Why Blue? It seems to me that a lot of people who’ve never been to Manchester are convinced that every man woman and child living in the town follow City. This of course is fuelled by the belief that there’s not a single Rag to be found north of the Watford gap (if only it were true, regrettably though they are everywhere). The flip side of this is that people think there’s something amiss if you follow the Blues and don’t talk like Liam and Noel. So, I get asked Why Blue quite a lot.
As a youngster I was confused about which team to support. My family are all Spurs so loyalty to my old man gave me a leaning towards them but I have no connection myself with North London. I was born in Brighton so if I was to support the club of my home town I’d be a Seagulls fan but we moved away when I was 5 so no real feeling for them either. We moved to Watford and although I went to Vicarage Road a few times in a fairly good spell for them (John Barnes era) they never really fired me up. When I was 8 we moved again to Cleator Moor, nr. Whitehaven in West Cumbria where I stayed until I went to University and where I really consider to be home. The nearest league club is Carlisle followed by Queen of the South! Slim pickings indeed so we’re left to choose between Newcastle, Liverpool, Manchester and Leeds. Although a few plastics have come out in favour of Newcastle in recent years, almost all support in West Cumbria goes to Liverpool or the Rags – Celtic also get big support. Perhaps out of a desire to be different I found myself being drawn to the Blues and this was a major factor in choosing to go to Manchester University when I left school.
Although my years as a season ticket holder in the wonderful North Stand took in 2 relegations and some truly woeful football, at times the experience of regular attendance really cemented my allegiance to the club. I think that this is the point – it’s not just about what happens on the pitch, with City you get the feeling of belonging to the club. As a fan you feel valued, something which I doubt I would get had I decided that Spurs, Newcastle or, God forbid, United were the team for me.
First printed in: MCIVTA Newsletter #655 on