Newsletter #1096

Continuing opinion tonight on City’s progress or otherwise, youth policy and post-derby analysis.

We also have part two of the Bert Trautmann competition; thanks for all the entries so far.

Finally, for those who cannot wait until the end of the month for their football, the reserves are in action at MiniCoMS tomorrow night (Friday) against Middlesbrough and the youth team play at Wolves in the FA Youth Cup on Monday night.

Next game: Norwich City, away, 8pm 28 February 2005 (TV)


Bert Trautmann, 1956 FA Cup Final

We are pleased to bring you, in conjunction with, the first part of an MCIVTA Supporters’ Quiz, which will run through MCIVTA and our website over the next week. produce limited edition prints of iconic footballing moments and have very kindly donated a limited edition print of Bert Trautmann OBE for MCIVTA readers to win. The print is in black and white, and is A2 sized (594mm x 420mm) high quality gloss finish, and signed by the great man himself.

These (along with numerous other sporting images) can be viewed and purchased from their website

To win the picture you will have to answer 6 questions, three featured in MCIVTA 1096 and the final three today.

To submit your answers and view the competition rules, please go to the MCFC Supporters’ Homepage at: and follow the instructions to register. Answers to these questions must be submitted by Monday 21st February.

What was so remarkable about the line-up when City won the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1970?

City were the first team to field 4 foreigners at the same time in a Premiership game. Name the game and the 4 City players involved.

Can you name an England international game where 4 Manchester City players were on the field at the same time?


General News

Sixty Cap Shaun: Friday saw Mr K. stoutly defending SWP following his full international début that week. “I have worked with Shaun every day for the past three years and I know he will play a lot of times for England,” said Keegan. “If he doesn’t win 40, 50 or 60 caps, I am no judge of a footballer because he is a very special player. Looking at the situation objectively, maybe the fact he didn’t knock everybody’s lights out on his first start might not be a bad thing. A lot of great players have started with an average game. There were a lot of poor performances on Wednesday night. But the critics are highlighting Shaun, which tells you how far he has come in a lot of people’s minds. If you are given a rôle that might not be your best, you have to go out there and do it hoping that you will one day convince the manager you are slightly better in another position. It is all part of the learning process and Shaun can’t say he wasn’t given a fair chance. But the one thing you know about Shaun is it won’t bother him. He will just bounce back up and get on with it. He certainly doesn’t have anything to prove to me, or the Manchester City fans.”

Sky’s the Limit? Sky TV are a-tinkering with City’s fixtures again, and it’s the visit to Charlton that has been altered. Charlton vs. City will kick off at 12.45pm on Saturday April 2, and will be shown live on Sky Premiership Plus.

Joe’s Nag: The Daily Mail mentioned last weekend that Joe Royle is looking to become a racehorse owner after winning his £422,000 dismissal claim against City last year. The club had said that it would appeal against the award, but since then it’s all gone quiet over there in Eastlands.

Transfer News and Gossip

Wright-Phillips to Forest? They may have missed out on the elder Wright-Phillips boy, but Nottingham Forest were reportedly in the hunt for Bradley this week. New manager Gary Megson was said to be set to make a move for Beep on loan. The 19-year-old has broken through into the first team picture at City this season, scoring his first Premiership goal against Middlesbrough in December, and making a number of substitute’s appearances.

Give Me More More More: As Carmel once sang. And it must be a familiar tune to KK, as he makes an early bid for transfer funds to bolster the playing squad come the summer. KK insisted that it is vital he increases the size and quality of the squad in the summer if they are to compete with the best. He said: “I have used pretty much the same players all season. There is no doubt about it we need a bigger squad if we genuinely want to compete with the big boys. We have got to have a stronger bench than lots of good kids.”

Ex-Blues’ News

Nico Nets: On the same day City were failing to find the net in the derby, Nicolas Anelka scored his first goal for Fenerbahce as his new team stayed top of the Turkish League and chalked up their tenth successive home win. Anelka, playing his second match for the Istanbul club, scored with a 63rd minute tap-in. He also set up Marcio Nobre to score and was widely praised in the press for his performance. “I have been out of the game for the last month due to an injury. I will regain my form as I play more and then you will see the real Anelka,” he said. Fenerbahce are two points clear of Galatasaray at the top of the Turkish first division and play Spanish side Real Zaragoza in the UEFA Cup first knockout round on Thursday.

Reactions and Comments

Macca’s Miss Makes Us Maudlin: KK felt his side wasted their opportunities during the 2-0 defeat to the Reds on Sunday lunchtime. A Wayne Rooney strike (via a Richard Dunne deflection) and an own goal by Dunnie gave United the points but Keegan told Sky Sports: “We had a great chance to take the lead through Steve McManaman but the first goal was always going to be crucial. We started off with a good tempo but then we allowed them to dictate the pace a bit too much. But we still had four good chances here, two of them after we’d gone 2-0 down. The one McManaman missed was very similar to the one Rooney scored from. Steve was there to miss it is what you have to say in situations like this,” continued Keegan. “I know he is disappointed. It was a chance that you would normally expect him to score from. If it had gone in it would have changed the rest of the derby, I am sure of that. We never really got the fans going for us enough today, but they’re terrific to us generally and we live to fight another day.” Asked whether he felt United could catch Chelsea, Keegan added: “They’re the only ones who can now. Chelsea have got to lose three games, and they still have to play United and Arsenal again. But I’m not very good at predictions, I thought we’d win today.”

Dunne’s Curse Strikes Again: “It was unfortunate for the team and for Richard Dunne,” said Kevin Keegan of the two goals. “Defenders have to defend in really difficult situations and maybe, just maybe, David James may have saved it but then it took a deflection off Richard. He was trying to do his job and get a foot in, a block in and it came off him to Wayne Rooney and he got the goal. The second one was very cruel. It could have gone anywhere but it went off the upright and into the corner. That has happened to Richard a couple of times this year. He has had a great season so far. But when the luck has been required to go his way Richard has not just had it and what happened in the derby is another case in point.”

Ben Down: Ben Thatcher spoke of the players’ frustration after the game. “We are bitterly disappointed in the dressing room at the way the result went, particularly the manner of the two goals that were slightly fortunate for them,” he reflected with some understatement. “We were left ruing the three or four decent chances that we created. We didn’t have the rub of the green in front of goal. For a long time it was a very even contest. The plan was to play Antoine in the hole behind Robbie and it worked quite well in the first half in particular, when it stifled them a little bit. They didn’t create much in the first half and Steve McManaman has probably had the best chance for us at the near post. Once the first goal went in it deflated us a little bit and the second one really just killed the game. There was nothing Dunnie could do about the second goal; it just hit his left foot and spun in,” he added. “He has been outstanding this season and in the last few weeks has even taken his game up another notch so there are no fingers pointing at Dunnie. Defensively we feel we have done OK this season. We have kept the back four reasonably the same most of the season and David James has been in great form. Now we have to carry that on for the rest of the season.” KK was asked why he had substituted Joey Barton. “Joey has done very well for us but he is not the finished article,” he said. “Joey is not everything that he wants to be or that we want him to be yet. He had a spell in the game in the second half, like Willo Flood did a few weeks ago, where his inexperience was starting to hurt us as well as himself. So I took him off but I am in no doubt that he will bounce back from it.”

Squad News

Not Fade Away: So we’re out of the Cup, and not likely to either leap up into a UEFA place or plummet into the relegation mire, so might this be a good time to blood a few youngsters Kev? “It is very important for this club that we finish as high as we can.” mused the manager. “In some ways that pressure of where you finish and the money you get for finishing takes away the chance to experiment with younger players to see if they are ready. We will keep playing the strongest team and put the youngsters in when they have earned the right to be in there. We are still aiming to finish in the top half of the table, which I think, bearing in mind the injuries we have had and the players we have lost in the transfer window, would be a good season even if we all want to finish much higher.” And KK revealed that he had given the players a week off. “I have told the players that that they are going to have a week off to give them all a rest,” he said. “It will give them all a much needed break because we have tapped into more or less the same players throughout the season. Players like Shaun Wright-Phillips and Sylvain Distin for instance have played in every game this term. Richard Dunne, David James and Danny Mills have missed just a couple of games each. It is something that we will have to address for next season. We will have to have a little bit more leeway. We need to be able to pull odd players out when they need a rest and that will undoubtedly help a lot.”

On and On: He may be soaring up the own-goal scorers’ chart, but Richard Dunne’s towering performances have almost certainly earned the Irish international an extension to his contract. “Richard still has 18 months to run of his current deal,” said KK. “But we want him to sign again because he has been outstanding for us this season. A couple of years ago I warned him he was in the last chance saloon. Now what you see is a star defender, and there’s even more to come from him.” Meanwhile, David James’ agent has revealed that his client has a contract with the Blues that could mean he stays with City for the rest of his career. Colin Gordon revealed: “Although David signed a three-year deal there’s a clause which will automatically give him a further year so long as he makes a certain number of appearances each season. It’s a unique arrangement and means he could easily stay at the club until the end of his career. David’s 34 now. He’s an honest bloke who didn’t want to sit on a long-term contract if he wasn’t doing the business.”

Bermingham is Now in Lincoln: Karl Bermingham has gone to Lincoln City on a month’s loan. The League Two side are currently seventh, and are looking to cement a play-off place. The 19 year old striker was an unused substitute in last night’s 2-0 victory for the Imps in the Lincolnshire derby at Boston United.

Reserves Run-Out for Reyna? Claudio Reyna is on course for a first-team return after being named for Friday’s reserves game. The 31-year-old, who had groin surgery in November, could be in contention for a place against Norwich on 28 February if he comes through the reserves tie. “Claudio will play for the reserves on Friday and we will assess him after that,” said City boss Kevin Keegan. “If he doesn’t suffer any kind of setback, he will be involved in some capacity against Norwich.”

Croft Ain’t Soft: Lee Croft has returned from his loan spell with Oldham Athletic (which included a bit of national TV exposure during Latics’ FA Cup adventure – although Croft’s horrendous tackle on Bolton’s Nicky Hunt earned the youngster the displeasure of Alan Hansen and his buddies in the studio), and the 19-year-old is ready to earn a place if he can in City’s first team. Might be a bit tricky for the right sided midfielder, bearing in mind who currently occupies the right wing. “There is probably no better player in the country at playing on the right than Shaun so I am under no illusions about shifting him from the team,” admitted Croft. “I know I have to be adaptable and maybe change my game a little bit if I am to force my way into contention and that’s something I am more than willing to do. I have been offered an extension on my contract of a year and we are discussing it at the moment but nothing has been signed. Obviously I want to stay at City and the talks are nothing to do with money or the length of deal for me, the decision is all about playing football. That’s what I want to do. It is up to me to show that I deserve a chance somewhere in the side. I am willing to play anywhere in any system for City. Everyone knows my passion for the club. I know there is a mountain to climb but I want the chance to climb it.”

Geert’s Not So Hurt: Goalie Geert De Vlieger is making good progress in his return from injury, and may yet be available for selection before the season is out. “I am nearly there,” said De Vlieger this week. “I started training outdoors at the start of the year and that went okay. A couple of weeks ago I started goalkeeping sessions and just today I joined in training for the first time with the other ‘keepers. It seemed that it all went well for me and for the physios so now I am looking forward to moving on to tougher sessions in the next few days. I did the twisting and turning a couple of weeks ago then some more strengthening work before joining in with the other ‘keepers today for a full session.”

Don Barrie <news(at)>


On numerous occasions I have questioned the training methods at the club, because players seem to lack a killer instinct in front of goal.

Having thrown away another game in which we dominated for long periods on Sunday, questions again have to be asked as to how serious is the manager, when coaching players in front of goal.

He should be demanding total commitment and desire to put the ball in the net; players’ actions will sometimes show if they really want to get the ball on target.

That’s the difference between winning and not winning, and I’m afraid it seems Kevin allows a lack of real effort from his players both at training and subsequently on match days.

Gary Sullivan <gary(at)>


I had mixed feelings about the result – in some ways it was the Chelsea game without a little luck. I have been worried for a few weeks now about our inability to score goals and also harboured dark thoughts that United’s form might find us out in a big way. So the fact that I don’t think we were second best for much of the game and that both goals were own goals leads me to continue to think that defensively we are ok. Our passing and possession leaves much to be desired so I suspect that one reason for the improvement defensively is that they are getting a lot of game practice!

But I have no idea where goals are going to come from at the moment. There were 4 very, very good chances yesterday. But our paucity of forwards and goalscorers was clear before the January transfer window.

Because of the transfer window there is nothing we can do now and so, once again, I don’t want to give individual marks to players. It would be different if we had the depth that United had yesterday but we don’t and I think Keegan is going to have to be very brave to change the starting team much at all. Bosvelt will come back in I assume and as much as I would like to see some of the younger players given a go I can’t see this happening in any big way.

So now we have to see how the rest of the season plays out. We are safe, unless there is some remarkable sequence of results, but I don’t just want to be safe. I would like to end this season with some promise and some sense that the club has figured our clearly which players to depend on next year and which need to go. On which subject we all have our own thoughts and opinions.

So, disappointed but not dispirited about yesterday’s result. But I remain a little worried about the rest of the season. I don’t want to see a slide in results, even if we remain safe, but some positives and I don’t see where they are going to come from at the moment. But my flight is booked for the Bolton game and I am bringing my 7 year old (he went to a game at Maine Road in 2001 but was more interested in the police horses than in City’s 3-1 loss to Villa). I see no reason why I should be the only family member to suffer.

Finally: There’s a faculty member I work with who is from Liverpool and an Everton fan who goes home for games now and then. We have both been contemplating the change in our lives since Fox Sports began showing so many Premiership games on US Cable. Before this we would either just know the score by phone or Internet or wait to the next day for the score in the Bay Area papers. And when we lived in the UK our weekend mood was on hold until around 4.50 p.m. on a Saturday. Now it is decided by about mid-morning on a Saturday so we have lost around 6-8 hours of peace and contentment!

City till they finish me off, John Pearson <john.pearson(at)>


Where do we go from here?

It isn’t an overreaction from the derby, it has been coming since August! We simply just aren’t good enough and we can boo every player in a blue shirt if we so wish but there is one reason they are wearing that shirt that we would sweat blood for: Kevin Keegan.

I came home from the derby fuming, I thought we were rubbish all over the park, Distin apart, and was shocked to hear GMR callers saying they “were proud of the team, that we were unlucky”; let’s face it, we were c**p.

Seems to me KK was fed up of the stick he was getting as the poor tactician and the “typical Keegan” going for goals every week but getting caught out at the back and decided to go completely the other way and become ultra defensive and uncreative; if this was his ploy, he has achieved it.

We are so one dimensional. If SWP doesn’t play, we don’t. We know that so every other team will know that.

The guy has bought in players that we all knew were rubbish to begin with: Sinclair, Reyna, McManaman, Seaman, Mills, Thatcher, I could go on (I could also add Fowler’s name here). When he has had money he has wasted it on “chance” signings like Vuoso, Negouai, I could go on.

I am not one of the bandwagon fans, I have been going for 24 years. I am “only” 29 now. We have had some great times with KK, Spurs in the cup, the First Division season with Eyal, Ali, Goat et al, the derby wins, so many fond memories but now the time has come for KK to say “I’ve took them as far as I can with what I have got left”, tell us with one game to go and we will give you a great send off. Thank you for the good times, thank you for showing us that we are a great club, that we can achieve more than being a yoyo team.

Maybe the next guy, whoever he may be will, will not have the money either, but surely he will come with fresh ideas, not afraid to try something new, give subs more than 6 minutes to change a game, buy a playmaker, notice that Mills finds it impossible to pass to a blue shirt, that McManaman just isn’t good enough anymore, that we need at least 6 new players and need to shift at least 6.

I will be there next season, I will always be there, I am just asking for my money’s worth and the last 2 seasons I haven’t. I work hard to afford the season ticket and surely this gives me my point of view and in that KK must go.

Mark Oldham <mark.Oldham(at)>


What no tactics?

Rooney, easy to get him sent off. McManamaaaaaan, better to play with 10 men. Macken up front to hold the ball up, he does that well and.

KK, bring back some of the on-loan youngsters and give them a game; we will only need 40 points to stay up this season.

Sam Duxbury <samduxbury(at)>


Still sick as a parrot.

Will do a trip report based on CityCard International Superbreak Mini Holiday if anyone would find it helpful? Suffice to say we had a smashing weekend, not cheap but wasn’t looking in that direction.

Dear Kev,

I think we look alright. Mid-table but no more. Shirley relegation is off the menu.

The Elk may not have been the real deal but I reckon he gave SWP the ability to come in without singular focus. The pressure on SWP hinders his presence. Three musketeers every time he’s on the ball is impressive but he needs an out.

Ben Thatcher was immense. It was very cold. Perhaps Messrs Fowler and McManaman could invest in Specsavers.

Kinnell. How did we lose that?

Garry Higgins <balrog(at)>


As they say on the radio, I’m a first time caller, but with a couple of comments in answer to recent MCIVTA concerns on the subject of the kids.

I was fortunate enough to attend the recent Annual Academy Fund Raising Luncheon at COMS where KK put himself in front of the masses to participate in a Q&A session. One of the points put to him was now that the team are in no danger of going down (optimistic even by our standards eh?), would he give the kids a go instead of the regular first teamers who have “earned” us our mid-table position? KK was firm in his response – “No”.

His reasoning: These days, money rules, and as has been well publicised City have debt problems. With each league position up the table, serious cash can be earned and the difference between where we ended last year (16th) and where we could end this year (6th/7th at the time, now maybe 9th?) is a few million. In short we cannot afford to experiment with the kids and risk a couple of places that will be worth some serious cash to the club in its times of trouble.

Now. KK isn’t daft and he knows how to develop players and a team and I’m willing to bet that the decision to push on for places rather than groom the kids isn’t his!? So where is the pressure to put money before the team coming from? Unfortunately I don’t have a spy on the board so the question has no answer (at least not from me) but I’d be interested if anyone knows otherwise?

Finally, for the record, while I have my stage, Nedum and Stephen (Jordan) are far better footballers than the current full back duo and regardless of age should be in the team on ability. And instead of pulling a strop every time he’s subbed, young Macken should be on his knees thanking the Lord he’s making a living out of the Premiership – lucky, lucky boy. Oh for a striker!

Mike Sokol -Still Loving It <msokol(at)>


Although I have always been a big KK fan, I do now think that it is time for him to go. I say this after reading that he does not intend to play the young players for the rest of the season unless they get in on merit! It is a good job this doesn’t apply to the experienced players as Mills, Fowler, Sibierski, Macken, Sinclair, McManaman, Sommeil, Reyna, and; Negouai would not have played 20 games between them!

Obviously now is the time to play the youngsters as there is no pressure on them, or is it just that by not playing them he can keep trotting out the excuse that they have no experience? Not playing = no experience.

The other reason why he should go now is, how can he buy new players on 3 and 4 year contracts when the new manager might not want them? This is how you end up with a squad of 50+ players. Also, has anyone else noticed the resale value of our squad when KK is supposed to leave? Most of them will be 30+ with barely a pound to be made on selling them, or untried youngsters (like Elliott was) with no worthwhile value.

I will renew my seasoncard but am not looking forward to a season of no progress as the manager sees his contract out. Be afraid, be very afraid!

Mike Cooke <Mikecooke321(at)>


Kevin Keegan will try to get City up the table as far as he can with an outside chance of a place in Europe. Each place that City can move up the table means another £500,000 in prize money for the club, so the season is far from over.

The concerns that I have is that the young stars might not have the playing time that they deserve. I don’t see the point in to keep playing Macca with the hope that he becomes good before the end of the season, whilst a young star who has played the most games for England at his level should not be given his chance, that being Lee Croft.

If Lee Croft does not get his chance at first team football he will be gone in the summer to a team that will give him that chance; we certainly do not want to lose this bright, young talent.

Sibierski has been named the player to fill Anelka’s boots, sorry wrong words used, he will never fill Anelka’s boots, and he has already proved he is not the goalscorer that we need. Sure, he has been playing in a position on the left that did not suit him, but when in with the chance to score he failed, go ahead and prove me wrong.

We need a “fox in the box” to score goals. Fowler was that “fox in the box” at Liverpool, but is now playing a different rôle for City, sometimes playing deep. The player that needs more time to gain experience, and the only one on the books right now with the potential to be that “fox in the box” is young Bradley Wright-Phillips; he needs more than just the last 10 minutes of a game, or just sitting on the bench. It does not give young Bradley the true confidence building that he needs. He lacks experience? Well give him it on the field.

The season is far from over, but we must not lose any bright youngsters in the summer because they have been overlooked by KK to keep playing others who will be leaving the club, and are not on form or good enough to be in the team anyway. For the rest of the season one eye must be on how far we can get up the table, but the other on whom can be with us to play next season.

City has a great youth policy and a great Academy, the time to look after the brightest is right now.

Come on you Blues!

Ernie Barrow <Britcityblue(at)>


After reading Richard Lord’s contribution to MCIVTA 1095, I thought I would have a look at the team that we put out on Sunday and by my calculations our starting 11 only cost £15 million.

James £2 million
Mills free
Thatcher £150,000
Distin £3 million
Dunne £3 million
Musampa loan
Barton youth team
McManaman free
SWP youth team
Sibierski £750,000
Fowler £6 million

Billy Watkinson <billy.Watkinson(at)>


Just find the Google fight site at, which sees which words have the most links in Google, or at least I assume that is what it does.

I entered Manchester City vs. Manchester United and City came out winners 13,300,000 results to 8,670,000 results.

There are other fights in there: God vs. Satan, McDonalds vs Burger King, Bush vs. Bin Laden. Have some fun!

Adrian Bates <adrianb(at)>


I had to respond to Paul Howarth re the £10 Credit / Debit Card charge for the renewal of season tickets not being a rip off (MCIVTA 1095) Unfortunately you are misinformed re it ‘costing’ the club a 2% charge as that is an entirely separate VAT loophole scheme that is exploited by the likes of Debenhams and Dixons to avoid paying VAT on 2% of the transaction value by deeming it payable to a separate entity of a company for use of the retailer’s card services. This was a rather clever ploy established by certain major retailers a few years ago that is currently at the European High Court awaiting judgement.

As we all know our beloved MCFC are nowhere near clever enough for this and the £10 is just simply a rip off I am afraid. How do I know that? Well as someone who has negotiated merchant charges rates for a major(ish) retailer I can inform that if you use your credit card to renew your season ticket it will cost the club somewhere around 1.1% of the value but better still for the club if you pay by Debit Card (i.e. Switch) it will cost them no more than 15p to 20p for the whole transaction. And if anyone at the club is reading this and you are paying more than that you are the ones being ripped off so drop me a line!

Sorry to be an anorak but facts are facts and my first comment on reading the leaflet was “what a p*ss take”.

P.S. Just what did Macca have to do on Sunday to get taken off? First he tried not tracking his man, then missing a sitter, then walking, then hobbling, then hobbling five yards in front of the technical area, then looking longingly at the bench and wincing every time he caught KK’s eye. Oh bless I felt so sorry for him.

Steve Oliver <steve.oliver1(at)>


After seeing Paul Howarth’s item in the last MCIVTA and hearing the subject come up at the Points of Blue meeting, I was spurred to take a quick look into credit/debit card processing fees. While I agree that the rates for processing credit cards are somewhere between 1.5% and 3%, I am far less convinced about debit cards. A quick look (try typing “switch card processing fee” into Google) would suggest that switch processing is a flat fee of around 15-18p per-transaction. Can anyone who is in the know confirm this?

Like Paul, I have few qualms about the club passing on the credit card processing fee but it looks like it is entirely out of proportion for debit cards. Surely it must cost them more to process a paper cheque (including employing people to open the envelopes and move the paper around) than 18p per-transaction. Am I missing something?

Andy Longshaw <andy(at)>


I noticed the mail concerning the England appearances of Bell, Lee and Summerbee and can confirm:

Bell (2nd appearance) & Summerbee (3rd appearance) played against W. Germany on 1st June 1968 & W. Germany 13/5/72 (Summerbee came on as sub.) & Wales 20/5/72 & N.Ireland 23/5/72.

Lee (England début) & Bell played against Bulgaria on 11/12/68 & against France on 12/3/69 & vs. Wales (7/5/69) & Uruguay 8/6/68 & v. Holland 5/11/69 & Portugal 10/12/69 & Holland 14/1/70 (coincidentally they both made their 10th appearance in this game) & Brazil 7/6/70 (Bell came on as sub.) & vs. West Germany 14/6/70 (Bell came on as sub.) & Greece 1/12/71 & W. Germany 29/4/72

Lee & Summerbee played together vs. Switzerland 1/11/71

But sadly the 3 of them never did play for England in the same match.

Gary James <garyjames(at)>


The short answer to the question “did Bell, Lee and Summerbee ever play together in the same line-up for England” is “no”.

Summerbee was only capped 8 times by England, 3 in 1968 (Sc, Sp, WG), 1 in 1971 (Sw), 3 in 1972 (WG, W, NI) and 1 in 1973 (USSR). Lee on the other hand did not get his début until 1969, and while he did play together with Summerbee in 1971, Bell only attended one of the England games that year (Greece in December), when Summerbee was not present.

Now the most interesting fact is perhaps that all three of them played against West Germany in 1972. But alas, England met West Germany twice in the Euro’72 Quarter Finals that year and Lee and Summerbee did not turn out for the same game. Bell did play both though. I think Lee was injured between the two matches and Summerbee took his place in the England squad. Lee never played for England after that April game, where he scored England’s only goal against Germany’s three.

Now there have been three City-players in the England set-up on numerous occasions, as Marsh was also frequently used in that period. But have there ever been four or more City-players involved in an England international? Answers can be made to the web-page as it’s one of the questions in this month’s MCIVTA quiz 🙂

Svenn A. Hanssen <Svenn.Agnar.Hanssen(at)>


In answer to Keith from Toronto (MCIVTA 1095). Keith questions his father who says Bell, Lee, and Summerbee all played for England at the same time versus West Germany. My first reaction was Keith’s dad is right, for I was lucky enough to have been at that game, my ticket kindly given to me by the late head groundsman Stan Gibson. I remembered three players from City played that day (it was after all 32 years ago). But after been corrected by a good friend, that the three players never played for England at the same time, I just had to research it further for I knew I was at that game.

This is what Keith’s dad was thinking of, April 29th 1972 at Wembley Stadium European Nations Quarter Final (first leg) England versus West Germany. Yes, there were three City players that day, Francis Lee, Colin Bell, and only one sub was allowed back then: it was Rodney Marsh who did play that day.

It was the first competitive game between the two nations since England had won the World Cup in 1966, so West Germany were after revenge; they got it too: they won 3-1. West Germany I remember played in a different colour that they had never been seen in before that day: it was green.

I remember wearing my City scarf at the game with pride because we had three players playing, but the result sent me home disappointed.

So Keith, your dad has to buy you a Boddingtons – cheers (but dad was close)!

Ernie Barrow <Britcityblue(at)>


Further to Keith Sharp’s question “Did Bell, Lee & Summerbee ever play together for England?”; well you are correct Keith and your dad is wrong.

Summerbee played 3 times as a starter alongside Bell (and once came on as a sub when Colin was on). He also started once alongside Lee against Switzerland in ’71, although both players were subbed in this game.

Lee and Bell played against West Germany several times together, which may be the games your dad was thinking of, but Summerbee sadly was not with them.

Hope that helps settle the family dispute!

Mark James <mark(at)>


So there I was on a lovely Saturday evening, sitting on a hill overlooking a vineyard and a lovely Hawkes Bay vista, sipping on wine, liquers and the odd beers and watching a tall, denim mini-skirted German lady saxophonist accompany the Celtic grandpa of music at the annual Mission Concert.

Resplendent in my City shirt was I when Rod Stewart burst into his rendition of Blue Moon, much to my half pickled delight, and I accompanied him to the best of my ability amongst the kilted throngs. Hard to better Sailing and The First Cut Is The Deepest but ’twas the pick of his songs on the night that alas was not bettered by a derby victory.

Rod’s a closet Blue after all!

Chris L <hawkeye(at)>


The Official Manchester City Hall of Fame book, by Gary James.

The official book of the MCFC Hall of Fame will be published by Hamlyn books in August 2005. This will retail at £16.99, but copies can be pre-ordered for the special price of £14.99 direct from the publishers. Please call 01903 828503 quoting reference HAM 493 to reserve your copy.

Written by Club Historian Gary James, and produced in association with MCFC, this is the official story of the 18 players inaugurated into the Hall of Fame during 2004 & 2005. It includes detailed profiles of each player’s life and playing career, interviews, complete career statistics, match reports from key games and profiles of some of the other great City players.


I shall be in Thailand for 3 weeks, based in Chiang Mai. Does anyone know somewhere I can go see the matches? I heard the Irish Bar is a good place but are there any others?

Mark <justineandmark(at)>


I was wondering where I can get a copy of the 2003-04 end of season video. I can get it on DVD but I need it on video. Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks, John Gray <grayj(at)>


I am pleased to announce that has now had more than a quarter of a million hits since launching onto the ‘net on June 26th 2003, and would like to thank everyone who has visited the site. We hope you find it useful. Apologies to our regular visitors last weekend; we had problems accessing our server to update the site after the “derby”, but the problem was solved by Monday evening.

By way of a mini thank-you, you will now find details in the “Matches” section of every line-up from the 1890-91 to 1909-10 seasons. All débuts and finales are highlighted. The missing 85 seasons or so will be available soon, once the débuts and finales have been checked. There are now over 750 pages for you to browse!

Here is an MCFCSTATS Trivia question to get your grey matter working: “Can you name the City players who have played for the club during two different periods, i.e. played, left to play elsewhere, and returned to play again?” Loan deals don’t count, and a clue is they have all been since World War 2. There’s no prize, but we’ll announce on MCIVTA the name of the first person to email the correct answer to <info(at)>.

Steve Kay <steve(at)>


Minutes of Points of Blue meeting, 14 February 2005 at COMS

Present: 11 fans

Dave Miller (chair / co-ordinator)
Steve Parish (secretary?) (also OSC Warrington; King of the Kippax)
Gavin Cooper (OSC Hazel Grove)
Simon Cooper (Blue watch / safestanding)
Phill Gatenby (CSA)
Stephanie Ferraioli
Ged Isaacs (CSA P&W branch; King of the Kippax)
Andy Longshaw
Tom Ritchie (City Till I Cry)
Sarah Rooke (Planet City)
Dave Wallace (OSC Swinton branch; King of the Kippax)

Matters arising from last meeting with club (some to be re-addressed to club)

  1. Name change to Points of Blue confirmed; Dave Miller invited others tochair next meeting, there were no takers.
  2. Branding at COMS. Club were checking wording of lease and EU regulationsfor private companies / public funding issues; SP had written to CityCouncil, whose legal department would contact the club. Campaign ofletter-writing to city councillors etc. by PoB, and supporters’ clubbranches, once we had the details of the restrictions. What about a JoeMercer statue (out of Joey Barton’s cigar fine!)? Where did the“Manchester City” locomotive nameplate go?
  3. Banners: see atmosphere below.
  4. Reserve team venue. Club to be asked to review the decision to use NorthCar Park.
  5. Home Cup Match pricing. Other considerations than the reality of priceinelasticity, viz. “supporting our supporters”, and building future support(i.e. loss leaders may be justified)
  6. Away match prices. Seek update from Alistair on Premier League WorkingGroup.
  7. Season tickets. Price freeze much welcomed; queries over £10 charge forpaying by debit card. Earlier dates queried, including the need to renewbefore end of current season to retain seat.
  8. Scoreboard – no further comment.
  9. Loyalty points – “
  10. Smoking policy – “
  11. Catering – “
  12. Programme sales. Localised improvements. Queries over availability ofback numbers (including from away matches).
  13. Kits – new away kit for next season?
  14. Safe standing – comments about different policy for home / away support.
  15. Publicity for PoB – page in programme commended, still needs mention onwebsite.

New stuff:

  1. Atmosphere. Comments about stewards trying to ban Stars and Stripesflags as it might wind up United fans (serious query: are these stewardsUnited fans? Comparison with quasi-official approval of rolling “29 years”banner at Old Trafford). Music – choice of music generally, but particularno-need when fans are making their own noise. Some signal needed onconcourses at half time to indicate restart of play. Possible long-termrelocation of away fans to one tier (fewer stewards needed for segregation,less visible to TV!).
  2. Confusion between Citycard / Matchcard / Smartcard.
  3. Policing – complaints re post-match use of horses near Mary Ds (dangerfrom police horses worse than danger from any altercations). Other forcesmanage without horses. Also complaints re West Midlands Police at WBAcorralling away supporters, forcing them to run, and hitting stragglers,and forcing people onto trains when they’d come by car or bus.
  4. Public relations. Continued complaints about no replies; inappropriatecomments about rival fans at Oldham, and interruption of radio interviewwith manager.
  5. Website – out of date material (e.g. re roadshows), and inappropriatematch reports (e.g. referring to Dunne’s “howler” o.g.).
  6. Requests for some seating in lower tier concourses, and for someappropriate-height shelves for wheelchair users (possible DDA issue).
  7. “abysmal and overpriced service”?
  8. Matches moved for TV. Several supporters out of pocket on airfares forNorwich match, and one branch paying £7 a head cancellation charges forblock booking for the weekend in Great Yarmouth. Response from Sky to onesupporter’s letter of complaint, suggesting that they request changes butit’s up to the Premier League to decide after liaison with the clubs andlocal authorities. 6 weeks notice minimum, but is there any reason whysupporters could not know earlier which matches might be moved(correspondence to be shown to club for comments for next week’s meeting)?
  9. Query on the policy on Supporters’ Club branches being offeredautographed shirts for fund-raising.
  10. Corporate seats – if not used, could they be bundled into (lower-price)packages for branches (is there a dress code?)?

Steve Parish <bloovee(at)>

MCIVTA FAQ [v0405.01]

[1] MCIVTA Addresses

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

[2] What are MCIVTA’s publishing deadlines?

Deadlines for issues are nominally 6pm, Monday and Thursday evenings bu email. Unfortunately we cannot accept email attachments.

[3] 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.

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

The official club web site can be found at

[5] 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” (

[6] 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.

[7] 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

[8] 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

[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] Where can I find a list of City-related websites?

Try Wookie’s Lair:

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 #1096