I was born in Malta (due to parental military service) in 1967. My entire family were/are United fans and at an early age they tried to brainwash me into this sinister tradition. I cannot put my finger on why but I just did not like them. Maybe it was the colour red, Charltons’ sad comb-over, or United fans in their 3 star jumpers and sawn off wranglers.
I recall hearing on the radio that City were losing (not that common an occurence in 1974) and feeling sorry for them. I first saw City in 1974, it was an evening game at Old Trafford, League Cup, October 9, lost 1-0. My first Maine Road game was against Wolves a couple of weeks after City beat Newcastle in the 1976 League Cup final; it was also Gary Owen’s début. During 1975 to 1979 I was taken regularly to Man United due to my friend always having a spare seat ticket. I hated Man United and their cretinous fans and only went to see them get beat; I was starved of live soccer due to having no City-supporting relatives. I have probably seen mufc plc more times than 95 per cent of their customers/fans.
City really should have won the league in ’77 and obviously the Cup in ’81 were it not for the flukiest goal ever seen at Wembley. The ’81 Cup run stands out as a particular highlight along with that great run under John Bond, Gow, Hutchinson and McDonald, Trevor Francis’ genius and best of all the Georgian maestro, 5-1, 10-1, Luton and Liverpool relegations, dog forcing the teams to be brought off the pitch (Birmingham at home 1982?), Charlton ’85 promotion, a few highs and a lot of lows.
I lost interest in football during punk but have always been City mad. Some of my favourite people support City – Lard and Radcliffe, James H. Reeve, Mark E. Smith, Paul Morley, Mark Burgess of the Chameleons, it’s better than Zoë Ball, Gary Rhodes, Mick Hucknall and 75 per cent of cockneys isn’t it?
First printed in: MCIVTA Newsletter #350 on
Stuart Barstow Audenshaw