The past… I guess it all comes from my mum. She’d been going to games with her father since 1947 and had even been at Windy Corner the day she found she was carrying my brother. When we went to Manchester, we’d always have to wave at Maine Road as we went into town, and on one occasion she even made my grandfather detour and stop the car so that we could get out and touch the wall of the ground. So City must always have been in my genes.
Over the years however we moved all around the country and as I didn’t get to see City my concentration faltered. I confess to once owning a Leeds shirt and even writing ‘Liverpool FC’ on a sports bag. My mother, who did keep the faith, still contends that I only did this to wind her up. Maybe there was something of that in it (maybe it’s a result of these glory chasing years that I still can’t bring myself to dislike any child wearing a United shirt. A terse round of “when did you last actually go to Old Trafford?” usually does the trick I find). Every Saturday tea-time we would be made to suffer the agony of ‘no tea if City lose’; fortunately at that time City won enough for my brothers and I to get some nutrition and we survived.
Years passed, I found City again (at the unlikely venue of Portman Road) and moved to Manchester. Standing at Windy Corner with my uncle and cousins (all Blues) made me think “why did I stay away so long?”
The present… No longer in Manchester but getting to games when I can. I introduce my wife to the delights of City. Her first game, Forest at the City Ground, and she and the baby she’s carrying are hooked. My suggestion of Sean for the baby’s name is however, still under negotiation.
The future… Premiership I hope. My mother, who is now dying of cancer, won’t be around to see City win the Premiership title in 2001 but she’s determined to see us go up this season. And our baby’s due in May so my wife is hoping she won’t have to suffer the agony of the play-offs as well as labour. Me, I’m just hoping I can stand it when our child declares that it supports Arsenal…
First printed in: MCIVTA Newsletter #595 on