Newsletter #1141

Another week, another signing and another indiscretion. No sooner is Barton sent home early from our Thailand tour due to an alleged late night altercation with an Everton fan and Richard Dunne than Darius Vassell emerges as the latest signing under Pearce.

We have continuing opinion on the transfers tonight, looking ahead and the latest on Barton, Cole et al.

Next game: West Bromwich Albion, home, 3pm Saturday 13 August 2005


Leaving aside Joey Barton’s stupidity (a titanic bollocking, an anger management course and a fine the size of my mortgage should do the trick), I’m quite chipper about the last week. For little more than 10% of the SWP money, we’ve got two proven players.

Cole is a short-term signing with a good record, not five years ago, but last season.

Vassell is an England player who should be at the height of his career, but has lost his way somewhat and will benefit from a change of scene. Defoe has overtaken him in the England squad, but if he stays fit (which is one of his biggest recent problems) and scores 20 for us next season, he’ll probably make the squad.

Whatever, I think it’s unlikely that at least one of them won’t do well for us, and I also like the fact that SP isn’t always going for the bleeding obvious targets. In recent years, we’ve done so much better with signings that have surprised us (Morrison, Goater, Rösler, Walsh, Schmeichel, Benabia) than buying players that seemed a good idea at the time (Summerbee, Holden, McManaman, Phelan, need I go on?).

I know some people may be sceptical about what I’m about to suggest, but I’d also like to see Vassell and Sibierski playing together. One has pace, the other has height and the ability to hold it up and play people in.

We also shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that Sinclair appears to be fit at last and the Academy players continue to develop very nicely. It’s OK.

Mark Meadowcroft <Mark(at)>


I wish I’d have written this when I meant to, after the Bolton game. I had this horrible feeling that Joey Barton’s attitude was all wrong, and I felt he was almost saying I want to be off, this pitch and from the club.

Now the news he has been sent home. If I had written this when I should have done I could have said told you so. I didn’t so can’t, but I will hang my hat on the fact he will be gone before the deadline.

No comment, no judgement, I’ll leave that to others.

Dave Kilroy <dave.kilroy(at)>


I don’t often throw in my two pennorth these days but I enjoy reading the comments of others on these pages. I must say that I agree with Glyn Pardoe when he says the club must sell Barton. He is trouble. I want players to give their all on the field – and Barton does – but he is not in control of himself and brings discredit to himself and the club. Cash in on him now!

When I lived in the UK I went to see the team play home and away every week and although I moved to live in the States in the early ’70’s, I still try to see the Blues when I return to Manchester for a visit.

The team has had its bad boy throughout the years and I suspect that Pardoe (whose career was cut short by a terrible injury) is thinking about the bad boy of his time at the club TC (Tony Coleman). A decent enough player – but a troublemaker off the pitch.

Part of being a top flight player is the responsibility to be a rôle model. Barton does not meet this criteria and should not be allowed to stay at the club. Cash in on him while we can!

Michael Edwards <Cityfan2(at)>


With the Villa fans saying he’ll give you 100% and, if you get behind him he’ll be a great signing for you, how about sorting out a decent chant for him? Best effort so far courtesy of the Kaiser Chiefs:

“If you want a goal, I predict Da- ri- us.”

P.S. Can you name a side that had 3 England strikers in it?

Rick Eagles <rick(at)>


Sorry to drone on about SWP again but I have to defend the club on this one.

They rejected £20 million and I believe that they would have rejected £21 million and above, had SWP not performed a huge U-Turn and suddenly decided he did want to leave. What was the club supposed to do? Keep an unhappy and unmotivated player?

The club has done well with this transfer at least, maybe now we will have some money for some of the deals we had to miss out on (remember when we couldn’t afford £2.5 million for van Buyten?). £21 million (most of it up front) is better than £25 million paid in staged payments over a long period of time, as another excellent article last week pointed out to me.

So please stop moaning about the club, they have done OK on this one.

As for Cole, I agree with one of the articles last week – he is not a SWP replacement, he is a step up from Macken (not hard), let’s get behind him and the rest of the team, and see where it gets us.

Roll on August 13th, and also roll on the moment when Thatcher unceremoniously deposits SWP into the front row of the stand next season (if he gets a game).

Those who want to moan and groan about lack of ambition etc., I hope that FC City of Manchester have a good season in the Beazer Homes League.

Richard Ellor <r.ellor(at)>


In order for the team to move forward and up, we need a new captain, and quick. Sylvain does not have the ability to lead the team, as he proved again against Bolton.

Gary Sullivan <gary(at)>


Let’s start with the good from Manchester City’s visit to Thailand. On Saturday City beat Everton on penalties. Great to see Andy Cole score a goal in his first game, more to come we trust.

More good on Thursday: Danny Mills and Stephen Jordan represented the club well when they went to Phuket to coach more than 300 children who had suffered by the tsunami on Dec 26th 2005.

The bad: we get beat by Bolton on a penalty kick shootout. Bradley is forgiven for his miss.

The ugly was the bad and foolish action by Joey Barton; his punishment will be set by MCFC on Wed July 27th. my faith is in whatever Stuart Pearce decides, I trust in his judgement. More good was how Richard Dunne tried to intervene, but the bad how he hurt his foot in the situation.

Ricky Hatton was at the Everton game; I don’t think he wanted to see any fights whilst in Thailand, just his favourite football team win.

Apart from Dunnie who has a foot injury, the rest of the players came back home in good shape after some very good work-outs; that is of course besides Joey Barton who came home early with his head hung low in shame.

This week we will probably see Stuart Pearce in action in the transfer market. Who will he sign? Might be a bit of a mystery; can we believe all we read from the media?

Come on City.

Ernie Barrow <britcityblue(at)>


“I experienced the same kind of thing when I signed for Manchester as a player of 39,” said Pearce. “People turned round and said `What have we got him for?”

I didn’t! I was delighted! Where does he get that idea from?

Marc Starr <marc.starr(at)>


I suspect it’s mainly down to the fact he used to be a Rag, e.g. Goater, Schmeichel, Cooke.

But the facts speak for themselves: we are desperately short of attacking options, we haven`t got Chelski’s millions and at the time of initial negotiations we didn’t have the SWP money to spend.

Our options for out and out strikers for next season were: Fowler who has improved but I’m still not personally satisfied we’re getting value for money (£6 million). BWP may be one for the future and that’s about the only positive I can say about him. And erm that’s about it as far as I’m aware.

So back to Andy Cole who cost us £6 million less than Fowler and £4.5 million less than Macken. Compare last season’s Premiership goal tallies:

Andy Cole apps 39 goals 13
Robbie Fowler apps 33 goals 11
Jon Macken apps 25 goals 3

How many of the following would we have got on a free and who were prepared to take a 50% pay cut? None of whom scored more Premiership goals than Cole last season:

Defoe 13
Hasselbaink 13
Gudjohnson 12
Keane 11
Rooney 11
Drogba 10
Shearer 7

Brian Channon <bluebrian(at)>


I wrote recently about Andy Cole (I’ll be Fu$£@d if I’ll call him Andrew) that I was prepared to wait and see before making judgement.

Well, it may have been a meaningless match but, at the end of the day, his record so far reads P1, G1. Unspectacular but, it ended up in the back of the net. Nuff said. And I don’t care if he played for United. He’s employed to do a job for us now and he looks as though he intends to do it.

If after 20 games it reads P20 G15, I’ll be more than happy.

Personally, I’d love to see City pursue Andy Johnson at Palace. I reckon he’s the best striker in the country at present and would be a great asset. I think he’s underated but could do well for us.

I also think that Vassell could do well for us. He’s always done well for England when he comes on so why can’t he do it at club level? Maybe he’s not motivated at club level but then would you be playing for Villa? Would you be happy playing for O’Leary?

There doesn’t seem to be that many people having a go at SWeeP for leaving but I wish everyone would leave it. What would you have done in his position? He’s 23 and one more season without European Football takes him to 24 and he’s virtually half way through his career. He needed to make his move now.

That doesn’t mean that City lack ambition: quite the opposite. But our growth will not happen overnight and Shaun needed his move now.

If losing a star player every now and again upsets people to the extent that they will stop going, well I suggest that these people are not proper supporters anyway. Shaun won’t be the last big star to leave City and, hopefully, there will be stars coming into the club as well.

John Nisbet – People’s Republic of Hyde <nisbet1957(at)>


Bradley Wright Phillips will never make a good Premiership goalscorer; he reminds me of the ever so laid back Aidy Mike (remember him). Oh yes, another one for the future.

As for Andy Cole, well I couldn’t give a monkey’s really. If he scores 20 odd then great; if he does nowt then it’s what I expected.

England are 90 for 7 on the first day and I’m already thinking about relegation; where has she hid the whisky?

Andy Webb <Charlesalexhols(at)>


“So, now forget about SWP and concentrate on the future – just let it go. A new season beckons – time to stop this negativity and to move on.”

Couldn’t agree more! Thanks Shaun and best of luck, you were an inspiration but now don’t even give us a mention! £21 million will do me fine, buy me a dinner and a bottle of wine, £21 million will do me fine (yes I’m P****ed).

Oh well. Come on Andy (Andrew?) Cole, give it your best and play for Manchester City with all your heart, we will soon forgive your past sins.

Mark Redgrave – 29 years and I’m still here <leaguecup1976(at)>


Well everyone and his dog has had their say on SWP. Sod him, he’s gone, was great while it lasted (ever been in love)?

Let the chairman and board and SP run the club and we’ll do what we are good at and support through thick and thin (a lot of thin I know).

I think SP has the potential to be the greatest English born manager since Brian Clough. Time will tell, but he did his apprenticeship under the master.

A Cole? I know a divi bar-code has a tattoo of him on his leg. If he has a sky blue shirt on and scores goals he will do for me.

First taste will be at Sheffield on Sunday; 50 years and I still love the feel of a new season. Taking my grandson too. What am I sentencing him to? A future of Blue blindness.

Don’t we all just love it?

See you there.

CTID, Mick B <koolfurmick(at)>


Just before I went away on holiday recently, the official City website had a new wallpaper for mobile phones consisting of the club shirt, number and your name of choice on the shirt. I decided to wait until I came back from Ibiza before updating my phone.

When I did come back, not only did I find the website had gone under a total revamp but the shirt wallpapers were nowhere to be seen!

Does anyone know where I can still get this wallpaper from? Or does anyone know where I can get a City wallpaper without the company sending useless texts etc. to your phone once they have your number?

Yours in hope, Ian (the Blue) Bell <Kylsandra(at)>

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Newsletter #1141