Newsletter #1031

Don has managed to get a host of City news together despite the quiet season, with yet more transfer rumours, Faz’s thoughts, and legal cases for both Royle and the FFF.

We do have a fair number of requests ranging from the Sport, War and Peace exhibition on in Manchester to Washington Blues, Stones shirts and more details on car sharing. There’s also a splash of Blue humour. If anyone gets along to the exhibition, perhaps they could do a review?

Next game: Bury, away, 7.30pm Wednesday 21 July 2004 (friendly)


General News

Memorial to Marco: As Heidi mentioned last week, City fans and officials have been remembering Marc Vivien Foe, who died a week and a year ago. City commemorated the sad occasion with a ceremonial planting of a Blue Moon rose in the Memorial Garden at the City of Manchester Stadium on Friday. In attendance were Chairman John Wardle along with two of Marc’s children. It’s been reported that MVF’s family have begun legal action against the French Football Federation (FFF) for failing to provide adequate medical back-up for the midfielder, who collapsed during a Confederations Cup international match in the French city of Lyon.

No Royle Prerogative – Yet: A decision on former Joe Royle’s lawsuit against City is expected next week. Royle, 55, is suing the club for money he claims he was entitled to as part of a “golden handshake” package when he was sacked as manager three years ago. His lawyers claim that when he was dismissed from Manchester City he was compensated as if the club had made the transition to Nationwide League Division One. Liverpool’s high court has heard that JR believes he should have been paid off based on his £750,000 a year Premiership salary, as the club was not officially declared relegated until June 6, 2001. Judge Michael Kershaw QC is expected to hand down a written judgement on the case next week.

Faz Speaks! Whoever said ‘why do we never hear from Derek Fazackerley’ – your moment has arrived. The first team coach has been giving his views on matters City this week, and is predicting better things from the team in the new season. Fazackerley accepts that the home form must improve. “If you look at the games that we drew and lost at home last season, some of the performances were good but that’s of little comfort when you are not picking up points. We showed what we could achieve in the last match against Everton and it is important that we pick up where we left off in that winning vein. A sound home record is always the basis for a decent season and we lost as many as we won at Eastlands last season.” He also expects more impact from three of last season’s new boys, namely Paul Bosvelt, Claudio Reyna and Trevor Sinclair. “it was their first season with us and there is always a settling in period,” he said. “In Paul’s case it was the first time he had played in English football and I am sure he will be better prepared what to expect this time around. Claudio suffered from not having a long run in the side. He picked up a lot of injuries. His ability is not in doubt but we have to make sure he is fully fit and that he can have a good run at things.”

Transfer News and Gossip

Any Old Full Backs: City are still in the market for a veteran (i.e. cheap) full back. The weekend reports, in the Sunday People and M.E.N., claimed that KK was still after Chelsea’s Dutch international Mario Melchiot. It soon emerged that Melchiot’s wage demands were a problem, and Birmingham and Middlesbrough were said to be favoured destinations. City were next said to be targeting Danish international Thomas Helveg. Helveg, who can play on either side of defence, is thought to be available on a free transfer from Inter Milan. The 33-year-old impressed at right back for his country in Portugal, where he was an ever-present.

City Look East: Also at Euro 2004 – City could be ready to make a move for Bulgarian midfielder Marian Hristov after following him closely over the course of the tournament. City are understood to have posted scouts throughout Bulgaria’s campaign in Portugal, and the reports on the giant midfielder have been very favourable. Bulgaria news agency Focus are now suggesting that KK is set to make a move for Hristov. The 30-year-old is currently with Kaiserslautern, but a move looks to be on the cards after Wolfsburg were strongly linked with a move for him earlier this month. Hristov would not cost a large amount of money, with Wolfsburg rumoured to be preparing a £1 million bid for him – which City should be able to match. The midfield man’s current contract with The Red Devils is due to expire next summer and Kaiserslautern will be eager not to lose him for nothing in 12 months. City and Bolton are interested in securing the services of Croatian winger Milan Rapaic, who impressed with Croatia in Euro 2004 and is keen to leave Ancona in Italy to try his luck in the Premiership. Rapaic had a trial at Liverpool last season, but failed to impress Gerard Houllier. He played well in the 2-2 draw with France last week, scoring from a penalty. His agent said: “He has several clubs interested in him, but the Premiership does hold his interest.”

London Elk? The Sunday tabloids suggest that Fulham would like to tempt Nicolas Anelka to move back to London. The Elk spent three seasons with Arsenal in the late 1990’s, and the reports said that a £7 million bid was on the cards. KK has let it be known though that he won’t be encouraging bids for his leading marksman.

Thome is Where the Heart Is: KK could be set to offer Bolton’s Emerson Thome a chance to stay in the North West with the offer of a one year contract. The 31-year old has rejected fresh terms to stay at the Reebok Stadium with Bolton and Keegan could be tempted to make a move for the former Chelsea and Sunderland star to add to his defensive options. Thome was a regular in Bolton’s 2003-2004 success, which saw them finish in 8th place in the Premiership, but has been unhappy with the new contract terms that the Trotters have put to him prompting talk of a move elsewhere both at home and abroad.

Foxy Danny: There seems to be a bit of “transfer thing” going on between the Cities of Manchester and Leicester at the moment. Hot on the heels of Ben Thatcher’s move to the COMS, comes news that Leicester have captured Danny Tiatto on a two-year deal subject to a medical. The Australia international, released by City at the end of last season, is due to fly in from Australia next week to sign. “Danny will be a valuable member of the squad and is an ideal player for Leicester City at the moment,” manager Mickey Adams told the club’s official website. “He’s versatile and can play in all positions on the left-hand side of the pitch.” The thirty-one-year old made his début for City in September 1998 in the then Second Division. He made a total of one hundred and fifty nine appearances in his City career, scoring three goals. His final season at Eastlands was hit by injury and he made just three starts. He had been linked with a succession of clubs before agreeing to the move to the Midlands.

Two Way Tug: Wigan Athletic and Ipswich Town are vying to sign Gerard Wiekens. Wiekens, 31, is a free agent after being released following seven years at City. He was highly rated by Ipswich boss Joe Royle during his spell as manager at City, and a Joe/ Gerard reunion has oft been mentioned in recent years. Wigan are also reported to be interested in the 31-year-old Dutchman who was brought to City by Frank Clark in 1997. Wiekens was a key member of Royle’s side that went from Division Two to the Premiership in successive seasons before relegation back to Division One.

Euro ’04 News

Home, James:

Both of City’s representatives at Euro 2004 have had their participationended by hosts Portugal. Paul Bosvelt’s Holland were beaten 2-1 yesterdayin the semi-finals, while David James and England bit the dust after apenalty shoot-out in the previous round. City’s erudite, art loving ‘keeperthought that England were “knackered” by the time of their last game. Hesaid: “The gaffer said we were fitter than in the World Cup but inextra-time against Portugal we were knackered. The amount of defending wedid in two of the four games, against France in the second half andPortugal in the second half, took its toll on the lads. We did so muchdefending in the second 45 minutes trying to protect the 1-0 lead. It was acase of every time the ball went out it came straight back in again. Thelads got so tired and, like I said after the France game, you can’t keepgiving decent teams enough opportunities. Eventually you are going to break.”

Shaunie for England! Sven Goran-Eriksson has dropped broad hints that Shaun Wright-Phillips could be included in the next England squad. The England chief was talking in the light of England’s exit from Euro 2004 while looking ahead to the future make up of his squad. England will entertain the Ukraine in a friendly at St. James’ Park in August and already the manager’s thoughts are on that game. “Jermaine Defoe is one for sure, maybe Shaun Wright-Phillips,” he said. “Defoe is interesting. He is a goalscorer and he’s quick.” Shaun-Wright-Phillips had his hopes of being included in the squad for Euro 2004 dashed after one call up for the friendly against Sweden at the end of March. But injury hampered his chances of playing a part in that game and he subsequently failed to make it into the final party for Portugal.

Squad News

Stay at Home: Academy Chief Jim Cassell is backing home-grown talent to win through and dominate in the Premiership. He said: “I think there is concern over the number of foreign players in this country. But everything comes full circle and I think clubs will start looking towards home produced players more and more.” Cassell added: “I don’t object to the top players coming in, and the likes of Thierry Henry and Georgi Kinkladze, when he was playing, are entertainers. But finance will always determine. The reasons foreign players came here initially was that transfer fees were spiralling and players were maybe not proving to be worth the money. But I think what we are seeing now is a lot of fool’s gold in the foreign players. Clubs must think very carefully now about where they go to purchase their players. Some clubs will continue looking abroad but I believe some will change back again.” Cassell must therefore be pleased at the next news item: KK has invited Bradley Wright-Phillips to train with the first team after his fantastic form in the reserves, bagging 11 goals in 18 second-string starts last term.

Absent Friends: KK is facing up to the prospect of losing Sun Jihai, Claudio Reyna and Paulo Wanchope during the opening months of the new season. The trio are set to miss four Premiership games if, as expected, they are called away on international duty when the World Cup 2006 qualification campaigns get underway. Keegan will be without the trio for the crucial clashes with Everton on 11 September, Chelsea on 16 October, and Blackburn and Portsmouth in November. USA midfielder Reyna and Costa Rica striker Wanchope are both involved in the CONCACAF qualifying group while full back Sun Jihai is needed by China, who currently top Asia Zone Group Four. It’s hardly worth Jihai and Reyna taking their coats off – they are expected to be late for pre-season training, as both were on international duty this summer. After their Euro2004 exploits, David James and Paul Bosvelt are similarly excused.

Don Barrie <news(at)>


As it is now the slow part of the MCIVTA season I have decided to put forth a request for information from fellow MCIVTA pundits concerning an unusual but nonetheless inspired choice of Rolling Stones tour T-shirt from the early 1990s.

Back in the early 1990s I was staying at a hotel in Chicago and in the hotel lobby I saw a bloke wearing one of City’s away shirts. The color scheme on the shirt did not look familiar but I recognised the club badge with the old ship design. I asked the fella where he got the shirt and he said he had bought it in his home town of Toronto at a Rolling Stones concert. On the back of the shirt it had the name of the tour (can’t remember which album it was for) and the tour dates.

I swear I was stone cold sober at the time but I have not met any fellow Blues who recall seeing such a shirt. Any one out there in MCVITA land seen or remember hearing of such a shirt, or any one have one for sale?

Johnny [Tampa Bay Blue] Walsh <walshj2(at)>


I am a Man City supporter here in the United States and I’ve recently started a club of City supporters in my area. I live in Washington DC, but we’re also reaching out to people in the metro DC area (which includes Virginia & Maryland). We have a temporary web site set up, to promote our supporters’ club.

The address is:

This is one of those cheap, free web-hosting places, so the layout isn’t spectacular, but it’s a start.

If there are any other Blues in the area, or Blues travelling out here, please get in touch.

Kevin Horrocks <tcjournal(at)>


Not exactly in response to Kal, but should anyone be interested in car sharing, there is a website set up by Manchester City Council that helps you to find people to share with.

If you’re interested, go to and register. When you get your password, go to your account and click on ‘groups’ at the top of the screen. You can then join ‘MCFC’.

Ade Collins <Ade.Collins(at)>


An exhibition is taking place from 3 July to 1 November at the Imperial War Museum, North with the theme “The Greater Game: Sport, War and Peace”. This is the first exhibition looking at sport in wartime, with stories of real sporting heroes and a wealth of iconic objects from across the UK and of course features MCFC legend Bert Trautmann. Admission is free and you can find out more at:


Ronaldo, Luis Figo and Wayne Rooney are standing before God at the throne of Heaven. God looks at them and says; “before granting you a place at my side, I must first ask you what you believe in.”

Addressing Ronaldo first he asks, “what do you believe?”

Ronaldo looks God in the eye and states passionately, “I believe football to be the food of life. Nothing else brings such unbridled joy to so many people from the slums of Rio to the bright lights of Madrid. I have devoted my life to bring such joy to people who stood on the terraces supporting their club.” God looks up and offers Ronaldo the seat to his left.

He then turns to Luis Figo, “and you, Luis, what do you believe?”

Figo stands tall and proud, “I believe courage, honour and passion are the fundamentals to life and I’ve spent my whole playing career providing a living embodiment of these traits.” God, moved by the passion of the speech offers Figo the seat to his right.

Finally, he turns to Wayne Rooney, “and you, Wayne, what do you believe?”

“I believe”, says Rooney, “you’re sitting in my seat.”

Stephen Loss <S.Loss(at)>

MCIVTA FAQ [v0304.07]

[0] MCIVTA Addresses

Articles (Heidi Pickup)          :
News/rumour (Don Barrie)         :
Subscriptions (Madeleine Hawkins):
Technical problems (Paul)        :
FAQ (David Warburton)            :

[1] What are MCIVTA’s publishing deadlines?

Deadlines for issues are nominally 6pm, Monday and Thursday evenings.

[2] MCIVTA Back Issues and Manchester City Supporters’ home page is the unofficial Manchester City Supporters’ home page. Created in 1994, it is the longest running of the Manchester City related web sites. Back issues of MCIVTA are also hosted on the site.

[3] What is the club’s official web site?

The official club web site can be found at

[4] What supporters’ clubs are there?

Manchester City FC recognises three supporters’ clubs: The “Official Supporters Club” (; the “Centenary Supporters’ Association” ( and “The International Supporters’ Club” (

[5] Where can I find out about the fans’ committee?

The Fans’ Committee operates as an interface between supporters and the club. It has its own website, containing info about forthcoming meetings as well as minutes from previous gatherings.

[6] What match day broadcasts are available on the web?

The GMR pre and post match phone-in is available on the web at

Live match commentaries and archives of games, reports and interviews can be found at, whilst an alternate live commentary service, hosted by Yahoo, is located at

[7] Where can I find out if City are live on satellite TV? provides a listing of Premiership games being shown on UK domestic and foreign satellite channels. Useful sites for North American viewers are,, and also provides a guide to pubs in the USA showing football.

[8] What’s the music the teams run out to?

At the start of the 03/04 season it was actually a mix of two tracks: Starting with “O Verona” (from the film “William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet”) leading in to “Barber’s Adagio for Strings (Ferry Corsten remix)” by William Orbit. The first part is available on the movie soundtrack (volume 2) and the second is included on a variety of CDs such as Kiss House Nation 2000, Galaxy Hit Mix, Cream Live, Ibiza Chill and Dance Nation 4.

Currently we use a selection of different music, which seems to change each game.

[9] Do we have a Usenet newsgroup?

Yes we do: is our home on usenet. If you are not familiar with usenet, a basic explanation is available here:,289893,sid9_gci213262,00.html

[10] Do any squad members have their own web pages?

There are a number available and direct links can be found at

[11] Can I buy shares in the club?

Yes you can: Shares in Manchester City PLC are traded on OFEX. The latest prices can be on found the OFEX web site (registration required) or in the business section of the Manchester Evening News.

[12] Where can I find match statistics?

Statistics for the current season are available from the club site, but for a more in-depth analysis try

[13] Acknowledgements

Thanks go to Damian Quinn, Stephen Webb, Roger Haigh, Martin Price, and Adrian Howarth for the Satellite TV info.

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]Heidi Pickup,

Newsletter #1031