Newsletter #1701

With a good win at the weekend, and other results going in our favour, City have consolidated their 3rd place in the table as we go into the derby fixture just 5 points behind United.

We have opinion tonight on which is the real City and players, a look at the disappointment of Birmingham and tributes to Neil Young along with details of Gary’s talk this Friday evening in Manchester.

Next Game: Manchester United, away, 12.45pm Saturday 12 February 2011


Firstly, it’s good to have MCIVTA and Heidi back, I really needed this forum a few weeks back to vent my fury.

Having watched the last 4 matches, it was good to finally get a comprehensive win over a tricky WBA team. I was absolutely livid with the way we threw away 2 points away to Birmingham, when Vieira needlessly conceded a stonewall penalty. As soon as Richards and de Jong got injured, I was thinking who could Mancini bring on? Sadly it was Vieira… he does OK in the cup matches and Europe as the pace is a tad slower but I feel he gets found out in the Premier League. What irked me was that he is meant to be so experienced but he dived in recklessly like a rookie and I could not believe Mancini claiming “it was never a penalty!” In the second half Birmingham were bossing the match, and I do wonder if our squad is good enough? A win there and we would have still been in with a genuine shout, especially considering the results this weekend.

With Adam Johnson out for 3 months, the only other out and out winger we have is SWP, and he is so short of confidence and playing time, I sometimes wonder who is going to fill in. Milner is not a winger, and does not have the ability of Johnson or SWP but works really hard. David Silva is pure class; for a little guy, he has everything that Barcelona or Arsenal would admire in a player, he makes a massive difference to our team’s fortunes. From what I have seen of Dzeko, I am pleased we bought him, and he will only get better the more he plays, and he also appears to be a sensible and level headed guy – in total contrast to Balotelli! Personally speaking, I would be happy if we offloaded Balotelli, he constantly appears surly, he also appears to be injury prone, and does not seem to appreciate he is playing for City. I hate all his overtures of playing for AC Milan; he needs to prove himself in the Premier League before looking beyond.

Now for my real rant, am I alone in thinking that Jo is absolutely useless? I have not seen so many abject performances from a player, whom we paid £17 million for, and yet Mancini kept picking him ahead of Adam Johnson, SWP, Adebayor and Santa Cruz. Anyone willing to buy him must see qualities that he manages to keep well hidden; he would struggle in the Championship.

I was really hoping that we would look at Charles Nzogbia in the transfer window (well money is no object for us!), as I feel he would have been a player who could conjure up something out of nothing, and given us a better balance in attack. I still feel we lack a genuine attacking midfielder (when was the last time one of our midfielders scored?). Even someone like Charlie Adam would improve our midfield and set pieces, especially as Mancini sets up the team too defensively at times, and I cannot see us hammering anyone by 5 or 6 goals.

A lot of my friends say that City are a one man team, totally reliant on Tevez, and I cannot really argue as he is so pivotal to our team. Next Saturday sees the Manchester derby, and boy would it be good to beat them, and comprehensively too… however, I just cannot see it. Mancini has a set plan for the top 4 teams: keep it tight, with plenty of players behind the ball and be happy with a 0-0 draw. How refreshing it would be if he proved me wrong and just had a real go at United and scored a few goals in the process. We need to stem the creativity of Giggs, and the potential genius of Berbatov, whilst not giving any United player time on the ball.

Well here’s hoping we beat United, and give us a real chance of success this season.

Come on City!

Glyn Albuquerque <GlynAlbuquerque(at)>


I can understand Roberto Mancini being upset with his team after this game. At times City looked great and at times just simply a team that was not concentrating on the job at hand.

City are still in the top four and have the players in the squad to keep us there, but from now on all players must give 100% concentration in every game. I am not saying that the City players did not give a good effort in this game, they just let the Brummies have an easy goal and then the referee gave a penalty to Brum that should definitely never have been given; the referee became a Friend to Birmingham.

I am pleased to hear that Micah will be OK; that was a strong effort on his behalf when he collided with team mate Tiger de Jong. Still some way to go this season with silverware to be won; it would be very nice if City can win the FA Cup in the name of Neil Young (RIP).

Come on you Blues!

Ernie Barrow <britcityblue(at)>


Sad, sad news about the death of Neil Young, one of the finest players to put on the sky blue shirt. My memory of him is unusual but vivid after over 40 years. When City won the Cup in 1969, we had been living in the United States for nearly two years. Winning the Cup was brilliant enough but, wonder of wonders, ABC TV’s “Wide World of Sport” announced that they would show “highlights” of the game on the Saturday after it had been played. In those days, America didn’t recognise “soccer” as they knew it and it was fantastic to be able to see any game any time. Five minutes of the Cup Final was unheard of.

Saturday afternoon, before the programme, wife and kids needed a trip to a local mall, several miles from our home. By the time we had corralled the kids, got them all in the car and headed for home it was nearly 5pm and I sped up to make it in time for the programme. I was 100 yards from the turn-off from the motorway equivalent when the state trooper, his car light flashing and siren howling, pulled me over. I wound down my driver’s window and waited for him to get to our car. “OK buddy” he said “Where’s the fire? License and registration.” I gave him the required papers and put on the poshest English accent I could muster. “You’re not going to be believe this Officer, but the English football Cup Final is going to be on “Wide World of Sport” and my home-town team that I’ve supported all my life is going to be on and win it. I was speeding to get home to see it”, He stared at me hard, folded up the papers handed them back and said “Slow down ya crazy English b’stard. And good luck to yer team”. He got back in his patrol car and drove off.

I drove home and made it just in time to see the excerpt from the game and Nelly’s goal. One of the best sporting moments of my life. Thanks Neil and RIP.

John Parker <mumdadparker(at)>


I’m so terribly sad to hear the news that Neil Young has died. A great character and a true club man, he wore the sky blue shirt with pride and for a relative pittance and wasn’t even awarded a testimonial for his troubles.

What a contrast to the greedy players of today. Thanks for the memory!

Robert Sleigh <robert_sleigh(at)>


Neil Young was one of the main reasons I became I City supporter in the late 60’s; my condolences to his family, a true legend of MCFC and will never be forgotten. Rest in peace Neil and thanks for the memories.

Dave Jones <david.jones(at)>


In today’s market what would Carlos Tevez be worth? More to the point, where would City be without him? The best striker to grace our club since Francis Lee, or the best ever. His work rate, work ethic is simply first class, and City need to do all in their power to keep him. But there again Franny had a great team behind him, which makes Carlos’s efforts even the more special. Where would we be without Carlos… I really wouldn’t like to think.

As a footnote, my heart goes out to Neil Young’s wife and family. Always thought he never got the accolades that Lee, Summerbee, Bell etc. got, but there was something special about him. Thanks for the memories Neil.

Kevin Williamson <scribbs(at)>


Reading the back issues of MCIVTA that the editor is sending us to catch up. I think that the most important thing that many of us wrote about has been resolved.

Carlos Tevez is still a City player and playing with such great form. He already is the Premier League player of the year right now as far as I’m concerned. I am very pleased Roberto Mancini has kept Tevez as captain, although at that time I was leaning towards Kompany as captain; after all I, just like other City supporters, was upset by our hero putting in for a transfer to leave us.

A weekend of some great results: Rags lose to Wolves (well played Wolves), Chelsea lose to Liverpool, Gooners draw with Newcastle (great comeback by the bar codes, and thanks Joey), and City beat West Brom.

Next United wait nervously as they prepare for their noisy neighbours to invade them on the short trip from the City of Manchester to Salford. The 2,900 City supporters who have been allocated tickets will not let us down, and will make more noise than the 73,000 Rags. This game is a six pointer, more than a derby game; what a time to beat the Rags, and a draw won’t help us. Attack! Attack! Attack! Win! Win! Win!

Come on you Blues beat the Evil Empire!

Ernie Barrow <britcityblue(at)>


The meeting place of the Galway Branch of the OSC, The Western, Prospect Hill in Galway, has been awarded a “Heart of the City Award” by Manchester City FC.

All the members of the branch are delighted with the news. The branch have been based here for a number of years and have had many highs and lows watching the lads on T.V.

If you’re ever in Galway when City are on the box call in, you`ll be made very welcome and be among friends. For more details about the award go to:

Howie de Blue <galwayblue(at)>


“Manchester A Football History” author Gary James will be performing an illustrated talk on the “Twists and Turns” of Manchester football at Waterstone’s Manchester Deansgate on Friday 11th at 6pm (the eve of the Manchester derby). Basically, Gary will be talking, doing a Q&A and signing copies of his books. The talk will include stories about the first successes; the Bribe Scandal and what that did to City & Utd; the Manchester Central Story; and the transformation of recent seasons; plus much more.

Gary will be showing images and film connected with the derby as part of his talk. This will include the oldest known footage of a Manchester derby match (almost 100 years old and it was a highly significant derby game!).

The event officially starts at 6pm on the 11th, and Gary will be there some time before that. He’ll be talking, showing the footage and images etc. until about 6.45 and will then do a Q&A on Manchester football, his writing and research etc. Tickets cost £3 and are redeemable against any of Gary’s books on sale at Waterstone’s (they will have “Manchester A Football History” and “Joe Mercer, OBE: Football With A Smile”).

Tickets are available from Waterstone’s. If you want to know more: or Facebook: “James Ward Publishing” Gary will also be around for a bit afterwards for book signing etc.

Gary James <city(at)>


6 February 2011

West Ham United       0 - 1  Birmingham City       32,927
Chelsea               0 - 1  Liverpool             41,829

5 February 2011

Stoke City            3 - 2  Sunderland            26,008
Aston Villa           2 - 2  Fulham                35,899
Everton               5 - 3  Blackpool             38,202
Manchester City       3 - 0  West Bromwich Albion  46,846
Newcastle United      4 - 4  Arsenal               51,561
Tottenham Hotspur     2 - 1  Bolton Wanderers      36,197
Wigan Athletic        4 - 3  Blackburn Rovers      18,567
Wolverhampton Wndrs   2 - 1  Manchester United     28,811

With thanks to Football 365

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Newsletter #1701