why a small number of supporters have encountered difficulties getting into the site.

If people do have a problem, if they can e-mail me with their details, then I can ask Sky Sports technical people to follow up on it and try to identify the problem.

Adrian Coe <adrian.coe(at)>


Ex-Blue Mettomo scored his first goal for his new club 1. FC Kaiserslautern with a beautiful header. What impressed me even more was the way he was organising the defence – he kept barking commands at his fellow defenders and directed them throughout the match. FCK won 4:0, so he was quite effective defensively, too.

I wonder if Distin (whom I did admire last season) finally found his voice, too? He should do so quickly, especially after urging the crowd to be more vocal. Looking forward to your match reports!

FCK+CTID, Petra Manker <Petra.Manker(at)>


Huge City fan and rogue trader Nick Leeson is looking for work. Immortalised by City fans by his appearances in the Parkside before home matches, he used to sign autographs for City fans with a big difference. One City fan asked him to sign his cheque book – “you can bank on City for promotion” signed Nick! He chuckled, thought it was in poor taste but then every other City fan in the pub insisted he followed suit. Typical celebrity City fan, embezzlement, fraud, prison, cancer and now after dinner speaker. Phoenix from the ashes…

The rest is from the Independent newspaper.

Rogue trader Nick Leeson, the man who single-handedly brought down Britain’s biggest investment bank, is to return to the job market for the first time since his imprisonment.

Mr Leeson, 36, arguably the world’s most famous fraudster, said he was looking for “mainstream” nine-to-five employment for the first time since leaving Barings. The plasterer’s son from Watford cost the bank some £791 million through unauthorised trading in the early nineties. His activities were finally exposed in 1995 and, after escaping to Borneo and then Germany with his wife, he was subsequently imprisoned for forgery and cheating.

Now, after serving prison sentences in Singapore and Germany, surviving colon cancer and a messy divorce, Mr Leeson said he was looking for a job to give some “stability” to his life.

“I’m not quite sure what it will be – something in business maybe,” said Mr Leeson, who married his second wife, Leona, this summer. “It could be a complete change of direction. A few people have offered me jobs, but they don’t totally suit.”

Mr Leeson, who has been studying for a psychology degree and appearing as a “motivational” after-dinner speakersince his release from jail, told the Financial Times he was now forced to seek employment.

“I have to work,” he said. “I have no other source of income.”

Philip Lines <philipjlines(at)>


My good pa’s fault.

I was destined to be a Blue. my grandfather being an Evertonian, moved to Hulme, Manchester where my dad was born. He was encouraged to be a Blue when 10 years old by a school friend.

My first brush with footie was on my dad’s shoulders, 2 years old at a Blackburn Rovers game, where we lived then.

Time passed as it does and the weekly noise from the radio coupled with Match of the Day and my Blue years were born. I was one of those girls who played footie with the lads, along with asking for a girls’ football team for the school. Back in the 1960’s that was met with hostility by unimaginative teachers.

I then managed to marry a man who detests football. So I often go to matches on my own, or with friends/fans of the opposing team.

However, my love for the game continues and I’ve supported Man City for 40 years now. I love the humour and character of City fans, so proud to be one of them.

One of my best memories was meeting a childhood hero Mike Summerbee at Maine Road.

I’ve finally got a ticket to enjoy my first game at the new stadium.

Here we go, City till I Die.

Carole Surey <k.surey1(at)>


My mum and dad are coming down to Londinium for an unexpected visit. I’ve already shelved out £42 and would love to take them to a posh ground (then again it’s nothing compared to our new turf)! 2 tickets please. Call 07961950911 or email.

Thanks, Phil Harper <pharper(at)>


If anybody has any Chelsea tickets going spare I would gladly take a couple off your hands.

Andrew Rose <afbrosie(at)>


I have one spare ticket for the QPR game (Tues 28 Oct), face value £20. I am based in South London. Please contact:

Mike Carver <m.carver(at)>


Could any reader let me know if there are coaches travelling from Manchester to QPR for the Cup game? If so are there 2 spare tickets I could buy?

Chris Chew <chewychris1(at)>


I have two spare. City end. Face value (£28 each). Call 07976 422971.

John Marsland <jmarsland(at)>


Hi there, I am a Blue flying into UK on 2 weeks’ business from Perth OZ on 1 November, having spent the last 10 months exiled here watching c**p football!

I would dearly love to get 1 ticket for the Soton match and 2 for my first visit to the fantastic COMS vs. Leicester. If anyone can help then there’s a free souvenir boomerang in it for you, honest!

John Warrington <johnwarrington(at)>


The appeal fund established in memory of Foe is progressing well and we are now able to give an update on how people can contribute:

Financial Donations:

Any branch of HSBC

Account Name/Payable to: Marc Vivien Fo