I’m from Singapore and have been supporting City since 1981, the year they reached the FA Cup Final. Although they lost in the final (after a replay), it was the way they played that endeared them to me. And also the determination that home grown youngsters like Ranson, Reid & Caton showed during those two matches.
City have not achieved much since then, either in the league or cups – in fact they have not even reached the semi finals of either the FA Cup or League Cup since 1981. But I have never regretted supporting City. In Singapore, every soccer fan supports one of the so-called big clubs like Man U, Arsenal, Spurs, Liverpool. I know of hardly anyone that supports City, even when they were in the First Division (now Premier). My friends say I am mad to support a ‘losing team’. They will never understand that supporting a team means supporting them through thick and thin, and not just supporting them when they are successful. I remember back in 1985 to 1988, there were many ‘fans’ here who supported Everton because they were extremely successful then. I hardly know of anyone now in this country who supports Everton. Also, in 1995, after Blackburn had won the league, people emerged in the streets wearing their jerseys. Again, I hardly see anyone wearing their jerseys now. It would probably take them another 20 years or so before they start wearing them again.
The point I am trying to make is that whichever team one supports, they must support them throughout their life. As City have not been very successful recently (an understatement), I can imagine the unbridled joy I would feel should they finish in the top 5 of the Premier league or win one of the Cups. It is my dream to watch them ‘live’ in Singapore in either the FA Cup final or Worthington Cup final so that more people would become aware of City in this country.
My brother is a United supporter. But United have been so successful of late that he does not even bother to watch them play mid table or bottom teams in the Premier League because he knows they would probably win (in Singapore, three matches in the Premier League are shown ‘live’ every weekend and either one or two other matches are shown on delayed telecast). If City do win promotion to the Premier League, you can be sure I would be glued to the television set throughout those 90 minutes for any matches shown involving City.
I think that the real reason for City’s demise during the past two decades lies in the fact that they have had a poor record of selecting their managers coupled with the fact that very few good youngsters have come through the ranks. Apart from John Bond, all the other managers are what you would call ‘run of the mill’ managers and they all have had poor records in the transfer market. For instance,