Newsletter #1757

Another good performance on Sunday as our opening games see us net 7 goals and nestle in top place for now. A sure statement of intent from Mancini as we begin the season.

Tonight we have match views on the Bolton game together with a look at the possible transfers still to unfold and the last on the Reds debate.

Next Game: Tottenham Hotspur, away, 1.30pm Sunday 28 August 2011


What a wonderful display of attacking football that was at Bolton yesterday.

The press are going on like City have suddenly metamorphosed into a beautiful multi-coloured butterfly, when the reality is City started many games playing superb one-touch football last season. It’s just that in the games we have seen so far this term, City have sustained the high quality, mesmerising passing game for longer periods.

There were several top drawer performances from City at Bolton. Gareth Barry gives so much to the team, doing the simple things, plugging holes here and there, and getting his foot in where and when it matters. I’m so pleased for him that he scored, and what a great strike his twenty five yarder was.

James Milner was very impressive as well, being an important part of the midfield engine room. He has a good eye for a pass and underlined with two assists in this game. He is certainly better playing in a central midfield rôle than out wide, but his ability to pop up in wide positions and deliver quality balls gives us another attacking dimension. He has patiently waited for an opportunity, showing the right attitude. I’d love him get a goal for us.

Edin Dzeko is a real pleasure to watch and he led the attack superbly. Fitter, and attuned to the pace of English football now, he is looking like an absolutely top drawer centre forward. He is showing his strength now. His hold up play, touch and ability to win headers is there for all to see, and he took his goal very well to put us 3-1 up. He also supplied two good crosses for Agüero, with whom he has formed an immediate understanding.

The real star of the show again, though, was the sublime David Silva. Always available, forever wanting the ball, and adept at finding space, he makes the play so brilliantly. It is great to see him shooting more. Whilst Silva is the main inspiration behind our sophisticated passing game, the team’s passing and movement as whole makes this possible. Whilst there is still room for improvement, City are looking like a team now.

One huge plus is that City actually played really well without the injured Nigel de Jong. Too often last season, we struggled without the excellent Dutchman, but this time City just got on with it.

Mancini tried some new tactics to counter Bolton’s aerial threat. Leaving 2 or 3 men up when we defended corners cut down the number of attackers we had to deal with, and hence reduced Bolton’s aerial threat somewhat. They were clever tactics, even if it meant there was no one on each post (something that I’d rather see).

The defence was a slight worry, though, especially with those two goals conceded, where Joleon Lescott was slow to respond. Klasnic’s finish for the first was top drawer, but Lescott needs to be sharper in responding; and for Bolton’s second, everyone knows that the serial fouler Kevin Davies is very good in the air, but again Joleon was not quick enough to deal with the threat. 2010/2011 was a good season for him, but with Stefan Savic pushing for a first team place, Joleon surely knows he will have to do even better this term.

On the plus side, Kompany is consistency personified and at a very high level too. Micah Richards did pretty well to deal with the threat that City old boy Martin Petrov offers. Alex Kolarov too looked like he was more attuned to the Premier League, having had the benefit of a season here behind him.

Two wins against moderate opposition (Bolton are a solid mid- table material) is a decent start. Tottenham, with or without Modric, will ask more searching questions of us. A draw down at White Hart Lane would be a decent result, and a win would be a real statement of how far we have come. Let’s eat up the Spuds next Sunday lunchtime!

Phil Banerjee <philban65(at)>


After a very entertaining game, and a winning game, versus Bolton to put City top of the League, a very good start to the season.

City supporters and fans still have questions on their minds, which should be answered soon. Will Tévez, after coming onto the pitch to a warm welcome as a sub in the Bolton game, stay with City now? Will Nasri sign for City and if he does he has to do it very quickly, or Wenger will play him in his Euro game on Wednesday in his personal effort to keep him with the Gooners.

Mancini made remarks in an interview that there will be another signing by City before the transfer window closes: who?

Will MCFC be able to find homes for all the players who are not on the Mancini list to play this season? There are still nine days (today being Monday) left during the transfer window. Adebayor: I think that most will say goodbye in a hurry, whilst SWeeP still remains a favourite, but time marches on and he should have no problems.

So far Roberto Mancini has said City have got just 22 out of 25 players on his list for the coming season, room for three more to make his list. Roberto Mancini has shown the world that with the right players his team can play attacking football with flair, and brilliance.

Come on you Blues! In Mancini I trust!

Ernie Barrow <britcityblue(at)>


Thanks to Jack Millington for his touching and humorous piece in MCIVTA 1756. I’ll get revising for that test, Sir!

As for Martin Hunt being pulled up for referring to Ferguson as “Bacon Face”, I find myself shaking my head rather wearily, and muttering, “Oh dear”. Martin too is on the end of ill-informed sanctimony! The “Bacon Face” nickname is basic, but it’s wonderful! It does actually help diffuse a lot of antipathy for that thoroughly odious man (well, for a minute or two anyway), and I find it almost impossible to keep a straight face when I hear or read it. I confess, I wish I’d invented it!

I can also empathise with Martin on the subject of our not-so-beloved neighbours as sadly, I’ve got a cousin and uncle who are afflicted by an allegiance to the Red menace. Like Martin says, if they want to be cured… If they really do, I’ll be on hand with educational aids! I have another cousin who is a Stockport County fan (poor sod!), and his dad is a lifelong Leyton Orient fan who hates United with a passion. Anyway my sixty-something uncle really enjoyed doing the Poznan in the Swansea game! Great stuff.

It was interesting to read Iain Keir’s latest piece. Without wishing to labour the point, I thought I’d made it clear that several City fans (not just me) have been on the end of violent behaviour, as I stated in the last issue and before, but hey, clearly the penny hasn’t dropped! The fact that City fans have been attacked by some of our lovely neighbours is worth writing about. Of course the Rags don’t have a monopoly of perpetrating violence (other ‘hooligan’ firms are available), and yes, City has, sadly, had its own share of ‘bad lads’. The point is (and I apologise to all if I sound like a stuck record) when United do it, the press turn a blind eye, when they shouldn’t. We should be informed and forewarned. As the vast majority of you will have deduced, part of the purpose of my piece pre- and post- Charity/Community Shield was to highlight the violent Rag threat, condemn it, and in the piece before the match, and to advise which tube station to avoid and which railway and tube stations to use. I hope it was of use.

As for Iain’s comment about having ‘grown up’, I don’t think he has a monopoly on that, even if footy does have a habit of releasing the inner child in us all from time to time! Maybe folks should read the written contributions of people senior in years to ourselves in newsletters like this and fanzines (I can think of one or two granddads (and fellow dads) out there who feel the same way as I do about the Rags, and who have written similarly themed pieces to me in various publications! Check out Messrs Wallace and Burfield, in KoTK to name but two). Yes, we all have other things to think about other than dear old City (family, work, in that order for me), but hey, writing about City, our progress, what the Blues are good at (that Kun Agüero is pretty special isn’t he?), and where we’re not doing so well, as well showing the Rags up, and, yes, ridiculing them at every opportunity, never did anyone any harm.

Vive la difference…

Phil Banerjee <philban65(at)>


New song for the new man. To the tune of “That’s amore”

When the ball hits the net, it’s not Torres or Shrek, it’s Agüero

Steve Marks <salty12(at)>


21 August 2011

Norwich City          1 - 1  Stoke City            26,272
Wolverhampton Wndrs   2 - 0  Fulham                22,657
Bolton Wanderers      2 - 3  Manchester City       24,273

20 August 2011

Sunderland            0 - 1  Newcastle United      47,751
Arsenal               0 - 2  Liverpool             60,090
Aston Villa           3 - 1  Blackburn Rovers      32,319
Everton               0 - 1  Queens Park Rangers   35,008
Swansea City          0 - 0  Wigan Athletic        19,028
Chelsea               2 - 1  West Bromwich Albion  49,041

League table to 21 August 2011 inclusive

                            HOME          AWAY        OVERALL
                    P  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  W  D  L  F  A  GD Pts
 1 Manchester City  2  1  0  0  4  0  1  0  0  3  2  2  0  0  7  2   5  6
 2 Wolves           2  1  0  0  2  0  1  0  0  2  1  2  0  0  4  1   3  6
 3 Aston Villa      2  1  0  0  3  1  0  1  0  0  0  1  1  0  3  1   2  4
 4 Liverpool        2  0  1  0  1  1  1  0  0  2  0  1  1  0  3  1   2  4
 5 Chelsea          2  1  0  0  2  1  0  1  0  0  0  1  1  0  2  1   1  4
 6 Newcastle Utd    2  0  1  0  0  0  1  0  0  1  0  1  1  0  1  0   1  4
 7 Bolton Wndrs     2  0  0  1  2  3  1  0  0  4  0  1  0  1  6  3   3  3
 8 Manchester Utd   1  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  2  1  1  0  0  2  1   1  3
 9 QPR              2  0  0  1  0  4  1  0  0  1  0  1  0  1  1  4  -3  3
10 Norwich City     2  0  1  0  1  1  0  1  0  1  1  0  2  0  2  2   0  2
11 Stoke City       2  0  1  0  0  0  0  1  0  1  1  0  2  0  1  1   0  2
12 Wigan Athletic   2  0  1  0  1  1  0  1  0  0  0  0  2  0  1  1   0  2
13 Sunderland       2  0  0  1  0  1  0  1  0  1  1  0  1  1  1  2  -1  1
14 Arsenal          2  0  0  1  0  2  0  1  0  0  0  0  1  1  0  2  -2  1
15 Fulham           2  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  2  0  1  1  0  2  -2  1
16 Swansea City     2  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  4  0  1  1  0  4  -4  1
17 Tottenham H.     0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0   0  0
18 Everton          1  0  0  1  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  1  -1  0
19 West Brom A.     2  0  0  1  1  2  0  0  1  1  2  0  0  2  2  4  -2  0
20 Blackburn R.     2  0  0  1  1  2  0  0  1  1  3  0  0  2  2  5  -3  0

With thanks to Football 365

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Newsletter #1757