Newsletter #1092

A deserved point against Newcastle on Wednesday, an emphatic 5-1 drubbing of the Rags in our Senior Cup game tonight and we can look forward to our visit to Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Match reports tonight thanks to Rich (first team) and hot off the press from Gavin (reserves), a news round-up thanks to Sarah, and continuing opinion on the finances, signings and all things Blue.

Next game: Chelsea, away, 4.05pm Sunday 6 February 2005 (TV)


General News

Anelka – who? So Nicolas Anelka packed his bags for Turkey, after a deadline day transfer that will see City without a replacement for the unsettled striker who has played for 6 clubs in the last 9 years. Now, King Kev, whose patience with the Frenchman seemed to finally run out, would prefer not to dwell on his past prodigy, but to concentrate on his current players. Wishing Anelka well, and with thanks for the rôle he played in keeping City in the Premiership, KK claimed that the decision was more financial than anything else. City are reported to be saving over £5 million in wages over the remainder of the French forward’s two-and-a-half year contract, plus around £2 million in hard cash above the £5 million still owed to Paris St Germain for his transfer in 2002. KK also expressed his disappointment that because the sale took so long, he was unable to bring in a replacement. Amongst the possible replacements being suggested were Anderlecht’s Mbo Mpenza, Craig Bellamy (who is now on loan at Celtic), Henri Camara, and Robbie Keane (first suggested as a possible make-weight in a bid for SWP). It seems that KK is still keeping tabs on Camara (now on loan at Southampton) and may go after him in the summer.

In Search of Silverware: City’s deputy custodian Ronald Waterreus has finally got a chance of first team football with Rangers. Wattereus, who joined City in August, after De Vlieger was injured, has moved North for £100,000 to deputise for Stefan Klos, who is out for the rest of the season (thanks to Henk Timmer for alerting me to this). The former Blues’ ‘keeper claimed he switched to Glasgow Rangers because he wanted to win trophies and said he welcomed the move to a club with a chance of success. “I know the title race in Scotland is really tight and I would love to play a major part in the remaining 14 matches,” he told the Rangers News. “Playing for trophies is what it’s all about in football and that was probably the only negative for me about Manchester City because they were not challenging for any trophies.”

Back to Eastlands: Now, Kevin Stuhr-Ellegaard is set to return to Manchester City following his one-month loan spell with Blackpool.

From treatment bench to subs’ bench: And Nicky Weaver is deemed fit enough to be on the bench again (indeed, he was last night).

A Nice Little Earner… Well it could have been if the rumours of David Sommeil going to Nice had been correct! Also rumoured is that Sir Bobby Robson could become KK’s replacement if he leaves (or should that be when he leaves, or should that be when hell freezes over!).

Farewell ‘le sulk’; welcome the lazy b@t@rd! (Hopefully not) Thanks to Duncan Bennett’s Athletico Madrid supporting colleague for a summary of Kiki Musampa – let’s hope he’s not as bad as reported!

Ex-Blues News

Of course it’s Not Financial! Reading assistant manager Kevin Dillon insists the £50,000 appearance fee due to the club, if City legend Shaun Goater plays one more game, is not the reason he has been left out of the team. Of course he would be playing if Reading’s current boss – Steve Coppell (least said about his City credentials the better!) felt he was better than the club’s current other choices. Goater missed the Royals’ FA Cup defeat against Leicester while on international duty with Bermuda but the striker’s last appearance was in the 3-0 reverse at Preston in December – his 49th game. The appearance fee was written into Goater’s contract when Alan Pardew brought him to The Madejski Stadium in August 2003.

Eyal be off then! Former City creative midfielder, Eyal Berkovic, has agreed the termination of his Portsmouth deal and is reported to be leaving English football for a return to Israel after he did not feature in the long-term plans of his current boss Velimir Zajec.

Reactions & Comments

Points a priority: After sharing the spoils with Newcastle last night, in a match in which neither team looked at their best, KK has stated that his priority now is securing the last eight points to reach the 40-point safety mark. Although he did also add that he hoped that City would finish higher than their current tenth slot and the ninth position achieved the year before last.

Managing the ‘Beautiful Game’ – it’s tougher than you think! On the day that his own temperamental player was sold, KK came out in support of his old Liverpool pal Graeme Souness, over his handling of the Craig Bellamy saga, admitting the management game is harder than it has ever been. No longer is the job about team selection and tactics. Now, Keegan believes the men in charge have to cope with the knowledge that part of their power has been stripped away. “The players are wealthy young men in their own right and they have a lot of power. Clubs don’t sell them, agents and the players themselves do that. It is a lot different to the sport Pele described as ‘the beautiful game’ but that is the reality of the situation and you have to react to it.” KK also praised the fact that Souness had acted decisively and as he felt in the best interest of his club.

Squad News

Bosvelt Banned: … from the forthcoming derby match after receiving his fifth yellow against Newcastle last night. Stephen Jordan & Joey Barton may also need to watch their steps, as both are on four yellows. However, both McManaman and Sibierski have played central midfield for the Blues, and may start in this rôle against United. Claudio Reyna, who has been sidelined through injury for the part four months is set to resume training, but will not be fit by then.

In Form, in Favour? David James is keen to get his place back for England, and believes his form for City will help him. England will meet Holland in a friendly at Villa Park next week and the City stopper is hoping that he will get a chance to play in the game. James lost his place to Paul Robinson after England’s draw with Austria last September. Now, although he admits that it is SWP who is in the limelight, James hopes that City’s defensive form will act in his favour.

The time is Wright… According to first team coach, Stuart Pearce, for SWP to get a start on the right for England, even if it means relegating the current position holder and England Captain, David Beckham, to the bench. Pearce believes that the versatile City winger could also play on the left, but feels that it is time he got a chance to show what he can do for the national team.

Keeping his sights on the States: David James and Claudio Reyna will be glued to the Superbowl next Sunday night. Both are big American Football fans and will be glued to the Super Bowl XXXIX, when New England Patriots attempt to win their third title in four years, against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Robbie Set to Return to Anfield: … to play in a charity match organised by Jason McAteer for the tsunami disaster. Also playing will be other Liverpool legends Kevin Keegan and Kenny Dalglish. McAteer stated: “Just like the rest of the world, the football community is determined to do all we can to help the people affected by the tsunami tragedy.” As a result ‘Tsunami Soccer Aid’ has been founded and hopes to continue to raise funds with other events after the match.

Sarah Longshaw <news(at)>


The first game post-Anelka and the first game in a trio of very difficult games. Optimistically I was hoping for three points from the next three but realistically I wouldn’t be surprised if we got none! Much was the same with this game tonight, you wouldn’t be surprised had City run out winners, Newcastle gave us a thrashing or share of the spoils such is the inconsistency of the two teams on display. My main interest point was to see how the new recruit Musampa would fare, not the worry how the team would fare without Anelka; let’s be honest, mentally I think he left months ago.

The game started with Newcastle having lots of possession, pace and a reasonable threat. As per the WBA (away) game, City couldn’t keep the ball for love nor money; either we were second to every challenge, passed straight to the Newcastle players or hustled off the ball far too easily. It was no surprise that yet another striker in need of a goal (Shearer this time, to score 250 Premiership goals) stepped up to root one in the back of the City net. The goal actually was class, a long ball from Bramble found Shearer wide on the right (Thatcher completely misjudged his header allowing Shearer to run into the penalty box), where he lashed a shot with typical Shearer venom past James. City went from bad to worse, Barton/Bosvelt misplaced passes, Thatcher was having a bit of a ‘mare, and Macken was giving the ball away far too often. However, by far the worst culprit of the first half was Danny Mills, who once again was purely abysmal. Every pass was either a long way backwards or to nowhere other than out of touch or to a Newcastle player, he slowed up breaks for SWeeP and was caught frequently out of position. The worst point came when a Newcastle player was off the pitch receiving treatment and Danny kicked the ball out so the player could get attended to. For me this was the worst performance I have ever seen in a City shirt, utter rubbish, but I still don’t agree with people booing him; if he’s on the pitch it is completely counterproductive. The side looked disinterested, lethargic and completely lacking in ideas and movement; as per the WBA game there simply was no drive. The only player that seemed to have any degree of success or guile was Fowler.

After a very depressing half time, I made my way back to my seat and lo and behold SWP was up-ended in the box by Bramble (I missed the build up – sorry!). Fowler duly slotted the penalty home for a somewhat undeserved equaliser (based on the first half performance). In the second half though, City seemed to find some drive, Barton/Bosvelt starting commanding midfield, Musampa was adding some lovely touches and passes and Thatcher was running tirelessly for the cause. Again, it was Fowler providing a lot of the guile and craft around the penalty area and he looked the greatest threat. Macken was mixing it regardless of some mauling by the Newcastle defenders (Macken looks a much better player when he plays the physical game). With all the huffing and puffing, neither side created any real clear cut chances, Newcastle flashed a shot wide and City had a few half chances but neither ‘keeper had a save to make. City did produce a much better account of themselves in the second half and overall I think 1-1 was probably a fair result.

Player Ratings

James 5/10 – No chance with the goal but seemed very shaky tonight. Certainly didn’t inspire confidence and on a couple of occasions nearly gifted Newcastle with a goal with a very poor clearance and throw out.
Mills 2/10 – Dire. KK simply has to drop him and put Onouha in.
Distin & Dunne 8/10 – Both supreme, rock solid, timely tackles and quick – other than Chelsea I don’t think there are a better centre-half partnership than these two in the Premiership, consistently class.
Thatcher 5/10 – At fault for the goal but really ran his socks off in the second half. Needs better delivery of his crosses though.
SWP 6/10 – no real luck tonight although he was marshalled extremely well by Babyaro.
Barton 6/10 – Poor first half, much improved in the second, added drive, urgency and bite, which was missing in the first.
Bosvelt 5/10 – Poor game for Bosvelt tonight; has set himself a much higher standard in recent performances.
Musampa 7/10 – Showed some real nice touches, rarely gave the ball away, one pass at least will surely make it to Soccer AM’s showboat! Doesn’t look the sort of player to go past a full back but could bring something to the side as he seemed to have a bit of vision. Seemed a bit slow but I’m sure he’s lacking fitness.
Macken 6/10 – Poor in the first half because he gave the ball away too much but vastly improved in the second, chasing and holding the ball up well.
Fowler 7/10 – Good performance again, showed a lot of craft and running.
BWP – too late to judge.

So, overall a very bitterly disappointing first half but much improved in the second – I’m not sure the new lad is the answer to all our needs (I think we were all kind of expecting a left sided SWP, which is asking a bit much) but he certainly looks a more natural fit on the left than Sibby and had some nice tricks and yes, he did seem to be naturally left-footed, which is a huge plus! You can’t help but feel this is a team that is going through the motions, the first half performance was similar to that of an end of season game when there is nothing to play for. Personally I would start looking at the youth. Jordan and Onouha have to come back into the reckoning; if we are really to play for nothing this season then let’s at least give these lads a chance, along with Flood, BWP and Croft (based on the Oldham fans raving about his creativity) to get some experience, I don’t mean play them all together for the full 90 minutes but give them more than the 9 minutes that BWP got today, which was no use to him or the team.

Chelsea next – easy, let’s get at them in their faces and hustle them. 1-0 to City again will do nicely.

Rich Fenton <rich(at)>


City’s final Senior Cup group game, which they needed to win to progress to the final, ended in an emphatic victory for the Blue half of Manchester. Four goals and an assist from 19-year-old Karl Bermingham stunned the home crowd. A goal from Italian Giuseppe Rossi was a mere consolation for Manchester United, who were completely outplayed on a very hard and undulating sandy surface for the majority of the game by their local rivals, City, at Altrincham’s Moss Lane ground.

Right from the kick-off City looked far more up for this local contest than United, pressing home every loose ball and winning the second balls. So it was no surprise to see City take the lead as early as the fifth minute. The ever-industrious Ian Bennett won the ball in midfield and played a good pass up to Bradley Wright-Phillips, who turned and switched the play with a good diagonal pass for Bermingham to run onto. Tim Howard, who had a wretched night, came haring off his line, which allowed Bermingham to hit a thirty yard lob into the back of the net with Jonathan Spector attempting a last ditch clearance; he was only able to hit the ball into the roof of the net as the ball had already crossed the line.

City nearly doubled their lead six minutes later; a cross from City’s right came over the shoulder of Carlos Logan, who hit the ball first time on the volley and the ball was deflected inches wide of the far post. United then started to soak the pressure up more effectively as they got men behind the ball and started to hit City on the break with pace but City’s defence, marshalled by captain Paddy McCarthy, stood firm and gave Nicky Weaver, making his third reserve appearance of the season, very little to do as United were kept back from close range efforts.

On thirty-one minutes United nearly scored a good equalizer right from City’s free kick when the ball came out to Ebanks-Blake, who flicked the ball over the head of Bennett to run onto and deliver a great cross to Rossi, but he lacked composure and blazed his effort over the bar.

As the half drew towards the final five minutes, a flurry of goals gave a whole new look to the tie. City were pressurizing the United defence and the ball was cleared away, but Bennett ran on to the loose ball and played it over the static defence into the path of Bermingham, who ran into the area and slotted the ball past Howard, who again had come off his line needlessly, and give City a two-nil lead.

That lead was then cut in half two minutes later when Rossi was presented with an easy opening after Stephen Jordan decided to pass the ball back to Weaver without any conviction; Rossi was easily able to slot the ball past Weaver and into the goal.

We only had to wait two more minutes for City’s two-goal cushion to be restored and effectively end the tie. Good work from Willo Flood down the right hand side allowed him to deliver a good cross, which Bermingham controlled first time, turning sharply and slipping the ball into the box for Wright-Phillips. The United defenders brought him down and the linesman on the far side waved his flag, which allowed the referee to point to the spot and award City a deserved penalty. Bermingham confidently grabbed the ball, placed it on the spot and then thumped the ball into the corner, sending Howard the wrong way.

City kept United waiting for the start of the second half, as United had decided to return to the pitch five minutes early. This tactic though failed to produce any change in their fortunes, as within four minutes of the restart, City had extended their lead. Bennett tackled David Jones in the midfield, Carlos Logan ran onto the loose ball and sent a good pass out wide to Bermingham, who proceeded to run into the box and deliver a good cross. Adam Eckersley was making a concerted effort to get back, but he only managed to get a nick on the ball and as it dramatically changed direction, Howard was unable to turn back and prevent the ball from going in at the near post.

Both sides then got into a rhythm of cancelling each other out as neither team were able to create any real openings for twenty minutes. This obviously allowed City to make changes to rest their members of the first team squad. Ishmael Miller on as a substitute for the mainly overshadowed Wright-Phillips, and had a good chance in the last twenty minutes when again, the ever dangerous Bermingham fed him an inch perfect ball, but the state of the pitch made the ball bobble, Miller failed to get a true connection with his venomous left foot, and it was deflected wide for a corner.

Bermingham then put the icing on the cake to score the Holy Grail, our fifth goal. Jonathan D’Laryea, returning from a seven week lay-off with a bad hamstring injury, played a well-weighted long ball over the top of the defence for Bermingham to chase with Spector, but both Spector and Howard failed to deal with the ball and Bermingham’s persistence allowed him to run away from Howard towards the penalty spot with the ball and slot it into the net.

This result now means we’ll meet United or Bolton in the final, later in the season, depending on who has the better goal difference. But we’ll meet United again at Altrincham in three weeks’ time when we play them in the league.

Weaver: Very little to do, but his kicking was pretty solid throughout. 7
N D’Laryea: Recent indifferent Academy performances are in the past after this. 8
Jordan: Good display, but has to be marked down for his howler. 7
J D’Laryea (80): Solid eighty minutes on his return. 7
McCarthy (capt.): There was no way past this rock at the back. 9
Onuoha (71): Didn’t put a foot wrong all evening. 8
Flood: Was his usual terrier self and delivered some fine balls into the box. 8
Bennett: Was at the heart of everything, never gave United a second’s peace. 9
Bermingham: We found our replacement for Stephen Elliott tonight. MoM. 9
Wright-Phillips (68): Worked hard, but it just didn’t always happen for him. 7
C Logan: Helped keep the United defence pressed back in their own half. 8
Miller (68): The dreadful pitch didn’t suit his hard running play. 6
Collins (71): Did his job when he came on. 6
Laird (80): Too late to mark.
Not Used: Schmeichel, Matthews.

United: Howard, Picken, Eckersley, Hogg, Spector, Ngalula, Bellion, Jones (capt.), Ebanks-Blake, Rossi, Poole (Martin 66).
Not Used: Heaton, Collett, Timm, Campbell.

Att: 663.

Gavin Cooper <blueboy(at)>


  1. If media rumours are correct and Steve “I’d make a great traffic cop”McManaman is going to be offered a new contract in the summer, why on earthisn’t Paul Bosvelt being snapped up for one more season? OK, he’s nearly35, not the fastest thing on two legs – that’s SWP followed by BWP &Dunnaldo a close-ish third (he can half shift for a big lad!) – but hedoes a sterling job in midfield, keeps Master Barton in check and they workwell together. The only time he misses a game these days is if he gets 5bookings… which he did last night courtesy of that other irritatinglittle NUFC oik Lee Bowyer – Bos now misses the derby, which is a shame,he’s playing well – sign him up KK!
  2. I take it that Danny Mills is colour blind as there is no way that hecan pass to someone wearing the same colour shirt. The man is a nightmareat present – why can’t KK play Nedum Onuoha for goodness sake? The boy haspace, he can pass a ball and is a very good defender from what I’ve seen sofar. Danny’s distribution and overall defending is dire at present – Icould do better even at my advancing age!
  3. Jon Macken – I agree that Jon is not a Premiership player but what helacks in goals he makes up for by working his socks off for the cause -enough said.

Carol Darvill <carold(at)>


Having read the comments regarding Keegan in the last few editions, I finally felt compelled to write when confronted by some of the nonsense that is in today’s email.

According to one contribution KK is at fault for getting rid of “Goater, Huckerby, Stephen Elliot, Berkovic, Benarbia, Dickov, Tiatto. All those players were hard-working, skilful and better than the cr@p we have now.”

Most of these players served us well at one time or another but for goodness sake, let’s have some reality. I loved the Goat as much as anyone but he’s hardly scored since he dropped down a league. KK got rid of him at the right time with some dignity. Huckerby doesn’t seem to be keeping Norwich up and is hardly a world beater. Berkovic failed totally at Portsmouth and Benarbia was over the hill and unable to keep pace with Premiership games. Dickov is debatable but there weren’t too many complaints when the 3 up front scored bucketloads in Division 1 after he’d gone. As for Tiatto, I suspect he’s being lauded for one great game in the Manchester derby. The truth is he spent most of his time with us either injured or banned and now at Leicester he doesn’t seem to be doing much to drive a squad of underachievers forward does he? Stephen Elliott was a great shame as he clearly had potential, but he hasn’t proved it in the Premiership yet. KK clearly stated that he didn’t want Elliott to go, but McCarthy would have seen him in the reserves a few times whilst watching his son and the lure of first team football was too much for the boy. Let’s be very, very clear – if the lot listed above were in our first team this year we would be in the bottom 3 without any doubt at all. Teams like West Brom, Palace etc. are showing that hard work is not enough in the Premiership, you need some genuine quality, even if it is inconsistent. The reason we are in the top 10 is because we have that quality now. In KK’s first year in the top division with us we got thumped by the big boys on a regular basis. Despite the frustrations and confidence issues that we endured last year, how many games have we been thumped in since then? The truth is we are making progress and if we are limited by the finances then we are in the same boat as everyone else.

For the record the most impressive stat this year is our defensive record, which shows the benefit of a stable partnership at the centre. Obviously the merchants of doom conveniently forget that KK has brought 3 of our first choice back 4 into the club and completely transformed the 4th member Richard Dunne into one of the best defenders in the league. I believe that Nedum will eventually oust Mills at right back (Danny isn’t great positionally is he?) and obviously cover will be needed at left back but the defence looks sound. Hopefully Sun will return next year and will give us another option in the holding rôle.

My concerns at the moment are in the forwards where we only really have Fowler as an out an out goalscorer. Presumably our efforts to replace Anelka in the window were either non-existent or unsuccessful and we seem to only have 3 strikers in the first team squad, one of whom works hard but is not good enough (Macken) and a kid just starting out in Bradley. I believe that Fowler will really thrive now that he is firmly number 1 but we needed someone with a bit of pace to support him. Whilst on the subject of Fowler, will people please stop knocking him and learn something about football? Ever since KK finally got him fit he has been superb. His touch is back and his link-up play is exceptional. He was never quick even in his younger days, which is why he didn’t quite make it with England, but given the right pacey partner, the money we’ve spent on him could yet pay off handsomely. Mind you if Fowler gets injured we’re in trouble.

Part of me is sad to see Anelka go but it was always going to end this way. He’s been with us longer than anyone I think, so we should thank him for helping us stay in the top flight for those crucial last 2 seasons. His goal tally this year has not been impressive and his partnership with Fowler didn’t work (and please don’t jump on the Wanchope bandwagon anyone).

I do agree that there have been quite a few buys that have not worked out but there simply isn’t a manager in the league who has spent perfectly. The truth is spending circa £50 million will get you into the top 10, which is where we are now. The teams who consistently challenge for Europe have all spent more than us (look at Liverpool for God’s sake – take Gerrard out and they are no better than us after spending 3 times as much!).

So all in all I think Keegan will leave us in a much better state than he found us in terms of our league position. We need to be realistic and patient now as we stabilize in the top half of the league. We have some exciting young players coming through, who, in a few years could help us to get into Europe where we want to be, but it will not happen overnight. Keep the faith and back the manager who has got us back into the top half where we belong. All we need then is a sugar daddy backer and Martin O’Neill.

Andy Clarke <Andy(at)>


I’m sorry to see Anelka go, but only the Anelka who played for us for the past two seasons. The Anelka whose been putting on the famed blue shirt this season has not looked half as interested. The “fact” that he refused to take a fitness test just shows that he was trying to engineer a move. I for one, was quite surprised that he was still at City after last summer, but I’ve been saying for months now that City didn’t need to sell. Why we’ve sold him for such a paltry sum I’ll never know. He has a fantastic record for City, and was still the best striker in Europe not cup-tied. The only thing I can think is that the problem for the club selling Anelka is that due to the reputation he has, there is a reduced market of buyers. City were always going to struggle to find people willing to pay what we paid.

I was, like my brother, very happy to see us sign him. I felt that we were on the fringe of getting a quality squad. I do feel like we’ve taken a step back over the last two years. The players we had then (Berkovic – fell out with KK? Benarbia – “retired” a legend, Wanchope – out of favour, how we could do with him now, Jensen, Tiatto – bit of bite in midfield, Marc Vivien-Foe – RIP) with the players we have now (McManaman – injured and unproven at City, Sinclair – injured and unproven at City, Reyna – injured and unproven at City, Sibierski – lacking consistency). There just isn’t the same spark to City’s play as there was the year we finished 9th. I don’t feel like we’ve pushed on in the way that we could have done after that season, and there have to be questions over the purchases that have been made in the last 12-18 months. I just hope, and this is a big hope, that the generation of youth players coming through are given a chance to flourish.

Who knows, if they live up to the hype and we stick with them, we could just have created a quality, young side who could be the core of City for years to come.

Fingers crossed…

Ed Bodey <edbodey(at)>


A reply to Richard Stoodley on City’s Finances. OK, you said some people might not agree with everything you wrote; how about agreeing with nothing you wrote?

Anelka cost £9-10 million. You seem to have forgotten Toure’s valuation of £3 million in the deal.

Anelka’s take home pay was £35,000 not £55,000. See, I’ve recouped 50% of those costs straight away!

With your analysis of goals to cost ratio, how does he compare with other strikers in the division? That’s unfortunately how the game is these days; you pay top dollar and you get 46 goals. How many of those goals contributed to our 9th spot 2 seasons ago?

As for the Goat, well he’s set Division 1 alight hasn’t he? Ever thought it was time to let go?

He got rid of… er, Berkovic? Sorry mate, but he walked when he knew uncle Harry wanted him. He couldn’t wait to leave. Bye bye to the throat slitting idiot! Onto Elliot, unfortunate he didn’t stay, but he wanted out too, he was down the pecking order. Tarnat great shot, but way, way too slow. Thatcher was a good buy; it’s unfortunate his wife wants away from the NW. I guess in a year’s time you’ll be blaming KK for the loss of him too.

As for the buys, there have been hits and misses, same as any club. As for buying Macca, he was free, so was the talent you call Tarnat, oh, and that little Arabic chap whatshisname?

So Kev is raping the club is he? He’s spent a net of £32 million, that’s £8 million a year for the 4 years he’s been in charge. We get more than that from Sky!

Finally, what is wrong with being in 10th place in the league? Do you think that your “wonder” buys of Dickov and Huckerby will propel us to chumps league football? Think again, that’s why the teams they play for are competing for Division 1 places next year.

Keep taking the tablets mate and keep the faith!

Tony Shaw <tonys(at)>


Is Richard Stoodley really saying that Keegan got rid of Benarbia? Benarbia left on emotional grounds! Or are you also saying Keegan’s at fault for Foe having a dodgey heart?

As for van Buyten, he only came so that City could act as a shop window. He was never interested in a move to City, so good riddance.

Tarnat got skinned too often; because he was slow he had to stay back! That meant that no attacks were going to come from the left. A problem we have yet to resolve. Also, yes he started hitting good long balls, but they soon dried up. Tarnat could no longer stand the pace. Good stop gap, but not a solution.

Berkovic is a nightmare to manage, and left before he caused too much grief. He’s good for one season, and one season only! Move-on, next club.

The Elk has gone. Thanks for the goals, but I won’t miss the no-shows.

Huckerby could defend for toffee, so if you want your full backs to get forward who’s going to cover?

Enough whingeing already! Keegan will be gone in a year, and then what? Are you going to turn on the next man?

Maybe you want Royle back? Nice pub team, shame about the league.

As for Allardyce, he’s got a great record at bringing in youth players hasn’t he? What’s the average age of his squad? Two or three years down the line and Bolton will be relegated. I don’t want to see City go that way.

How can Keegan be responsible for the bad games, but not the good ones? They are the same players, as is the manager. Let’s be at least even handed!

As for Keegan’s rape of the club, where are all these youth players coming from? It may be a left over manager’s past, but he has let it bloom.

Mark Jones <Mark.Jones(at)>


Can someone help me out perhaps – I am honestly curious. Barry Robson says he’s lost his flag with a City badge on it and a Glasgow Rangers badge. Why would a City flag have a Glasgow Rangers badge on it? Or indeed any other badge from another club unless we were playing them in a game or something?

Andrew Goodman <Andrew.Goodman(at)>


Just a quick response to Mel C. I was at Boundary Park on Sunday (pained me to go back there, but I went with a Bolton fan from work, so it was a good trip!). Moonie was there for a half time penalty shoot out, to raise money for the Tsunami Appeal. For some odd reason, for every goal they missed, the local rag donated money to the appeal (it’s Oldham, I don’t try to explain their reasons). Paddy McGuiness from Phoenix Nights joined in too. For any Mascot Spotters out there, the green dragon/donkey was from Rochdale FC, who joined Moonie with the mascots from Bolton and two from Bradford.

No doubt after their work was done at half time, they saw no reason to stay a minute longer and trotted/flew/pounced their way back to their respective abodes.

Andy Davies <wat_mi_techno(at)>


Dave (MCIVTA 1091), got to agree that it didn’t exactly set the fashion world alight, but the away shirt reduction is probably due to a new kit being launched in the summer.

How many kits is that since we moved to Reebok? Disregarding the First Advice fiasco, I still think we’re starting to be ripped off on this issue.

Oh how we used to call the Rags for their 3 kits a season.

Tony Ward <anthony.ward(at)>


He didn’t blow his whistle mate
That rasping shot you must retake
I know it’s just another grumble
But how our mighty lads did crumble

The Baggies only had one thing
It seems they had a will to win
Keegan blames the players once more
But let’s be honest his tactics are poor

I’d like to sing the players’ praises
But they seem to have so many phases
One week great with fire and invention
The next week poor, out of contention

It may seem that I’m cold and cutting
But we need a change, the trend needs bucking
Kevin Keegan’s had his chance
And to the piper’s tune he’ll dance

So lest we do our very best
Wash and iron our lucky vest
Raise your class and swig your beer
‘Cause for City I’ll always cheer



I was reading a missive from an Arsenal fan that the Rags are now their true derby rather than Spurs (an interesting concept) when he dropped a classic. So maybe only I think this is funny and maybe it’s an old chestnut but this is what he said about Spurs’ fans.

“Those that you do run into the US or London are usually drunk, obnoxious, unwashed and unshaven… and they bring their husbands to the matches with them.”

Wallace Poulter <Wpoulter(at)>


With reference to the article by Debs Derbyshire re the “P&W SPORTSMAN’S DINNER” in MCIVTA 1091. I would like to point out that this is not a P&W Sportsman’s Dinner but is being organised by the CSA, of which P&W are, as always, playing a very active rôle along with the CSA Committee and CSA branches. All the other details are correct.

Howard Burr – Reddish Branch <reddishblues(at)>


Does anyone have a spare Maine Road seat (not necessarily the metal surround, just the plastic back/seat) for sale? I’m looking for one, maybe more.

Many thanks if you can help!

Marc Starr <marc.starr(at)>


Due to some bad planning aided and abetted by the TV gods, I find myself in Geneva without a date on March 7th. Can anyone guide me to a bar where I can watch our heroes play Notlob?

I’d be very grateful.

Andy <Andyatbluemoon(at)>


2 February 2005

Birmingham City       2 - 1  Southampton           28,797
Fulham                1 - 1  Aston Villa           17,624
Manchester City       1 - 1  Newcastle United      45,752
Blackburn Rovers      0 - 1  Chelsea               23,414
Everton               1 - 0  Norwich City          37,485

1 February 2005

Portsmouth            2 - 1  Middlesbrough         19,620
West Bromwich Albion  2 - 2  Crystal Palace        25,092
Arsenal               2 - 4  Manchester United     38,164
Bolton Wanderers      3 - 1  Tottenham Hotspur     24,780
Charlton Athletic     1 - 2  Liverpool             27,102

24 January 2005

Blackburn Rovers      0 - 1  Bolton Wanderers      20,056

League table to 02 February 2005 inclusive

                             HOME          AWAY        OVERALL
                    P  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F   A   GD Pts
 1 Chelsea         25 10  2  0 25  3 10  2  1 24  5 20  4  1  49   8  41  64
 2 Manchester Utd  25  8  4  0 22  6  7  4  2 19 10 15  8  2  41  16  25  53
 3 Arsenal         25  7  5  1 31 16  8  1  3 24 13 15  6  4  55  29  26  51
 4 Everton         25  9  1  3 16 12  5  4  3 13 13 14  5  6  29  25   4  47
 5 Liverpool       25  8  1  3 20  9  4  3  6 18 17 12  4  9  38  26  12  40
 6 Middlesbrough   25  6  4  2 19 12  4  3  6 21 23 10  7  8  40  35   5  37
 7 Charlton Ath.   25  7  2  4 21 15  4  2  6  8 20 11  4 10  29  35  -6  37
 8 Bolton Wndrs    25  6  3  4 17 12  4  3  5 17 20 10  6  9  34  32   2  36
 9 Tottenham H.    25  4  3  5 22 18  5  3  5  8 11  9  6 10  30  29   1  33
10 Manchester City 25  5  5  3 17 10  3  3  6 14 17  8  8  9  31  27   4  32
11 Aston Villa     25  7  3  2 19  7  1  5  7  9 23  8  8  9  28  30  -2  32
12 Newcastle Utd   25  5  3  4 20 19  2  6  5 16 23  7  9  9  36  42  -6  30
13 Portsmouth      25  6  2  5 18 17  2  4  6 10 18  8  6 11  28  35  -7  30
14 Birmingham City 25  4  4  5 15 12  3  4  5 14 19  7  8 10  29  31  -2  29
15 Fulham          25  5  2  6 16 21  3  3  6 16 20  8  5 12  32  41  -9  29
16 Blackburn R.    25  2  7  4 13 18  3  3  6  8 17  5 10 10  21  35 -14  25
17 Crystal Palace  25  4  2  6 13 12  1  5  7 16 27  5  7 13  29  39 -10  22
18 Southampton     25  3  7  2 18 16  0  2 11  8 25  3  9 13  26  41 -15  18
19 Norwich City    25  2  5  5 17 23  0  6  7  6 24  2 11 12  23  47 -24  17
20 West Brom A.    25  2  6  5 11 21  0  5  7 10 25  2 11 12  21  46 -25  17

With thanks to Football 365

MCIVTA FAQ [v0405.01]

[1] MCIVTA Addresses

Articles (Heidi Pickup)          :
News/rumour (Don Barrie)         :
Subscriptions (Madeleine Hawkins):
Technical problems (Paul)        :
FAQ (David Warburton)            :

[2] What are MCIVTA’s publishing deadlines?

Deadlines for issues are nominally 6pm, Monday and Thursday evenings bu email. Unfortunately we cannot accept email attachments.

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

[4] What is the club’s official web site?

The official club web site can be found at

[5] What supporters’ clubs are there?

Manchester City FC recognises three supporters’ clubs: The “Official Supporters Club” (; the “Centenary Supporters’ Association” ( and “The International Supporters’ Club” (

[6] Where can I find out about the fans’ committee?

The Fans’ Committee operates as an interface between supporters and the club. It has its own website, containing info about forthcoming meetings as well as minutes from previous gatherings.

[7] What match day broadcasts are available on the web?

The GMR pre and post match phone-in is available on the web at

Live match commentaries and archives of games, reports and interviews can be found at

[8] Where can I find out if City are live on satellite TV? provides a listing of Premiership games being shown on UK domestic and foreign satellite channels. Useful sites for North American viewers are,, and

[9] Do we have a Usenet newsgroup?

Yes we do: is our home on usenet. If you are not familiar with usenet, a basic explanation is available here:,289893,sid9_gci213262,00.html

[10] Do any squad members have their own web pages?

There are a number available and direct links can be found at

[11] Can I buy shares in the club?

Yes you can: Shares in Manchester City PLC are traded on OFEX. The latest prices can be on found the OFEX web site (registration required) or in the business section of the Manchester Evening News.

[12] Where can I find match statistics?

Statistics for the current season are available from the club site, but for a more in-depth analysis try

[13] Where can I find a list of City-related websites?

Try Wookie’s Lair:

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,

Newsletter #1092