Newsletter #539

A good but below par performance (on recent evidence anyway) saw us lose out 2-1 to Ipswich on Sunday. Overall, a draw would have been a result considered fair by both sides, so we were somewhat unlucky. The first two goals were pristine examples of the goalscorer’s art, one from the impressive Johnson and the other from the impressive Goater. The third was a soft shot which took a wicked deflection off Jobson, past the helpless Weaver. Having said that, if you do let opposition players run and run without bothering to challenge them, then you can’t really complain when the odd speculative effort winds up in the back of the onion bag! There are a few match reports, some opinion on our knack of conceding goals to midfielders, another book review, and an unusual Why Blue.

This one reaches 2,813.

Next game: Norwich City away, Tuesday 28th September 1999


Top Spot Lost but Blues Impress the Press

The Blues dropped to third place in Division One over the weekend, overtaken by Birmingham, who beat QPR at home, and Ipswich, who beat City 2-1 in the promotion six-pointer at Portman Road. Some Blue Viewers reflected that neither side had been at their best, and many felt Ipswich had marginally the better of the game. However, a couple of the senior football writers from the broadsheet papers were more impressed with the City display. The Telegraph’s David Miller wrote that “Ipswich and Manchester City surpassed the standard you would see at many a bottom-of-table Premiership match” and opined that, of the two sides, “it is probable that City have the qualities more likely to handle capably an elevated life in the top flight.” Meanwhile, The Guardian’s David Lacey was moved to describe Joe Royle’s side as having “breezed back into the First [Division] with the brisk, businesslike air of men who expect to restore Premiership football to Maine Road after four seasons below stairs.” The City manager also felt his side deserved something from the game, and he lamented the stroke of ill-fortune which allowed Gary Croft to score the winner on his Ipswich début when his shot ricocheted off Richard Jobson to wrong-foot goalkeeper Weaver. “This one has been decided by a deflection which tells you how tight it was,” claimed Royle. “It was a close game and I thought we were worth a point. I still believe we can be up there at the end of the season.”

New Striker Links Off the Mark?

Both David Lacey’s and David Miller’s match reports highlighted one deficiency in City’s play – the failure to capitalise on scoring opportunities. And Joe Royle, too, admitted after the match that, “We’re making far more chances than we score from.” It’s a failing which, of course, has long been discussed by fans and one which has prompted the tabloid press to link a host of forwards with impending transfers to Maine Road. This weekend was no exception, with two new names entering the frame. One was the man whose goal so nearly consigned the Blues to another season of Division Two misery – Gillingham’s Carl Asaba, supposedly up for sale for £800,000 as a result of a cash crisis at the Kent club. The other was the young Grimsby striker Jack Lester, who’s out of contract at the end of the season and is supposedly also a target for Charlton and Southampton. On the face of it, neither link seems particularly reliable. Injury has prevented Asaba from figuring for the Gills so far this season and he’s expected to be missing for at least six more weeks, while the Lester rumour is based on the presence of a City scout at Grimsby’s game away to Portsmouth on Saturday. However, this may well be a scouting trip to watch the home side, who are scheduled to visit Maine Road shortly. And after all, a player of undeniable promise but with a current scoring record of 13 goals in over 100 games probably isn’t the best man to help bring about an immediate boost in City’s goal output.

City to Protest Over Cooke Farce

The Blues are to make an official protest to the FA following the farcical drugs test incident involving Terry Cooke last week. Cooke, of course, was prevented from travelling down to the south coast with his team mates for last week’s League Cup tie at Southampton when he was unable to produce a urine sample. It’s now emerged that in the end the ex-Manchester United winger didn’t actually undertake the test. Cooke can now expect to be charged with failing to provide a sample, though, unlike refusing to provide a sample, this isn’t a serious charge. However, Joe Royle is angry at the timing of the tests and is unwilling to let the matter drop. The club’s official web site at quotes the City boss as saying, “We will be writing a strongly worded complaint to the FA explaining our point of view that it was ill timed. Landing on a club three quarters of an hour before they set off for a massive Cup tie on the south coast of England is poor timing.”

Portsmouth Game Set for Switch

The official site at also confirms that, as has long been expected, City’s home match with Portsmouth on Saturday, 9 October is likely to be postponed. Mark Kennedy has already been selected for the Republic of Ireland’s crucial game in Macedonia on the same date. With Tommy Wright and Jeff Whitley expected to be named in the Northern Ireland squad for their match against Finland on the same date and with Nicky Weaver set to be on England under-21 duty against Denmark a day earlier, it now seems certain that the match will be called off. There will be an immediate chance to play the fixture – the third round of the League Cup is due to be played the following Wednesday (13th October) and both clubs have already been eliminated from the competition. However, it remains to be seen whether Joe Royle will prefer to give his squad a rest after their gruelling September programme.

Academy Sides Rout Tykes

City’s under-19 Academy side managed a fourth successive win with a comfortable 3-1 victory over their Barnsley counterparts on Saturday. The under-17s, meanwhile, went goal crazy against the same opposition, winning 9-1.

Reserves Fail in Shoot-Out

There were no such fireworks at Hyde last Thursday when City reserves took on Bury in the Manchester Senior Cup. The Blues drew 1-1 after 90 minutes, with Shaun Wright-Phillips the City scorer. However, a 4-2 defeat on penalties means the City second string are now struggling to make the final having lost their two opening games in the six-match round robin group phase.

Norwich Away – Preview

Fatigue may well be City’s biggest problem when the Blues visit Carrow Road on Tuesday to face a Norwich side struggling in 20th place in the table, with only one win and six points from their eight games so far. The Carrow Road game will be the Blues’ sixth in 18 days, and manager Joe Royle was already talking about tiredness affecting his team in the second half at Ipswich. At least the Blues have an excellent record in Norfolk, having remained unbeaten on visits to the Canaries since 1981. The Ipswich game followed historical precedent, with City failing to gain what would have been only their second league win at Portman Road since the early sixties, and if Tuesday’s match also reflects the past trend between the two teams on view, it would mean the ideal response to two narrow defeats in successive demanding away trips. Joe Royle is certainly hoping for his team to show the character needed to bounce back. “What matters is how we react next week to two defeats in a row,” said the City manager, knowing that a win on Tuesday would return the Blues to the Division One summit.

Peter Brophy (


IPSWICH TOWN vs. MANCHESTER CITY, Sunday 26th September 1999

This game always promised to be a tough one. Ipswich were unlucky not to be promoted last year, going out in the play-offs to an inferior Bolton team on away goals, and had started extremely well this year. Our record at Portman Road is also frankly awful so I wasn’t expecting too much – had gone for 1-1 in the predictions league as I couldn’t see our defence of Wiekens and Morrison letting many in. Hmm, there was the first problem then, as contrary to our expectations the Mighty Mozza wasn’t playing so Grandad Jobson was in his place. The rest of the team was pretty much as expected, with Weaver, Crooks, Tiatto, Wiekens, the youthfully-challenged Jobson, Horlock (who was captain for the day in the absence of Mozza and Edghill), Whitley (will opposing team announcers ever pronounce his name correctly?), the equally youthfully-challenged but sporting a fine head of hair Bishop, Kennedy, Dickov and Goater. Granville and Cooke were amongst the subs – I didn’t hear who the others were apart from McKinney the goalie as I was concentrating on finishing off my cornish pastie at the time. Very nice it was too. Ipswich had David Johnson up front, complete with the magic scoring boots that he’d mislaid the previous season, and had Gary Croft making his début. I sat there musing on the number of players who score on their début – Mighty Mozza of course included – so you can blame the subsequent events on me as it was obviously my fault.

The game started at an absolutely furious pace as neither side were conceding anything in midfield. Ipswich did look more dangerous though, and assisted by some interesting refereeing decisions had the better chances. It reminded me for long stretches of the Sunday park football games when there are no linesmen – you know the sort, when the ref tells everyone at the start of the game that he isn’t going to play offside today? Most refs would give a free kick when the linesman (approximate distance from event 30cm) flags, but from 30 yards away his vision must have been better. The best possible explanation I can come up with is that he was trying to get the record for the longest consecutive time played in a game without blowing his whistle. It wasn’t just that he was biased, but he was missing blatant shoves from both sides and waved play on after a lovely little trip by Wiekens on Johnson as if he’d seen nothing.

There was a fascinating battle going on between Wiekens and Johnson throughout the first half and for most of it Wiekens won. The man is a class player, Johnson’s extremely dangerous with the ball and when running off the ball but Wiekens covered him extremely well. Ipswich were more or less restricted to shots from outside the area, but don’t let that fool anyone – Johnson can kick the ball considerably harder than Goater or Dickov and Weaver had to produce a storming save to push one looping shot around the post. Still, although they had the better chances we had more of the possession and didn’t look like conceding a goal. Bishop had a good chance from long range that almost hit the scoreboard on top of the stand (oops), then Goater shot just wide with Richard Wright beaten. Speaking of Richard Wright, he may be an extremely good ‘keeper and all that, but on the looks front he’s no match for our young Nicky… Kennedy didn’t look too interested in what was going on for most of the half – for some reason he was playing on the right so every time he got the ball he had to stop and swap it onto his other foot which was probably as frustrating to him as it was to us. As we hadn’t really looked like conceding all half it was only typical when we did. Our defence almost seemed to stand and watch as Johnson headed the ball goalwards, and the strength of the shot was such that although Weaver got his fingertips to it he couldn’t keep it out. How come Johnson can head the ball with more strength than half our team can kick it? Ah, I’m only jealous – and he’s not as good a header of the ball as the Mighty Mozza anyway. No-one is. And even if anyone was they wouldn’t disagree with him. There you go Andy, you head that one away ‘cos I don’t want you to knock me out.

So half time, City were undeservedly 1-0 down and the ref was booed off the pitch. He was booed back on the pitch too, which was nice – it’s always good to see a bit of consistency, as Frank Clark always used to mumble.

Kennedy moved back over the left wing in the second half which was a relief, and immediately looked more dangerous. Croft had a torrid time down that side as Kennedy beat him time and time again. Although Ipswich started the second half at as fast a pace as the first one, it wasn’t long before the equaliser came, and what a goal it was too. Kennedy played a lovely ball to Dickov who sprinted down the left then provided a perfect cross into the area. Goater (who had another good game and I don’t care what his detractors say, try noticing when he does something good as opposed to just slagging him off when something doesn’t quite come off) met the cross perfectly and bang it was 1-1. Could we defend for 35 minutes? Er, well, nearly. Kennedy was making some excellent runs down the left, and with Bishop’s superb, measured passing from midfield we were looking the better team. It was therefore even crueller than the first goal when Ipswich scored their second. A weak shot by Croft from the edge of area took a wicked deflection off Grandad, oops sorry Jobson, and Weaver had no chance.

Tiatto was struggling by this time, having pulled something when making a (very good) tackle. Everyone else in the ground could see it, so why did it take so long for Joe to notice? We all assumed he’d bring Granville on for Tiatto for the last 20 minutes, but instead he dawdled around for ages before swapping Bishop for Cooke instead. After that we lost control of the midfield, the only chances we were getting were hopeful long punts upfield for Goater and Dickov to chase. Eventually Tiatto was taken off for Granville, who promptly gave the ball away in dangerous positions three times on the trot. Still, fear not, Wiekens the superhero and Crooks the vastly under-rated were there with their superhero powers to instantly mop up any danger. That was about it really, Granville (once he started passing to the right team) and Kennedy linked up well down the left for the last ten minutes and Cooke put a couple of crosses in from the right but we didn’t really look like scoring. Goater had a goal disallowed for a foul on Wright which was probably fair enough, refs do take exception to gangly forwards clumsily knocking goalies over then kicking the ball in the net.

So, OK, we lost this but I think we should get things in perspective. On the corresponding weekend last year we drew away at Northampton courtesy of a very late, very lucky equaliser, in one of the worst performances I’ve ever seen from a City side. In the last two games we’ve played extremely well against a Premiership side (and OK they may have been “only Southampton” but the same time got a point at the Swamp on Saturday) and we’ve more than matched the promotion favourites. In fact, I’d hazard to say that the result would have been different if the Mighty Mozza had been playing as his aerial presence was about all we missed in defence on Sunday. Ipswich are the best team in that division, they play good, attractive football and should be a certainty for automatic promotion this year. If we carry on playing like we are at the moment we’ll be going up with them. It’s more important that we win at Carrow Road on Tuesday, if for no other reason that I’ve been there seven times now and I still haven’t seen a goal so it’s about time!

Sharon Hargreaves (


IPSWICH TOWN vs. MANCHESTER CITY, Sunday 26th September 1999

Watched this match with a bad hangover in a pub in Bishop Auckland (in the North East) surrounded by Sunderland fans more interested in playing dominoes. Fair play to the landlord, he put the big screen on and closed the curtains, so it was down to me to make the atmosphere, so pint in hand I mumbled “Blue Moon” for about 30 seconds, thought sod this, I’ll get locked up or smacked up.

The game kicked off with me singing the praises of Nicky Weaver to any local that would listen. Free sausages were made available (must have known I was coming), so guzzled a few of them to help with the Guinness. Looking at the formation I could see that Cooke had been dropped to make way for Bishop, but after a couple of minutes, I thought bl**dy hell, what is Kennedy doing on the right, our best attacking player this year, playing totally out of position (where’s the logic Joe?). David Johnson for them looked dangerous from the start (it brings a lump to my throat to think he could have been ours). Whitley and Bishop I thought had very quiet first halfs and didn’t get stuck in or influence the game for us. I felt that Tiatto kept getting caught out of position; their right winger was crossing the ball for fun, which lead to Johnson having a go at goal with a superb header.

Later on Johnson again got the ball outside the area and curled a beauty, which was heading for the top corner, but Weaver was more than a match for it with a fingertip save (as the old saying goes “he leapt like a salmon from fresh water”). City had a good chance around this time with Goater just deflecting wide under pressure. There seemed to be a lot of head injuries with Dickov in particular getting a nasty gash under his chin (no intention).

For Ipswich’s goal Tiatto was again caught well out of position, their right winger sent in another cross, and 1-0 Ipswich. On reflection, we got what we deserved from that first half. Horlock had a chance when the Ispwich defence opened up in front of him but he hit it hopelessly wide.

At half time Joe brought Kennedy over to the left, which created more openings and within a few minutes Goater banged the ball into the Ipswich net; 1-1 game on. I felt that if the game was going to won, now was the time. City did look up for it. Kennedy was teasing the left wing, making life difficult for the Suffolk defence. City were stepping up a gear and were going to show these “Pretenders to the Throne”. Or that was at least the script that I was reading.

Ipswich were obviously reading a different script, and with a huge slice of luck and a wicked deflection, City were 2-1 down and in trouble; suddenly you noticed that Wiekens couldn’t be 100% fit, he was struggling and maybe with hindsight shouldn’t have started (where was Vaughan? Well yes, Cardiff, but why was he not recalled?).

Terry Cooke came on for the ineffective Bishop (but he proved just as ineffective, where was the spirit shown at Southampton?). The one bright spark was that Granville was off the bench, and looking the business; maybe that was Tiatto’s last game (now that would be a pity!)?

City in the games against Southampton and Ipswich seemed to have a lot of the ball pinging around their penalty area/six-yard box; the ball is simply not being cleared, it is giving Weaver no chance and costing us dear. Just food for thought. Whitley looked better in the second half but the player who I think has improved most is Goater: 2 chances, one goes just wide the other is buried, his all round game has taken off and he looks far more dangerous than Dickov.

The final whistle blew, some old bloke looked up from his pint and dominoes, said something about “tough luck” and off I went to catch the train to Manchester.

Walter Smith (


IPSWICH TOWN vs. MANCHESTER CITY, Sunday 26th September 1999

The only other time I sent a report was for the Lincoln game last season. I started that report with “this was not a football match”. Well the result was the same but this was a football game and what a difference in City from 11 months ago, or indeed the team at Portman Road two years ago.

As most of you probably had a chance to see the goals or the whole match, I will not describe the goals or anything like that but just reflect on the performance.

City started with Weaver, Crooks, Wiekens, Jobson, Tiatto, Horlock, Whitley, Bishop, Kennedy, Dickov and Goater.

The overall impression was that the team played well together and dominated the possession. Ipswich sat back and snubbed any City attacks. Ipswich on the break were effective and I think they probably had more chances than City but it was close. 1-1 would have been a fair result and if it hadn’t been for a lucky deflection or mishit (it was a long way away and I wasn’t wearing my glasses) it would have been.


Tiatto kept getting stranded upfield around the opposition penalty area and was not playing as a full back. Throughout the first half this left the left side of defence very exposed and it was surprising that it took Ipswich so long to take advantage. Their goal came straight down the left wing and into the box with a decent cross. In fact I would say Tiatto was the only weak link. He was better in the second half but left the match limping. Whitley was quiet but was facing up to some pretty big opposition. Wiekens was superb and I’m glad he’s back. Kennedy did not have a chance to do much and seemed a little out of sorts with Whitley. My man of the match would have to be Goater. He ran hard all match and he has now got the ball control that makes him a real handful for opposition defenders. The improvement from last year is very noticable. His goal was pretty good too.

Cooke came on for Bishop but did not have the time or chance to do anything at all. Granville came on for Tiatto and was a bit rusty in defence but I can see that if Kennedy and him get their act together around the edge of the box we should get lots out of this partnership and hopefully defences will pull across and let Cooke get going on the other side.

My only real concern was that we never even looked like scoring from corners against the Ipswich defence. However, the Ipwich defence were excellent and I think not many teams will score many against them this season.

I don’t think City will lose many this season if they carry on playing like they did yesterday. In fact I am going to Norwich tomorrow in the hope that I may see City win away for the first time for a large number of years.

My pre-season prediction was that City would finish 14th in the league. I am glad to say I have changed my mind. I think 6-8th very possible but who knows?

Pete Carey (


It’s blo*dy frustrating to lose to a cruel deflection, especially when we might have been able to get back to the top. On the other hand, football people always say that luck tends to even itself out over a season and maybe we’re just seeing a little bit of that now.

For example, against both Bolton and Walsall we managed to somehow survive a number of goalmouth scares, balls hitting posts, opponents unaccountably missing from right in front of goal etc.

Anyway here we go – I’ve gone completely OTT this week and come up with 2 separate acronyms!

I nevitable
P romotion
S lip -
W orrying
I njuries
C an't
H elp.
I nvincible
P erformance?
S till
W aiting
I n
C autious
H ope!

Steve Maclean (


Dust Cover

TITLE		BLUE HEAVEN (Manchester City's Greatest Games)
AUTHOR		Ian Penney
PUBLISHER	Mainstream
ADDRESS		Mainstream Publishing Company (Edinburgh) Ltd
               	7 Albany Street
		EH1 3UG
DATE		1996
ISBN NUMBER	1 85158 872 8
PRICE		£14.99 (Hardback)

The Book:

The format is one of a City team (in relevant positions) made up of past players recalling their most memorable game. I don’t know how much of the author’s choice was due to availability but I’d pay to watch them.

The Team.                     Their Game.
 1.Joe Corrigan             v. Spurs 1981 Centenary F.A. Cup Final
 2.Ian Brightwell           v. Man Utd (H) Div One 23/9/89
 3.Glyn Pardoe              v. WBA 1970 League Cup Final
 4.Ken Barnes               v. Birmingham City 1956 F.A. Cup Final
 5.Tommy Booth              v. Everton F.A. Cup Semi-Final 1969
 6.Paul Power               v. Ipswich Town F.A. Cup Semi-Final 1981
 7.Mike Summerbee           v. PNE (A) Div Two 23/10/65
 8.Colin Bell               v. Newcastle Utd (H) Div One 26/12/77
 9.Niall Quinn              v. Derby County (H) Div One 20/4/91
10.Asa Hartford             v. Man Utd (H) League Cup 4th Round 12/11/75
11.Roy Clarke               v. Sunderland F.A. Cup Semi-Final 1955
   Tony Book                v. Newcastle Utd League Cup Final 1976
On The Bench. Celebrity Blues recall their favourite moments.

The Format.

I found this a very well constructed and very entertaining book, with each story being a mixture of the player’s thoughts, newspaper reports and the author’s research. It brings back many great memories (similar to the submissions to MCIVTA during the close season), the added spice being that these come from the players themselves. I’m sure most fans could pick out from the list above the reason each player picked their particular favourite. Those who love King Colin as much as I do will understand why the tears were welling (alright flowing) when I read his choice.

I would recommend this very strongly to those who like nostalgia (it’s not what it used to be), particularly if they were at, or can remember, most of the games selected.

Out Of Ten. 10 (If only for making me cry)

Paul Power at the PFA officesP.S. One thing I must mention is the priceless picture of Paul Power between pages 64 and 65. The question is “What was Paul Power caught doing in the offices of the PFA?”

David Kilroy (


Whilst watching City versus Southampton in a central London pub with a dozen other Blues, we were slightly bemused that the landlord (ex-Arsenal and Spurs boss, Terry Neill) had the Chelsea game on directly behind us, even though it was being shown on every other TV set in the (large) pub. As City and Southampton went into extra-time, the Chelsea game had ended and the post-match analysis had began. The analysts? Paul Walsh and Uwe Rösler!

Rick Baker (


The next gathering of the Reddish Branch of the Centenary Supporters’ Association will be on Thursday 14th October at The Carousel, Reddish Road, South Reddish, Stockport starting at 8.00pm. This is also the official launch date of the new City away kit and we will have a brand new away shirt as our top raffle prize. Confirmed guests for the evening are City’s Superstore manager David Heed and City’s newly appointed Safety Officer Peter Fletcher. So if you want to know what’s happening with Le Coq Sportif and why Mr Banks likes the Kippax so much, come on down to The Carousel. All Blues are more than welcome – for more information e-mail me at the address below.

Howard Burr – Secretary (


In MCIVTA 538 David Goodall made a reference to “Blue is the Colour”, an old City song from the 70s. I think that was an old Chelsea song actually. As a young 8-9 year old I used to enjoy singing that one myself though.

John Walsh – Chicago (


The Reddish Branch of the CSA are running coaches to Tranmere (Sat. 16th Oct.) and Birmingham (Tue. 19th Oct.). There are still a few seats left so any Blues in the Stockport area who want a lift drop me a line.

C.T.I.D. Howard Burr – Secretary (


Hmmm! So the bubbles burst with two defeats. Still, all is not lost; if lady luck had been with us we could have won both games. However, I feel I must bring some points to the attention of the MCIVTA forum:

  1. Of the six goals scored against us, four were shots by midfielders fromthe edge of the penalty area, as a result of the ball being cleared after across or corner. This is rank poor defending. Opposition midfielders inthese positions must be closed down quickly. Why is one of ourstrikers/midfielders not positioned near the penalty spot for this specifictask? On each occasion the opposition player has had what seems like agesto decide what to do with the ball.
  2. Andy Morrison is our best defender. Over the last two games, we have badlymissed his heading ability and his knack of booting the ball 60 feet up thefield directly to one of our players.
  3. We badly missed Edghill on Sunday. Ipswich were allowed to put too manycrosses in from their left wing as a result.
  4. We lost again on TV – Is this some sort of jinx? We seem to lose 3 out of4 games on the box and in the other we are very lucky.

Richard Mottershead (


David Beckham walks into a beauty salon to get a hair cut with headphones on. The hairdresser asks him to take them off for the haircut and he replies “I can’t, I’ll die.” She proceeds to cut his hair and it looks awful.

Six weeks later he comes in for another haircut. The hairdresser pleads with him “Please take your headphones off – I can’t make your hair look stylish.” Once again the Becks replies “I can’t, I’ll die.” So he receives another awful haircut.

Six weeks later Davey-boy turns up at the salon and once again the hairdresser says “Please take your headphones off – I can make your hair beautiful if you would just take off the headphones.” “I can’t, I’ll die,” says the overpaid pillock. The hairstylist proceeds to cut his hair. While doing so Becks falls asleep. The hairstylist quickly thinks to herself: I will remove the headphones and replace them before he wakes up, I’ll make his hair look wonderful. Seconds after doing this he falls off the chair. The hairdresser checks and he isn’t breathing. Dying to know what was keeping him alive with the headphones on, she places them on her head. She hears… “Breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out.”

Michel from Holland (


My reason,like many others, is one of pure chance. I’m from Chesterfield, my old man is a jock, so his infatuation with Greenock Morton wasn’t passed on. It so happened that the guy next door but one was born and bred in Rusholme and a die-hard Blue. It also happened that his son was the same age as me and was my best friend. It was decreed that on my friend’s 5th birthday we would make our inaugural visit to Maine Road. The auspicious occasion was City vs. Southampton in November or December 77. As Junior Blues we somehow managed to wangle a pre-match behind the scenes tour. The sight of Joe Corrigan naked has lived with me all these years (what they say about big hands is definitely true).

Over the years many more visits ensued, interspersed with many trips to see Chesterfield play.I even moved to Manchester for my student days and managed to live 2 streets away from Maine Road. Now I live in Tokyo, I’ve adopted a J-League side, Bellmare, who are really sh*t and are currently in a relegation dogfight (sounds familiar?). If you watch the Toyota cup in November, I’m the guy in the City shirt amongst the Brazilian contingent.

Gordon Nisbet (


So much for Sporting Life, who haven’t even posted Saturday’s results at 8 pm on Sunday…

First Division Table after Sunday’s game:

                              Home       Away                 Goals
         Team          P  W D  L  F  A  W D  L F   A  Pts Difference
 Birmingham            9  3 2  0  14 6  2 1  1 5   5   18          8
 Ipswich               8  4 0  1  12 4  1 2  0 7   4   17         11
 Man City              8  3 0  1  9  2  2 1  1 3   2   16          8
 Fulham                8  3 1  0  6  1  1 3  0 5   3   16          7
 Barnsley              9  4 0  1  17 6  1 1  2 6  12   16          5
 Huddersfield          8  3 0  0  11 3  1 1  3 4   8   13          4
 Charlton              6  3 0  0  6  2  1 1  1 5   5   13          4
 Stockport             7  3 1  0  7  3  1 0  2 2   4   13          2
 West Brom             8  0 5  0  4  4  2 1  0 5   3   12          2
 Portsmouth            8  2 2  1  6  3  1 1  1 5   9   12         -1
 Blackburn             7  2 1  1  5  2  1 1  1 6   5   11          4
 Sheff Utd             8  2 2  1  10 6  1 0  2 3   9   11         -2
 Grimsby               9  2 1  1  3  2  1 1  3 5  10   11         -4
 Nottm Forest          9  2 2  0  8  4  0 2  3 4   8   10          0
 Port Vale             9  3 0  2  7  5  0 1  3 4   8   10         -2
 Bolton                8  2 2  1  10 9  0 1  2 1   3   9          -1
 QPR                   7  2 1  0  7  4  0 1  3 2   6   8          -1
 Crewe                 7  1 1  0  3  2  1 1  3 7  12   8          -4
 Crystal Palace        8  1 1  1  5  3  1 1  3 6  14   8          -6
 Norwich               8  1 0  2  2  4  0 3  2 5   7   6          -4
 Wolverhampton         7  0 1  2  2  4  1 2  1 3   5   6          -4
 Walsall               9  0 2  2  3  7  1 1  3 4   9   6          -9
 Swindon               8  0 1  2  2  6  1 1  3 3   6   5          -7
 Tranmere              9  1 2  2  6  9  0 0  4 1   8   5          -10

Dorien James (


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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 #539