Newsletter #350

The press continued their fine tradition of inventing stories about City with a fine effort concerning Boler selling all of his shares; you’d have been forgiven for thinking they were there as they were signed over, especially as they were quoting Mike McDonald (SUFC chairman and avid Blue) as having been approached. Just as we were all thinking that we were in for another round of instability, Boler appears and angrily denies everything; apparently his company is in some difficulty and he merely returned home for a short stay from his game reserve in South Africa!

This issue has a report on the recent reserves’ game, which was Shelia’s début, a Why Blue, and plenty of opinion about postings to, and by Noel Bayley. Doubtless this one will run and run, and my intention is to let the proponents have their say and let everyone else make their own minds up. However, this certainly has the potential to be one of the more contentious discussions that have appeared in MCIVTA, so I only intend to publish them as long as they are not damaging to MCIVTA, either due to offensive or soporific content. I’ve already conducted a fairly lengthy correspondence with various people and have my own personal views which I’ll keep to myself. Although I still think personally abusive mail is out of order (and the one sent via me certainly was!), there will be no knee-jerk reaction from me.

By the way, I owe James Nash an apology as Paul pointed out that it was James’ idea to include everyone’s address in MCIVTA postings. Soz James!

Next game, Stockport County away, Saturday 29th November 1997



Murtaz Shelia makes his Pontin’s League début…

Well it was either stay at home and watch Newcastle vs. Barcelona or a quick dash over the M62 and watch City reserves vs. Huddersfield reserves – no contest.

Murtaz Shelia was welcomed to English football on a cold damp evening in West Yorkshire and got off to what would best be described as a steady start – although he did look well pleased with himself on scoring City’s 2nd goal – he is a big left sided defender and showed a few good touches and was also good in the air. However, some of his clearances from defence were woeful and reminded me of some 1st team performances.

City played with 3 center backs: Beesley, Morley and Shelia, with Jeff Whitley and Jason vn Blerk playing as wing backs. Beesley was outstanding in the centre of defence and had an excellent game. Other players who shone and are worth a mention were: Tony Scully, always a threat down the flanks and never afraid to take on and beat the defender; Jim Whitley, played well in the centre of midfield alongside Lee Crooks who again looked a good prospect for the future.

In summary, Shelia looked an ordinary player, but, I’ll give him the benefit of doubt as this was his first game at a new club.

Final score: 2-2

Finally, who is Francois Calderado – wore the number 9 shirt and was appalling. He still managed to get on the score sheet when a shot by Lee Crooks was only half stopped by the ‘keeper and he was then presented with an open net to roll the ball into.

CTID, Ian Reeves (


One of City’s major shareholders, Stephen Boler, who helped to finance the £11 million rights issue earlier in the year, is set to sell his 24% stake in the club, which is currently worth £4 million. Boler has no real interest in the club, not having attended a City match since his friend Peter Swales was ousted from the chairmanship three years ago. With his company, The Limelight Group, currently sustaining massive losses on the stock market (the price of their shares has fallen from £2.00 to 40p in the last few months), Boler needs some money and is reported to be looking to offload his shareholding in City.

The most likely person to buy Boler’s shares is Sheffield United chairman Mike McDonald. He is a Manchester businessman and long-term City fan, and was Peter Swales’ own choice as his successor, losing out by just one vote when Francis Lee took over the club. McDonald is reported to have had talks with Boler over the last couple of weeks. It is also thought that J.D. Sports and Greenalls could also be ready to sell their shares, which would leave the club open to a full takeover which would lead to Francis Lee (who has a 28.6% share of the club) leaving City. The club looks to be quite a good investment at the moment, with the share price currently around £1.20, about half the value of a year ago.

Paul Howarth (


Stephen Boler has “angrily denied” reports that he is ready to sell his shares in Manchester City, according to the MEN on Tuesday. He told the paper “I have no intentions of selling my shares in City. I don’t know where these stories come from. I am back in England for a short holiday and nothing else and I will be returning to South Africa at the weekend.”

Paul Howarth (


“Just a perfect day, drink Boddingtons in the pub (The Parkside),
And then later, when it gets dark, we have more.

Just a perfect day, watch Man City playing too,
And then later (92nd minute) a winner too, and then oooohhhh!

Oh, it’s such a perfect day, I’m glad I spent it with you (MCIVTAites),
Oh, such a perfect day, you just keep me hanging on (injury time goals in the last two games),
You just keep me hanging on…”

What a great day. Meeting in the Parkside pre-match to put ugly mugs to all the Internet Blues’ names. I won’t attempt to name everybody I met as I will inevitably upset somebody by forgetting to mention them. I must however give a special mention to four: Le Tank Bleu for the badge, Martin Ford for the blue “bakery” cap I spotted at Sheffield, Thame Blue for allowing me to buy his spare Stockport ticket, and Ken Foster for lending me a fiver to buy it!

As for the match, I’m not going into great detail, except to say that finally, finally we’ve learnt to keep the ball on the ground. City deserved to win, had most of the play, and yet it was left to Margetson (met his love interest, Alex) to pull off a double save near the end (eventually called offside, but he didn’t know), before Tony Vaughan rose to head a Michael Brown free-kick over Gary Walsh’s hands in the 92nd minute. I’m really pleased for Vaughan ‘cos I’ve been really impressed with him since his return from injury, and I’m sorry for referring to him as “My Left Foot” earlier in the season. What a brilliant end to the match, the lottery tickets went skywards, and what a day to have the Tribal Gathering. The atmosphere was the best for at least six home games, there was no booing and this encouraged the team. Noel missed the goal for the second week running. What’s that saying Noel? “Business before Pleasure”?

Back in the Parkside after the match, to meet yet more MIBs, including Tony “the Tattoed Donkey” Hulme, and Clive “Gio’s Bootlicker” Tysoe.

I even enjoyed doing DOSLA on Sunday, as we’ve moved up most of the tables.

P.S. I have spare seats in the car for West Brom next Tuesday night if anybody is interested.

City ’til I die, Steve Kay, Kippax Upper FF Row 36 Seat 179 (


From the feeble efforts to provide a translation of this Latin motto, I reach the scarcely surprising conclusion that I am the only Classical scholar among the readership of 1,700 odd. It actually means “by dint of discussion and hard work”. However, I hope your correspondent has misread the last word on the badge, cos there ain’t no such word as “Concileo”. If he hasn’t, we have yet another City cock-up, meriting refunds all round?

Ian Howarth (


I am currently trying my hardest to set up a Students’ Branch of the Official Supporters’ Club. The first meeting was held at the Platt Lane Complex on 18th November and about 30 people turned up. Encouraging – but not good enough. I want this to be the youngest, most dynamic supporters’ branch, but we need more people! We have a committee and we are awaiting the Supporters’ Club’s recognition. In the meantime we’re going to Birmingham City (a) on 13th December. It’s going to be a great day out. We’ll be following the Levenshulme Blues (either sharing a coach with them or following on a separate one) and anybody who’s experienced Bill Black and his Travelling Army knows what to expect! There’ll certainly be lots of drunken madness I assure you! If there are any students who want to come, or who just want to get involved in the branch, please get in touch. The branch will be based in Manchester but all students are quite welcome to join (of course, anybody can join, but the branch will be aimed a the student community). Please get in touch! Contact:

Nina Haigh (


Well, everyone else has done one…

The Ups

  1. Names to faces – especially Doug, Rev Blue, Stan and GB, the first geezers I remember seeing on BV.
  2. The bloke who asked, as we passed the trophy cabinet, “What’s that silver thing?”
  3. Getting Mike Summerbee agitated about the Press during the tour of Maine Road, and his quality quote – “Only believe two things you read in the papers – the title and the date.”
  4. Mike’s other big quote – “Francis Lee has invested heavily in modernising this club”, drowned out by a 68-year-old groundsman pushing a squeaky old barrow.
  5. Having a pee in Gio’s toilet – well, ok, the lav in the home dressing room…
  6. Kit Symon’s nervously chewing an apple down to the pips whilst facing a dozen yakking BV-ers – respect to that man.
  7. Being introduced to Frank Clark by Bob Y with “Rob’s flown in from India to be here”, and trying to keep up the pretence. Cheers, pal…
  8. Bumping into Peter Barnes and Asa on the stairs at the training complex.
  9. Nine people, eight pissed, squashed in an estate car in Middleton, trying to find my Aunty Elsie’s and the joke shop that promised it had Frank Clark lookalike masks…
  10. Trying to keep a straight face when LTB asked the girl in the joke shop if she had a bushier one…
  11. Managing to miss one of me mam’s infamous roast chicken dinners on Friday night…
  12. Don Price’s brilliant performance as the archetypal WMC compere, with classics like “Will you watch your language please lads, you’re upsetting the f**king kids…”
  13. Watching virtually every City goal since 1968 on the TV in the private lounge before the match, with Hutch, Gow and BobbyMac taking the p*** out of each other.
  14. Brushing the canope crumbs off Liz’s teeshirt – twice.
  15. First time I’ve been able to get a half time pint for ages – in the private bar, too.
  16. Margetson’s double save – I take it all back.
  17. Last-minute slow-motion winner.
  18. Danube nearly going over the rail of the third tier of the Kippax when leaping about.
  19. Players’ Lounge – cheers Bob.
  20. Getting a big smacker from MLI for getting her the Noodles autograph.
  21. Pava – despite deliberately having his hair cut and beard shaved to look as little like Pavarotti as humanly possible, and ending up looking the spit of Gareth Hale – eventually succumbing to the microphone at the Parkside.
  22. That innocent-looking young lad’s face in the Punjab, when we hushed the whole room and announced that he was about to propose to his girlfriend…
  23. Chicken tikka masala, mushroom bhaji, stuffed paratha, rice, poppadums and two pints of Kingfisher for less than a tenner – what is going on there?
  24. Bayswater Blue in a coma, standing up at random intervals on his own and yelling “stand up if you love City…” – like all night (has anyone told him yet?).
  25. That beltin’ Summerbee song to the Robin Hood theme in the Lassie Come Home or whatever that pub was called…

Summerbee, Summerbee, walking down the wing
Summerbee, Summerbee, doesn’t do a thing
Falls to the left, falls to the right
Bag of s**te, bag of s**te, bag of s**te…

(And they only put it on to try and make us leave)

The Downs

  1. Losing Aunty Elsie’s christmas presents (after all that) in the back of Mike’s car…
  2. S**t – did I really pay that for a ******** football?
  3. Having to walk three miles home cos there were no cabs – that’s probably five miles if you include the meandering.
  4. Getting my mam’s chicken dinner reheated for breakfast…
  5. No beer in the City Superstore.
  6. Stan The Man – “I thought you’d be younger” – and that from a man with thermal underwear…
  7. Having to drink two pints of Kingfisher.
  8. Christmas decorations in the Punjab.

Thanks to Clive and Bob and that Leo Sayer from MCFC.

MoK (real name witheld to protect the insolvent)


Did anyone, like me, notice the beautiful sight on the pitch on Saturday? Kit’s armband fell off during the first half and he did not put it back on, so for most of the game it looked like he wasn’t captain, and that produced a warm feeling in me I can tell you.

Tony Peachment (


Many of us will remember how great Franny Lee was at taking a penalty kick, he just picked a spot and hit that ball like a mule, it would be in the back of the net before the ‘keeper could move; well Franny got a little famous for taking a dive in the penalty area (of course he never really did that – unless it was really necessary). Just before Christmas every year a pantomine was put on in the City Social Club; incuded in the cast would be some players all in the spirit of Christmas. Well, Francis Lee took part one year in particular and as he came on the stage he tripped; right away the audience shouted as if one voice: “Penalty!” All in good fun!

Ernie Barrow (


Being a fan of both The Fall and Man City, I can shed some light on the track “Symbol of Mordgan”. The caller to Peelie’s radio show is none other than ex-Fall guitar supremo Craig Scanlon. The match in question was a goal-less draw against West Ham but I’m afraid I have no idea as to when it was played.

Jim Needham (


Regarding Anthony Catterson’s Oasis (Munich) comments (MCIVTA 349).

I saw them two days ago (Tue 25/11/97) in Frankfurt and there were, quite literally, hundreds of Man City shirts. I went up to a guy in an old away shirt and said, “Nice one for wearing the shirt, you are a lot braver than me!”, and he replied in a German accent, “Yez sank you, it’s good ja!”

So perhaps it’s not our southern friends over in Stretford that have a world following!

My faith might return yet.

Simon Jones (


One of the features of MCIVTA over the years has been the lack of criticism of even the most outrageous of contributions. With the exception of a moronic response from one of K Stand’s finest, the only replies I have ever received have been well reasoned and civilly written, regardless of how strongly the writer has opposed my view.

Another salient point is that no contributors have had any vested interest in having their views published in MCIVTA.

We have now reached the point where Noel Bayley plugs his fanzine with his bi-weekly contributions, each introduced with the “by Noel Bayley (editor of …)”, and he is attracting replies of an apparently abusive nature. Neither is a welcome development.

Over the years Noel and Dave Wallace have taken pot-shots at each other in their respective fanzines. That’s fair enough but MCIVTA is not the vehicle for the continuance of their inter fanzine bun-fight.

That said, I’d agree with Noel’s assessment of the Lee-out noises emanating mainly from the direction of Dante Friend, editor of The Fightback, yet another City fanzine. Dante’s last effort contained a protracted attack on Francis Lee which seems to have avoided the attention of Messrs Sue, Grabbit and Runne. There was also a spoof interview with Maurice Watkins (legal man from the Swamp) which also appeared to invite legal action.

There is little point in campaigning to remove Francis Lee unless a suitably wealthy replacement can be found.

Apparently Monday night’s Lee-out campaign meeting was cancelled because most of the potential attendees could not face the embarrassment of being identified as Forward with Franny campaigners.

The only people to benefit from a piss-and-wind campaign against Francis Lee are the tabloid papers and Dante is in danger of becoming a puppet of the Daily Sport (remember their six page spread about Gio recently?).

If there is to be a replacement for Francis Lee then it will come about when someone with money and an interest in City buys Steven Boler’s shares in the club. Today’s news headlines on GMR make interesting reading on that front.

I’m not wishing to stand as an apologist for Francis Lee so I’ll repeat a story I heard recently. When Brian Horton left Maine Road one of the names in the frame as a replacement was Joe Kinnear. This was dismissed by our Chairman as he didn’t want City to play like Wimbledon. Personally I’d settle for a team with guts, pride, no little skill and, above all, a place in the Premiership.

Roger Haigh (


I was horrified to read the news that people have been so pathetic as to send abusive emails to Noel Bayley’s address. I for one do not always agree with him but no-one deserves that kind of treatment. Response, in my opinion? Simply remove the culprits from the MCIVTA list. Their email adresses must be included in the message.

Vince Docherty (


Sure have. Noel’s right that these people have invaded his privacy. If a loud-mouthed thug barged into your house and started shouting abuse you’d call the police, and abusive e-mail is in this league. And, if it continues it becomes the equivalent of stalking. So, why not try the New Labour policy of ‘naming and shaming’! Or at least threatening to do so unless they desist and/or apologise within a set time.

And if they don’t desist, there are two clear steps: firstly, withdraw from them the privilege (for such it should be) of membership of MCIVTA (yup, unsubscribe them); secondly, report their behaviour to their own ISP and demand action. Alternatively, a gentler measure is to work on the basis that there are ‘evolution-dodgers’ in most groups who can easily spoil things for the rest of us, so switch to a ‘delete without reading’ strategy. And changing e-mail address is a bit like fleeing your home when subjected to vandalism and bullying, rather than reporting it to the police, so it’s definitely a last resort.

Casting these miscreants into the outer darkness beyond MCIVTA might seem like the denial of free speech and a step that should not be taken lightly, but what the hell, waste those losers!

Keep up the great work on MCIVTA, Ashley and others. In the increasingly shallow and money-driven world that is English professional football, it’s the equivalent of a diamond glittering on a dung-heap!

David Hatch (


I suspect that I was one of the people you refer to as writing “abusive and offensive” e-mail to Noel Bayley. However, I think you might have the courtesy to check with your readers before labelling constructive criticism is this way. I contacted Noel personally, rather than via MCIVTA, precisely because I didn’t want to get into a public slanging match. I was responding to a comment Noel made in one of his articles, about “King of the Kippax”, a publication with which I previously had some connection.

I simply remarked to Noel that I was surprised that after all this time he still felt the need to have a go at another fanzine and that he must still worry about having only the “second best City fanzine”. At no time was I “abusive or offensive”, in fact I intended the message to be light hearted. What I received in return was indeed abusive as Noel proceeded to refer to me as an “arse-licker” and worse, referring to my previous connection with “King of the Kippax” and suggesting that I was reporting back to Dave Wallace. He went on to suggest that Mr Wallace had “an axe to grind” and that perhaps it affected his judgement.

I replied to Noel pointing out that I now have no connection with the fanzine and that I was disappointed that instead of the fanzines collectively providing an opportunity for ordinary fans to put their views across he was still wasting his time and his talents trying to score trivial points. I do believe that Dave Wallace does have a legitimate grievance with Francis Lee and that his treatment by Lee demonstrates that Lee wanted to present the illusion of supporter involvement whilst continuing in the fine tradition of City chairmen and making promises he knew he couldn’t keep. I suggested to Noel that it might be more appropriate for us to continue this dialogue in the pages of MCIVTA and had heard nothing until I read your comments in MCIVTA 349.

Gideon Seymour (


I have just read Ashley’s comment in MCIVTA 349. I cannot understand how anyone can be so spineless as to have ago at him “on the quiet”. I do not always agree with all of Noel’s sentiments, but he has the right (as we all do) to say what he feels! That is what being a football fan is all about; if we give that up then we might all turn into the “Arsenal fan” on the Fast Show! He has the right to say what he feels (so long as it’s not about me ;OP) and we have the right to reply… that’s called a debate. That’s called Freedom and long may it live!

Note: all emails to me will be forwarded to MCIVTA so you can run, but you cannot hide!

Tony Hulme (


I was also disappointed to read of the abusive mail Noel Bayley received, but I can’t help but think he brings it upon himself. We all have views and generally we know when to keep them to ourselves, if too confrontational or inflamatory and when to publicise them. I get the impression Noel likes to air his views no matter what, without thinking about how other people may take them, believing he has some humour to share with the Blue public at large. This in itself is quite smug and conceited and causes resentment.

I was not impressed with his specific article either, but what’s the point in getting involved? Although, it was quite infuriating. But I can understand why people mailed him as his comments would get peoples’ backs up. Even in his subsequent letter in this week’s issue, he offers his own ill-opinioned comments and rattles on again, this time about rugger buggers. Entitled to his opinion, I know, but who wants to hear it on MCITVA? As it happens he offended me twice in two weeks. At the age of 14, I had to decide on playing football for Swansea or rugby. I made my choice (who wants to clean the boots of the Swans?) and I went on to play representative, international and first division rugby from school to age 30. Now I suspect Noel doesn’t mean any harm but a simple comment can lead to people getting the hump. Noel doesn’t seem to care about the interests or opinions of others.

Consequently, I have very little regard for his opinions and will simply skip over his comments from now on. But I don’t think it’s fair for him to antagonise any further those folks who mailed him directly, if he upsets them in the first place with his opinions and snipes. They didn’t want to hear it but weren’t given the chioce. If you live by the sword… and all that (though, I also don’t know how bad the mail he received was).

I do believe he doesn’t mean to upset people, but genuinely thinks he’s witty. Given the fact that he has inadvertently ruffled my feathers twice in two weeks, I’d have have a cause to discuss it with him. If I was face to face in a pub, I’d probably talk it through with him, and probably find out he’s a decent bloke and doesn’t really mean any offence. No problem. If not, I’d chin him.

Maybe a little more thought on Noel’s behalf would help cement relations.

Carlos Fandango and his Super Blue Wheels – Huw Thomas (


I am writing to offer my 100% support for Noel on the issue of abusive e-mails being sent direct to him. It’s a disgrace and the sad f***s who send them should be made to watch Rags videos after having the batteries removed from the remote control!

I welcome the inclusion of e-mail addresses for the very reasons that Ashley mentions and would even suggest putting together a database of all 1,745 subscribers that people could reference (assuming subscribers are willing to have their e-mail addresses made available).

As an aside, I would just like to say how great it was to make the 400 mile round trip “back home” (I’m an exiled Blue living in London) to see a rare victory.

CTID, Mark Leibling (


Thanks to all at MCIVTA for all of the hard work that goes into compiling the newsletter that I so look forward to receiving. I would also like to extend thanks to all those who write in with articles and reviews as without that material there would be no MCIVTA. This brings me on to echo the point made by Noel Bayley in the most recent issue; whilst it is good to promote general discussion and friendships through the publishing of email addresses in the newsletter, I would have to agree with Noel that cowardly assasignation of opinion in private is not really on. There have been many occasions when I have disagreed with opinion published in the newsletter but I would never even consider disagreeing in private with someone; if you have to disagree or feel that someone is “out of order” then please stimulate further conversation by placing your comments in a medium to which we can all see your point of view. If you are afraid to place it there then it would seem quite obvious that you are concerned about the reaction you would get from our friends who contribute. If anybody disagrees with my sentiments then say so through MCIVTA. So please use the email addresses for the purpose for which they are published, which I feel is to meet people of like mind who support a great team!

On a more positive note it was really uplifting to see that City completely outplayed Bradford, which seemed to be the view in all of the match reports that I read in the Sunday papers. It is also good to see that a City team performed in a manner worthy of the hallowed blue shirts that we all wear with pride. All we need to do now is to start scoring goals and who knows we might make a late charge into the play-offs :)).

Be proud, Be Blue forever, Steve Cox (


Whilst I won’t condone the sending of abusive e-mails to anyone, I can sympathise to some extent with those who give a little moan and hit the return key (several times) at the sight of an ‘article’ from our Noel. That’s never been the case with anyone else’s postings in 2 or 3 years of subscribing, but do I really want to read a pint by pint account of his descent to cirrhosis of the liver? The self-indulgent, name dropping, rambling, not very funny, often nothing to do with football, postings belong, (if anywhere), in his own fanzine which people may buy out of choice, (not!). As Ashley quite rightly points out, everyone is entitled to their say, but please keep it short and keep it City.

Paul Monaghan (


Sorry to hear that Noel has received abuse for a few mindless individuals who disagree with his opinion.

I for one think that these so called fans should be excluded from this medium (if this has not already been done). As one of the many City fans outside of England, I value the information and opinions (while I might not agree with some) that I and approx 1,700 others get about City from MCIVTA. So I would not like to see MCIVTA discontinued because of the few sad people who sent these mails. Maybe they should get a life?

I was going to hold back my E-Mail address but I won’t let these sad people win.

CTID, Paul Cassidy (


In life there are always one or two absolute idiots who, if we let them, can spoil a good thing. MCIVTA is great, I love getting it and although some subscribers go a tad over the top I dont think we should let the ******s spoil it for the rest of us…

So exile, deleting an address, or just plain old “delete” is fine by me.

Forever Blue – Be Happy 🙂 Nick Charles (


I can’t understand why anyone would want to act this way towards someone like Noel who arguably has his heart in supporting City more than most. I can’t see what anyone would find offensive in his articles anymore than most other posts – is it personal in some way?

I feel it would be a backward step to stop publishing addresses as I for one have taken the opportunity to contact people direct and it seems that 3 or 4 people in 1,700 or so is not a bad ‘nutter rate’ even for a group of manic depressives that City fans must comprise!

I appreciate the effort both of you put in in your respective ways… keep up the good work!

Geoff Donkin – Beverley (


I can’t believe that a mindless minority can spoil such a useful, informative and fun forum for others. This is after all a free country, we can all speak our minds (yes OK, so maybe that works in reverse for ‘them’ too) but unfortunately the internet/e-mail being what it is I guess we leave ourselves open for such intrusions.

I for one enjoy 99% of the content of MCIVTA, the only “downers” being as mentioned I think previously the mis-spelt and amount of **** words which some of the less intellectually developed feel compelled to include. Would it be simpler for Stephen to just remove those offensive few from the mailing list rather than Noel having to go through the rigmarole of changing his e-mail address?

Anyway, roll on Saturday although it’ll be ostrich style if the Hatters beat us, but I must say if we have to get beaten by anybody – and God knows we have had our share – then I think Stockport would get my vote to for their achievements.

Stay Blue, Heidi (


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?

Stuart Barstow, Audenshaw, Manchester (


I really hope someone can help me. At the moment I am in Virginia USA and have been offered a job in Calgary AB. Are there any Blues out there in Internetland who live in Calgary? If not, anyone who knows where I can drink good beer, eat good curries or watch a good game of footy when I’m there please let me know.

By the way be prepared to see City climb up the table very soon and we will win the play-offs and get back to where we belong. In the Premier League playing in ‘The Best Stadium in the Country’.

Can’t wait.

Stay Blue, Davey H (


Do any MCIVTAers play CM2? I can’t get City out of the bottom half of the table (sound familiar?). I desperately need help with my match strategies. Any tips or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, Justin Hayes (


Here’s a joke sent to me by a Derby County ‘friend’ of mine. Even though it’s about City, I still think it’s amusing:

Frank Clark is at Birmingham NEC, to address the League Managers’ Association Annual Conference. Sadly, however, he falls over as he walks up to the platform, cracking his head, and knocking himself unconscious. Other managers gather round him in concern, and bring him round. “Where am I?” asks Frank. “Don’t worry,” replies Dario Gradi, “you’re in the conference.”

“Bloody hell!” says Frank, “What happened to divisions 2 and 3?”

Charles Pollitt (


Contributions: Ashley –
Subscriptions & Club Questions: Steve –
Technical Problems: Paul –

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.

[Valid3.2]Ashley Birch,

Newsletter #350