Newsletter #1427

Defeat at Anfield, news about protests and a monthly and end of season round-up tonight.

Next Game: Sunday 11 May 2008, 3pm, Middlesbrough (away)


It was almost such an easy season! In fact it was almost three points against Fulham but I suppose City just don’t work like that. From the best finish ever in the Premier League with so much to build on in the years to come to a farcical managerial situation and uncertainty to boot. Just another year in the life of a City fan.

Losing to Chelsea was acceptable considering their increase in momentum since realising they could win the title and no-one truly believed we could recover from that day at Stamford Bridge with a stylish win so to only lose 2-0 was almost a relief. And then it started. The first rumour leaked that Thaksin would “review the club’s situation at the end of the season”. Automatically the tabloids jumped on it as the imminent sacking of Sven and as such the Blue faithful dismissed it as nothing more but mere tabloid gossip. Yet this rumour seemed to boost the sprits of the players as if the next couple of games were fighting for the manager’s job and as such we went on to win against Sunderland. Not only did we beat Sunderland but we did it away from home. The lads played decent football again and there was some attacking nous that had been long missing. Obviously I won’t be the only one to mention that two wins over Roy Keane go down well in a season with two victorious outings with that other team from Manchester.

A week later saw a tricky tie against Portsmouth. Granted it was at home but recent form tells you that our home form is not what it was six months ago and therefore it was always going to be difficult. Both sides set up defensively and the game was always going to be decided by the clash between the rejuvenated Jermaine Defoe and Pompey old boy ‘Benji’. The Blues went out and again played good football, scored one goal, scored two goals and saw the opposition down to ten men. Those three points put the club back into European contention, which was a major boost given the fact that Norway of all teams have overtaken England in the Fair Play league. Three-one winners and back to back victories with a home game against Fulham to come; we may have been too confident.

As a Blue I have got used to the feeling that when City go 1-0 down there is very little hope that they will go on to win but at the same time when we’re two nil up against a team in the bottom two, I’d like to think I could sit back and relax. But no, of course Hodgson took a last throw of the dice with Diomansy Kamara and I hear two sixes are good. The Senegalese winger showed that bit of class he’s been missing all season and in Fulham’s hour of need, he responded. Apparently the fans have claimed that the makeshift defence was the cause, now I agree that it wasn’t exactly convenient. but having held their own for seventy four minutes, why let it go then? At a time when Sven needed his players to throw their bodies on the line, they didn’t quite reach the mark and performances against Liverpool and Middlesbrough will have to be much improved if Sven stands any chance of changing the mind of Mr. Shinawatra.

With regards to this little predicament we find ourselves in, if we are going to protest then let’s make it organised. At the beginning of the week a group of fans caught the eye of the M.E.N. when they protested against Sven’s departure and whilst I have much respect for those who fight for the cause, it makes a much bigger statement if there are more then twenty people there. If we are going to protest then let’s organise it and ensure it is done properly. There is a petition online at

So put your names on it. But please remember, the reason we are on the up is thanks to Thaksin, the reason we have money is thanks to Thaksin and the reason we have Sven in the first place is thanks to Thaksin. So whilst I fully support Sven and all he has done, if you protest, you protest for Sven not against Thaksin who has been essential to the growth and development that this club has experienced in the past ten months.

Star Player: Benjani. Looked more up for it this month. A goal and respectful celebration against Portsmouth may be all he needs to move on from the South and start doing it up here for us. Though he didn’t score in the early part of this month, his work ethic and movement around the pitch was much improved and the bane of those two wins against Sunderland and Portsmouth.

Best Moment: Keane’s face at the ninety minute mark with only a couple of minutes for stoppages. Priceless. Almost as good as Ferguson’s when Tevez hit the side netting with five minutes left in the early season derby. Almost but not quite.

Alexander Rowen <ajpr2007(at)>


I know it’s not the end of the season yet but with all that’s going on at the moment I feel now is as good a time as any to voice my ‘end of season review’ as Dr.Thaksin would put it.

I feel that we as fans must do all we can to save Sven from losing his job. We are the heart of the club, not the new businessmen bigwigs from far afield. If we let Sven go now, who knows what doldrums our club will be leaking out of next! His merit is distinctional, his experience A+ and what I have been impressed with the most is his willingness to involve our next generation of stars, something I feel the likes of Senor Scolari and Messr Mourinho would not be willing to do. Our season has slowly fluttered away but what can we have honestly expected from our first season under new ownership (not dictatorship yet!), a new manager and backroom staff and a host of new players from different countries? A respectable 9th, which is looking like where we will now finish, is an achievement in the 1st year of our new ‘era’. With the Academy prospering evermore and another two or three signings from Sven’s black book of contacts we will make a UEFA Cup spot next season. But to let him leave now would be a travesty, not to mention the queue of players who will no doubt wish to follow suit. All said I am very grateful for Sinatra coming in and stabilising our club, albeit financially at least! But whereas he is a successful businessman, a successful chairman he is not. If he wants to make his 3 year plan possible, we need stability and Sven and his team, I believe, are the ideal candidates. Shinawatra should continue his wheeling and dealing on the business front but the likes of Alistair Mackintosh and John Wardle etc. should be given a voice on the footballing front, something I don’t feel they are. Hopefully the Anfield rally on Sunday will wake up Shinawatra to our disgruntled feelings. Another way we as fans can have a say is by signing this petition, it might amount to nothing but at least we have tried rather than whinging in the corner. So go to if you haven’t already and have your say said!

So let’s make sure Dr Shinawatra can hear our opinions, whether he’s in his adopted home of England or Thailand. And with Sven here next year plus a few additions it shall be a prosperous year for all Blues, something well overdue! Keep the faith!

Chris Mac Manus <mackermanus(at)>


In no particular order, in this time of uncertainty, here’s 10 reasons to be cheerful about our club from this season…

  • Beating the Rags twice in the league for the first time in 37 years – This is Our City
  • Keeping quiet during the Munich silence when everyone was waiting (and the press hoping) for us to break it
  • Finishing 2nd in the Reserves League (ahead of the Rags)
  • Finishing 2nd in the Pontins Reserve League (with a team of mainly kidsagainst old pros like Jeff Whitley) and now in a play off semi final vs.Morecambe
  • Topping the Academy U18s group (again) and 19 points ahead of the Rags and through to this Sunday’s National Academy Final
  • Winning the FA Youth Cup for the first time in 22 years
  • Sven Goran Eriksson
  • Elano’s free kicks
  • West Ham away
  • Five more Academy graduates making a 1st team appearance

If anyone else has happy memories to add from the season – why not share them to cheer ourselves up?

John Baines <johnbaines76(at)>


So the mess continues and it looks like Sven is resigned to losing his job. I couldn’t get to Anfield but the support that was given to Sven and his players by those Blues who did make it makes you all the more proud to be Blue. The continuous chants of Sven Goran Eriksson throughout the game came over loud and clear over the radio commentary. It is important to show our support, and the Manchester City fans were absolutely magnificent at Anfield, and witty too: (to Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall) ‘We don’t need no Phil Scolari, we don’t need Mourinho.. hey Thaksin, leave our Sven alone’. Brilliant, inspired stuff. It also made me swell with pride to see pictures of City fans raising the caricature pictures.

I am pleased to hear that there is a demonstration that has been arranged by official supporters’ clubs on Saturday in support of Sven – it is important to send a signal to Shinawatra that most of the fans appreciate the good work and progress under Sven and that we would like him to continue as City manager. Some say it is futile to protest and that Shinawatra will do what he wants regardless. He may well do but they are wrong to say that protest is futile. If everyone took that defeatist attitude in history then none of us would have enjoyed the freedoms that we enjoy today. While there is a chance that we can change his mind then we should try. It’s better to have tried then never to have tried at all. Plus, it must be embarrassing for Shinawatra for him to be portrayed as being so out of tune with the Manchester City public.

What’s more, our credibility as fans for backing Sven like this can only rise. In the absence of a genuinely successful football, the fans remain the best thing about this club, and the 97% endorsement of the Swede say it all. Even in these days of high finance in football and astronomical TV contracts and multi-millionaire benefactors, we remain an important brick in the wall and it would be great to have a solid architect and builder like Sven to complete the project over the coming years.

Phil Banerjee <philban65(at)>


Plenty of comment regarding Thaksin, in the red corner, versus Sven, in the blue corner. The rest of us simply sat on the sidelines.

To date, Sven has not been fired and remains manager of team affairs. However, if the chairman does act to remove Sven, it should prove quite an interesting summer.

Petitions are all well and good but, in this instance, I’m sure Thaksin would never, ever be seriously swayed to change his operational methods. In all likelihood, he’ll never even see any petition, nor, read any of the previously suggested postcards of discontent. I have, however, another alternative to suggest:

Thaksin is a businessman. He understands money. So, surely, the very best and most effective way for the club’s fans to get his attention is to hit him where it hurts the most: in his pocket. Devastate his bottom line. At the same time, effectively embarrass the heck out of him. How can this be done? Well, come season 2008/2009, simply stay away from the ground.

Stay away from all home games. Do not travel to away games. Can you imagine how Thaksin (together with his “advisors”) would feel/react if home attendances were, say, consistently reduced to less than 10,000?

Play the game as Sven plays it, in a quiet and dignified manner. Hurt Thaksin’s financial statement. More importantly, hurt his pride. He will eventually sell the club and shall be gone.

And, if Sven is forced out of the club, best of luck to him a true manager and gentleman, in the mould of the great Joe Mercer. Very apparently, quite unlike Mr Thaksin and his “advisors”.

Graham Mills <gkm_5(at)>


Chas Sinclair suggests in the last issue of McV that we should all send postcards to <Frank(at)M.C.F.C>. with our pleas for Sven to stay. Unless Frank changes his mind about Sven, my postcard would have been with a scene of Alcatraz Prison with the caption “Wish you were here”.

Some years ago whilst on a ship that docked in San Francisco, I sent such a postcard to Tommy Docherty (then manager of the Evil Empire) but I did say “not him TD in Alcatraz”, but all the United supporters who at the time were notorious for tearing up railway trains, toilets, coaches, shop windows, etc. after a game.

If at the end of the day Sven cannot stay despite our pleas, then the only other manager that I would want to see is the “special one” Jose Murinho, who joined Chelski under similar circumstances.

I remain a City fan whatever happens, after more than 50 years, how can I ever change?

We all can read the various press and media reports on who MCFC are interested in signing next season, but all the names mentioned for which manager? Surely a manager makes out a list of players he is interested in, then the owner and directors decide if the club will pay the price and terms, at least this is the way I thought it should work. Also we know that agents will offer some players that will be considered.

However, without a manager for next season, unless Frank comes out and says he has reconsidered Sven, or named another manager, what’s the point of all these transfer listed players being interested by City?

I just hope for the stability of the club a manager is named right after the ‘Boro game, Sven being our favourite to retain his position. It would be very disrespectful of me to even think of another manager but Sven right now.

Ernie Barrow <Britcityblue(at)>


Now Thaskin wants the players to bow to him before each game! To those who were happy to take his money and go along for the ride, I hope you’re enjoying it, the rest of us are shaking our heads in disbelief. All this makes Manchester City Football Club the laughing stock of world football.

It makes the Swales, Lee eras tame in comparison. When will we ever learn? To those who disagreed with my comments in previous issues, you’re a bit quiet now aren’t you, maybe you’re still out on that ride!

Staying Blue, Kevin Williamson <scribbs(at)>


Just for info. It’s a big if, but if you want out from the Thai despot’s regime and would rather put your money somewhere else it does appear that refunds can be had.

I don’t really want to do this but we’ll see what pans out in the next few days/weeks and see what the man has in mind for our beloved club.

David Walker <davidjwalker1(at)>


If I could just respond to Kevin Williamson’s nonsensical comments against me in MCIVTA 1424. It might have helped your argument if you actually argued from a logical standpoint rather than an emotionally-charged nostalgia-fest where it’s still jumpers for goalposts, a Wagon Wheel at half-time and a copy of The Pink on the way home.

Is the purchase of City by Thaksin the “best thing since sliced bread”? Well, seeing as that was not my original point, I will, nevertheless, reply to it.

No, obviously it’s not. I would much have preferred City to have been bought by some retired scrap-metal dealer from Gorton, who won the lottery seven or eight times in his life, so he could fulfil his dreams as a lad standing on the Kippax (or Hyde Road if we want to get real genuine “Cityness” into it!) of taking City onwards and upwards.

Unfortunately, Wardle sold out to the best deal. Just like Lee did before him and Swales did before him. And that’s why we ended up with Thaksin. Nobody else was interested. Or had the money. So is he the “best thing since sliced bread”? Well, to be honest, probably yes in that case. As the alternative was a bankrupt club facing another period in relegation battles. And I have to say I’m bored with all that now. It was fun once. But let’s try to be better. You never know, it might just break that 32 year hoodoo!

Too many of Thaksin’s critics are making subtle racist references with the view that as a Thai he knows nothing about football. All that I suggested was that good old English stock like Swales, Lee and Wardle knew probably less. All I’m saying is let’s give Thaksin a chance. Let’s look again in a couple of years to see if he’s been as bad as you suggest.

Isn’t that the sporting English way of giving someone a chance? Or doesn’t that apply to foreigners? Oh, and beating United twice a year is not good enough for me. That’s why I also back our chairman in “reviewing” the club at the end of the season.

Before I go, could you just clarify a couple of your points… “when he’s finished with his little game he’ll be off quicker the Christiano Ronaldo down the wing.” What game is that? Trying to make us a footballing power? Oh, he might want his percentage out of come the end of the day, but so did Swales, Wardle and Lee. And they achieved little (well Wardle and Lee anyway). So why shouldn’t the chairman benefit out of our eventual success?

You mention working in business and how it comes with conditions. And? We all know that. What’s different this time? You say you trust Wardle and Lee more than Thaksin. Why? Lee almost bankrupt the club as did Wardle. Thaksin has simply invested so far, and until the day comes when you can point at him being worse than the previous two I suggest you show something City fans are renowned for not having and that’s patience.

And finally, to finish, the real doozie of a statement “Money buys success? Maybe, but the best players at Man Utd and Chelsea were English (United Kingdom) and most were there before the money explosion that has gripped our game. Do you think United have done any better under their foreign owners. Good heavens, they were the biggest thing in football before all this happened. Grant’s faced with the sack, Liverpool are in turmoil, even Sven might get the chop. What price do clubs have to pay?”

Here we are, back again to the subtle undertones. Most of the players were English? Well, no they’re not, but even so, what’s your point? All-English teams? The only “big” clubs not owned by “foreigners” are Newcastle United (great example of the chairman leading from the front and in the process making them a laughing stock), and Everton. And they’ve been chasing the outside investors for years now.

Tom Ritchie <tomcitytilicry(at)>


Perhaps this no big deal, but someone in the latest MCIVTA thanks me, David Smith, for urging supporters to document their Newcastle-40-years-on memories. It wasn’t me that came up with the original idea, cracking idea that it was. Whoever thought of it please take a bow.

[It was Steven Davis, so yes a big thanks to Steven for coming up with the idea – Ed]

David Smith <dsmith(at)>


I am a genuine long time Blue and someone who has helped out many others on McV when they have needed City tickets – I have sold spares for never anything more than face value – often less. Now I need a favour of the MCIVTA community…

I recently moved to the Highlands and have met several Rangers fans who think I should be able to pull some UEFA Cup Final tickets out of my bottom because I am a City fan. Does anyone have any tickets that they would consider selling, so I can pass then on to my new pals?

Even a single seat would do, but I have Rangers fans banging my door down so the more the merrier!

Hope that someone can help.

Richard Ellor <richardellor(at)>


Any Blues meeting up in Bangkok on the 17th?

I’m considering a Sven banner or alternatively “Frank Whatarighttw@t”. The latter may put me in the Bangkok Hilton!

John Taylor <john.taylor(at)>


Manchester City Supporters Clubs (CSA, OSC) are holding a Support Sven Rally at the City of Manchester Stadium on Saturday 10 May 2008.

We encourage as many City fans as possible to attend this event to show Sven our support and thank him and all his staff for their fantastic efforts during 2007/08.

All those attending are asked to congregate in North car park 1 from 2.30pm on Saturday. We will then proceed over Joe Mercer Way towards the main entrance where representatives will then hand in a petition.

The organisers would like to stress that this rally is not anti-MCFC or any of the board members, including Dr Shinawatra, but a show of appreciation for Sven.

For further information contact Alex Channon or Kevin Parker.

Kevin Parker <Kbmp2000(at)>


4 May 2008

Arsenal               1 - 0  Everton               60,123
Liverpool             1 - 0  Manchester City       43,074

3 May 2008

Aston Villa           0 - 2  Wigan Athletic        42,640
Blackburn Rovers      3 - 1  Derby County          26,110
Fulham                2 - 0  Birmingham City       25,308
Manchester United     4 - 1  West Ham United       76,013
Middlesbrough         2 - 0  Portsmouth            24,828
Reading               0 - 1  Tottenham Hotspur     24,125
Bolton Wanderers      2 - 0  Sunderland            25,053

League table to 04 May 2008 inclusive

                             HOME          AWAY        OVERALL
                    P  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F   A   GD  Pts
 1 Manchester Utd  37 17  1  1 47  7  9  5  4 31 15 26  6  5  78  22  56  84
 2 Chelsea         36 12  6  0 35 12 12  3  3 27 13 24  9  3  62  25  37  81
 3 Arsenal         37 14  5  0 37 11  9  6  3 36 20 23 11  3  73  31  42  80
 4 Liverpool       37 12  6  1 43 13  8  7  3 22 15 20 13  4  65  28  37  73
 5 Everton         37 10  4  4 31 16  8  4  7 21 16 18  8 11  52  32  20  62
 6 Aston Villa     37 10  3  6 34 22  6  8  4 35 27 16 11 10  69  49  20  59
 7 Blackburn R.    37  8  7  4 26 19  7  6  5 23 25 15 13  9  49  44   5  58
 8 Portsmouth      37  7  8  3 24 13  9  1  9 24 26 16  9 12  48  39   9  57
 9 Manchester City 37 11  4  4 28 20  4  6  8 16 25 15 10 12  44  45  -1  55
10 West Ham United 37  7  6  5 22 22  6  3 10 18 26 13  9 15  40  48  -8  48
11 Tottenham H.    37  8  5  5 46 32  3  8  8 20 27 11 13 13  66  59   7  46
12 Newcastle Utd   36  8  5  5 25 24  3  5 10 19 36 11 10 15  44  60 -16  43
13 Wigan Athletic  37  8  5  5 21 15  2  5 12 13 34 10 10 17  34  49 -15  40
14 Middlesbrough   37  6  5  7 19 22  3  7  9 16 30  9 12 16  35  52 -17  39
15 Sunderland      37  9  3  6 23 20  2  3 14 13 38 11  6 20  36  58 -22  39
16 Bolton Wndrs    37  7  5  7 23 18  2  4 12 12 35  9  9 19  35  53 -18  36
17 Fulham          37  5  5  9 22 31  2  7  9 15 29  7 12 18  37  60 -23  33
18 Reading         37  8  2  9 19 25  1  4 13 18 41  9  6 22  37  66 -29  33
19 Birmingham City 37  5  8  5 26 22  2  3 14 16 39  7 11 19  42  61 -19  32
20 Derby County    37  1  5 12 12 39  0  3 16  8 46  1  8 28  20  85 -65  11

With thanks to Football 365

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Newsletter #1427