Newsletter #1232

The World Cup begins and distracts from the lack of activity City-wise, with mixed fortunes for Blues past and present in Wanchope, scoring two against the hosts, and Reyna, not scoring and seeing his team slump to the biggest defeat thus far. Pearce is out there doing his punditry for ITV; hopefully he can cast his eye over one or two potential acquisitions.

Meanwhile we have opinion on the transfer policy, and City appear to be getting something of a reputation for rip-offs amongst the fans as the museum comes under scrutiny tonight. There’s a good analogy of fronting a band and a football club too, and Bill’s world cup blog is worth a look.

Apologies for the delay, broadband problems up in the hills.

Next game: Wrexham, away (Friendly), 7.45pm 19 July 2006


Transfers aren’t exactly inspiring to date, though it’s better to ensure we get what we need rather than a scattergun approach à la KK.

Don’t much care if we sell the head case but would prefer to keep Distin if possible because who do we replace him with? Too much too soon for Onouha and Richards. In fact if we retain Barton I would take away the no 8 shirt and give it to Micah Richards. Joey can have number 28 to remind him of the £1,000’s he has turned down due to delusions of grandeur.

Personally I’d like to see the Gravesen and/or Malbranque rumours come to fruition to provide the steel and skill combo required in the engine room. I like Dickov – he is a pain in the butt to the opposition and will die for the cause, more than many of the current squad.

Let’s get behind SP – if anything last season we have seen an emergence of quality youth that should pay off next season. Only injuries at crucial moments have hampered our progress.

Keep the faith.

CTID, Chris <hawkeye11(at)>


Reading Mr Nisbet’s article I was compelled to tell you my story.

I teach 14-16 year olds and part of their curriculum is to visit a sports stadium. Being a loyal fan, I decided to enquire about the ‘museum and stadium tour’. There were 12 students and 2 teachers. I was told that 1 teacher could go free for every 10 students. Not a problem. Was there any discount for school bookings? Yes, but there has to be 20 or more students. In the end it cost £4 per student and £8 per teacher (1 teacher could go free but there had to be a minimum of 20 students). Total cost £66. But 2 students were ill and 2 others couldn’t make if for disciplinary reasons therefore there was only 8 students. Discount given? No. I had pre booked it and they wouldn’t give me my money back. It is very difficult trying to get money out of the bursar for trips and on top of the trip was the cost of a minibus. So all in all it cost over £100. Upset school bursar.

Now some of my students are Rag fans. So I made enquiries to visit ‘that place’. Twelve students, 3 teachers (one a Rag fan), total cost for museum and tour £23. Special costs for school groups, school can be invoiced so no need to carry money, only pay for whoever goes. Happy school bursar!

How am I supposed to explain to my students why we can only go to ‘that place’ and never go to the rip off merchants – the CoM stadium.

By the way, when I do go to ‘that place’ I always wear my City shirt and put it over the Rags’ emblem on the dug-out when we have our photo taken. I do tell the City supporters to wear their shirts on the day as well.

Kevin Pollitt <kpollitt(at)>


A bit of clarity is needed re. the City shirt fiasco. As I understand it, the club will change an away shirt each year. As we have two different away shirts, this still means they will change one every two years. So it might be pushing it a bit but it’s within the FA/Prem guidelines.

The new home kit is the worst one we’ve ever had. Why have we got blue shorts and white or grey sleeves (hard to tell on the official site)?

The simple answer is: don’t buy iy. However, no doubt our dwindling band of supporters will be in full muppet effect by the start of the season and will all be wearing the new shirt with Dickov on the back. Crap shirt; crap signing. A marriage made in heaven.

John Kelsey <damp_Labrador(at)>


Having seen next season’s kit, it is just plain rubbish, although it looks kinda like the old ‘Eidos’ kit we had a few seasons back. I thought we were going back to the traditional sky blue all over dealio (except the shorts)?

Surely, with a fanbase like ours who feel passionately about the club like we do, why don’t those ‘boffins’ at Reebok stop boffin-ing and let us fans design the kit or at least pick our favourite from a set of designs? And if I remember a few seasons ago some Spanish side (can’t remember who) had the names of all their season ticket holders (and other donators) ‘watermarked’ into the kit, which looked nice and which would be nice. With a club like ours, surely they should give us the opportunity for some input into something that brings us together like the kit does?

Gareth Croke <garethcroke(at)>


Here is an article by The Fall’s Mark E Smith from The Guardian, which should amuse. As you probably know, MES lost 60% of his band during a recent US tour, but replaced them within 3 days! How often have we wished for a similar approach at City? Judging by The Fall’s gig in Manchester last week, which many Blues witnessed, MES has a better subs’ bench than Sven. Long live the new Fall.

What Sven Could Learn From Me by Mark E. Smith (Guardian, 5 June)

Running the national football team is very much like running my group, the Fall. As a manager, you’ve got to maintain a certain detachment from your players, and it’s the same with my musicians. When we’re on tour, I sit at the back of the bus. We’re friendly but the secret of it is never get too ally-pally. You can have a pint or two together now and again but you don’t want to be going round their houses.

You don’t want people to get too comfortable, because if they do, there’s no way they’ll be on top of their game. It’s not a job for life. I see the Fall being like a football team with a two- or three-year cycle. There’s always going to be a period where I’ll need a new centre-forward.

I always like to keep a strong subs’ bench of people who can step into the breach, ’cause you never know when you might need them in an emergency [Smith is currently touring the US with pickup musicians, after a guitarist, drummer and bassist became the latest of around 50 “ex-players” who have sadly and suddenly departed from the Fall).

You want a manager that’s hard but not stupid. I met Manchester City manager Stuart Pearce on the transfer bus on the way to Amsterdam. He’s a hard case. Some lads were going up to say hello, but he had this air of “That’s all you’re gonna get”. I like Pearce but I couldn’t stand Kevin Keegan. I saw him on telly once when City were playing Newcastle and he went up to the Newcastle fans, shaking their hands. The City players were looking at him, appalled. No surprise he never won a game against Newcastle or Liverpool.

The way the England team is now is ridiculous. A team of superstars is like a supergroup. It’s like picking the best guitarist in Britain, the best drummer and the best singer, and expecting them to produce something that isn’t prog-rock mush. It doesn’t work: this England team will never work at the highest level. I know that. See, Sir Alf Ramsey [who managed England’s 1966 World Cup win] – people never liked him for it, but he’d always have the full backs from the Second Division. He took players and moulded them, like I do with musicians. Gordon Banks, the goalkeeper, was from Stoke City, who were bottom of the First Division. They’d conceded more goals that World Cup season than anybody else. But it works. You want a goalie who gets bloody shot at every week! You don’t want the Arsenal or Spurs goalie or whoever in any national team, because he’s never got anything to do! He might pull off the occasional beautiful save, but he’s never gonna be any good against a gang of Poles or whoever who know full well they’re going to face the firing squad if they don’t score.

Mind you, I shouldn’t be talking about England. My wife’s Greek, and when Greece won their first game in the [2004] European championships, I said, “Put a bet on now”. We didn’t put the bet on, but I know these things. Two of my mates put £500 on at 250-1. When Greece won the tournament the wife went crazy, absolutely mad. We even ran a Greek flag up in the front garden. We were very popular that week.

Gareth Jones <member(at)>


Just to let fans of proper football that I have a World Cup blog where they can while away some minutes by checking:

Oh, and Frank Sidebottom’s doing a fantastic tip every day.

Bill Borrows <easytiger1(at)>

MCIVTA FAQ [v0506.02]

[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. The Fans’ Committee has been relaunched as “Points of Blue”. It has appeared on the club website as a minor entry under “Fans Zone”.

[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 #1232