Newsletter #1773

Well the second game in what is being described as a pivotal week is upon us. Something of a must-win feel to tonight’s match against Villarreal and both Mancini and Silva have been in the press admitting as much. So fingers crossed. For perspective, better this than must-win games against Macclesfield… no disrespect!

Great contributions in this issue from Phil and Ernie. Great to see the passion in Phil’s match report and Ernie’s perspective on the Tévez saga touches on a lot of people’s thoughts.

Some controversy as well with Phil’s observations on the incident at Eastlands on Saturday. Was anybody closer to it? What happened? Little press coverage of the incident.

Finally, the ‘and finally’ piece has a link of interest to us all I think.

Next Game: Villarreal, home, 7.45pm, Tonight


City strode purposefully to the very top of the League on a beautiful sunny autumn day with this ultimately impressive show of strength to defeat a hitherto unbeaten Aston Villa.

Yet it all started off so sluggishly for City who took 15 minutes to get into gear. Eyebrows had been raised when Roberto Mancini left both David Silva and Samir Nasri on the bench after their international exertions, and we were beginning to wonder whether we had enough creativity in the centre of the park as Aston Villa grabbed an early foothold in the game. Indeed, we could have been one down after Lescott allowed himself to be rolled and muscled off the ball out on the right by the speedy Agbonlahor. Hart was forced to make a sharp save from the Villa striker and from the rebound Kompany threw his body in the way to deflect the ball over.

We were struggling to get Adam Johnson into the game down the right. Balotelli was looking a little isolated up front for a while and he showed his frustration when Yaya’s return pass in a breakaway was too short.

The tide started to turn though as City started to click. De Jong, who had overcome an early wobble (in giving the ball away in a dangerous area), started throwing himself into tackles and with Barry, Milner and Yaya working hard in midfield we started to string some passes together and create some chances. Balotelli had a long range effort well saved and he also fired just wide, and Yaya forced a sharp save from Given. Then, just before the half hour, we took the lead with a beautifully executed finish. Johnson’s right wing corner was chested by Richards and Balotelli hit a lovely overhead kick high into the net for his fourth goal in four games. “Wooah Balotelli! He’s a striker…”, you know!

There was sadly a rather nasty situation developing in the Singing Section corner after this goal and this is covered in another article.

Our second goal, which came just after the break, owed much to poor Villa defending. Villa left back Warnock failed to deal with a high bouncing ball from Yaya Touré and Johnson coolly finished with his left just inside Shay Given’s right hand post. It was difficult to see a way back for the visitors as City turned the screw. City emphasised our dominance when another Johnson corner was flicked in powerfully by Kompany to leave Shay Given with no chance. As another Poznan enveloped the stands, Richard Dunne was rightly furious with Darren Bent who seemed to duck out of the way of Vinny’s wonderful flick header. Not that this should detract from a wonderfully executed goal, and it was clear that everyone was pleased for the popular captain.

We were absolutely delighted for the manager too. “Mancini Woh-oh! Mancini Woh-oh-oh-oh!” again filled the air in a show of great warmth to our manager in appreciation and support and Roberto turned and saluted the whole crowd. He is without doubt the best manager here for many, many years, and he has handled difficult situations and a largely hostile media with great panache as well as passion. Long may he continue.

It wasn’t quite over as a contest as Villa hit back when our defence had a momentary lapse of concentration, Warnock hooking in off the underside of the bar. There was a mitigating factor in that we were down to ten men after Micah Richards had banged his head in colliding with Shay Given when challenging for a high ball. Micah went off with a sore head that needed stitching and Shay looked like he sustained extensively bruised ribs, given the visible red mark on his right hand side. Micah was subbed but Shay played on and hopefully both will have no ill effects for the next game.

It was to be a temporary reprieve for Villa as City, with Silva having joined the fray for Yaya, stared to decorate a solid performance with his quintessentially delightful playmaking. He is so well balanced and has such intelligence. He is undoubtedly in the world’s top four players along with Messi, Iniesta and Xavi.

The fourth goal was a real beauty that was started and finished by James Milner. Milner showed great vision to played a superb, lofted cross-field ball from left to right into Johnson’s path. It was inch perfect. Johnson checked back and worked the ball to Barry who teed up Milner to hit a sumptuous curling shot into the roof of the net. It was a lovely way to round off the game and Milner showed his class and respect to the Villa fans (who still revere him) by not celebrating. Good lad.

Talking of good lads, the three ex-City men in the Villa side, Shay Given, Richard Dunne and Stephen Ireland all received a warm, appreciative welcome back to a club where they gave sterling service. Shay and Dunney applauded the fans back, and Stevie Ireland was a little less expressive.

All in all it was a very satisfying result. Indeed, it is wonderful to sit atop the League table and enjoy the moment and chant “We are top ‘o’ the League”! We will not get too carried away, though. Seven wins from eight, which represents the best start since 1897/98, is a fantastic start but as Mancini as pointed out, there is a long way to go and neither he nor his staff and players will rest on their laurels. City will be ready for a must-win game against Villarreal and prepare for next weekend’s derby and we know that in Mancini we have a manager who will have them well drilled for the task in hand.

Forza Mancini, Come on City!

Att: 47,019
Hart: Saved City early on and continues to show great concentration levels: 8
Richards: He was his usual brave, energetic self until a head injury ended his afternoon: 7
Kompany: Saved City at the start, putting his body on the line, and solid as a rock. The captain deserved his goal: 8
Lescott: Will be thankful to Hart and Kompany for digging him out of trouble but otherwise ok: 6
Clichy: Not really tested: 7
Johnson: Overcame a quiet start to be involved in the build up for all four goals. His two good corners helped create goals and a goal made it a very productive afternoon for the young winger: 8
Barry: Overcame the Villa boo-boys to give an assured, poised performance in midfield: 8
Yaya: Enjoyed the freedom of a more advanced role. Bagged an assist for the 2nd goal: 7
De Jong: Good to see him back, steaming into tackles: 7
Milner: Had a cracking game, which saw him starting wide left and having spells out on the other flank and in the centre. His goal was brilliant and he can look forward to many more goals in City colours: 8
Balotelli: Led the line well, took his goal superbly: 9 (Man of the Match)
Silva: It’s always a treat to watch this fellow: 8
Kolo Touré: Solid enough at right back: 7
Hargreaves: n/a

Best Oppo: Dunne: Did his best to stop us, but was let down by his team mates: 7

Refwatch: A Taylor: Should have awarded us a penalty and various other free kicks but just smiled and carried on. Poor: 5

Phil Banerjee <philban65(at)>


Sadly there seemed to be a near riot in the Singing Section next to the Villa fans after the first City goal. Even from over 100 yards away, it looked like there was some very aggressive stewarding and the City fans in that section were clearly incensed as a result whilst the Police did little to prevent it. I have not seen such anger and aggression at a City match for many a year and it took a good 15 minutes for everything to calm down. It was clear even from my view in the Colin Bell Stand that someone had been hurt as there were a group of people in high-visibility jackets looking over someone for a good ten minutes. Firm allegations have been made from several sources who were present that an elderly City fan was singled out and assaulted by a Showsec steward. The man who clearly claims that he has a heart condition actually passed out and there is Internet footage of him lying on the ground.

It was possible from our view in the stand to see another man being dragged out of the seats rather violently.

The footage that is widely available on the Internet does not suggest that the stewarding was “polite” or respectful towards City fans.

The issue was over standing in the Singing section. Indeed, it is rather strange that it has suddenly become an issue as standing has been going on in that section ever since it was inaugurated. Granted, standing is a bit of a grey area and a difficult issue for the club, but the way it is dealt with has to be far better than this and fans should not be getting hurt as a result.

There must surely be a full investigation into the incidents and the stewards’ behaviour must be reviewed. If a steward or stewards assaulted a fan, then they should be prosecuted as well as fired. Questions about the recruitment policy for stewards also have to be asked. After all, both Showsec and MCFC have a duty of care to the fans. If Showsec stewards cannot treat fans with respect then they should be removed from our ground and replaced with proper MCFC stewards. The role of the Police in this incident should also be questioned because they have an even greater responsibility than the stewards. Overall the club, the Police and the stewards (whether they be Showsec or MCFC stewards) are here to keep us safe. Somewhere along the lines, that didn’t happen on Saturday, and it must not happen again.

Phil Banerjee <philban65(at)>


Thank you Liverpool for the draw with United; it should have been a Liverpool win as a reflection of the game.

But it was the Manchester City win that sent City to the top of the table, a magnificent win whilst some other important players watched from the bench – what a fantastic squad we have! Some important games coming up this week with Villarreal on Tuesday in Europe, and the game at the Swamp versus the Rags on Sunday; it is non-stop action.

I will just quote our manager Roberto Mancini after the 4-1 victory to his players: “We are top of the league, now stay there!”

Come on you Blues!

CTWD, Ernie Barrow <Britcityblue(at)>


I have always had the impression that Tévez was not giving his best for City ever since his request for a transfer was turned down before last Christmas. In fact I have made my opinion well known in a McV edition long ago. Just look at his record: the goals he scored before the Christmas transfer window, and how many goals after?

Remember his last penalty, how weak it was shot towards goal? That was never in the old style of Tévez.

To me, Tévez is a very good footballer but the worst kind of prima donna, because last year he was such a star, he thought that he could walk straight back into the team, a team that was playing very well without him, and with a new star Sergio Agüero who also hails from Argentina.

Tévez had been told to get fit and get back on form so as to get back into the City side, so he was put on the bench, something that Tévez was not accustomed to. The rest of the story we have all heard or read about several times, his failure to get on the pitch to play when asked by his manager.

Later, his agent, Kia Joorabchian, seeing what damage was happening to his star, tried to rescue Tévez, but too late, the damage had been done. What could have been best for both parties, Tévez and MCFC, would have been for Tévez to play his best until the transfer window opened, then a good team would come forward for him with a decent transfer fee, and both parties would have been happy, but no, when Tévez was made a substitute his ego got the better of him and out came the prima donna who thinks with an agent like Kia Joorabchian he can do anything?

The footballing world has seen the truth.

We still do not know what the final verdict will be, but I now know one thing: after the chances that City have given Tévez, I never want to see him in a City shirt ever again. No one player is bigger than Manchester City; even the great Colin Bell was never a player bigger than City.

We have a great squad of players at City, and they already have proven they can play without Tévez. Roberto Mancini is a very good manager who has proven his experience with four years at Inter Milan; he is in charge, and he runs the team.

As long as we can carry on without injuries, I feel very sure that we can do very well.

Come on you Blues.

Ernie Barrow <Britcityblue(at)>


Due to family illness I haven’t read MCIVTA for a few weeks. But just to say thank you very much for all the work you have put in over the last 10 years bringing City to my inbox. The instant nature of message boards has changed the Internet – but for considered, thoughtful opinion, MCIVTA is still just about the best and that has a lot to do with Heidi and the rest of the MCIVTA team.

So thanks a lot Heidi.

Richard Mottershead <richardjohnm(at)>


Hello, I am an avid City fan and I have moved to America for the year and I am wondering if you have any supporters’ clubs in Maryland, close to Ellicott City? I am from England myself and I love to go to the games every weekend and still want to enjoy that experience with other City supporters. It’s not the same watching it on your own.

Sophie Broadhurst <xxsophie1989xx(at)>


This week not a gag, but a link to an article and interview with former Blue Jeff Whitley. He talks about his post-City problems and I think it’s a really insightful look into some of the problems young players face.

You don’t know whether to feel sympathy or anger at the waste of talent. Either way, it’s good to see Jeff turning himself around so positively. Good on ya lad.



16 October 2011

West Bromwich Albion  2 - 0  Wolverhampton Wndrs   24,872
Arsenal               2 - 1  Sunderland            60,078
Newcastle United      2 - 2  Tottenham Hotspur     46,420

15 October 2011

Liverpool             1 - 1  Manchester United     45,065
Manchester City       4 - 1  Aston Villa           47,019
Norwich City          3 - 1  Swansea City          26,567
Queens Park Rangers   1 - 1  Blackburn Rovers      16,487
Stoke City            2 - 0  Fulham                26,890
Wigan Athletic        1 - 3  Bolton Wanderers      17,261
Chelsea               3 - 1 Everton                41,789

League table to 16 October 2011 inclusive

                           HOME          AWAY        OVERALL
                    P  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L   F   A  GD Pts
 1 Manchester City  8  4  0  0 13  1  3  1  0 14  5  7  1  0  27   6  21  22
 2 Manchester Utd   8  4  0  0 16  3  2  2  0  9  3  6  2  0  25   6  19  20
 3 Chelsea          8  4  0  0 12  4  2  1  1  8  5  6  1  1  20   9  11  19
 4 Newcastle Utd    8  2  2  0  7  4  2  2  0  4  2  4  4  0  11   6   5  16
 5 Liverpool        8  2  2  0  7  4  2  0  2  4  5  4  2  2  11   9   2  14
 6 Tottenham H.     7  2  0  1  7  6  2  1  1  6  6  4  1  2  13  12   1  13
 7 Stoke City       8  2  2  0  4  1  1  1  2  2  7  3  3  2   6   8  -2  12
 8 Aston Villa      8  2  2  0  6  2  0  3  1  4  7  2  5  1  10   9   1  11
 9 Norwich City     8  2  1  1  6  4  1  1  2  4  7  3  2  3  10  11  -1  11
10 Arsenal          8  3  0  1  6  3  0  1  3  6 14  3  1  4  12  17  -5  10
11 QPR              8  0  3  1  2  6  2  0  2  4  8  2  3  3   6  14  -8   9
12 West Brom A.     8  1  1  2  3  3  1  1  2  4  7  2  2  4   7  10  -3   8
13 Swansea City     8  2  2  0  5  0  0  0  4  2 12  2  2  4   7  12  -5   8
14 Fulham           8  1  3  0  9  3  0  1  3  1  6  1  4  3  10   9   1   7
15 Everton          7  1  1  2  5  6  1  0  2  2  5  2  1  4   7  11  -4   7
16 Wolves           8  1  0  3  3  7  1  1  2  3  5  2  1  5   6  12  -6   7
17 Sunderland       8  1  1  2  7  5  0  2  2  3  5  1  3  4  10  10   0   6
18 Bolton Wndrs     8  0  0  4  4 15  2  0  2  8  7  2  0  6  12  22 -10   6
19 Wigan Athletic   8  1  1  2  5  6  0  1  3  1  8  1  2  5   6  14  -8   5
20 Blackburn R.     8  1  0  3  5 10  0  2  2  4  8  1  2  5   9  18  -9   5

With thanks to Football 365

MCIVTA FAQ [v1112.01]

[1] MCIVTA Addresses

Articles (Philip Alcock)         :
News/rumour                      :
Subscriptions (Madeleine Hawkins):
Technical problems (Paul)        :
FAQ (David Warburton)            :

[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/Twitter 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. You can also follow on to get the latest updates.

[4] What is the club’s official web site?

The official club web site can be found at and the official club Twitter page at The club also has a facebook page at

[5] What supporters’ clubs are there?

The Official Supporters’ Club and the Centenary Supporters’ Association have merged to become the Manchester City Supporters’ Club ( The club also recognise the Manchester City Disabled Supporters’ Association (

[6] Where can I find out about Points of Blue?

The committee operates as an interface between supporters and the club. Points of Blue appears on the club website under the “Fans” heading (

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

Live match commentary can be found on the club website. The Radio Manchester pre- and post-match phone-in is available on the web at

[8] Where can I find out if City are live on satellite TV? provides a listing of Premier League games being shown on UK domestic and foreign satellite channels. A useful site for North American viewers is

[9] Do we have a Usenet newsgroup?

Yes we do: is our home on usenet. If you are not familiar with Usenet, a basic explanation is available here:

[10] Do any squad members have their own web pages?

There are a number available and direct links can be found at

[11] Do any squad members have their own Twitter accounts?

A list of genuine player accounts is maintained at!/MCFC/players

[12] Where can I find match statistics?

Statistics for the current season are available from the club site, but for a more in-depth historical analysis try

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]Philip Alcock,

Newsletter #1773