Newsletter #859

A much-needed victory and 3 points on Saturday from Birmingham with Sun and Anelka on the scoresheet sees us move up to 16th in the table. We have a match report tonight thanks to Richard.

Also plenty of opinion on our strikeforce, requests, some Blue humour and another lovely Why Blue.

Next game: West Bromwich Albion, 3pm Saturday 2 November 2002


I will be taking a few days break and James Walsh has kindly agreed to step in for issues 860 (31 October) and 861 (4 November). Contributions can be sent to the usual address at:

Thank you.


After failing to get a ticket through the normal channels and a request via MCIVTA, I managed to get a ticket from the Birmingham City ticket office for the Paddock with a warning of a restricted view. Travelled up to Birmingham from Hertfordshire courtesy of a Birmingham City fan, his son and a fellow City fan.

The restricted view turned out to trying to see past Steve Bruce as my seat was very close to the dugouts. Bruce was constantly by the touchline whilst Kevin hardly moved out of his seat. A very quiet first half saw City take the lead from their first decent attack. A nice passing movement lead to Berkovic hitting a great cross, which was headed in by Sun Jihai from near the penalty spot. The only other chance was a Berkovic shot from inside the penalty area that was sliced wide.

Jensen was replaced by Horlock at the start of the second half and although Birmingham had a lot of the ball, there was no invention and the City defence coped well. City had plenty of chances in the last 15 minutes to score the second but the goalkeeper saved from Anelka and Goater and especially Foe missed good chances. Anelka scored a very classy goal when he was released by Horlock and although it looked like he had taken it too far, hit a shot into the bottom corner. The City section behind the goal really started to sing.

A few general comments. Tiatto had a great game and certainly back to his best. He certainly gave City some presence in midfield in the first half and I hope Jensen watched how a wing back should play. Dunne also had a great game and I was also impressed by his reading of the game as he made some good saving tackles. Howey must have had a good game but I hardly noticed him. Distin grew in confidence as the match went on. I am still not convinced by Sun Jihai; although had a decent match he does not seem to read the game and I think is a weakness in the defence. Foe has to go and Horlock did not show his good form of last year. Anelka was pure class but Goater, although he tried hard, did not impress. Finally Berkovic had another great game.

It was a shock that Ali was dropped although he has had a disappointing start to the season. Can Eyal and Ali play in the same team? I think so but probably more often at Maine Road. I would much prefer having two strikers and one playmaker away from home.

Finally a request for a ticket for the United match. I know there is little chance but if you don’t ask…

Richard Levy (


This was the win that City needed to bring back some confidence into the side. Birmingham 0 – City 2, and it could have been more.

I was pleased to hear that Dunne, Tiatto and the Goat all had fine games, along with the rest of the team. Let’s continue this at West Brom next Saturday, concentrate on every move with confidence.

Come on you Blues (you can do it)!

Ernie Barrow (


Are Kevin’s days at City now numbered?

I have a feeling they need to be. Where are the results we were led to expect, our very talented forwards are not scoring goals, and our goals against is growing (worst in the Premiership). This season is starting to show signs of the past. Kevin Keegan’s formula appears to be floored. A high scoring game is great if the goals are in the opponents’ net, not ours. So please let us get our season back on track. The Goat knows how to score.

Mark Leahy – fan for over 30 years now in Wellington, New Zealand (


I agree with Joe O’Brien’s opinion regarding Anelka. For those who didn’t read MCIVTA 858, he expressed his dissatisfaction with Anelka’s performances, and his rôle in the team. Joe thought he was playing too much down the channels and not enough down the middle. At