Newsletter #1139

The inevitable has finally happened as SWP and City agree his £21 million transfer to Chelsea. Let’s hope the move works for him; a lot of money to pay and a big risk on his part to be a benchwarmer.

The plus side to this is that Pearce is to be given a rumoured £10 million transfer kitty and has identified a striker. One Andrew Cole of Fulham, formerly Andy Cole of Stretford.

Understandably there is plenty of opinion tonight on both Shaun’s departure and the potential arrival of Mr Cole. Neither giving City fans much cause for celebration.

Meanwhile, the Thailand tour is about to get underway and Peter has the latest news for those Blues watching “live” or on TV. There is some worrying news about online sales, a look at the worst managers and our transfer policy.

Next game: West Bromwich Albion, home, 3pm Saturday 13 August 2005


I for one am gutted and really disgusted in us losing SWP to Chelsea. We have talent that came up via the Academy and a fans’ favourite, and we just sell him to the highest bidder. It is a disgrace to see how clubs like Chelsea can just buy trophies nowadays. We already know which 4 clubs will be in the FA Cup, League Cup and anything worth playing for next season. The rest of us will just be playing to survive. Not looking forward to another boring naught to play for season. I am a little upset today. Do not even get me started on Cole. I am lost for words with how I feel about this.

Jon Sedgwick <Jsedgwick(at)IMGWORLD.COM>


I write this with great sadness as I have just seen on Sky Sports that SWP has now officially signed for Chelsea. My initial thoughts are:

We knew he’d be gone one day. I just hoped that we could get one more year from him, but not qualifying for the UEFA Cup this coming season, I’m sure, was a deciding factor in his decision (oh to go back to the Middlesbrough game and score that penalty). We might qualify this coming season but that will be another year without European football for him. Can you blame him?

I am hugely disappointed that the club have succumbed and let him go for £21 million. We should have held out for at least £25 million. Chelsea have got him on the cheap.

We can survive without Shaun. We played OK without him last season and under SP, we will again. Lee Croft will fill his boots and go on to captain England (then we’ll get another £21 million for Lee Croft).

I wish Shaun all the best in his future and look forward to a day when he might want to return. He’s been a ‘Cracker’ (if we feel bad, how do you think Forest must feel letting him go?).

Andy Cole? I think he’s a stump but then, I thought a number of our players were stumps until SP took over. Let’s see.

John Nisbet <nisbet1957(at)>


Of course I’m gutted that SWP has gone. And the signing of Andrew Cole hardly fills me with joy. But:

  1. If it’s over £20 million, we’ve got a good price.If he goes down the Scott Parker route atChelsea, we may look back and say we got a sensational price.
  2. We’ve got two players from the Academy, Croftand Flood, who can now vie for his position.There’s a great chance that one will emerge as atop player – and the fact that they will have tocompete with each other will help them both.
  3. Let’s have some dignity – unlike Liverpoolfans over Gerrard. Don’t whinge about theunfairness of it all (leaving aside for a momentthe source of Chelsea’s riches). If we now bidfor Dean Ashton (as I hope we do), then we’ll putNorwich over the same barrel that Abramovich and Kenyon put us.
  4. Let’s also knock on the head the idea thatwe’re now a “selling club” because Chelsea havepaid a very big fee for our best player. WhenChelsea come knocking, every other club in theworld is a selling club. How we’ll laugh whenFerdinand goes there in two years’ time – on aBosman. If we flogged our skipper to Astons**ding Villa – then that would be different.
  5. We can now spend decent money on another youngforward and a young replacement for Bosvelt. Ifwe make two good signings and have some changeleft over, the money needn’t burn a hole in ourpocket. We can keep it for January.
  6. There’s a tiny chance that the media will stopendlessly repeating the utterly misleading net debt figure.
  7. As for Cole, SP’s first priority (sadly) is toensure we’re not relegated. With a good ‘keeper, asolid defence, a decent midfield and twoexperienced, proven goalscorers, the spine of theteam should ensure this is very unlikely tohappen. He’s come on a short-term contract forlittle or no fee and as he scored 12 goals in 31starts for a mediocre side last year, he’s not lost it entirely.
  8. Remember what we all thought when Schmeichel signed.
  9. Yes, he played a few games for StretfordBuccaneers. But he’s also played for BristolCity. And the last ex-Rags, ex-Bristol Citystriker we signed didn’t do too shabbily. Nowwhat was that Bermudan chap’s name?
  10. We’ve got a lot of talented young strikers atthe club: BWP, Bermingham, Miller, Sturridge andalmost certainly one more to be bought in thenext month. Therefore, what we need is a coupleof experienced players to help them along – andtake primary responsibility for short-term goalscoring.
  11. Last-minute backheels to take all threepoints at OT on September 10th. It’s written inthe stars, and if he does that, he’ll be up therewith Bell, Trautmann and Kinkladze.

So Shaun, good luck. It ended slightly messily – like some other great relationships I now look back on with fondness. Do well most weeks, but remember to play like a drain against us (we all know that you’re capable of a few shocking performances every season).

In other words, it’s not the greatest time to be an incurable romantic City fan (what other type of City fan is there?) – but it might just be that we’ve done two sound (if unexciting) pieces of business. Now let’s get ready for Chelsea’s bids for Onouha in 2007 and Danny Sturridge in 2009.

Mark Meadowcroft <Mark(at)>


I’ve never felt so down and totally gutted, after the transfer of SWeeP.

After the long drawn out, ‘will he, won’t he’ stay saga, I think you’ve got to surmise that there may have been some sort of ‘back door dealing’ going on to force such a change of mind and I think it’s that that is rankling me so much.

I don’t blame him one bit for taking the ‘golden chalice’ and the chance to play on a stage that will befit his talent, but I honestly thought, naïvely you might think, that after the comments he made, he would stay for at least another 6 months or so, especially after last season finished so optimistically. I will however clap and cheer him whenever he turns up at the COMS and just hope he has a stinker.

We’ve now just got to try and pick ourselves up and start looking at some of the plusses, e.g. Crofty and BWeeP given a chance to show what they can do when they tie up together up front. If the understanding those two seem to have in the reserves can manifest itself in the first team, we may still have something to shout about next season. I hope so because I’m miserable as sin at the moment.

Good luck Shaunie. All the very best (except when you play us).

Tony Ward <anthony.ward(at)>


Can I just say, after the whole SWP débâcle, that I am sick as the proverbial parrott. As I have read in numerous articles, Shaun had pledged his future to the club, and was looking forward to the new season. Shaun might just want to think back to where he would have been if City hadn’t offered him the chance to realise his dream after being released by Nottingham Forest.

What we must try to do is not take out our frustrations against Shaun when he returns to CoMS with his new team; we would not have been challenging for Europe last season if it were not for him. Our anger should be directed, as always, to those with the money.

I have not felt this sick, disappointed, and let down since City sold Paul Stewart to Spurs!

Niall Hope <enzo974(at)>


Like many City fans, I’m really saddened by the transfer of SWP to Chelsea, feeling as sick in my stomach as I did when we sold my former favourite Clive Wilson to the same club. I’m also very angry at the transfer too. For a start, I don’t blame SWP in any way, and I simply don’t believe that he ‘asked’ for a move in the same way that Gerrard, Owen, Cole and Anelka have all manipulated their situations to their own selfish agendas. Last year, Everton, as deep in debt as City are, cleverly made Wayne Rooney the scapegoat for his financially essential move to United, and I think MCFC are trying to pull a ‘fast one’ on us too. I love Shaun, and simply don’t believe the way this move is being presented to us.

For me, the majority of the blame must lie with Kevin Keegan, arguably the most selfish and self-centred manager in our history; he knew how much money we had as a club to spend, he deliberately spent it all as quickly as he could (wasted being the more appropriate word) and he was then cheeky enough to keep asking for more. When you add up what we lost on Anelka, Macken, Vuoso et al, then you pretty much have SWP’s transfer fee covered: what a total waste. Did Keegan ever apologise for his selfish recklessness? Don’t think so, and we can now ‘thank’ him for the loss of SWP.

I’m also disappointed in the club for selling SWP – he is (was) the heart and soul of MCFC as far as I’m concerned, especially when you consider the behaviour of the ‘stars’ at other football clubs. Mr Wardle has had plenty of time this summer to talk down or rule out the sale of SWP, but instead his silence has spoken volumes, and as ever City even got an M.E.N. journalist (Paul Hince) to prepare us for the worst, instead of telling us the truth directly.

Worse still, I think the £21 million fee we have got is an insult considering how rich Abromovich actually is: why are we the only club to ever pay over the odds for the players we need? And they are usually bad purchases too?

Finally, on a positive note, I have total faith in Stuart Pearce to take us forward, and I keep my fingers crossed, that yet again, our Academy can turn-up trumps for us, and unearth some more gems like Shaunny.

Neil Haigh <city(at)>


Well I suppose that it had to happen but I am not happy about the manner in which it did.

I think that Stuart Pearce and the club have handled the whole issue very well and with much tact and diplomacy, and I also admire that fact that they held out for more money (albeit not as much as they should have IMHO). I do however have to take issue with the way the lad himself and his advisors have behaved. I would not have had such an issue if Shaun himself had said that he wanted to go to a bigger club instead of all the “I’m happy here” that we have had from him – I would have understood, as would most City fans.

I can’t help thinking that the lad has made the wrong choice as with Duff, Robben and Cole all there I think he may even end up being a bit part. This I think would hinder him rather than further his career. I think that the authorities need to contemplate the effect that Chelsea’s money is having upon the Premiership as we now have those that can afford and those that can’t afford.

The only good thing to come out of it is the cash and the fact that I won’t have to read any more speculation in the papers about him moving and the £40/60 million debt that we have (eloquently explained by other contributors to the newsletter).

Let’s hope that Stuart now spends any cash that he gets on good, stable players.

Look forward to seeing you all at the COMS this year with my two Junior Blues in tow.

CTID, Steve Cox <stephen_cox(at)>


Two words: No Ambition!

Ian Ferguson <ian(at)>


So it’s finally happened. I really wonder at times about the state of English football. I’ve supported City since 1965 and since the ‘good old days’ when we actually won something, every time things start to turn around, we shoot ourselves in the foot.

If as we’re led to believe, SWP’s going for £21 million, then that’s a steal. What happened to the £25 million City were reportedly wanting? Are we getting sold short again! It seems that contracts are only fit for toilet paper; players can demand this, that and the other, and we’re going to sign Andy Cole!

Good heavens, that makes Johnny Macken look like Michael Owen. It really makes you wonder what goes on at times. At City we’re short on players, been linked with everyone who can kick a ball, and now sell another one. Will we ever know what’s going on? It would be really nice for someone to come out and tell the truth for a change.

So Stuart Pearce, this will be a real test for you, I hope for your sake you’ve got what it takes for my beloved City, and all of us City fans worldwide.

Kevin Williamson <scribbs(at)>


So SWP thinks he’s better off playing at Chelsea. Good luck; I suppose it was inevitable.

What annoys me are comments that the 21 million quid City received will relieve its debt load. Excuse me but money alone does not put the ball in the net.

How are City going to be better off if we get relegated from the Premier Division?

So far City have unloaded Anelka, McManaman, Bosvelt, Macken and now SWP. And we have added (speculation) Andy Cole! Please tell me this is not true.

I truly hope that the monies from Shaun do get spent wisely but I have a nasty feeling that we just sent out the wrong message. As much as I hate to say it, Manchester City are viewed as a second rate team and nothing that has happened recently changes this opinion. I feel sorry for Stuart Pearce. He could be a great manager for the Blues but he needs some new players. Our kids are good but they can’t carry the load alone.

Something tells me this is going to be a very frustrating season.

Keith Sharp <keith(at)>


As I write this on Sunday, MCFC have agreed on a fee of £21 million for our thoroughbred Shaun Wright-Phillips. That was a blow below the belt, just after hearing the day before that SWP wanted to stay at City. It’s obvious that some advisers have been talking to SWP.

We cannot stop SWP from leaving and can only wish him well, except when playing against City.

More bad news: I have just read that Stuart Pearce is about to sign Andy Cole from Fulham. I sure hope that this is wrong or my faith in Stuart Pearce will take a dramatic turn around.

It’s just as if we sold a thoroughbred to be replaced by an over aged donkey.

Please MCFC at least get a very good striker, it will at least soften the blow of losing SWP.

You can spot a City fan: his/her hair is going prematurely gray/white, or he/she is losing it.

If the club wants Andy Cole as a back up, then they should have signed a quality striker first, then the supporters would not have been hurt as bad, hearing that the first signing after SWP’s departure is Cole.

Ernie Barrow <britcityblue(at)>


Well he’s gone. It was only a matter of time. Just want to say good luck to you Shaun, hope you don’t come back to haunt us, but if you’re a pro, that’s your job, hope you’re not a bench warmer and show them what our Academy produces, all the best.

Steve Wagstaff <steve.wagstaff348(at)>


Should Shaun Wright Phillips go (and I don’t think there is any point in keeping a player who doesn’t want to stay! – though I think Shaunie would be wise to remember Scott Parker and how the move to Chelsea enhanced his opportunities for first team and international football!) – please could the club give Bradley no. 29? It would save an awful lot of people having to get new shirts, though that’s probably the reason they won’t.

Also a big thank you to the Junior Blues, Stuart Pearce and Macc Town for allowing Adam & Josh to be mascots at the friendly; they had a brilliant time. Hussain looks promising: small, but skilful and not afraid to take on the bigger players. Looks like Ali B’s third recommendation could be a good ‘un!

Sarah Longshaw <sarah(at)>


Well as of last night it appears that SWP is on his way. No doubt his agent has advised him strongly to explore the deal with Chelsea and see exactly what’s in it for him. I think I was kidding myself when I thought City were serious about rejecting the bid on Friday. It makes a change for the club to play hardball with another club over transfer dealings. Normally we manage to sell for well under the fans’ expected value (Anelka – watch this space with regards to Souness).

I personally feel SWP is a better player than Rooney. No doubt SWP has been assessed by the Chelsea manager. In these days of psychological profiles, SWP is the real deal, he is an exceptional talent. He does not have any flaws unlike the former player mentioned. I think it is tragic that he will inevitably go, but, I am afraid judging by the current inactivity in the transfer market, essential. SP is doing a good job clearing the deadwood from the club and he can look forward to having players like Sun and Sinclair back in the squad. There are key areas that need strengthening. I am sure we will continue to see many more youth players come through this season. I hope players like Flood and BWP can make the grade. I know the future looks bright in this area. Maybe this is where SP is keen to develop the squad. I have confidence in the manager and I feel at last we have a true motivator of men. He will inspire the players and ensure they give 100%.

I remember not so long ago how Chelsea were playing in front of small crowds, with the likes of Kerry Dixon. They even had a time in the old second with us! Now they are considered a massive club. Sorry, I do not buy that, they have deep pockets and financial muscle. That does not make them a massive or great club. A poor start to the season will soon see rumblings with the Stamford bridge faithful. We will see!

One last point concerning David James. I was not impressed with the interview recently on Sky; attitude indicated that SWP would be better off at a bigger club. So much for loyalty when your own players are indicating you should go. Let’s hope there is a buy back clause in the contract. After 12 months in and out of the team at Chelsea, we can buy him back at half the price.

Ian Richardson <kinkladze(at)>


Can’t understand what made SWP change his mind and decide to talk to Chelsea.

After playing in a thriller at Tranmere and then with the prospect of another mouth watering friendly at Macclesfield he must be barking to want to join the pensioners, European footy and all that bollox.

Anyway, good luck to him, he’s been nothing short of fantastic while he’s been at City, a true gent and an England player for many years to come.

Can’t wait to see what happens with the money.

Talking of which, does anyone know where the 7 million pounds we got for Anelka went? Did it reduce the debt or did we buy someone else? The £62 million knicker keeps cropping up; has our accountant been locked up for 12 months or what?

Would it be possible for our accountant to give us a bit of information regarding the sixty two millon quid that we owe so at least we know where we stand?

If I knew the score I would have bought 2 or 3 pies at half time to ease the debt. I’m sure buying more pies or even crisps would have put the club in a stronger position in regards to SWP.

On another note, when a chairman gives a manager a vote of confidence, you know the manager’s time is up. And when a player mentions how great the fans are, it’s time to scrape the player’s name off your kidss shirt; you can use the steaming envelope technique with a wire brush if you want, but like I say, once you hear the words fans, die for, going nowhere etc., get the kettle on.

Shaun Wright Phillips is just one of a number of players who are pressured into moving from the club they really love to one that seems a lot greener on t’other side. I remember when I left my first girlfriend, no fee involved, for another chick, I loved it each time we made love, but at the same time I thought of my first love and wished I was with her.

So when SWP bangs one in for CFC you know he will be thinking of all the horse s**t behind the old Platt Lane, and who in the world can fault him? Happy days.

Shauny Wright Wright Wright, Shauny Wright Wright Wright, Shauny Wright Wright Wright, Shauny Wright Wright Wright. Wasn’t the best song, was it?

Andy Webb <Charlesalexhols(at)>


Stuart Pearce must surely win the prize for most rapid change of opinion in a recent article on the official City website.

Published the day before City and Chelsea agreed terms on SWP, he first commented, “We fly tomorrow evening to Thailand and I fully expect Shaun to be on the plane.”

A paragraph later, he wasn’t quite so certain, saying, “it would be nice to see him board the plane with us”.

Perhaps as Stuart was being interviewed he caught sight of Shaun trying on a Chelsea shirt for size, because in the very next paragraph he had clearly given up on the wunderkind entirely: “It is doubtful that he will be on that plane”.

Nice one Stuart!

Mike Maddox <mwm224(at)>


Admittedly these are rumours – I’ve seen them on Teletext and Ceefax – but apparently City are interested in purchasing Andy Cole from Fulham (for £750,000) and Kewell from Liverpool (or is it the local hospital?). God forbid! The club is going backwards if this is the best we can do in the transfer market.

Pearce has shown his inexperience by allowing Chelsea to dominate his transfer dealings. He should heed what Mourinho says – you don’t let your players go until you have identified substitutes. This especially applies to your better players.

I cannot understand why on earth Pearce sold Macken but insists on keeping Sibierski. Letting Macken (first team squad) go without knowing who he was going to sign is poor planning. Now we see Fowler is injured before the season starts so his pre-season fitness will be called into question.

Pearce and the board had better wake up otherwise we are going to struggle. Oh, but I nearly forgot, we have Sun and Sinclair returning – wow, everything’ll be alright then.

Ian Burgess <i.burgess1(at)>


Dale Johnson wrote a piece on Soccernet ( expounding on his choice for the 10 worst managers in the last decade. Not too surprisingly, wor Kev makes the list for his sorry stint with England. But Steve Wigley also appears for his 3-for-17 record and relegation for Southampton. After this week’s mauling at the hands of the mighty Hyde United, I’m left with a worried feeling.

Bill Buffam <mcivta(at)>


With regards to the article posted by Ernie Barrow in MCIVTA 1138 about the official website and the editor footer comment as below: “A new and much improved website is due to be launched soon as Sky are stopping doing club sites, the new company will have something much better – Ed”

Well I certainly hope the online shopping security is improved as well as I had the following experience when recently purchasing a MCFC clothing article.

I had selected my item and had got to the part where my delivery details were supposed to be displayed – I clicked the “edit” button as I couldn’t see any details displayed and obtained some guy’s details in England (I’m in NZ) with the same first name as me. I subsequently received a Micro$oft database error before reaching “checkout” where my delivery details were actually displayed correctly. Upon emailing MCFC to report the incident I received an apology for the “inconvenience”. I replied that this was not an “inconvenience” to me but a security flaw as I had sufficient information to attempt identity fraud had I been an unscrupulous person – I got no reply thereafter.

Thankfully I did not obtain any credit card details but it did make me wonder about whether credit card details were stored in a obviously dodgy Micro$oft system. I hope the new web site producer also uses an alternative infrastructure to Micro$oft or has it configured somewhat more securely. I like to fully support my beloved club with the odd purchase that I can proudly display in my working environment where casual dress is allowed (but is unfortunately with the dark side’s sponsor – yes I did try and convince the UK sponsorship team they backed the wrong side in Manchester). Don’t know if anyone else experienced this.

CTID, Simon Wardle <s.wardle(at)>


From today’s Bangkok Post: Bolton’s staying at Imperial Queen’s Park Hotel, Everton at Plaza Athenee and City at the Radisson.

I’ve been in touch with the club and the boys will be training at the Thai Army Training Ground. They have stressed that don’t give times because if they are changed they don’t want people turning up and being disappointed. The times I was advised (subject to change) at the Thai Army Training Ground are Tuesday afternoon, Wednesday morning and Friday morning. So if you go it’s your gamble.

Rumour has it that the team (minus SWP? and Robbie Fowler) is arriving at 2pm today on a Lufthansa flight – I suspect it’s true.

The games definitely are on live TV out here on ESPNSTAR and on Thai Local TV.

Can I bring to your attention for anybody planning a wild night out on Thursday & Friday that they are Buddhist religious days here, which means no alcohol can be sold (your hotel may be able to arrange something for you?). So it should be an alcohol free time – Stuart Pearce will be happy though!

Peter Carlisle <Peter(at)>


City’s record against next season’s Premiership new boys, Sunderland, Wigan and West Ham have now been added to the site. See Matches, then Opponents for the listings.

Thanks to Joyce Maddocks for supplying much of the missing unused subs information for City’s European games of the 70’s. Joyce extracted the info from the extensive records of her late husband, John, who was the club’s official statistician until he passed away.

As the site enters its 3rd year, I am pleased to say the site attracted over 250,000 hits in the last year, a 150% increase on the first year. Thanks to everybody who visited the site, and looking forward to your continued support as we aim for our next target, the 500,000th hit.

Steve Kay <steve(at)>

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Newsletter #1139