Newsletter #49

Quite a bit of news, info and the up-to-date nickname list this time around.

If anyone has any more nicknames then please send them in. There is now a geographic distribution chart of MCIVTA subscribers available on the WWW under ‘Maine Road Diary’; thanks go to Paul Howarth for putting this in a presentable form.

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to send MCIVTA 50 out ’til Wednesday morning; on second thoughts perhaps that should be fortunately 8-). Any important news or match reports can be sent to Svenn ( so that they can be read on the WWW page beforehand. Keep the mailings coming as usual (to me) as I might be able to pop into work on Monday or Tuesday evening and put together the next issue then, rather than leaving it ’til Wednesday.

Let’s hope City can do themselves justice tomorrow; with Hughes and probably Giggs out and the mercurial but unpredictable Cantona sidelined, chances of a victory won’t come any better than this.

Next game Manchester United at home, Sat 11th January 1995


It’s been confirmed that TC will not be fit to play in the derby, so Dibble will once more act as deputy. The team is the same one that finished against Southampton at the Dell.

Dibble, Summerbee, Kernaghan, Curle, Brightwell (D), Gaudino, Brightwell (I), Flitcroft, Walsh, Rösler, Beagrie.
Subs (from) Vonk, Hill, Quinn, Burridge

Martin Ford (


Another name has been linked with the manager’s job at Maine Road. This time it’s Steve Coppell who has been out of managership for two years following his departure from Crystal Palace. He is also being linked with Arsenal and Sheffield Wednesday. Out of the names mentioned so far, I prefer this one the most but BH still has my support – for the moment.

Staying with Palace and the Cantona incident, the fan who was attacked by “King” Eric, Matthew Simmons, has gone into hiding following threats to himself and his family. According to a report in today’s Guardian (9/2/95), leaflets have been distributed outside Old Trafford listing his home address and telephone number. There are also T-shirts, one of which includes the same information on the back. Mr. Simmons’ friend, who was with him at the game, has also received threatening calls.

Whilst I have no wish to defend the Palace supporter, this is pretty despicable behaviour from some of United’s so-called fans. Obviously, it is only a few people doing this but one has to ask again if the arrogant and petulant attitude shown both on- and off-pitch at OT doesn’t lend succour to these criminals. Let’s hope nothing stupid occurs especially when United play at Selhurst Park against Wimbledon later this season.

On a wider scale, hooliganism seems to be coming back into fashion. City are under investigation for the “mini-riot” at the Palace CCC game, a Blackburn fan almost thumped a ref recently and last night Chelsea fans disgraced themselves at Stamford Bridge after being knocked out of the FA Cup by Millwall, with mounted police stepping in. Recent reports from Maine Road have hinted at a troublesome atmosphere and I hope nothing untoward happens at Saturday’s derby. Apart from a rags defeat, that is. ๐Ÿ™‚

English football should consider itself lucky that no-one is being seriously injured (or worse) after the recent death of a fan in both Italy and France but the signs are there that the bad old days are coming back. ๐Ÿ™

James Nash (


Large article in this morning’s Guardian re the Derby from City’s point of view – many comments from Franny on the state of MCFC, largely gleaned from last Tuesday’s M(U)EN, in which he enlarged on the shambolic financial state that wighead left the club in. There was also an article claiming that BH was after another (as yet unnamed) European (mainland) midfielder, who he was hoping to get on a Gaudino type deal. Wonder if he’s called Cantona?

Fingers crossed for tomorrow. I fear for our health if Kanchelskis is up against David Brightwell again – perhaps someone could whisper in his ear that acquainting Andrei with the advertising hoardings a couple of times, early in the game, is a tried and tested method of quietening him down. Ask Stuart Pearce.

Jeremy Poynton ( or


Having seen some of the nicknames for current/past players it’s quite amazing why/how the names came around, the likes of Gladys for Power. Here’s one that puzzled me: when Pointon was at the Academy, I heard him refered to as ‘Dissa’; does anyone have the foggiest why?

Here’s another nickname:
David Oldfield – Skippy. I suppose ‘cos he’s from Oz and the only other notible Aussie import was a talking Kangeroo!!

Martin Ford (


‘RAGS’ is one of mine. I don’t claim to be the first to use it as it also has the ‘red rags’ connotation. But I claim the credit for the ‘gits’ part. ๐Ÿ™‚

As for nicknames, all of what’s gone before looks OK to me. With Mark Brennan, I sometimes used “Banks’ Mystery Customer”. This was originally coined for Paul McGrath of Aston Villa. For those of you who don’t have Banks’ pubs near you, they had an ad campaign a couple of years ago where a “mystery customer” was supposed to come in and evaluate the pub. Basically, the insinuation is that the Invisible Man used to like the odd tipple or two.

James Nash (


Jimmy Currier played for City between 13th April 1940 and the end of the 1942/43 season. He is not mentioned in any transfer lists etc because he was never on City’s books. According to the “wartime” section of a City quiz book he was registered as a Bolton Wanderers player.

The following is taken from Ray Goble’s book “Manchester City – A Complete Record 1887-1987“. This book has recently been updated but the wartime details have been omitted, only the summary remaining.

“When Germany invaded Poland in September 1939 and Britain declared war a few days later, football was immediately called to a halt and the League was abandoned after only three matches of the new season. Once more, regional football was arranged: at first City were in the Western Regional League but this was only to last for the first season, and for the 1940-1 season until 1945-6 they played in the North Regional Section.”

“City, in common with other clubs, had often to rely on guest players to make up the teamsheet each week. More often than not they lost many of their own star players to other clubs and, of course, the forces teams which played a lot of representative matches…”

“The wartime regional leagues were quite complicated structures with some matches counting double and even treble in the League and Cups. There were two championships, one played to Christmas and one to the end of the season. The second championship were also qualifying games for the League War Cups which involved two legged affairs in the knockout stages which followed. For the 1945-46 season they resumed the more familiar 42-match programme; also, the F.A. Cup and Central League returned in this season, so it was more or less back to normal”

Why Jimmy Currier played for City and not Bolton is a mystery but he was very successful. His record is:

1939/40  League  Played 4 scored 11 (yes the numbers are the right way round)
         Cup            1         0
1940/41  League        35        42
         Cup            7         5
1941/42  League        30        10
1942/43  League        36        26

Totals up to 113 matches and 94 goals, which contradicts the number of goals shown in the summary of wartime appearances and goals where he is only credited with 84 goals.

Another City guest on one occasion was John Carey, who at the time captained United.


While looking at the details of Jimmy Currier’s matches for City, I came across anther 5 goal hero. Jimmy Heale scored 5 goals for City in a 6-6 draw with Stockport County on 2nd December 1939. He scored 31 goals in 39 games played in seasons 39/40, 43/44 and 44/ 45.

Roger Haigh (


Here is the current list of City players’ nicknames, some well-known and others less so. If anybody has any more to add or can provide an explanation for some of the more obscure ones then let me know [Ashley]. Also, if any disagrees with these attributions…

Colin Bell

Named after the famous race horse and referred to his legendary stamina.
Ding dong
What else does a bell do?

Mark Brennan

The Invisible Man
Totally inconspicuous but would suddenly pop up out of nowhere to do something.
“Banks’ Mystery Customer”
This was originally coined for Paul McGrath of Aston Villa. For those of you who don’t have Banks’ pubs near you, they had an advertisement campaign a couple of years ago where a “mystery customer” was supposed to come in and evaluate the pub. Basically, the insinuation is that the Invisible Man used to like the odd tipple or two.

Ian Brightwell

Could be a comparison to Bobby Charlton but to be honest the reason is not really known.

Tony Coton

Top Cat’s nickname from the ‘Top Cat’ cartoon series. It’s also his initials of course.

Andy Dibble

Officer Dibble
Character from the ‘Top Cat’ cartoon series.

Garry Flitcroft

From the league cup replay at Twerton against Bristol Rovers. 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! (JP)

Carl Griffiths

Apparently the poor lad worships Dean Saunders! (MF)

Alan Kernaghan

From ‘SchoolBoy’, invented by Martin Ford due to the subject’s predilictionfor schoolboy errors.
Tendency to hoof the ball into orbit? (Roger Sharp)

Francis Lee

Lee Won Pen
Invented by the media in 1972/73 after Lee scored a record 13 penalties.Undeserved really as only 2 were for fouls on him.

Trevor Morley

Clever Trev
I think that one came out after a 2-1 win at Barnsley. Trev was compared toa Brazilian player after some good control and turn before scoring the winner.Being compared to Brazilian’s must make you pretty ‘clever’ (MF). Rhymes as well!

Perhaps derived from the well-known Ian Dury song?

David Oldfield

Born in Australia as was a certain intelligent TV marsupial! (MF)

Terry Phelan

More than a passing resemblance to Sonic the Hedgehog when he’s steaming down the wing!

Paul Power

It’s a mystery at present

Fitzroy Simpson

Resemblance to Bart Simpson the cartoon character

Nicky Summerbee

From the ‘bee’ element of his name

David White

As in, between his ears, no footballing brain (MF)

Neil Young

Common English nickname for anyone called Neil


5th round draw. Matches to be played 18th,19th, & 20th Feb.

Liverpool             vs  Wimbledon
Everton               vs  Norwich
Man Utd               vs  Leeds Utd        ***** Live TV - BBC1 19th Feb
Newcastle Utd         vs  Man City
QPR                   vs  Millwall
Wolves                vs  Leicester
Tottenham             vs  Southampton
Watford               vs  Crystal Palace

4th round replays

Chelsea         (0) 1 - 1 (0)  Millwall    aet. Millwall 5-4 on penalties.
Southampton     (4) 6 - 0 (0)  Luton
Norwich         (1) 3 - 1 (1)  Coventry
Wolves          (1) 1 - 1 (0)  Sheff Wed   aet. Wolves win 4-3 on penalties.
Liverpool       (1) 1 - 0 (0)  Burnley      (Tues 7th Feb)

With thanks to Riku Soininen


Californian Citizens!

My brother Jon lives in San Francisico (Lyon Street, Pacific Heights); He isn’t on the net but would love to get MCIVTA. Do any of our Californian cousins live near him and if so, would you be able to print off & deliver him a copy? Let me know if so, and I’ll let you have his full address. He has been known to drink beer and would I am sure welcome having a like-minded drinking partner to go to wherever they show real Football in SF (bar called the “Mad Dog” I think).

Jeremy Poynton ( or


Thanks to Martin, Roger, James & Jeremy.

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 #49