Monday, 12 May 2014


From someone who’s been supporting City for 28, solid seasons; winning an F.A. Cup, a Community Shield, a League Cup and 2 Premier League titles in just 3 years is, I’m sure you can appreciate, utterly mind-blowing! Before all of that I had to be content with success being in the form of promotion from a lower division...

Just a brief one for now

Utterly ‘partied out’ and too tired to think properly and, so, I’ll put on a proper Blog in due course – hopefully not too long.

Great day yesterday! It’s not over, of course; there’s another party in Manchester tonight. When we won the F.A. Cup at the end of the 2010/2011 season there was a reported, official [from GMP and Manchester City Council] 60,000 City fans at the parade. I get the feeling it’ll be about the same tonight.

I think, for now, I just want to put in a few words of congratulations - and hope that my clouded head doesn’t forget someone deserved…

Congratulations to…

Manuel Pellegrini for coming into this country as a Football Manager for the first time and not only winning a very difficult Premier League title in his first season but also the League Cup. Getting to the quarter final of the F.A. Cup too and putting on a very good showing on the road to reaching the last 16 of the Champions League.

5 trophies in 5 seasons was the official remit of Txiki Begiristain and Co; 2 down in the first season isn’t a bad’n at all! I wonder if they’re gonna count the Community Shield, something, which, we’ll be contesting with either Arsenal or Hull City in August.

Well done for steadying the slightly listing ship of internal fractions left by the previous respected-by-fans Manager; for your calmness and for introducing the best attacking football most of us have ever seen at this Football Club. For your steadfast conduct in the face of the hard-nosed British press and dignity when pitched against the other less-so Managers in this league.

For your unwavering support and belief in certain players when most around – including myself – were seriously questioning you. And, similarly, for bringing belief and a smile back to certain players; bringing out the very best of them.
That’s the sign of a great (and I mean that word) manager!

Alex Kolarov for a much improved season. I still don’t think he’s a good-enough defender but, where it was applicable, he benefitted from Manuel’s attacking philosophy and fulfilled his role most admirably.

Martin Demichelis for beating the odds. Stepping into the Premier League for the first ever time at 32 / 33-years of age is one thing; but to ‘step up to the plate’ after overcoming a early knee injury and to survive the fan and press bombardment of doubts and negativity [some of the less class press and pundits even started to poke “fun” at him] is incredible. Most certainly wins the award for 'most improved player'.

Samir Nasri for a much-improved season than last year. As I previously alluded to; he has his manager to thank for that. It’s no secret – he says it himself in interviews – that the French midfielder plays MUCH better when he feels loved. I understand, but don’t necessarily like, Mancini’s continuing criticism of him - yes, even this season you just get the feeling that he doesn’t always put in the effort that he could do at times. But I take nothing away from him; he had way more good games than average ones…

Edin Dzeko still frustrates the HELL out of me at times…but there’s no doubting his huge contribution and eventual / fantastic season. Another beneficiary of Pellegrini’s father-like influence.

Vincent Kompany. Our ‘Cap’ has been immense once again - the ‘Manager on the pitch’. He’s such a vital component; not just for his ability as a colossal central defender but as a leader and inspiration to his colleagues. The way his battles through frustrating injuries says it all about him. If only you could bottle up that determination.

Yaya Toure for another, fantastic season. Showed some quite scary frustrations towards the end of season and was open as to why. Just carry on what you’re doing Yaya – you’re a monster of a player – and let your football do the talking.

David Silva. Sometimes the shorter sentences say more. He continues to be our maestro – he CONTINUES to make us 'tick'. What a star!

Pablo Zabaleta. Quite simply – despite Yaya & David’s performances and contributions – this guy gets my Player Of The Season. If Kompany has managed to bottle up his determination then Zaba drinks a couple of bottles before every game. What a ******’ man!

Alvaro Negredo for BURSTING onto the scene in his first ever English season. What a player and partner for Aguero he was. “If only” are the words when I think of that ill-fated fall at Upton Park; that unnecessary time he spent on that already-won game / tie. Unless we have plans to bring in another top, TOP striker in the summer; I hope the rumours are wrong about him going. He can be that ‘Beast’ once again…

Joe Hart. For battle through a difficult time form-wise. He was under the microscope for a long time; scrutinised – and given words of encouragement it has to be said – by some of the best, past-Keepers in the world. He came through it and showed just WHY he’s England’s Number 1.

Costel Pantilimon who continues to ‘never let down’ when asked to come in. It must be hard to step in to such a focal and important position when not-having played for so long…not to mention stepping in for such a top-class keeper in one of the toughest leagues on the planet.

The fans. Although Manchester City F.C. do what they can to keep home prices reasonable for the most part; following your football club is a very expensive hobby. These days I only go to every home game (league and all cups competitions) and anyone who attends “just” all of the home, league games deserves credit for their financial support and dedicated time.

But I want to praise also and in particular those fans who, both now and in years gone by, also follow the Blues ‘on the road’…in England AND abroad. We’ve always travelled well [in numbers] and some may now skit that it’s easy to follow a team that’s doing so well. But I know first hand that a lot of those who go away now are the same who went away when we were in the 2nd and 3rd tiers of English football. And to those who ‘make noise’ both at home and away – respect!

The Owners, Chairman and the board. For all their hard work and expertise that they bring to this fine football club.

The staff. All those unsung heroes who make it all possible behind the scenes not only, but including, those technical guys who trawl through and analyse SO much finite data in this now ever-so-technical game; supplying Manuel and the Physios with all the information a modern-day football team needs to succeed at the highest level. And special mention to…

Chappy. There’s always someone in the workplace who gives everyone a lift. I’ve already mentioned the huge impact Manuel has had since his arrival in that respect. But whatever the atmosphere inside the club has been like over the many, many years Les has been there; I bet he’s the main one who gives EVERYONE a boost…as well as doing a bloody fine kit-man job of course! I’m so glad he’ll be staying on in some capacity [yet to be decided] after his announced retirement.

I may well have missed someone off but, as I say, it will be unintentional. My head is clearing slowly and I might decided to add one or two more. But it just felt right to, at the very least, thank as many as possible at this time. It’s been a long, hard season and one, which, seemed to be slipping away as the apparent WORLD support for Liverpool gathered pace in another anniversary year of a very sad event.

But we beat the odds; we first bedazzled and then, later, battled & scrapped our way to ultimate victory. We fought to the end.

So much for the short Blog-posting and apologies for any fog-minded errors

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