Newsletter #1802

Well it’s our first game in ‘the other’ European Competition this evening. It’s a tough one too, away at the holders and putting us up against ‘The Hulk!’ Hopefully he won’t turn green and be running round in ripped clothing but nevertheless it seems Kompany and Lescott will have to be on their toes, if selected!

Two non-playing strikers have been catching the headlines this week. First the ‘returning’ Tévez and second the remarkable feats of John Guidetti on-loan with Feyenoord. Hopefully the latter will be with us next season!

Next Game: Porto, away, 20:05pm Thursday 16 February 2012



Another wonderfully relaxing afternoon for us, eh?

Remember not too long ago when we were routinely underachieving and lacklustre for such a big club? I’m not saying I want to go back to those dark days but in some respects it made for easier watching than these recent away matches, if only because of the predictability and expectation levels back then.

For about 85-86 minutes Villa were as toothless as Fulham were against us last week, but the difference was that we hadn’t put them away, and it oh so nearly came back to bite us! Even before that Hart wonder save, it was not what Villa were doing as much as what they might do at any late moment. It seemed inevitable that we wouldn’t be able to hold possession towards the end and so it came to pass that this led to jitters aplenty.

Nevertheless, three well ground out points, though we should have been over the hills and far away before the latter stages.

MotM went to Barry but IMO – yes, he was massively involved and overall had a great game – he still gave the ball away too softly, too often. Not as much as the other ex-Villain, Milner, who I thought had forgotten that he was no longer in Claret and Blue, the number of times he gave them the ball.

No, for me MotM was a toss up ‘twixt de Jong (he got in amongst them constantly and never put a pass astray) and Lescott (even without the goal I’d still have said he was outstanding – indeed IMO he has stepped up to the crease when Kompany was banned and has stayed atop his game mostly since).

Silva continues to be the string-puller and sometimes you have to marvel at his touch and low centre of gravity but he occasionally looked like he was trying too hard today and not for the first time either. He does try to thread the needle in impossible situations now and again. Not having a pop though, the man is a genius.

Zabaleta and Johnson both impressed in the 2nd half, the latter hitting the post in the 1st.

I can’t say I have been a big Kolarov fan but this is the second time in a row he’s impressed me.

All in all, a good and solid but not great performance. A good and solid great result, mind!

I noticed that last week’s issue was a tad on the thin side, so I thought I’d belatedly add my thoughts. I started with a match report last week but scrapped it, so I’ll very briefly try to reprise the most salient points:

First off, I admit that I don’t get to too many matches per season these days (can’t afford it – times have somewhat changed since my first season ticket, £6 sitting on the Platt Lane benches, or subsequent seasons saving a quid by standing on the Kippax) but this one I managed.

Bad choice given the weather and how tough it was getting home afterwards, but good choice given that it was one of those oh so rare matches recently where we could relax whilst the game was ongoing – such was the sheer impotence of Fulham.

As I alluded to above, Kolarov – especially in the 1st half – proved me wrong in my doubts about him, Micah on t’other side was superb and it didn’t take Sherlock to figure Sergio as MotM.

If only today had been as easy, eh?!

Anyhow, it’s a couple of hours afterwards now, I’ve calmed down mostly (with the help of a couple of therapeutic dosages prescribed by Doctor Boddingtons, admittedly) and I’m thinking about the latest twist in the Tévez soap opera.

Whilst I feel I should resent him with every fibre of my being, the fact remains that we could well have used his services over recent months. If ever we had a player who could take a game by the scruff of its neck, then he (along with Trevor Francis, back in his day) is that man.

No idea as to his current health but bottom line: he’s a world-class player who had a fantastic year for us last campaign and his return might be just what we need given that, off the top of my head, I can’t remember the last time we scored from open play in an away Premier League match.

Cheers, best and everything crossable XXX’d for the rest of the season.

Steve O’Brien <BODSnVIMTO(at)>


A very important win by City against a gritty Villa; the truth is that City should have scored more than one goal. Just before the end of the game Joe Hart brought off a fantastic reflex save to hold on to the victory and put City back on top of the League by two points.

Come on you Blues! In Mancini I trust!

I don’t need to clip my nails this week.

CTWD, Ernie Barrow <Britcityblue(at)>


Time to dust off the Welcome to Manchester poster.

Well, it looks as though Carlos Tévez will be back in the team shortly as some of us predicted – well, as I predicted some time back to howls of outrage! – and while there will be a lot of hard feelings to soften, I think it’s great news. We need his energy, enthusiasm and, obviously his ability. Let’s hope he’s fit.

Doubtless the club will smooth his re-entry with some skilled PR but doubtless many fans will be loathe to offer any more than tepid applause at the outset. Fair enough, but Tévez was never solely to blame for this débâcle.

Kudos to Mancini for swallowing his pride. Time to move on – and up.

Chris Cobb <cobsun(at)>


As the debate rages over who should be the next England manager, I believe the job should go to Stuart Pearce, at least through the European Championships.

For one thing, Pearce has past experience with the English set-up, knows all the players, has been there before as a player and former manager (with City) and more importantly, can pick the current England team objectively.

Yes, I know certain critics will give him a hard time over his job at City, but let’s face it, Kevin Keegan left the team in a real mess, he had to get by with loaned players (anyone remember Kiki Musampa!), yet Pearce has the strong character to take charge of the various egos that currently disrupt the current England team.

Everyone is talking about Harry Redknapp, but think about it: how is he going to justify jettisoning Tottenham at this stage of the season to take over England? Then there’s his internal conflict of interest; does he select Kyle Walker over Micah Richards or pick Aaron Lennon over Adam Johnson or Theo Walcott?

He would have a hard time working with these players if he did go back to Tottenham after the Championships. Whereas Pearce doesn’t have these problems… yet would probably give Richards a fair shot at the team.

I can see Redknapp becoming England’s boss next season but I believe England could do worse than give the team to Pearce for the 2012 Championships. I think he might surprise everyone.

Just a thought.

Keith Sharp, Toronto <>


Once again I received loads of help from fellow City fans when I turned up on SPEC (Dave Wallace knows the reason for the CAPS) yesterday.

Thanks to the guy in the Witton Arms who texted his mate in the Supporters’ Club to try to get me and my lad tickets, to the Polish guy who sold me his spare and to the friendly Villa steward who let my lad in with a dodgy ticket despite it setting off the turnstile alarms!

Well worth the day out, but I think I’ll get my tickets in advance next time.

Alan Frost <alan.x.frost(at)>


Please list your order for these events of the last 48 hours:

  1. Rangers go into administration
  2. Pompey go into administration
  3. Mad Mick out at the Wolves
  4. Tévez to kiss and make up with Mancini
  5. Suarez to lead peace mission to Middle East
  6. Barça lose away at Pamplona
  7. Daglish to have cataract surgery
  8. Abramovich admits he’s the Chelski manager
  9. Pardew finds good points in thrashing at Spurs
  10. Inter lose to Novara

Last but not least, the relief on Joe Hart’s face holding onto the ball with most of his body out of the area.

Have a nice day.

Philip Telford <telfordpnt(at)>


12 February 2012

Wolverhampton Wndrs   1 - 5  West Bromwich Albion  27,131
Aston Villa           0 - 1  Manchester City       35,132

11 February 2012

Manchester United     2 - 1  Liverpool             74,844
Blackburn Rovers      3 - 2  Queens Park Rangers   20,252
Bolton Wanderers      1 - 2  Wigan Athletic        23,450
Everton               2 - 0  Chelsea               33,924
Fulham                2 - 1  Stoke City            23,555
Sunderland            1 - 2  Arsenal               40,312
Swansea City          2 - 3  Norwich City          19,927
Tottenham Hotspur     5 - 0  Newcastle United      36,176

League table to 12 February 2012 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 25 12  0  0 37  6  7  3  3 27 13 19  3  3  64  19  45  60
 2 Manchester Utd  25 10  1  2 37 15  8  3  1 24 10 18  4  3  61  25  36  58
 3 Tottenham H.    25 10  2  1 29 10  6  3  3 20 15 16  5  4  49  25  24  53
 4 Arsenal         25  8  2  2 24  9  5  2  6 24 26 13  4  8  48  35  13  43
 5 Chelsea         25  7  2  3 27 19  5  5  3 17 12 12  7  6  44  31  13  43
 6 Newcastle Utd   25  7  3  2 18 12  5  3  5 18 24 12  6  7  36  36   0  42
 7 Liverpool       25  4  8  0 14  8  6  1  6 15 15 10  9  6  29  23   6  39
 8 Norwich City    25  5  4  3 19 15  4  4  5 18 26  9  8  8  37  41  -4  35
 9 Sunderland      25  5  4  4 20 13  4  2  6 14 13  9  6 10  34  26   8  33
10 Everton         25  5  3  5 14 13  4  3  5 12 14  9  6 10  26  27  -1  33
11 Swansea City    25  5  6  2 18 10  2  3  7 10 22  7  9  9  28  32  -4  30
12 Fulham          25  6  4  3 24 19  1  5  6  7 17  7  9  9  31  36  -5  30
13 Stoke City      25  4  4  4 15 14  4  2  7  9 24  8  6 11  24  38 -14  30
14 West Brom A.    25  2  2  8  9 16  6  3  4 20 19  8  5 12  29  35  -6  29
15 Aston Villa     25  3  4  6 14 17  3  6  3 15 17  6 10  9  29  34  -5  28
16 QPR             25  2  4  6 13 20  3  2  8 14 24  5  6 14  27  44 -17  21
17 Blackburn R.    25  4  0  9 19 26  1  6  5 18 30  5  6 14  37  56 -19  21
18 Wolves          25  3  2  8 17 28  2  4  6 11 21  5  6 14  28  49 -21  21
19 Bolton Wndrs    25  2  2  9 15 27  4  0  8 14 24  6  2 17  29  51 -22  20
20 Wigan Athletic  25  1  5  6 11 22  3  2  8 12 28  4  7 14  23  50 -27  19

With thanks to Football 365

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Newsletter #1802