Newsletter #1504

News tonight from Alex on the transfer comings and goings, reaction to the recent games and Robinho’s aspirations. We also have opinion on those transfer dealings, what the future holds, why City are now officially “hated” and just whether it’s time to go into mind games and adapt the siege mentality.

Next up Boro, not many people like them either.

Next Game: Middlesbrough, home, 12.45pm Saturday 7 February 2009


General News

Business is Business: Four players joined the new City era last month and though Hughes missed out on the signing of Roque Santa Cruz, the Welshman believes he was right not to be held to ransom on the player. Blackburn ultimately valued the Paraguayan striker at £25 million but the manager stated that Manchester City has a project in place that is budget based and they will not be forced to play more than they consider to be reasonable for any player even if they are players that Hughes is very well connected to: “The situation was that Blackburn were not prepared to sell their player. Their stance was that they did not have anybody to come in; they had apparently been trying to replace him but could not so there was no deal to be done. If we had offered more money to a certain level it would have been done, which would have negated their argument to a certain extent, but we were not going to do that. We said all along that we had values for players, and we were not going above them.”

Overall the former Blackburn boss was very impressed with the success that the Blues had had in such a small period of time and thinks that the new boys will help push the club up the table: “We have still spent a significant amount of money. What we were able to do was address a number of the key areas that we felt needed to be strengthened. You always have targets you are hopeful of getting in a transfer window, but you are always realistic about the likelihood of bringing each and every one of them in. That’s been borne out, but we have probably done better than we thought when the window opened.”

German Offensive: Bayern Munich General Manager Uli Hoeness has come out of nowhere just to make the effort to shoot down any aspirations that City have in the near future. Having possibly never made a comment on City before in his life, the man in charge of Bayern’s transfer budget claimed that City will go nowhere if they consistently perform as badly as they did at Stoke and that their plight was due to a simple waste of money: “I saw the Premier League game between Stoke City and Manchester City (last weekend). I noticed that millions have been invested by certain people there very badly. I saw that they can do absolutely nothing, even though they were very expensive…” This from the man whose millions and millions of investment didn’t even allow Bayern to qualify for the Champions’ League last year. I sense the scent of fear reaching Europe as little known Manchester City start making a name for themselves.

Squad News

Irish Connections: Shay Given, City’s new £8 million goalkeeper, came out this week stating that he is very much looking forward to linking up with international team mate and MCFC captain Richard Dunne. Given told the press that Dunne is one of the best players he has ever played with and that he remains the man to lead City’s revolution forward: “Dunnie is one of the best centre-halves I have ever played behind and it will be a bit strange to play with him at club level having only done so for Ireland before. He’s a fantastic player. I’ll need to get to know the rest of the lads here and work with them as well, but the centre half and goalkeeper is quite an important partnership. Richard and I have played together a lot for Ireland, and hopefully we’ll improve on that as well.” Given is also pleased to be joining Stephen Ireland, fellow national and Craig Bellamy, who he played with at Newcastle in this new challenge: “Stephen has been at the top of his game. He is a fantastic talent. What with Stephen, Richard and myself being here then (Republic boss) Mr Trappatoni may be coming to our stadium a bit more often!”

World’s Best: When Robinho made the move to Manchester from Madrid last summer, he stated his intent to become the best player in the world. That isn’t something that has changed or will do anytime soon. Robbie told the press of how he never felt at Madrid he had the right opportunities to meet the standards that former team mates Zidane, Figo and Ronaldo set but now at City, he feels he has the stage the compete with current World Player of the Year Christine something: “I hope to show my best football in England. Some (Brazilian) players have had bad luck in the Premier League because they have not adapted but, in this sense, I’ve had luck. When I left Santos and signed for Madrid I was convinced I was going to be the best player in the world. Now I’m at City and I think the same. I think that in Manchester I can fulfil my dream of being the best. I think that Cristiano is an excellent player and he deserves to have won the Ballon D’Or and FIFA World Player. But I don’t like making comparisons. I focus on playing football and the press are the ones who have to judge who is better. But I have my style and Cristiano has his.”

Academy Roll-Out: Following the any others that have preceded him, Clayton McDonald is the latest of City’s Academy talent to be picked up on loan by lower league sides. The defender has joined Chesterfield on loan for a month having spent the opening part of the season with Macclesfield. The twenty year old hopes to aid Chesterfield in their push for promotion and there is the possibility of a contract extension should he impress.

Petulant: A few weeks back I found myself questioning why Richard Dunne had stupidly kicked out at Amr Zaki in the victory over Wigan and almost cost the club three points as he was sent off. Now SWP has followed suit and been charged with violent conduct by the FA after retaliating like an eleven year old to Rory Delap’s own bout of abuse. When something as obvious as that occurs in a football match why is it that players cannot just let the referee deal with it? Beckham? Zidane? And now SWP. And even though the referee might not have spotted the kick, the twenty five cameras looking at the pitch did and now the FA have been able to charge the winger, which could mean he faces three or four games in the stands rather than on the pitch where he is desperately needed.

Transfer News and Gossip

Shay Given: Republic of Ireland goalkeeper and long time servant of Newcastle United, Shay Given has finally seen sense and left the North East in search of trophies. After eleven years at the club one of the most highly rated ‘keepers in the Premier League made the £8 million move to Eastlands. Having never won a trophy with the Geordies, Given believed that the chance to join up with Robinho and Co. was just too good an opportunity to turn down: “It’s exciting times at Manchester City with the new owners and this manager. There are big plans for the Club. I am very excited to be joining and delighted that Manchester City wanted my services. I have two young kids, I had just moved house in Newcastle and there were a few things that could have made me stay there. I have a lot of friends there, and the supporters there are fantastic. They have been great to me for so many years, and I thank them for that. But I just felt that this was an opportunity for me to come to a club that in my opinion are really going to be going places. There is already the nucleus of a very good team here, and I hope I can add to that. I am just delighted that they have chosen me to strengthen their goalkeeping department as well.” City were not prepared to repay the favour to Newcastle as they knocked back an £8 million bid for young English midfielder Michael Johnson claiming that the aim of the club is to mix quality signings with local talent.

Tal Ben-Haim: The former Bolton centre back who joined from Chelsea in the summer in search of first team football found it hard to break down the partnership formed by Richard Dunne and Micah Richards despite their critics. The Israeli has now moved to the North East on loan until the end of the season and will join up with new Sunderland manager Ricky Sbragia who Haim worked with closely when he was a coach at Bolton. Sbragia praises his new signing: “I spent about two-and-a-half years with him and he’s got a lot of experience, international-wise as well. He can play across the back four and he can also play in midfield, so he is an important player for us and we are really pleased we have got him because we thought we may have just lost out on him.”

Jo: Everton have sought to end their striker crisis with the loan signing of City flop Jo. The £19 million Brazilian forward has failed to make any sort of impression in the Premier League and despite a fantastic record at former club CSKA Moscow in Russia, a mere three goals in nineteen league appearances tells its own story. Jo himself hopes that a temporary move to Merseyside will hopefully allow him to recapture the form that caught former Chairman Thaksin Shiniawatra’s eye and Everton boss David Moyes expects a positive impact from the target man: “The truth is that it hasn’t worked for him at Manchester City and there could be a couple of reasons for that, such as it takes time for some foreign boys to settle in. He might also have found the Premier League a bit of a struggle, but we’re happy to give him a chance and it would be great if he could show the form he did in Russia. The early signs are encouraging. It’s never easy on your first day at any new club and we have only had a brief chance to look at him on the training ground. We are not too desperate at this minute, He can work himself up so he’ll be ready when he gets his opportunity and then show us what he can do.”

Post Match Reaction

Stoke City: The future looked bright with four new players entering the ranks and a comfortable win at home to Newcastle and then we had to play away from home. Why it is that we can’t get the results away from home is beyond me; the defence seems competent enough, the creativity is there and yet on Saturday there was no end product. With Robinho, SWP, Ireland and now Bellamy in the ranks at least one goal should have come our way and yet there was just no way of breaking down a Stoke side who hadn’t won in twelve games (in all competitions).

Hughes assessed the performance: “We’re obviously disappointed given the circumstances of the game. We would have expected to have got something out of it. The big disappointment was conceding the goal because we were very much in control of the game at that point and to concede with something like 10 seconds left of the first half was a blow that we didn’t really recover from. It gave Stoke something to battle and fight for and made a difficult situation even more so. In the end we just needed to find a flash of inspiration to unlock the door and enable us to get back into the game.” Sadly despite multi-million pounds worth of investment, the team was still lacking that inspiration.

Centre back Nedum Onuoha, who has recently become a more regular fixture in the starting eleven claimed that despite the fact that the Blues got nothing from the game, it was not for want of trying: “It was difficult, but then at the same time we dealt with it at home and they didn’t really create a lot from it here, it was just a case of us unfortunately not being able to score the goals today. A lot of the teams we play against just try and put four defenders there and four midfielders there and it’s up to us to try and break them down. Even if Stoke hadn’t have been a man down they would have played the same way and unfortunately we just couldn’t break them down.”

Alex Rowen <news(at)>


Being a MCFC supporter is always a rollercoaster ride of emotion with that wonderful (erm?) addition of crazy money to add to the on field ‘antics’. As a new father (daughter of 5 months) she will be brought up Blue, despite being half Canadian and us living in Texas now. I sometimes wonder if my desire to have her brought up as an MCFC fan doesn’t class as child abuse. My wife may agree, especially seeing me watch the live text or occasional live TV show and seeing my crazy emotions, typified by our loss to Liverpool (3-2) and Stoke recently.

I’ve watched over the years as teams spend crazy amounts of money or are linked with all manner of players. Nowadays City are in that league although it seems that we can’t bring in the class of players we are linked with in the press. Robinho’s transfer I sometimes think may have been a case of mistaken identity, wrong blue club on his part. However, it seems our ability to be consistently inconsistent will never change. I’m not normally driven to question a manager, especially after only 6 months in charge. I prefer to question the 11 players on the day and why their performance can vary so much. To lose against 10 man Stoke after beating Newcastle and with a performance like we achieved in the first half against Liverpool made me take stock. I can’t think that Mr Hughes lacks motivational skills, nor do I think that our players are poor. Far from it, how can they be great for one club or on one day and so poor the next? When you see Liverpool, Man Utd and Chelsea they have passion and fire. Liverpool on Sunday were unstoppable. City at times are like a coiled rope… and just as inspiring. One has to question either the tactics or decision making of the management and coaches.

I’m all for giving Mark Hughes time in the job and to settle for a good top 10 finish this year. Just across the city Alex Ferguson took 6 years to win anything and was close to losing his job (oh if only!), so we have to be patient. Our lack of dealing in January may suggest that he is being lined up to go at the end of May. We could question what has happened, e.g. why are Dunne and Richards a shadow of last year? It may be fickle to replace him and we certainly shouldn’t unless on June 1st someone else comes in, but someone with proven history. I hear rumours of Jose Morinho but I have trouble seeing him leave Inter Milan. Who else would be of quality and would they be successful? Scolari has hardly set Chelsea alight and Wenger seems berefit of his usual guile. I would have liked someone like Harry Redknapp but he won’t leave Tottenham now.

Is a foreign manager the answer or even someone with ‘proven’ winning ways? Perhaps the answer should be for management support with experience to help guide Mark Hughes? Either way I have trouble picturing anything other than more of the same this year. Man Utd winning the league, City being so inconsistent we will finish 10th and win UEFA Cup, and then start all over in August!

[Jose could well be lured by the prospect of £millions and proving his doubters in the UK wrong – Ed]

Chris Marland <Chris.Marland(at)>


Usually when a club gets to be hated they get to be top of the pile for a good few years e.g. United. Previous to that it was Liverpool. Recent members to “hate club” have been Arsenal and Chelsea… We still all hate Leeds (but that’s another story, they deserve a special place at the table, a bit like an honorary degree).

Essentially the collective UK psyche is the “tall poppy syndrome”. It’s against the natural order of Brits. We don’t do success in this country, we are happy to be the “plucky losers”, “it’s the taking part that counts”, wasn’t Eddie the Eagle great etc.

Garry Cook needs to get his head round this; having 20 years in the USA it’s a shock to come back and watch a nation that glorifies losers and failures, which is why Royle Family, Eastenders, Corrie and Shameless are very popular in the UK. We do failure very well, heaven forbid we should have positive rôle models in this country. Jade Goody gets more column inches than Paula Radcliffe / Matthew Pinsent FFS.

As soon as success appears on the horizon, out comes the knives.

Look at Captain Short Bottom Ricky Ponting smarting after the Ashes defeat in 2005. “The Poms had an unfair advantage with their 12th man being a good fielder and running me out like he did with such a good throw.” WTF! How badly the Prime Minister of Australia behaved in handing out the medals to Jonny Wilkinson and Co. when England won the world egg chaser cup; it was comical, he virtually threw the winning medals at the team in disgust it was so funny. Look at the Aussie Olympic team bemoaning the fact that we can only win gold in events we sit down at; rowing, cycling. Get a life!

Poor ickle City or is it Ciddie or is it Citeh (I can’t keep up) used to be the “people’s 2nd club”. Of course now that we have just cuddled up to our new Arabian Knight (ho ho ho) the Abu Dhabi “sugar daddy” (they just keep coming don’t they), we are now the new hate target without the intervening period of success. So we are not even allowed to serve our apprenticeship of even winning a trophy before we get the press treatment of “ruining the game”, “immoral behaviour”, “we need a price cap”, “shouldn’t be allowed” boo hoo hoo…

Alan Green, Terry Christian, Alan Brazil, Mark Lawrenson all crying the blues over “middle eastlands”. Ho ho ho watch out Jack Dee these comic devils will be after a job as your joke teller.

So basically they want to perform a “King Herod abortion” on us. Strong word perhaps but it appears we need to have our success aborted before we join the top 4 party.

It is something we have to get used to and each defeat we suffer, Stoke/Forest/Brighton etc. will be celebrated with wild emphasis. Money bags ‘citeh’ can’t beat 10 man Stoke…

With that in mind, have we got the right man in the camp to steer us through the hate filled sewer of press bile that we have to trudge through? Have we got someone to batten the hatches and deal with the “siege mentality”, someone who has been there before.

Yes we have. Can you imagine the tutelage that old bacon face must have instilled in Hughes, Bruce, Keane etc. when all the world was throwing bricks at them? Pure jealousy. As a nation we can’t abide successful people or entities or corporations.

Dave Whelan is hilarious: “City upsetting our player, what they are doing is immoral.”

This was the same man that was fined by OFT for price fixing the replica shirts. So having money that is ours to spend on what we please is immoral but ripping fans off with inflated shirt prices and being caught doing so in an illegal act is perfectly acceptable. Pot, kettle, black: discuss!

Onward and upward, don’t rise to the bait… Strong resolve, keep our heads down, we’ll get through this. We need more distracting headlines, big brother scandal, Jade Goody, Beckham shirt signing, Prince Harry and his youtube clips. Keep the nation focussed on petty nonsense, we just get about our business quietly.

I shall consider that spleen well and truly vented! Gentlemen (and ladies) let’s enjoy the ride!

Phil Lines <philipjlines(at)>


While I don’t advocate the tossing of managers/coaches overboard because of one bad spell, I also find it difficult to disagree with Martin Hunt’s “bemusement” at those who refuse to blame Mark Hughes for the current slump.

In MCIVTA 1497, Martin offers all the examples necessary to make the case for the prosecution. Professional footballers, overpaid, boorish, self-obsessed jerks though many of them are, need motivating and it obviously takes a special talent to do that. There’s little point lamenting about the state of the game or the obscene amount of money these young men and boys are paid. It is what it is and it isn’t going to change. We all have the option of opting out.

During his post-game interviews Hughes is articulate and reasonable if entirely predictable (aren’t they all?). During games, when the going gets tough, he appears unsure of what to do. Beyond impressions gleaned from TV, I am concerned about Hughes for two specific reasons:

One, that apparent inability to manage and get the best from elite players of the sort that we can now afford to buy (Kaka, that means you). Unless they have personal problems (booze, rapid hair loss), elite players don’t suddenly stop performing without reason. Richards, Jo, Elano…

Two: His determination to buy a player like Craig Bellamy, a workman-like journeyman currently on a roll that, if past history is any indication, could end any time. A good player on his day for sure but also an unpredictable personality (I’m being polite) who could prejudice the spirit (being polite again) in any dressing room. And the pursuit of Bellamy in parallel with the pursuit of Kaka is all the evidence needed to support the view that it is not Hughes who is driving the Kaka bid and never was. Despite his protestations to the contrary, I doubt he even thought of it. Owners and manager are clearly not on the same page. Bad sign.

This has been a disastrous season so far for City and perhaps the pragmatist in Hughes figures that blood and guts Bellamy will contribute more to the immediate cause than any higher-priced, temperamental, hot weather import. And maybe he’s right. Hughes knows Bellamy, speaks his language (in all ways) and figures he’ll give the team the punch (bad word in this case probably) it sadly lacks. But right or wrong, it’s evidence that manager and the backroom poo-bahs are moving in different directions.

Who knows what magic it takes to handle a bunch of millionaire ego maniacs? It can’t be easy and if you’ll pardon the heresy, there is only one manager in the Premier League who seems to be able to do the job on a consistent basis. I won’t mention his name for fear this note is defaulted into Heidi’s junk mail. Bottom line? Barring a quick reversal of fortune, Hughes is a dead manager walking.

Chris Cobb – Canada <cobsun(at)>


So the transfer window closes and we have failed to bring in either a striker that can lead the line or a top class centre half. Omissions I feel that will eventually seal the fate of Mr Hughes at our great club. I am truly amazed that we did not have a plan ‘B’ or a plan ‘C’ for a striker / centre forward. We have been short of a true goalscorer since Anelka left. It is clear Mr Hughes pinned all of his (and our) hopes on Santa Cruz and failed to land him. No back up plans, no alternatives: a surprise? Not really, just amazingly disappointing. The same can be said for a decent Vidic type centre half, someone who is strong, good in the air and can dominate a game. The type of player we are badly lacking and the type of player that without we are losing games (Everton and Stoke to name just two of many).

However, since the arrival of Mr Hughes in the summer he has constantly and repeatedly asked to be judged after the January transfer window when he can bring in his ‘own type of players’. This has also been articulated and supported by our wonderful Mr Cook. So now it is put up or shut up time. The facts are Mr Hughes inherited a half decent top 10 side. He has now spent an eye watering circa £100 million on new players. With this type of investment from our extremely generous and wealthy owners, some form of progress is not asked for, it is demanded! Anything below 7th position will be failure. Anything above will be genuine progress. Time will tell.

Around 6 or 7 of the current first team regulars are players that Mr Hughes himself has brought to the club. So: no more excuses, no more mitigating circumstances and no blaming it on anyone and everything else.

This is his squad, his team and his results from here on in. I honestly, sincerely and genuinely hope he achieves the progress that is now required. As regular readers / contributors to this forum are aware, I was not happy with the appointment of Mr Hughes and have seen nothing since to change my mind. However, I will support him and get behind him 100% as we now all should.

It will also be highly interesting to see just what Davy Moyes does with Jo at Everton for the rest of the season. Will he transform him into an £18 million Brazilian international? If he does then again serious questions must be asked regarding our coaching, motivational and man management skills. Again, time will tell.

The excuses are over – it is time for Mr Hughes to deliver.

Ray Bardsley <rbardsley(at)>


Got up 1.30 am Sunday top watch the Stoke game – should have stayed in bed. A few things stood out for me:

  1. We haven’t a plan ‘B’.
  2. We don’t have the ‘attitude’ and ‘commitment’ that Stoke had.
  3. Even down to 10 men, I always thought they had the measure of us.
  4. Left back is still a problem.
  5. Elano is still a petulant schoolboy; needs six of the best!
  6. We may be the richest club in the world but why would a world class playercome to City when we play absolute rubbish?
  7. Beattie cost £3.5 million, Heskey £3.5 million and we pay £14-17 (depending onwho you read) on Bellamy. Could have had two decent strikers with change leftover.
  8. Being the so-called ‘richest club in the world’ over-inflates transfer feesto such an extent that it we are paying well over the odds for players.
  9. Given £8 million – Bellamy £14-17 million really!
  10. Given a great signing – but feel sorry for Kasper. He was great early onlast year and shouldn’t have been dropped – now we’ll probably lose him; I ratehim higher than Joe Hart.
  11. Makes me wonder if Cooke knows how to run a football club; to me he seems allmouth and a flash suit.
  12. We’ll probably thrash Middlesbrough next game and everything will be fine; thejoys of following this team!
  13. The death of a supporter at the Newcastle game brings it all back intoperspective doesn’t it?

Kevin Williamson <scribbs(at)>


So the window is closed and now we have the following squad:

Goalies: Shay/Joe/Kasper
RB’s: Zab/Micah/Onuoha
CB’s: Dunne/Kompany/Micah/Onuoha/Berti/Ball
LB’s: Bridge/Garrido/Ball
DM: DeJong/Zabaleta/Kompany/Fernandes/Hamman (if he gets fit)
RSM: SWP/Etuhu/Vassell/Elano
CM: Ireland/Elano/Johnson
LSM: Robinho/Garrido/Bridge/Sturridge/Vassell/Petrov (when fit)
FWD’s: Bellamy/Caciedo/Sturridge/Evans/Vassell/Benjani/Bojinov (when fit)

That’s 26 outfield players and 3 goalkeepers. Plus any Academy kids coming through (people tell me it’s on the cards).

So, Mr. Hughes and your staff. No more excuses. Just do it, as you have all the talent that you need to get up the table and contest that sixth spot with Everton and West Ham plus a decent UEFA Cup run.

If Jo is brought on by Everton and he performs like the international I saw playing for Brazil last July, that will speak volumes.

So an interesting 4 months to enjoy.

Patrick Knowles <pjamk(at)>


The two players brought in by Mr Hughes in the summer have gone out on loan! The next few games will show us just what he is made of as he tries to get his new signings to create some sort of team that he hopes can keep him in a job. Be interesting to see just how Jo and Ben Haim perform at their new clubs.

Glad we didn’t contribute to Big Sam’s pension fund by buying RSC, no way is he worth £18.5 million. The hardest thing to get to grips with is that it no longer really matters that we might have wasted the money.

Sam Duxbury <Sammy459(at)>


I have to agree with Graham Mills: it was time to call Big Sam Allardyce’s bluff over Santa Cruz; he knew how badly MCFC had been after Santa and thought he could hang on for an improved deal to the last minute but it never came.

As much as I would have liked to have seen Santa Cruz or a very good target man signed before the deadline, it’s also good to see that MCFC with all the money are no fools.

Not signing Santa or any other target player now leaves the door open for Daniel Sturridge, a chance to prove himself. I wish him all the luck in the world.

During the transfer window, just like many of you I kept reading all the media articles that I could find, and trying to filter through them to which might be true. The articles that concerned me most of all were the ones stating that certain clubs could sign Sturridge in the summer when he will be out of contract.

I am not the only City supporter who thinks that Daniel Sturridge has great potential, and that we should keep him at all costs; he has skills, he is quick, and has a football brain, enough said.

As you all know I have supported Mark Hughes as manager, and now that he has had the chance to bring in players of his choice (minus Santa Cruz), Sparky has now got to prove that he is the one to carry City forward.

The rest of this season can still be very exciting. We are in UEFA Cup and we can climb back up the table, and no more excuses if we encounter bad games by our players.

One for all, all for Manchester City! Come on you Blues!

In Sparky I trust, now do it the old fashioned way, earn the job, so you can keep it.

Ernie Barrow <britcityblue(at)>


I have followed the lingering debate about Mr. Hughes’ integrity/ability as a manager with interest and still cannot make up my mind. But my Italian boss told me this joke, which may well apply to the City situation.

An MD fails to impress and his sacked by his board. When his successor arrives he finds a note from the outgoing man saying when the going gets tough, open the attached envelopes in order. All is well for a month or two as the staff respond to the new broom, but then the troubles start so he opens the first envelope, which says “blame everything on your predecessor”.

He does, and gets away with it for another month then questions are asked so he opens the second envelope, which says “change the structure of the organization”, which he proceeds to do.

Again, all is rosy for a while but then problems surface and he is forced to open the last envelope and he reads “prepare 3 envelopes for your successor”.

Has Hughesy opened the last envelope yet?

All the best to all at MCIVTA.

P.S. we desperately need snow out here in Bavaria (for skiing) and you have it and don’t know what to do with it. Put Hughesy on the job?

[We have the “wrong” sort of snow here Paul, the country has ground to a halt. I swear it was never like this when we were kids! – Ed]

Paul Ardern <Paul.Ardern(at)>


Does anyone know the new Robinho song, sung at Stoke? Bit tired of the “We’ve got Robinho…” effort.

Joel Perry <joel.perry(at)>


Just to let you know that the President of Schalke FC has donated 1,000 euros to the appeal to help with Carl’s brother’s expenses while he is in Germany. What a fantastic gesture. Now surely I can’t be the only one thinking well if he can do it why can’t some one from City make a similar gesture? We are now getting some support from the club, especially from Sam and Vicky at the PR department but to be honest it is the support from the Manchester City fans that has inspired us.

The fans at Schalke are also doing some fund raising and so are the fans at Royal Antwerp; Liverpool and Everton fans are also busy collecting funds. We are only scraping the barrel at the moment on the amount that needs to be raised as initial estimates are that it will cost around £15,000 to repatriate Carl. We are still after helpers to collect with the buckets on Saturday vs. Boro.

Carl’s brother Andrew and cousin Ian will be attending a helpers’ meeting on Friday 6th at Blackley British Legion at 8pm all welcome.

Don Price <donprice(at)>


League table to 04 February 2009 inclusive

                             HOME          AWAY        OVERALL
                    P  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F   A   GD Pts
 1 Manchester Utd  23 10  1  0 25  4  6  4  2 15  6 16  5  2  40  10  30 53
 2 Liverpool       24  7  5  0 19  7  7  4  1 20  8 14  9  1  39  15  24 51
 3 Chelsea         24  6  4  2 21  7  8  2  2 23  8 14  6  4  44  15  29 48
 4 Aston Villa     24  5  6  1 18 12  9  0  3 20 12 14  6  4  38  24  14 48
 5 Arsenal         24  7  3  2 18 11  5  4  3 20 14 12  7  5  38  25  13 43
 6 Everton         24  3  5  4 15 16  7  2  3 16 12 10  7  7  31  28   3 37
 7 Wigan Athletic  24  6  3  3 13 11  3  3  6 13 13  9  6  9  26  24   2 33
 8 West Ham United 24  6  1  5 18 16  3  5  4 13 15  9  6  9  31  31   0 33
 9 Fulham          22  7  3  1 19  9  0  5  6  3 10  7  8  7  22  19   3 29
10 Manchester City 23  7  0  5 27 12  1  4  6 14 20  8  4 11  41  32   9 28
11 Hull City       24  3  3  6 13 25  4  4  4 18 21  7  7 10  31  46 -15 28
12 Bolton Wndrs    24  4  2  6 11 14  4  1  7 16 20  8  3 13  27  34  -7 27
13 Sunderland      24  4  2  6 13 15  3  4  5 12 18  7  6 11  25  33  -8 27
14 Tottenham H.    24  4  4  4 11  9  2  2  8 15 22  6  6 12  26  31  -5 24
15 Newcastle Utd   24  4  5  3 19 20  1  4  7 11 20  5  9 10  30  40 -10 24
16 Portsmouth      23  4  2  5 14 18  2  4  6  9 20  6  6 11  23  38 -15 24
17 Stoke City      24  6  3  3 13 11  0  3  9  8 27  6  6 12  21  38 -17 24
18 Blackburn R.    23  3  4  5 15 19  2  4  5 12 19  5  8 10  27  38 -11 23
19 Middlesbrough   24  3  5  4 10 15  2  2  8  8 20  5  7 12  18  35 -17 22
20 West Brom A.    24  5  2  5 16 21  1  2  9  6 23  6  4 14  22  44 -22 22

With thanks to Football 365

MCIVTA FAQ [v0708.01]

[1] MCIVTA Addresses

Articles (Heidi Pickup)          :
News/rumour (Alex Rowen)         :
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 Points of Blue (formerly the Fans’ Committee)?

The committee operates as an interface between supporters and the club. Points of Blue appears on the club website as a minor entry under “Fans Zone”.

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

The Radio Manchester (née 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] 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

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 #1504