Newsletter #1560

A win on Saturday in our first home game of the campaign with the new signings linking up well and putting in good performances. We have a report tonight thanks to Phil together with match views.

There is also opinion on the signings and whinings from Everton with the imminent transfer of Lescott at £24 million and the arrival of Sylvinho, opinion on recent musings and more from our City marketeers.

Finally as MCIVTA approaches its 15th birthday – yes 15 years! – keep your eyes open for some competition news.

Next Game: Crystal Palace, away, 8pm Thursday 27 August (Carling Cup)


The sun shone brightly on Manchester City’s first home game of the season at Eastlands, as City secured a victory that should have been more comfortable than the score line suggests. We went to Eastlands in a celebratory atmosphere in anticipation of the excitement that is to come on the pitch after a thrilling summer of top drawer signings. To add extra spice, there was a strong rumour that Joleon Lescott was coming to watch the match between his new club and the club where he started out but this proved to be unfounded as talks continued between City and Everton. Against this backdrop, Mike Summerbee was announced as City’s first official ambassador as Eastlands buzzed with excitement. A huge banner stating ‘Manchester thanks you, Sheikh Mansour’ that had been conceived and paid for by City fans on the ‘Bluemoon’ chat forum, was draped on the Kippax stand. Indeed, we have much to thank him for.

Hughes brought in Carlos Tevez for Craig Bellamy who had been impressive at Blackburn, but otherwise the team was unchanged. With City boasting an exciting forward line of Robinho, Adebayor and Tevez, ably supported by the fluid movement of Ireland, Barry and Wright-Phillips in midfield, it was no surprise that City totally dominated the first half. Tevez in particular was full of running, harrying defenders as well as providing even more invention to our attack, and it wasn’t long before the Argentinian alchemist made a decisive contribution. Bridge crossed from the left in the 16th minute and a lovely, deft touch forward by Tevez played in Adebayor who drilled in a brilliant goal from a tight angle. It was a goal of the highest class and Adebayor and his team mates celebrated as Eastlands went into raptures.

‘Fergie, Fergie, sign him’ up was the mocking chant from the Singing Section and South Stand, as Tevez continued to buzz around the bamboozled Wolves defence. Wright-Phillips cleverly turned Mancienne down the right and from the resultant cross, Adebayor’s effort was saved. Adebayor also turned Mancienne and out sprinted him to turn provider for Robinho but his shot was tame. The Brazilian was giving Wolves full back Stearman a torrid time down the left and the young Wolves full back was booked for a trip on Robinho. From the resultant free kick, Tevez struck the wall and was alert to the rebound and his searing low drive forced Hennessy into a smart save low to his left.

After a bit of brilliant trickery down the left from Robinho, his wonderful strike was heading in for the top left hand corner, just under the angle, but the impressive Hennessy clawed it away.

With Adebayor athletically and skilfully leading the line, Robinho and Tevez full of ideas and a midfield that interchanged places, it was no surprise that City were clearly superior to the visitors who were forced to defend doggedly to prevent City from adding to our lead. Despite this superiority, Shay Given was forced to make a brilliant save when he tipped away Matthew Jarvis’ goal bound drive, after the young Wolves winger had tricked his way down the centre past both Toure and Dunne. It was still City who carried the greater threat up to the break and we should have added to our lead after clever footwork down the left by Robinho freed up Bridge, whose pinpoint cross was headed wide by Tevez. At the break it seemed like it was a matter of how many City would score having had 9 shots on target to visitors’ 1.

The second half proved to be an anti-climax as City squandered good opportunities and the visitors upped the tempo, bringing on débutant Kevin Doyle who was a livewire in their attack. It is good to have our ex-captain Mick McCarthy back in the Premier League and his young team displayed the gutsy traits of their boss, who was a fine centre half in his day.

Wright-Phillips played in Robinho but he stabbed his effort wide on 56 minutes. Mark Hughes’ theory that high class players don’t need long to gel was illustrated a couple of minutes later in a lovely one-two between Adebayor and Tevez that saw the Togolese striker shoot over from a Tevez cushioned header. Adebayor could have wrapped the game up shortly after when played through by Ireland but his heavy touch took him too wide of Hennessy, and he hit the side netting from the angle. Robinho had the ball in the net after more clever work by Wright-Phillips but he was ruled offside. Ireland uncharacteristically stabbed an effort wide when played in by Robinho’s defence splitting ball.

The longer City went without adding to the lead, the more the visitors gained heart and pushed City back. They came closest to levelling when Toure failed to deal with a long ball and Keogh struck the bar.

Despite Wolves’ growth in confidence, it was City who posed the great threat, largely on the break and we should have been awarded a penalty after Wright-Phillips was clearly impeded in the box. The tiring Tevez left the field to a standing ovation when he was replaced by Bellamy. Then the impressive Adebayor found Robinho down the left and Bellamy and Wright-Phillips were unable to get on the end of the Brazillian’s searching cross.

A tired City side were sat deeper and deeper as they made heavy weather of the game, but chances for Wolves were rare despite their growing dominance. Given blocked a Mancienne effort and Stearman blazed over, but Given was not really tested. Hughes replaced Robinho with De Jong to stiffen up the midfield, which was evidence of the increasing anxiety. We still had yet another opportunity to ease the tension but Bellamy hesitated before attempting to play in an unmarked Adebayor and the chance was gone. The final whistle shouldn’t have been a relief, but it most certainly was.

Were City still suffering from having played in the heat and humidity of Barcelona in midweek? The travelling might not have helped either.

Three points are always welcome, and good sides manage to win when they haven’t played that well, but City must be more clinical in front of goal if we are to reach the top six and beyond.

We must, though, not overlook the positives of this performance. Mark Hughes sent out a team that was built to attack with style and panache, yet it at its core there was more than an element of steel. Our defence was largely solid and managed a 2nd clean successive clean sheet in the league. Indeed the whole team defended as a unit, showing great resilience, which is how it should be. With the imminent arrival of Joleon Lescott, this should improve us still further, though we should retain the services of Dunne if we are looking to enhance the squad. The fluidity of the midfield three gives us great flexibility: Barry, Ireland and Wright-Phillips give City a good mix of skill, invention and endeavour. The greatest accolades go to Given for his brilliance in goal on the one occasion that he was needed and man-of-the-match Adebayor who has quickly settled into a goal scoring rhythm at City. The future is most certainly bright.

City formation (4-3-3)
Given: One brilliant save and assured handling throughout 8
Richards: Decent enough but found Jarvis a handful 6
Toure: Largely solid at the heart of the defence, but one poor clearance nearly cost us 6
Dunne: Some crucial interceptions but let down by his distribution at times 6
Bridge: Did his defensive job well 7
Wright-Phillips: Busy and inventive as ever in midfield 7
Barry: A crucially strong, assertive presence in the midfield engine room 7
Ireland: Bright and inventive despite a slightly more withdrawn midfield rôle 7
Tevez: Lovely touch to create the winner, and great work rate 8
Adebayor: His top drawer finish won the match. Led the line superbly, creating chances for others, and doing his fair share of defending too 8 (Man of the Match)
Robinho: His magic distracted defenders and opened doors for City 7
Bellamy (for Tevez): Should have creative a nerve easing 2nd goal. Not his day 6
De Jong (for Robinho): Too late to mark n/a

Lee Mason: pernickety at times, and missed a nailed on penalty for City 5
Best Oppo: Matthew Jarvis: Tricky little customer on both flanks 7
Att: 47,287

This report is dedicated to our brave armed forces, especially the memories of those who have died in service.

Phil Banerjee <philban65(at)>


The first half City really put on the pressure with some very good attacking football. In the 17th minute Adebayor scored his first goal for City at CoMS, coming from a classy first touch pass from Tevez.

City should have scored a few goals in the first half, for we came so close on several occasions. We can see that the players are getting to know each other, showing confidence in their play, and with the way that they are passing the ball to each other.

In the second half Wolves came out with a vengeance to try to get the equalizer, and close they came when they hit the crossbar. Mark Hughes changed tactics when Wolves tried so desperately to get a goal with a surge of energy in their play, by bringing on Bellamy who has that speed for a fast counter attack, and bringing on de Jong to help the defence.

Wolves will not be a pushover this season, I expect them to survive. Having said that they will have to keep playing as they did in the second half against City; we all remember how Hull started last season only to fade fast in their last few games.

Towards the end I felt that the City players started to show a bit of tiredness; it had to be the travelling to Barcelona, and then the big game itself of beating the Euro Champions on their own turf 1-0 took its toll, but it was worth it, for we have won both games.

No question that City deserved the win today versus Wolves, but a brave effort from Wolves. City are off to a 100% start to the new season, and Shay Given and the defence have not conceded a goal.

The perfect season to me would be a top four finish, and to go to Wembley and win the Carling Cup. It is not impossible, don’t aim for the stars, aim for the Blue Moon.

Come on you Blues!

Ernie Barrow <Britcityblue(at)>


So what’s this rubbish about Moyes wanting the FA to deduct 10 points and fine City for tapping up Lescott? Surely he is joking! Supposedly he has accepted 24 million pounds for Lescott yet still wants to register a complaint.

Lescott is not worth 24 million quid. Based on the fact that we have chalked up three straight clean sheets, we don’t need him.

If Moyes is going to be such a crybaby, Hughes should walk away from the transfer, go sign Hangeland or Upson and try to revoke Jo’s loan. I have no idea why Sparky is pushing this move through. The aggro simply isn’t worth it.

Keith Sharp – Toronto, Canada <keith(at)ACCESSMAG.COM>


I’d just like to echo the various positive notes in previous editions that the last 3 or 4 editions have been really great reads. Diverse views and topics without insulting and intolerant responses. All very edifying and entertaining.

I am surprised that no one has pointed out the biggest anomaly in Moyes’ rant. When we were vying for 6th place in direct competition with Everton, we still lent them an experienced international striker who put in a few good performances and won them a few points that we could have done with them losing. He is still there, even though they can’t afford to buy him. Hardly a measured response, Mr Moyes.

The most startling about-turn of all though is the report that Bacon Face concedes that we could “do a Chelsea” on them. Only weeks ago, his scorn and derision were absolute. Surely, if he can show a flash of reason, there is hope of civility in everyone!

I (like other contributors) also have reservations that we are going to win anything this year. The only element of doubt is the ability of the manager to do more than survive. My doubts have been made clear in past editions. It is down to Mr Hughes to prove me wrong (and, as I have made clear before) I sincerely hope he does that and with style.

Martin Hunt <martin.hunt(at)>


Living in Shanghai I too am tired of seeing a predominance of Man Yoo, Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal shirts on the streets and in the bars most worn by so called “fans”. It’s the same story in the knock off shops where one can buy most of the major European team shirts; in 3 years of perusing I have never seen a City shirt.

Imagine my surprise this week on passing one of the major knock off shops to see displayed front of shop a new City shirt resplendent with the number 32 and Tevez name on the back. Inside, a whole row of shining sky blue numbers ready to grace the backs of new City fans. Maybe this will start to redress the balance?

Needless to say I bought the Tevez number for the princely sum of 4 quid. It’s c**p material but will keep my going until I buy the real one in September when I’m back in the UK. City have arrived!

P.S. thanks to the kind comments regarding the mischief making, glad to know others have some fun too!

Philip Gregory <ph.Gregory(at)>


Liked the recent contributions from Phil Gregory and Simon Gibbs re hiding Stretford shirts behind others etc. Any trips I make to JJB sports, WH Smiths, newsagents etc. I regularly take a couple of minutes to hide the various dark side ‘merchandise’ from view of other punters… childish maybe, but always amuses me to think of the completely confused (let’s face it, it doesn’t take much) looks on ‘their’ faces when they trot down to the local newsagents for the latest ‘nited mag, to find it nowhere to be seen hidden behind OK or whatever.

Another good tactic is to spread the City mags out across the whole display just to increase the confusion. The latest one last week was to cover up all the ‘Stretford’ birthday cakes with Postman Pat ones in local Tesco’s. Try it, I guarantee it will make you smile, cleanses the soul and it’s all in keeping with the ‘Welcome to Manchester’ stuff.

Mike Kay <Michael.Kay(at)>


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George Dean <George(at)>


23 August 2009

West Ham United       1 - 2  Tottenham Hotspur     33,095
Burnley               1 - 0  Everton               19,984
Fulham                0 - 2  Chelsea               25,404

22 August 2009

Arsenal               4 - 1  Portsmouth            60,049
Birmingham City       0 - 0  Stoke City            21,694
Hull City             1 - 0  Bolton Wanderers      22,999
Manchester City       1 - 0  Wolverhampton Wndrs   47,287
Sunderland            2 - 1  Blackburn Rovers      37,106
Wigan Athletic        0 - 5  Manchester United     18,164

League table to 23 August 2009 inclusive

                              HOME          AWAY        OVERALL
                    P  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F   A   GD Pts
 1 Tottenham H.     3  1  0  0  2  1  2  0  0  7  2  3  0  0   9   3   6  9
 2 Chelsea          3  1  0  0  2  1  2  0  0  5  1  3  0  0   7   2   5  9
 3 Arsenal          2  1  0  0  4  1  1  0  0  6  1  2  0  0  10   2   8  6
 4 Manchester Utd   3  1  0  0  1  0  1  0  1  5  1  2  0  1   6   1   5  6
 5 Manchester City  2  1  0  0  1  0  1  0  0  2  0  2  0  0   3   0   3  6
 6 Sunderland       3  1  0  1  3  4  1  0  0  1  0  2  0  1   4   4   0  6
 7 Burnley          3  2  0  0  2  0  0  0  1  0  2  2  0  1   2   2   0  6
 8 Birmingham City  3  1  1  0  1  0  0  0  1  0  1  1  1  1   1   1   0  4
 9 Stoke City       3  1  0  0  2  0  0  1  1  0  4  1  1  1   2   4  -2  4
10 Liverpool        2  1  0  0  4  0  0  0  1  1  2  1  0  1   5   2   3  3
11 West Ham United  2  0  0  1  1  2  1  0  0  2  0  1  0  1   3   2   1  3
12 Fulham           2  0  0  1  0  2  1  0  0  1  0  1  0  1   1   2  -1  3
13 Wolves           3  0  0  1  0  2  1  0  1  1  1  1  0  2   1   3  -2  3
14 Hull City        3  1  0  1  2  5  0  0  1  1  2  1  0  2   3   7  -4  3
15 Wigan Athletic   3  0  0  2  0  6  1  0  0  2  0  1  0  2   2   6  -4  3
16 Aston Villa      1  0  0  1  0  2  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1   0   2  -2  0
17 Bolton Wndrs     2  0  0  1  0  1  0  0  1  0  1  0  0  2   0   2  -2  0
18 Blackburn R.     2  0  0  1  0  2  0  0  1  1  2  0  0  2   1   4  -3  0
19 Portsmouth       3  0  0  1  0  1  0  0  2  1  5  0  0  3   1   6  -5  0
20 Everton          2  0  0  1  1  6  0  0  1  0  1  0  0  2   1   7  -6  0

With thanks to Football 365

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Newsletter #1560