Newsletter #39

This one is going out today as it’s already full! Normally Match Reports don’t roll in ’til Tuesday so hopefully we’ll get one for the next issue which I plan to send out mid-afternoon Wednesday with the latest news for the Cup match. Any offers of a Match Report will be gladly accepted. Some good news was that Gaudino played on Saturday and Paul Howarth told me he looks like he is getting to grips with English footie, at last! I was beginning to smell a fish there as he wasn’t being picked and nothing was being mentioned in the press. Hopefully it’s just a matter of fitness.

James Nash has suggested that people could put their email addresses alongside their signatures (it’s too much effort for me to do it) so as to promote contact etc. Sounds a good idea to me!

Next game, at home to Notts County, FAC 3rd round replay, 18th January 1995


The disastrous Cup exit is still trailing a wake of concern across Maine Road. The injuries are beginning to pile up again. Although Steve Lomas would have been sidelined under FA rules after being knocked out against Palarse, more news on him is even worse. He’s cracked his fibula just above the ankle and will be out for two months!! Flipper is also rated as doubtful after straining his hamstring in the CC Cup defeat. Quinn will also certainly miss the game with a calf injury also picked up in the CC Cup defeat.

Martin Ford & Andrew Wilde


In Howard Kendall’s first game in charge, Notts County beat Burnley 3-0 at Meadow Lane. Next stop… Maine Road.

Paul Howarth


Horton has been linked with the Bulgarian central defender from the World Cup. The one with longish hair and sideburns. Think he was called Ivanov. Price in £0.5m region. Least that’s what the Sunday People says.

Also, talk of Fat Ron & City continues. Apparently Frannie is on holiday in some exotic island, where, purely by coincidence, Fat Ron is currently holidaying. Wonders never cease.

Adam Joinson 🙂


As for the state of our beloved club it seems more changes are to be made.

As mentioned in the majority of the Sunday papers, Franny has over the last week been in Barbados with a certain Ron Atkinson. This seems somewhat peculiar considering the blues had what, bar avoiding relegation was our most important game for a very long time, certainly in the time Franny has been in charge. Did he have it on satallite over there???!!!!!

As for Quinn ,it seems he is on offer for £4m. I think this is a somewhat inflated figure and unless we get taken for a ride in the transfer market like we have done in the past then nothing will happen.

I don’t think Franny will let BH make any major decisions like that, particularly if what is rumoured becomes true.

We have also been linked to some Bulgarian/ Russian centre half who played in the World Cup, valued at £0.5m.

Let’s hope for some luck on Wednesday.

Brian Worrall


There is now a group of London-based MCIVTA subscribers who attend matches (some frequently, some infrequently) who have expressed an interest in travelling to games together. If anyone else travels from that area and is also interested, mail me and I’ll pass the address-list on.



Info on the London Branch (Supporters’ Club):

They travel on the train to every home game and majority of away ones, last time I went with them it was about £17.00 return; that was nearly 2 years ago but still a big saving on normal prices. The address of the secretary is:

Tina Robertson
45 Durham Ave

Phone 0181-843-9854

Neil Foskett


Chairman                Anthony Horton          0161-864-4908
Secretary               Shaun Sefton            0161-474-7009
Travel Secretary        Bernard Buckley         01585-292108
A34 Branch              Steve Holt              01962-844374
Chadderton Branch       Jackie Heap             0161-682-1860
Heywood                 Chris Jacques           01706-369178
Higher Blackley         Carl Heald              0161-720-8438
Holyhead                Colin Bell (?!)         01407-760531
Knutsford & Mobberley   Mike Johnson            01565-872541
Central (Midlands)      Paul Ainsworth          01926-429924
North East              Dave Bamborough         0191-548-6140
Prestwich & Whitefield  Don Price               0161-798-9994
Rochdale                Mick Thompson           01706-341765
South Yorkshire         Gary Brough             01709-548634
Stockport               Shaun Sefton            0161-474-7009
West Yorkshire          Ian Barton              01904-488347
Wythenshawe             Brian Wardle            0161-945-7527

[All numbers in new UK format, e.g. 061 prefix is now 0161]

The following is quoted from the Nov/Dec 1994 issue of the Independent Supporters’ Association Newsletter: [my comments in square brackets]

“Time to Be Heard.”

“Plans are now well advanced for the formation of the new Centenary Supporters’ Association. Under the auspices of Dave Wallace (The Fan on the Board), Ian Barton (West Yorkshire Branch) and representation from the Official Supporters’ Club, a timetable has been formulated that will see a committee in place by the end of January.”

“Shortly you will be receiving a ballot paper detailing all the candidates and their aspirations for the new organisation. Obviously we [the ISA] hope that the Independent Supporters’ Association will provide the majority of the new committee in order that we can continue to overhaul and improve what we provide for you the supporters.

“The new organisation which will be called the [gulp] Manchester City Football Club Centenary Supporters’ Association/Club will have the full backing of the club, with all the privileges that follow so make sure you do vote and use your vote wisely.”

A little background: the ISA broke away from the Offical Supporters’ Club during the Swales struggle. After months of bickering, they are finally getting their act together.

I haven’t received my ballot paper yet (as of 11/1/95) so anyone wishing to join (4 pounds sterling annual fee) could contact their local branch official and may be in with a chance of voting. If you have no local branch, you can still join by sending a cheque or postal order for 4 pounds, made payable to M.C.F.C.I.S.A., along with a stamped S.A.E. to P.O.Box 188, Stockport, Cheshire SK3 8DS. Juniors can pay a “once only” subscription costing 3 pounds which lasts until they are 16 years old, whereapon (sic) full membership subscriptions will apply. Nothing is said about foreign subscribers, surprise surprise; if anyone is interested, I could phone around and find out. If so, e-mail me (

Whether it’s worth joining or not, I don’t know. If the new association is supposed to be in place by the end of January and you’re not interested in voting, I would wait a month or so and join then. Otherwise, go for it! I will keep MCIVTA/WWW readers up to date with information as I get it.

James Nash


Regarding Steve Lomas being referred to as a “Dirty Ginger Kraut” by some Palace fans; he was brought up in Ireland but was actually born in Hannover, so the Palace fans were right about the “Kraut” bit!

Paul Howarth


Well, to tell you the truth I can’t remember the point in my life when I said to myself “I’m a City supporter”. On the other hand, nor can I remember a time when I was conscious of football and not a City supporter. So how did it happen?

I was born in ’51, in Bramhall to a middle-class rugby-obsessed family; my father played for Davenport into his forties, so winter Saturdays were spent there or on the touchline of some windswept, godforsaken rugby pitch in the wilderness of Wirral or up in Lancashire. Football was played by girls in fact, with an exemption for the working classes.

I do remember our neighbours being Reds but I think that back in the 50’s, City & United were rather like the Boat Race – you supported one or the other, whether or not they had ever played any part in your life or not. Our next door neighbours were reds though I don’t recall any of them ever going to a game, so maybe it was a reaction to that. My Grandfather was also a red but then he had been supporting them since they were called Newton Heath; again, I don’t think he had seen them since they were Newton Heath. Anyway, I still can’t pinpoint when I became a blue, so I can only assume it is a some sort of chromosomal number.

The first real consciousness I do have of it was that a mate of mine at school was also a City fan (notional at least), but switched to the Rags when we suffered one of our regular periods of R&R in the (real) Div 2. At this point I knew for sure there was something wrong with them and I guess it was then I became 100% blue.

However, good old rugby still got in the way. No way was I going to be allowed to go to Maine Road. However, in 1966, in a burst of enthusiasm after the World Cup and having finally gievn up playing rugby, my father at last took me to Maine Road.

I can’t in fact remember who we played – I think it was Stoke, with Banks in goal and I think it was a 1-1 draw. Unfortunately, when I left home to go to University, and in effect never lived at home again, my mother ditched all my City memorabilia, programs and all, and worst of all, the 14 foot sky blue and white woolen scarf my grandmother knitted for me – anyone out there pick it up at a jumble sale? If so, any chance I can have it back please! The only thing I have from that era is a special Championship brochure put out after we won the league (yes folks – it can be done!) and that’s falling to pieces.

Well, from then on it snowballed I guess; soon I managed to persuade my parents that it was in fact possible to go to a football match and come home in one piece. Mind you, in those days I guess there was at times doubt about that; I do recall the Leeds fans trashing most of Lloyd street after one game; it was the start of the era of full scale train-wrecking and inter-fan barnies. I do recall being set upon by a fearome-looking skinhead after the famous Stepney blunder at OT in a league cup semi-final. Also being chased from Highfield Road to Coventry station (quite a long way!) by a gang of skinheads, with not a policeman in sight until we got near the station (they are never there when you want them). Apart from those incidents, in-built cowardice ensured I never got near trouble when it flared up.

So at last I could go to the Kippax! Despite being away at school – and that continued after prep school, I managed to take in as many games as possible. A regular spot was reserved on the top left hand corner of the tunnel at the open (North stand) end of the Kippax, from where we could launch a regular chorus of “I hear the sound of distant drums” at the feeble peeps of the away supporters. Maine Road was, as it still can be, a madhouse, both on and off the field. From what I recall, we had to go a goal down fairly quickly to play well and a collective sigh of relief would issue from the Kippax when this did happen.

On leaving public school, I had a good chunk of time before going to University. Much of this was spent with a friend of mine, an Owl, whose family moved from Sheffield to Bowden near Altrincham, taking in any game within striking distance. We’d go to Maine Road, Hillsborough, Anfield, Burnley, Stockport & accessible away games. I clocked up over 40 games that year. A great pleasure was going with the away fans at OT!

In those days of sensible public transport, despite living in the leafy green belt outside Greater Manchester, I could hop on a bus in Woodford and get off on Princess Road, just opposite Wilbraham Street, so despite my affection for Stockport County, no-one can accuse me of not supporting a local club. A particular pleasure I remember from those days was going in on the bus for evening games and seeing the pylon floodlights of Maine Road from far away. Does anyone else miss those old-style floodlights; I for one think they are much more evocative of .. something? I’m not quite sure what, but I do miss them.

The Championship & Cup years were wonderful; I saw as much as possible of City in that time, highlights being the two cups, the FA Cup semi-final at a packed Villa Park; I still have an image engraved in my mind of a toilet roll sailing over the goal just as Tommy Booth (master striker) hit the goal that took us to Wembley, the 5-1 thrashing of Schalke in the ECWC semi at Maine Road, a league cup quarter final against Liverpool which we won either 3-2 or 2-1 (my memory is not what it was!), a game about which I recall Bill Shankly saying “It wasn’t a game of football, it was a cavalry charge”. but most of all, being at OT when we beat the Rags 3-1 to go on to win the league. 1-0 down after 30 seconds, we then proceeded to take them to pieces. Again, it can be done!

On going to Oxford, my football attending started to slow down. Well … Oxford United weren’t the greatest of clubs! I used to go and see City in London occasionally and go to the Manor for big games. In ’72 I met my wife to be and by ’75 children started to take over. Football watching was relegated to TV. Occasionally Pat’s brother & I would pick up games at the Manor; I recall seeing Forest in the FA Cup there, winning 4-0 with a young Viv Anderson scoring a cracker and even better, City, with Marsh & Law winning a characteristically loony cup game 5-2. Mid seventies, attendance at games ground to a halt. I did get to the ’81 Final replay, which we should have won, but that was it for a while.

In ’83 we moved to Bristol. It didn’t even cross my mind to go to Ashton Gate or Eastville (which Rovers had not yet been kicked out of). However, once again the World Cup came into play. Two of my three boys had by this time got a mild dose of football fever and the brainwashing was getting into action; they were told they supported City, so City they supported. At this point, I decided it was time to start frequenting the terraces again. By now, Rovers had been kicked out of Eastville and had settled in Bath, where they are to this day, so I started taking them to Ashton Gate. At this time, Bristol City were in the (real) Div 3, but pulling in 8 or 9k crowds and playing some good football. It was all pretty low key (but at least I could shout “Come on City” without thinking) but I realised just how much I had missed the fun of being on the terraces; I was even prepared to grant Joe Jordan a certificate of exemption for being an ex-Red for his great deeds at the Gate.

Time came, therefore, when the lads had to be introduced to higher things. At this point we were, surprise surprise, back in (the real Div 2), so playing the likes of Swindon & Oxford. My brother-in-law (he of Oxford United and therefore a Swindon hater) took them to see City at Swindon and that was their initiation. Soon afterwards, we went to the Manor, where they were privileged to see a performance straight out of the archives. 2-0 down at half-time, and playing like blind men, within 8 minutes of half-time they were 3-2 up and won 4-2 in the end. We were imprisoned in the dreaded Cuckoo Lane end at the Manor with a couple of thousand of fine, upstanding & completely deranged Citizens The boys were impressed !

Since then, we try to pick up a couple of games a season at the academy (although that has been curtailed this season with the membership number) and the odd away game. I notice that in one of the MCIVTAs, there is a reference to Gary Flitcroft as “Flipper”; I think I can shed some light on that. At the league cup replay at Twerton against Bristol Rovers, we were in attendance (with the Rovers fans). They have a deranged MC there by the name of Keith Valle, who comes out before the game and at half-time to whip up the “gasheads” as Rovers fans are known. Well, at some point in the game, Flitcroft came on as substitute. Mr Valle announced the change of personnel… “And coming on for Manchester City, is Gary Flit, er Gary Flit, Gary FLIPFLOP” – wild cheers!

And so it goes; it’s a pleasure to have stumbled across MCIVTA and find so many like minds there, who stick with the Blues through thick and thin. Of the future, well, I think Franny has a major job on his hands after 20 years of Swalesdom and I don’t think he can put us back where we belong quickly. I just hope the fans stay patient and recognise the enormous task he has taken on, which is I guess, on our behalf. I am still unsure about Horton; you can’t help but like the guy and you can’t help but sympathise with him having had to cope both with a flailing team, when he joined, and the anti-Swales campaign but to me he seems tactically naïve in the extreme; witness the Derby disasters. If we lose to Notts County next Wednesday, I think he will be on his bike.

As for the Rags, well, I blame Trevor Francis & Howard Wilkinson. Francis first; if he had sold David Hirst to the rags then I am convinced that none of the horrors of the past two years would have happened. Hirst would have been permanently injured and perhaps he wouldn’t have gone for Cantona with a 4 million pound signing under his belt. I have run this theory past a couple of Reds I know and they reckon there is something in it. So Trevor Francis; we name the guilty person! As for Wilkinson, well, that needs no explanation at all.

Up the Blues.

Jeremy Poynton (


I was listening to the match on Picadilly Gold on Wednesday night (CP v MC). After the match, James Reeve (I think) was interviewing ‘fans’ in the Social Club at Maine Road. It was very upsetting to listen to the fans and their opinions. True, City had been beaten by the better team on the night and the fans (like us all) were in mourning but what was said by most of the interviewees was absolutely crap.

One chap said that only four of the team (he didn’t say which ones) deserved to be wearing a City shirt. One chap said that Horton should be sacked. One guy questioned the professionalism of David Brightwell etc. etc. etc …

The team has come a long way in the last 9 months and although beaten by Crystal Palace deserve a pat on the back for getting as far as they did – like they did knock out Newcastle on the way. Supporters should be supporting not undermining. Let’s hope their opinions were down to post-match blues and a lot of ale.

Robert Watson


Will our old friend Howard Kendall be taking charge of Notts County before next Wednesday? If so, what reaction will he get at Maine Road in the FA Cup replay? Either time will have healed wounds or it’ll be the old “Judas” mantra. The “Judas” thing has gone on long enough IMO and it’s time to bury the hatchet. Maybe we might see comments from him emerging before the game? “Sorry” would be nice.

James Nash (


Injuries. It struck me that since the advent of BH the squad has suffered a far greater number of injury problems. Anyone got any thoughts on this? Is it training methods? Is it a case of the Souness syndrome; I recall that he had the same effect at Anfield? I am sure that we were not suffering this volume of significant and recurring injuries under Peter Reid (whatever else may have or have not happened under his regime).

Jeremy Poynton


I am writing after the Palace fiasco & I must admit that it is not the most disappointing day of my City life. I have been supporting them since 1965-66 when I was 8.

The problem is that I was not surprised. Why is it that Arsenal played their best away football of the season, Notts county played ‘above their station’, United -superb-? It boils down to one thing. Teams like to play City; they are given so much space in midfield & therefore can create opportunities. Look at Villa, they could have killed us if not for Dibble.

I am not saying this with hindsight but I cannot understand why Horton suddenly ditched McMahon. Steve Lomas (my wife’s favourite coz he’s cute) is not up to it – yet! (I wish him all the best; not only did he swallow his tongue but cracked his shinbone). As for the German; he couldn’t keep pace in the Hyde Sunday League.

I think Kernaghan is improving with every game but get Buzzy at full back, allowing him to go forward, Brightwell in midfield (injuries permitting) and then bring a strong creative midfielder in with Flitcroft. OK, we won’t score as many goals.

Here’s to Wednesday – actually I’m quite confident.

Kevin Duckworth


I feel that City have got to do something about their defence. It constantly looks a shambles with or without Curle in the side. I think it is time to download Curle for a more consistent defender who plays more than Curle does. I definitely feel that he should go.

Another player I would get rid off would be Phelan. I have seen him several times this year and he to me is another weak link in the defence. I know we have severe injuries but our defence is a joke.

The third man I would sell would be Quinn. If it’s true that he is looking to move on because he is not getting a regular team place then I would let him go. Other top clubs don’t have this problem. I have always been a believer that a player should fight for his place and should not have the divine right to always be picked. If City can get 2 million for him they should do it; I’m sure we are all aware that he is no way worth anything near that.

I like Curle, Phelan and Quinn but I feel that it is time to get some new blood into the squad. Look what Beagrie, Walsh and Rösler have done for us.

I love Manchester City Football Club and I know there are many thousands like myself. I just don’t know how a team can frustrate and infuriate us so much; maybe us City fans are gluttons for punishment? I have had twenty or so years of it. I would like to say to all City fans who read this that we are a breed of our own, second to none.

O U R    D A Y    W I L L    C O M E

Paul Johnson


In response to Phil Knight’s request for info on home live TV matches, I think I have more gloom. I seem to recall about 3 seasons ago City playing at home to Southampton on a Sunday which I am sure was live on TV. As usual the Saints were struggling at the bottom and it should have been an easy win for the Blues but they ended up losing 1-0, beaten by a goal from that ‘handsome’ striker Dowie!

Mark Denton


Jan 14, 1995   Arsenal         - Everton          1 - 1
               Aston_Villa     - Queen's_PR       2 - 1
               Blackburn       - Nottingham       3 - 0
               Chelsea         - Sheffield_W      1 - 1
               Crystal_Palace  - Leicester        2 - 0
               Leeds           - Southampton      0 - 0
               Liverpool       - Ipswich          0 - 1
               Manchester_C    - Coventry         0 - 0
               Norwich         - Wimbledon        1 - 2
               West_Ham        - Tottenham        1 - 2
Jan 15, 1995   Newcastle       - Manchester_U     1 - 1

Total Jan 15, 1995

Blackburn       23    17   4   2    52  -  18    55
Manchester_U    24    15   5   4    45  -  20    50
Liverpool       24    13   6   5    44  -  20    45
Nottingham      24    12   6   6    36  -  26    42
Newcastle       23    11   8   4    41  -  25    41
Tottenham       24    11   6   7    41  -  35    39
Wimbledon       24    10   5   9    30  -  38    35
Leeds           23     9   7   7    29  -  27    34
Norwich         24     9   6   9    22  -  25    33
Sheffield_W     24     8   8   8    31  -  32    32
Manchester_C    24     8   7   9    33  -  38    31
Chelsea         23     8   6   9    30  -  31    30
Arsenal         24     7   8   9    27  -  27    29
Southampton     24     6  10   8    34  -  39    28
West_Ham        24     8   4  12    23  -  29    28
Crystal_Palace  24     6   8  10    17  -  22    26
Coventry        24     6   8  10    21  -  40    26
Aston_Villa     24     5  10   9    29  -  34    25
Queen's_PR      23     6   6  11    34  -  41    24
Everton         23     5   8  10    22  -  32    23
Ipswich         24     5   4  15    26  -  47    19
Leicester       24     3   6  15    22  -  43    15

With thanks to Riku Soininen


Thanks to Neil, James, Jeremy, Paul, Mark, Martin, Andrew, Robert, Kevin, Adam & Brian.

The views expressed in MCIVTA are entirely those of the subscribersand there is no intention to represent these opinions as being thoseof Manchester City Football Club, nor of any of the companies anduniversities by whom the subscribers are employed. It is not inany way whatsoever connected to the club or any other relatedorganisation and is simply a group of supporters using this mediumas a means of disseminating news and exchanging opinions.

Ashley Birch,

Newsletter #39