Carol Darvill

Why Blue?

Hailing from Gravesend in Kent (I now live in Bramhall, Cheshire), you would expect me to support someone like Arsenal, Spurs or even Gillingham! But no … despite the tried and tested efforts of my late father to support the Arse, I decided at the tender age of 10 in 1967 that City were for me. I thought Francis Lee and Colin Bell were the greatest (not a bad judge really for a woman!) so my late granny said “if you’re going to support two players you’d better support the whole team.” There have been times since then when, much as I loved the old dear, I could have cheerfully strangled her!

So my allegiance grew steadily. My best mate Julie was, and still is, a raging Spurs fan and even got me to wear a Spurs badge for ten minutes but she got it back having failed to convert me.

My first match was in the early 70s when Spurs played City at White Hart Lane – Julie’s dad took us. Even now I can’t remember the actual date (if someone can enlighten me I’d be grateful!). I remember Alan Oakes was the sub that day and was warming up in front of us. Our places were near the City fans as I remember seeing a girl from top to toe in blue and white. City won 3-2 and I was threatened with having to walk home if I said anything – they couldn’t stop me grinning though!

I joined the London Branch in 1976 just before the League Cup Final and have been a member ever since. I met my husband Colin in 1979 before a Spurs away match and we were married on 18 April 1981 (Wolves away – won 3-2!) the week after the FA Cup Semi Final at Villa Park – in fact I mentioned this to Paul Power at Bradford this season and he said he married three months after me and yes we are both still with our respective spouses! We lived for 11 years about 5 minutes away from Leyton Orient’s ground (great place!) and I often thought as I waited for a bus to take me to Walthamstow Central to meet my mate Maggie, “what the hell am I doing travelling 200-odd miles to see City when I’ve got a football team on my doorstep?” Needless to say, until I moved “up North” five years ago, I kept thinking that thought but never did anything about it!

The highlights of being a Blue – winning everything in sight when I first started supporting them, United getting relegated, 1976 of course, stuffing United 5-1, winning 10-1, getting promotion at Bradford in 1989, having the privilege of watching Gio Kinkladze and Trevor Francis in a blue shirt. I haven’t mentioned Franny and Colin Bell as they finished playing before I started to see City “live”.

Low points – continually getting beaten by that Red shower, having the fact that they are better than anyone on God’s Earth shoved down my throat whether I am “back home” or up here, relegation three times, perpetual changes in management personnel and the continual worry if we are going to hang on to our best players or not.

Having said that, City are a team for life, they get under your skin, in your blood and, more often than not, right up your nose but once a Blue always a Blue – I couldn’t see myself supporting anyone else ever. I suppose I’m like the song “I’m City till I die…”

First printed in: MCIVTA Newsletter #285 on


Carol Darvill