Newsletter #1565

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News tonight of behind the scenes moves and wrangling, Captain Kolo, international Blues and injuries.

We have opinion on the international action, Robinho’s whingeing and plenty of requests.

Next up the Gooners.

Next Game: Arsenal, home, 3pm Saturday 12 September

NEWS SUMMARY

General News

FIFA vs. The Premier League: The transfer of French youngster Gael Kakuta to Chelsea may have created a great division between the sport’s governing body and the English Premier League this week as international clubs across Europe began to accuse England’s top clubs of poaching their players. Whilst Manchester United were being reported by both French side Le Havre and Italian giants Fiorentina, City had their own issues as Le Ligue side Rennes claimed that the Citizens had made an illegal approach for 17-year-old Jeremy Helan who arrived at CoMS in February: “For us it was strange to have no discussion from City and now, in the week after the FIFA declaration on Chelsea, I would hope that it will be the same thing for Manchester City. Kakuta signed up for just a possibility of a full contract. For Helan there was definitely one there, under the terms of the pre-contract agreement, because he had played for his country.”

In response, the Blue Hierarchy asserted that there was a judicial dispute between club and player long before City came on the scene and strongly denied any wrongdoing: “Manchester City is aware of the ongoing contractual dispute in the French Labour Courts between Jeremy Helan and Stade Rennais. The dispute between the player and the Club pre-dates any interest from Manchester City. Manchester City obviously cannot comment on the case until the French judicial process has run its course, however we are comfortable that we have acted within the rules throughout the process and in no way induced any breach of contract by Jeremy Helan.”

Crossing the Divide… Again: Former United player and assistant manager Brian Kidd has re-joined Manchester City as Technical Development Manager. Kidd, who was a part of the 1968 European Cup winning squad at Old Trafford and went on to win the Premier League as Alex Ferguson’s number two, has returned to the Blue half of Manchester having spent three years at the club as a player. City Administration Officer Brian Marwood expressed his delight with the appointment of the former England assistant manager who will coach the club’s Academy and train club staff in his new rôle: “Brian was much in demand. We are delighted.”

Squad News

Captain Marvel: On the same day that Hughes named Kolo Toure as the club’s permanent skipper, the manager tipped City’s star Academy graduate Stevie ‘Superman’ Ireland to take the armband in the future. Ireland had a fantastic season last year, which culminated in the Irishman being awarded the club’s Supporters’ Player of the Season award and a PFA nomination for Young Player of the Season. Therefore when former skipper Richard Dunne left the club, Stevie Ireland was hotly tipped as the natural replacement but being surrounded by such experience was never going to make winning the armband an easy task and Hughes has claimed that despite plumping for Toure this time round, Stevie is undoubtedly captain material: “There have been a number of guys who have shown really good leadership traits. Nigel de Jong is very strong mentally, and you have to look at Vinny Kompany last year, and the manner of his performances. He is a good influence on the dressing room and then we have Gareth Barry who has been a captain for a long time at Aston Villa. There were many, many candidates – Stevie really enjoyed having the armband back in pre-season and I am sure in future he will be a Manchester City captain. Craig Bellamy is captain of his international side, and Shay Given has captained his club and country. These are all people who could have taken it on. It’s pleasing that we have so many characters and personalities in the group, all of whom could have taken the rôle. Kolo took it on readily, and right from the first game he became captain it felt right. The added responsibility doesn’t diminish his abilities as a footballer – in fact, we feel it enhances it. We are very lucky to now have that mentality in our dressing room with a lot of the lads, who could all carry the mantle of being a football team captain. But Kolo is the better option for us.”

South Americans Sidelined: The international break will always have club managers on the edge of their seats as each and every tackle flies in but the spectacle that should have been between Brazil and Argentina has turned sour for the Blues. The City faithful had looked forward to watching fan favourite Robinho come up against newly installed golden boy Carlos Tevez but it was the post match physio report that Blues most anticipated. As ‘Robbie’ picked up a thigh injury and was labelled ‘doubtful to return for the weekend’, Tevez twisted his knee, leaving Sparky to ponder his options for Saturday’s clash with Arsenal: “We heard yesterday (Monday) that Carlos had a knee problem, our doctor has spoken to the Argentine medical people and the feeling is that he is out for the weekend so he will not play against Arsenal. The hope is that he will be OK for the derby, but we will have to determine that when he comes back. He is staying with the national squad because he needs acute treatment at the early stage of the injury, which is what he can get now. Flying him back quickly might compromise the injury, so he will be back towards the end of the week so we can assess him and hopefully get him ready for the United game. It was an impact injury, he has twisted his knee but it could have happened in a training session or just walking down the road. It’s part and parcel of the game, we feel it’s not going to compromise him too much and that it will only be one game that he has to miss.”

Robbie-ng United of Their Crown: Last season’s top scorer may be doubtful for the upcoming games against Arsenal and Manchester United but the Brazilian playmaker sees no reason why the club can’t take on the league’s ‘big four’ in a title challenge this season. Robinho, who moved from Real Madrid last season for a British record fee of £32.5 million, had been linked with a move to Catalan giants Barcelona, but ‘Robbie’ has stated that he is totally committed to the Blues and is focused on nothing more than winning the Premier League title: “The club have set their sights high this year and backed that up in the transfer market. There have been great additions – now we need to under we must be stronger mentally. We have what it takes to go for the title. The more I think about it, the more I think this year must be our year.”

Super Eagles in for Super Nedum: Nedum Onuoha may currently be victim to City’s rotation policy as Micah Richards regains his position of right back, but he is in high demand on the international scene. Despite having been a key squad member in England’s recent Under 21s squad, the 22-year-old is yet to declare himself for international duty and having been born in Nigeria, the Super Eagles coach Shaibu Amodu is keen to claim the fledgling young defender for his national side in preparation for the 2010 World Cup Finals: “We have sent word to Nedum to see if he will be interested. We will get new players but first we have to qualify.”

Shay’s Influence is a Given: Kolo Toure may have been the man handed the captain’s armband this week following the departure of former skipper Richard Dunne to Aston Villa but manager Mark Hughes has said that the January signing of Shay Given has had a huge effect upon his side’s stability. Given moved from Newcastle at the start of the year for a mere £5 million and has begun this season with a run of five consecutive clean sheets yet the Welshman believes that the ‘keeper’s influence is not a matter of simply shot stopping but of organizing a stable and consistent back four: “One of the key reasons I wanted to bring him to the club was because he has the ability to organise the back four, is calm with the guys in front and when he is not called upon for long periods until that split-second he’s needed, then he is ready. That’s a key quality. Portsmouth only had two shots on target in our last League game, and the key one was when he stood up to David Nugent. That’s when he earns his keep and shows his value to the team, otherwise we would have been disappointed at not having got maximum points, given our performance there. That can happen in the Premier League, so when it does you want your top players to perform, and that’s what Shay has done.”

Stars Must Not Trip Up: Reserve right back Kieran Trippier has this week warned City’s mega rich squad that the club’s established Academy will continue to flourish and the boys who are promoted from the Under 18s to City’s senior side will push the millionaires all the way for their place in the starting XI. Trippier was tipped by former Academy director Jim Cassell to be the club’s next great breakthrough act and the FA Youth Cup winner has backed his fellow reserves to be a success this season: “We all want to train with the first team and play for the first team, but first we’ve got to play to the best of our ability in this team to catch the manager’s eye as soon as possible. Give Bally any opportunity around the box and he’ll score goals for fun. Both full-backs were bombing on, they’re quality, talented footballers. There’s a lot of running to do as a right winger, defending as well as attacking. But I love getting forward, and I’ll play anywhere as long as I get a shirt.”

Ex-Blues’ News

Dunney Fires Parting Warning: Richard Dunne may have moved to Villa in a £6 million deal last week but he did have some parting words for his former colleagues at Eastlands. Dunne questioned the integrity of Executive Chairman Garry Cook by claiming that the club had tried to sell him behind his back though the Irishman praised the club’s fans and wishes them well in the future: “From the day after the Bulgaria vs. Republic game in June, I was getting phone calls from people saying Garry Cook has been trying to sell me behind my back. That was two months after me going to him and saying if he has any problems to come and deal with me. I’m disappointed with people who say one thing and then completely do the other. They told me they have a certain amount of money they have to recoup each season to make things look better on the books. I could understand if I was getting sold for 200 million euros but it was a bit strange really. I am not bitter; I really enjoyed my time there and wish them all the success. The fans have been great to me and have been crying out for success. They now seem they are on the verge of it and I just hope they get what they deserve.”

City’s manager moved quick to support his Executive Chairman: “Richard obviously felt the need to discuss his thoughts on his departure from City, but the decision (to leave) was his. He was the only one to sign on the piece of paper to change from being a City player to being a Villa player. It was his decision and it was not as if he was forced out of the club. I have to say that it is a little bit unfair to highlight Garry Cook and his perceived rôle in the discussions. I have had great support from Garry, and from Khaldoon Al Mubarak as well. We work as a team to make sure the club is strong and competitive in the future. Decisions will be made that affect players, but we are trying to make Manchester City a good club and one that is successful in the future.”

International Blues: It was a matter of opposing fortunes for City’s South American stars this week as Robinho’s Samba boys overcame Tevez’s Argentina squad by three goals to one. Both players were relatively ineffective throughout and were reported as injured later that evening though former Blue Elano did have a hand in one of the goals. With this win, Robinho and Co. qualified for the 2010 World Cup and the Brazilians went on to thrash Chile 4-2 in midweek. Unfortunately for Tevez, Argentina’s hopes of qualification were left further in doubt as they stumbled to a 1-0 loss in Paraguay. Argentina now sit fifth in the South American qualifying group with only the top four certain to book their seats on the plane to South Africa next summer. Argentina coach Diego Maradona may be tempted to call up City utility man Pablo Zabaleta to his next squad as his job as national side manager hangs on a shoestring.

Gareth Barry’s consistent run as a fixture in Fabio Capello’s England squad continued as the Three Lions made amends for the 2008 summer that never was by beating Croatia 5-1. England’s perfect record of eight games-eight wins meant that for the first time in the country’s history, England qualified for a World Cup with two games remaining. The win came only days after SWP and Lescott played in their nation’s 2-1 win over Slovenia at Wembley though Wayne Bridge continued to warm his seat on the bench as Chelsea’s Ashley Cole continued his excellent run of form. Meanwhile, Nigel de Jong was key in both of the The Netherlands’ wins this week as they beat Japan 3-0 in a friendly and ruined any chance of a World Cup summer for George Burley and Scotland. De Jong took an assist from the Japan game and was one of few first team names remaining in the Dutch line-up as the Scottish succumbed to a 1-0 loss at Hampden.

Despite impressing as ever for the Republic of Ireland as his side walked out 2-1 victors against Cyprus at the weekend, Shay Given returned to City in order to allow Giovanni Trappatoni to tinker with the side that went on to beat World Cup hosts South Africa 1-0 in a friendly. Consistency was also the key for Kolo Toure of the Ivory Coast as the African side thrashed Burkina Faso 5-0.

On a more creative note, Vladimir Weiss played a major rôle in Slovakia’s 2-2 draw with the Czech Republic at the weekend and was named man of the match as Slovakia beat Northern Ireland on Wednesday night. Fellow winger Martin Petrov’s week was less enjoyable as although his Bulgarian side steam rolled Macedonia 4-1 on Saturday, the Bulgarians went on to lose 2-0 against current World Champions Italy in Turin. This result that means it is highly unlikely that City’s Shay Given and Martin Petrov will be at the summer tournament next year as the Italians close on automatic qualification and leave the City boys to battle it out for a play-off place.

Alex Rowen <news(at)mcivta.city-fan.org>

REQUEST: WEISS MOVE

Just back from watching N. Ireland play Slovakia. The City based Slovakian winger Weiss was outstanding and terrorised the Irish defence. On this evidence he deserves some sort of chance in the first team.

Arthur Magee <arthurmagee(at)googlemail.com>

OPINION: ROBINHO I

Isn’t anyone getting sick and tired of Robinho’s whinging about wanting to play for Barcelona? Didn’t we just stuff them in their own backyard?

Last time I looked, Robbie had yet to score and was rightly left out of the Portsmouth game. If he really wants to go, good riddance and turn the light off behind you.

City have an amazing line up right now. We have not conceded a goal in five games for a good reason. We are winning away games that last year we lost. If Robbie cannot fathom that he is on a team going places, please spell it out and go and sit on the sidelines until January.

Better still put Bellamy on him in training. Bellamy and Ireland are the epitome of players who bleed Blue. Anyone who doesn’t want to play for this team (and yes I also mean you Martin Petrov) can just get lost. Now is not the time for whingeing or crying about better teams. There is no team better than Manchester City.

Now let’s stuff Arsenal!

Come on you Blues!

Keith Sharp <keith(at)accessmag.com>

OPINION: ROBINHO II

I question Robinho and his full commitment to MCFC. According to the president of Real Madrid the club was glad for him to leave because of Robinho’s depressing mental state.

This time last year, Calderon told Radio Station Cedena Ser “Robinho’s problem was worse that we believed, I spoke to him several times when he spoke of his situation he physically cried and asked to leave Spain; he was desperate.”

“It is not in Madrid’s aim to sell players, we must defend the Club’s interests; the reasons in this case are humane and sporting.”

The strange thing about all this is that Robinho went to Real Madrid after refusing to play any more games for his former club Santos.

Now at City we see him missing from games, not long ago for compassionate reasons to go back to Brazil; this was the same time that Pele accused Robinho of using drugs – Pele later took back his remarks stating that he had no right reasons to have made them.

We have seen him missing in more games, and it could very well have been because of an injury, but the manager of Real Madrid was leaving him out of games because of his behaviour.

And now we hear Robinho talk about wanting to join Barcelona in Spain, the country that Robinho wanted so desperately wanted to leave?

Now I would like nothing better than for Robinho to come back to City fit, and really show us all that he truly wants to be a City player. We all know that Robinho can be brilliant at times; it is his times of depression I question.

I have written all this after doing a lot of research, and I without hesitation wish that Robinho will be OK and in the right frame of mind whilst at MCFC.

Come on you Blues and Robinho!

Ernie Barrow <Britcityblue(at)aol.com>

MCIVTA COMPETITION

The MCIVTA 15th anniversary competition

On September 7th 1994 MCIVTA was announced on the newsgroup rec.sport.soccer as what we believe was the first ever Internet newsletter dedicated to Manchester City. Two days later (on Sep. 9th) the first edition of the newsletter was pushed out to the subscribers. In October the first ever web-page dedicated to Manchester City saw its daylight when the “Supporters’ Homepage” went online. Soon back-issues of MCIVTA were collected on the homepage, and today the two have merged into “mcivta.com”.

To celebrate our 15 years of existence we challenge all our readers in a quiz about Manchester City. As always it will be completely free to participate, and best of all the prize is a signed poster of Paul Dickov celebrating after scoring that goal on Wembley. The competition will run over two weeks and the questions is presented in the newsletter and on the homepage.

So over to the questions: 1-3 out of 6 in total.

Question 1: MCIVTA was announced on rec.sport.soccer on September 7th 1994 and went public two days later. Who was the founder?

Question 2: Which players in the current City squad have played more than 100 league and cup games for the club?

Question 3: The 10-1 win against Huddersfield on November 7th 1987 was the second biggest victory in the club’s history, but have City scored 10 or more goals in any other league or cup game after 1900? [bonus: Name the game(s)]

To participate, just go to the web-page below and enter your answers. Please read the rules and guidelines. Deadline for submission of the first set of answers (1-3) is Sunday September 13th at 23:59.

http://www.mcivta.com/quiz/

Svenn Hanssen <svenn(at)hanssen.priv.no>

REQUEST: REDDISH BLUES

Reddish Blues’ first meeting of the new season is next Wednesday 16th September at Reddish Working Men’s Club when our guests will be Ian Cheeseman from BBC Radio Manchester plus City legend and Club Ambassador Mike Summerbee. Doors open at 7.30pm and the meeting starts at 8.00pm. Admission is free to members, £2 for adult non-members and £1 for juniors. Membership is available on the night. As always everyone is very welcome.

The Best job in the World: Ian has written his second book – it’s called “Best Job in the World – from the football specials to the press box”. As the title suggests, he tells his story from obsessive City/football fan to sports journalist for BBC Radio Manchester. It’s not a straightforward autobiography though, he gives an insight into his job, how his career developed and what it was like being a steward on the football specials, back in the 70’s and 80’s. It’s full of anecdotes of journeys up and down the country with his commentary sidekick Fred Eyre, his mate Charlie and others; and all told through the window of the 2008-2009 season when he attended 116 matches, including all City’s games at home and abroad.

It’s part travelogue and part blog and of course it’s packed with humour and honesty and there’s so much to go at, the arrival of City’s new owners, the signing of Robinho on transfer deadline day and the first season of Mark Hughes as manager as well as Stockport County going into administration, the brief return of Joe Royle to Oldham, Droylsden’s exciting and controversial FA Cup run and promotion challenges for Bury and Rochdale. Ian’s book will be available on the night.

[Ian will also be at Denton branch, Monday 14 September 8pm kick-off at Denton Conservative Club together with Paul Lake. Again everyone welcome – Ed]

Howard Burr <reddishblues(at)btinternet.com>

REQUEST: GENTLEMAN’S MORNING

The Manchester City Supporters Annual Gentleman’s Morning will take place on Sat Nov 7th before the Burnley game, at Newton Heath Working Men’s Club. The venue is only about 20 minutes’ walk from the ground but buses go regularly from the bus stop opposite the Club. Tickets are only £7-50. There will be the usual mix of fun and entertainment and we are pleased to announce that Frank Sidebottom will be making an appearance and we are welcoming back top local band the Microdotts. For any more info, please visit www.mcfcgentlemans.blogspot.com or phone Ian on 07852 826 150.

Don Price <donprice(at)live.co.uk>

REQUEST: GREATEST PREMIERSHIP TEAM

Thank you for taking a few seconds to read this really quick email introducing http://www.greatestplayerever.com/ to you and your community.

As the name suggests, the site uses a unique method for figuring out who the Greatest Premiership Footballers Ever are.

Please take a moment out of your time to visit the site and play at least one or two player vs. player play-offs as the more people that play the more definitive the results. It’s completely free to play and you do not have to sign-up to play either.

Your help and votes can help shape the greatest team ever too! Also you’ll have some fun doing it!

I have specifically contacted you as a supporter of your football club as we have recently been found by a pretty big Arsenal community and the Top 50 players are a little biased towards Gunners at the moment.

Please visit http://www.greatestplayerever.com/football/premiership

Many thanks, Lee David <ld(at)greatestplayerever.com>

RESULTS

League table to 08 September 2009 inclusive

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

With thanks to Football 365

MCIVTA FAQ [v0708.01]

[1] MCIVTA Addresses

Articles (Heidi Pickup)          : editor@mcivta.city-fan.org
News/rumour (Alex Rowen)         : news@mcivta.city-fan.org
Subscriptions (Madeleine Hawkins): subscriptions@mcivta.city-fan.org
Technical problems (Paul)        : paul@city-fan.org
FAQ (David Warburton)            : faq@mcivta.city-fan.org

[2] What are MCIVTA’s publishing deadlines?

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

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

http://www.mcivta.com/ 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 http://www.mcfc.co.uk/

[5] What supporters’ clubs are there?

Manchester City FC recognises three supporters’ clubs: The “Official Supporters Club” (http://www.mcfcosc.com/); the “Centenary Supporters’ Association” (http://www.mancitycsa.com/) and “The International Supporters’ Club”.

[6] Where can I find out about Points of Blue (formerly the Fans’ Committee)?

The committee operates as an interface between supporters and the club. Points of Blue appears on the club website as a minor entry under “Fans Zone”.

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

The Radio Manchester (née GMR) pre and post match phone-in is available on the web at http://www.bbc.co.uk/manchester/sport/manchester_city/index.shtml.

Live match commentaries and archives of games, reports and interviews can be found at http://mcfc.videoloungetv.com/do/preLogin?clubSiteCode=MCFC&CMP=AFC-003.

[8] Where can I find out if City are live on satellite TV?

http://www.satfootball.com/pl.html provides a listing of Premiership games being shown on UK domestic and foreign satellite channels. Useful sites for North American viewers are http://msn.foxsports.com/foxsoccer, http://www.soccertv.com/, and http://www.livesoccertv.com/.

[9] Do we have a Usenet newsgroup?

Yes we do: uk.sport.football.clubs.man-city is our home on usenet. If you are not familiar with usenet, a basic explanation is available here: http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/0,289893,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 http://www.mcivta.com/players/

[11] 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 http://www.mcfcstats.com/.


DISCLAIMER
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, editor@mcivta.city-fan.org

Newsletter #1565

2009/09/10

Editor:


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