Newsletter #1119

An early issue today as I’m off to watch the Reserves play at COMS in the Manchester Senior Cup Final this evening.

In today’s edition we have a match report from the Villa game on Saturday, the usual City Stats, opinion on the Jordan/Strachan rumour and yet more views on the club badge.

Next game: Middlesbrough, home, 3pm Sunday 15 May 2005


So to a warm, but rather chilly Villa Park for City’s last away game this season. A win was vital to keep alive hopes of UEFA whilst we also needed Spurs to lose away to Boro. Got to the ground quite late on and was still flicking through the measly 3 pages that City were given in the programme by the time the teams strolled out onto the blustery pitch.

Kick-off. City seemed to settle quicker than Villa, not surprising given the differences in performance last weekend. Villa still seemed a little nervous following their hammering at White Hart Lane. SWP was quick to capitalise: collecting the ball just inside the Villa half, he turned J Lloyd Samuel twice, went outside the centre back and then fired across Sorensen, 1-0. Excellent goal. This had followed Musampa attempting to carefully place the ball across Sorensen when free on the left hand side of the box, but only succeeding in giving Villa a throw on the other side of the pitch – that at least from Musampa was to be the story of the afternoon.

5 minutes later and it was 2-0. A good move down the right hand side saw the ball played into Macken, who, showing good awareness, flicked the ball onto Musampa who struck a sweet half volley past Sorensen. Excellent we thought, how many are we going to get here?! A couple of minutes later and the ball breaks to Musampa again, this time, head back, the ball was more danger to the angry Villa fans at the back of the Holte End than to the goal.

The first half continued in that vein really, the only problems for City being entirely of Danny Mills’ or Ben Thatcher’s creation. A dodgy passback of a shoulder here, a chest down 20 yards out there. You get the picture.

James had to make a good save from Davis. Villa were delightful, deciding to help City’s paceless attack whenever possible. Laursen especially thought he’d help Sibierski et al by allowing the ball to bounce whenever possible, or attempting to kick the ball with any part of his leg that wasn’t his foot. Comical. The ball regularly flying off a shin. City should have capitalised.

Half time and the Spurs score comes through to a cheer. City either were not prepared for the inevitable rejuvenated Villa after the break or were guilty of being slow out of the blocks. The first 20 minutes of the second half was all Villa, though to be fair to City with very few chances against them. A lot of it was pinball in the box and City clearing it straight back to Villa. The inevitable goal arrived. 2-1.

Villa were playing very high up the pitch and City badly needed some pace up front to keep the Villa back four occupied. Cue BWP and then a few minutes later Lee Croft. Suddenly City were back in it. SWP was unlucky when chasing a short back pass, and then unlucky with a heavy touch when put through by BWP. Then a good City move finished with Musampa hitting the post. City could have done with a third just to take the pressure off, and Villa came mighty close to an equaliser when Barry headed just wide.

City hung on. Then the Spurs result came through and all was set for next Sunday and the play off with our bogey team for UEFA. Will City ever manage to beat Boro?

Ed Bodey <edbodey(at)>


Is this the way to ‘ammer Villa?

FA Premiership – Aston Villa 1 Manchester City 2
Villa Park – Sat May 7th 2005
Kick-off 15:00
Attendance: 39,645

Team Changes: Macken and Thatcher replace injured Fowler and Dunne respectively in the starting line-up. Sommeil on the bench.

Line-up: James, Mills, Onuoha, Distin, Thatcher, S. Wright-Phillips, Barton, Reyna, Musampa, Sibierski (B. Wright-Phillips, 70), Macken (Croft, 80).
Unused subs: Weaver, Sommeil, Jordan.

Goal times: (5) 1-0 S. Wright-Phillips; (12) 2-0 Musampa; (61) 2-1 Angel.

Bookings: Barton (85)
Sent off: None

Referee: R. Beeby: 2nd game in charge of City, the first being the 4-1 home Division One win against Gillingham on November 3rd 2001, the day Shaun Goater scored a hat-trick. His record W2, D0, L0.

Comment: Yet another brilliant start by City, and with a stunning solo goal by Shaun Wright-Phillips in the 5th minute, and a second by Kiki Musampa in the 12th minute, City looked set fair to win this vital last away game of the season. I started a chant at this stage, and was joined by another dozen or so around me, but it never got lift-off. It went “Is this the way to ‘ammer Villa, every night I’ve been hugging my pilla, dreaming dreams of ‘ammering Villa, and Shaunie Wright is on the wing”. If all goes to plan next week, perhaps we can substitute “Villa” with “Boro” and “pilla” with “Onuoha”. The second half was a different story and Villa applied all the pressure, with Angel scoring on the hour mark. City survived the onslaught, and could have made it more comfortable had Shaun Wright-Phillips’ and Musampa’s efforts gone in. With Middlesbrough beating Spurs 1-0, it means to qualify for the UEFA Cup, City need to beat ‘Boro next week, and hope that if Spurs beat Blackburn at home, their winning margin is only one better than City’s.

If City don’t win, Middlesbrough are guaranteed to qualify, so expect a defensive line-up from the Teesiders.

MCFCStats: It’s now all square between City and Villa in League matches. This victory took the overall record to: Won 48, Lost 48, Drawn 36, Goals For 200, Goals Against 203.

Message to John Wardle: Dear Mr Wardle, here is a suggested speech for the presentation of Stuart Pearce’s Manager of the Month award before next week’s game: “Manchester City, please welcome the Barclays Manager of the Month for April, and your NEW PERMANENT Manager… Stuart Pearce”. That is guaranteed to get the crowd fired up for the vital 90 minutes ahead of the club, as we chase the European dream, something that would have been impossible without Psycho in charge.

Steve Kay <steve(at)>


After the brilliant 2-1 win at Aston Villa the stage is now set for a thrilling game at the City of Manchester Stadium; it will have the atmosphere of an FA Cup Final.

If John Wardle makes the announcement before the most important game of the season versus Middlesbrough, that the new manager/coach of MCFC is Stuart Pearce, the stadium will then rock with the supporters cheering on the team to victory and a place in Europe next season.

The game will then become the first game that Stuart Pearce will be officially in charge, and may I add well deserved.

I’m quite sure that Kevin Keegan will be watching everything that Stuart Pearce, and the players do with pride, for it was KK who brought Stuart Pearce to City.

It’s great to see Shaun Wright-Phillips coming back on form after his injury, and at the right time to help the team get into Europe.

Not every City fan will be able to be in the stadium for the last game of the season, so I am quite sure that all fans will join me in hoping that it is shown on TV worldwide.

As I write this, the schedule of games to be shown on TV in the USA has not been announced, so everyone is with crossed fingers, toes, legs and arms that the City vs. Boro game will be on TV; stay tuned, we should know by the next edition of McV.

The many City fans worldwide, their hearts will be at the stadium next Sunday, even if their bodies cannot be there.

So to Stuart Pearce and his team, good luck!

I predict City 3 Boro 1.

Come on you Blues!

Ernie Barrow <britcityblue(at)>


What if we bring the old badge back but design a really s**t kit? Would you buy the kit because the old badge is on it? Or would you buy the kit because the new badge has gone and the new kit seems better because the old badge gives it a bit more tradition?

Andy Webb <charlesalexhols(at)>


Thanks to those of you who responded to my request for the old and ‘proper’ badge. To clarify a point, I too remember the club saying the change was down to merchandising rights. However, having not being able to get hold of artwork with sufficient image quality to be expanded by the graphics company for the roof of my new(ish) City blue and white mini, I contacted the club.

The club still have the rights to this badge and they kindly came up with the requisite artwork, strictly for a one off use, and subject to a small donation to CITC.

This week I finally got my dream car. Resplendent with the club badge I have worshipped for all of my years as a Blue on the roof. Look out for it at the ‘Boro match, when we will hopefully (big hope and pre-Villa tip) be knocking on the door to a European Mini adventure.

Whatever you do, stay Blue!

Dave Clinton <daveclinton(at)>


I can’t help feeling that all these people who want to rush into giving Stuart Pearce the full time job after six or seven games are probably the same ones who will want him sacked when he loses two or three on the trot.

Whilst I agree he is doing a fantastic job, let’s trust the board to make the correct decision and stop trying to push them into making a hasty one.

Dave McCandless – Eccles Blue <dave.mccandless(at)>


If there’s any foundation to this story in the News of the World, I will be absolutely appalled and utterly ashamed to be represented by the devils behind the scenes at our once great club.

If there’s no foundation to the story, then Wardle should do the right and decent thing for Manchester City by putting all the speculation to bed and officially appointing Stuart Pearce as manager first thing Monday morning.

Don’t get me wrong, I admire Gordon Strachan as a manager but there’s no way he can possibly succeed in charge at City if he’s appointed in these circumstances. It’s a no-win situation for him because the fans will jump down his throat at the first sign of a slump – and who can blame us?

Pearce stands for everything that football should be about and he’s proving himself to be more than capable of doing the job with the limited resources he’s inherited. Everyone is happy and sees a bright future ahead, so why jeopardise that harmony with a quick fix to our financial problems?

To the board at Manchester City, I say this: You got us into this mess when you ousted David Bernstein to fund Keegan’s spending spree, now you get us out of it the right way.

Don’t sell us down the river to a consortium who know nothing about football or what this once great club is all about.

I’ve been a season ticket holder at City for 24 years but I’ve been growing seriously disillusioned with the match-going experience nowadays because of how the game has changed in recent times.

However, Stuart Pearce has re-ignited the fire and passion inside me lately and I feel like a kid getting giddy about the next match again.

The way I feel right now having read these stories, I’m not sure I’ll be in attendance at the first game next season. Pearce getting the bullet might just be the final straw and I’ll be demanding a refund on the £350 I forked out at the beginning of March.

If this proves to be anything more than a scurrilous piece of journalism, I don’t want to be placing my life and emotions in the hands of these monsters any longer.

Mike Holden <mikeholdenmcfc(at)>


I have just read with disbelief the rumour about Eddie Jordan and Bryan Richardson taking over our beloved Manchester City, with plans to put Gordon Strachan at the helm.

Forgetting the results of City vs. Boro and Spurs vs. Rovers on Sunday – hasn’t Stuart Pearce already done enough to get him the respect of the board and be given the job of Manager of Manchester City Football Club?

If results go our way on Sunday and then he is replaced by Strachan – the same Gordon Strachan who we booed from the last ever match at Maine Road, the same Gordon Strachan who we despised every time he pulled on a Red shirt for the Salford Scumettes – then the world of football and the Board of Manchester City will be seen to have gone absolutely mad.

We need a person like Pearce – we are not a huge club and already Pearce has gained the respect of not only the fans (important to the Board?) but more significantly – the players.

He has had no link with the Red Scum, he has played for us, he has scored for us, he has coached our team and once given the reins – has showed what he can do.

Please, please, please let us be as one against Boro on Sunday with loud, clear, solid “We want Psycho” chanting!

If the Board don’t give him the job soon, he will sod off and Manchester City will be the poorer without him.

We can’t let him go!

We need to show our support!

Richard Stoodley <Richard(at)>


To put John Nisbet’s mind at rest, I believe that the 04 in Schalke 04 refers to 1904, the year the club was founded, and is not in celebration of some heavy home defeat. There is also a Mainz 05, presumably founded in 1905. The lesser known Munich team is known as 1860 München.

David Buxton <dbbuxton(at)>


As promised in the last issue, here are the 38 miscreants and recidivists whose combined efforts could not keep us in Division 1 in 1997-98.

Take a deep breath…

Peter Beardsley, Paul Beesley, Ian Bishop, Ian Brightwell, Lee Briscoe, Michael Brown, Lee Bradbury, Ged Brannan, Barry Conlon, Gerry Creaney, Lee Crooks, Paul Dickov, Richard Edghill, Shaun Goater, Chris Greenacre, Neil Heaney, Kevin Horlock, Richard Jobson, Ray Kelly, Alan Kernaghan, Georgi Kinkladze, Eddie McGoldrick, Martyn Margetson, David Morley, Jamie Pollock, Uwe Rösler, Craig Russell, Tony Scully, Murtaz Shelia, Nicky Summerbee, Kit Symons, Kakhabar Tskhadadze, Jason van Blerk, Tony Vaughan, Jeff and Jim Whitley, Gerard Wiekens, and Tommy Wright.

All of a sudden I feel queasy…

David Butler <ervadale(at)>


8 May 2005

Arsenal               3 - 1  Liverpool             38,119

7 May 2005

Chelsea               1 - 0  Charlton Athletic     42,065
Aston Villa           1 - 2  Manchester City       39,645
Blackburn Rovers      1 - 3  Fulham                18,991
Crystal Palace        2 - 2  Southampton           26,066
Everton               2 - 0  Newcastle United      40,438
Middlesbrough         1 - 0  Tottenham Hotspur     34,766
Norwich City          1 - 0  Birmingham City       25,477
Portsmouth            1 - 1  Bolton Wanderers      20,188
Manchester United     1 - 1  West Bromwich Albion  67,827

League table to 09 May 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         36 14  5  0 35  6 14  2  1 33  7 28  7  1  68  13  55  91
 2 Arsenal         36 12  5  1 47 19 12  3  3 32 15 24  8  4  79  34  45  80
 3 Manchester Utd  36 12  6  0 30  9  9  5  4 25 13 21 11  4  55  22  33  74
 4 Everton         36 12  2  5 24 15  6  5  6 19 21 18  7 11  43  36   7  61
 5 Liverpool       37 11  4  3 29 14  5  3 11 21 26 16  7 14  50  40  10  55
 6 Bolton Wndrs    37  8  5  5 22 16  7  5  7 24 26 15 10 12  46  42   4  55
 7 Middlesbrough   37  9  6  4 29 19  5  6  7 23 26 14 12 11  52  45   7  54
 8 Manchester City 37  8  6  4 28 19  5  7  7 25 27 13 12 12  46  38   8  51
 9 Tottenham       37  9  4  5 36 22  5  5  9 11 19 14  9 14  47  41   6  51
10 Aston Villa     37  8  6  5 26 17  4  5  9 18 33 12 11 13  44  50  -6  47
11 Charlton Ath.   37  8  3  7 27 27  4  6  9 13 29 12  9 16  40  56 -16  45
12 Newcastle Utd   37  7  6  5 24 24  3  7  9 22 32 10 13 14  46  56 -10  43
13 Birmingham      37  7  6  5 22 14  3  6 10 16 31 10 12 15  38  45  -7  42
14 Blackburn       37  5  8  6 21 22  4  6  8 11 21  9 14 17  42  31 -11  41
15 Fulham          37  7  4  7 23 26  4  4 11 23 34 11  8 18  46  60 -14  41
16 Portsmouth      37  8  4  7 30 26  2  5 11 13 31 10  9 18  43  57 -14  39
17 Norwich City    37  7  5  7 29 32  0  7 11 13 39  7 12 18  42  71 -29  33
18 Southampton     37  5  9  4 29 28  1  5 13 15 36  6 14 17  44  64 -20  32
19 Crystal Palace  37  6  5  8 21 19  1  6 11 18 41  7 11 19  39  60 -21  32
20 West Brom       37  4  8  6 15 24  1  8 10 19 37  5 16 16  34  61 -27  31

With thanks to Football 365

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Newsletter #1119