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Vital City Zen: Frankly Unimpressed


The headline MCFC news this week has to be our Chairman Dr. Thaksin Shinawatra's announcement from Thailand that he will be on his way back to Sportcity later this week to shake things up at the club as part of a four week leave of absence granted by Thailand's Supreme Court. Ominously for Svennis, Hans Backe and our misfiring team, Thaksin said 'I feel like they are losing too many games in the last three to four months while I am still busy. So I have to go back and tighten the bolt.'
There's no way that Frank became so successful in business and politics so rapidly in his life without having a ruthless edge. He has already gone on record as stating that he expects businesses and companies he owns to be run efficiently and to get results, so City's currently half hearted, bobbins players had better shape themselves sharpish!


In a tough Eastlands second leg semi final encounter, City's Youth team were beaten by Sunderland but progressed 2-1 on aggregate to meet Aston Villa or Chelsea in the FA Youth Cup Final. What a glowing credit yet again to Jim Cassell and the MCFC Academy. This is the second occasion in three seasons that City have reached the final. Take a bow Hartley, Trippier, McGivern, Boyata, Mee, Kay, Weiss, Tutte, Ball, Sturridge, McDermott, Nimely-Tchuimeni, Johansen, Ramsey, Tsiaklis and Mak. Here's to the lads bringing home that trophy and becoming Blue household names in the years to come!


Next up, our very own Georgios 'Sam Harris' Samaras, 'Uncut Diamond TM' and 'Greek Tragedy TM' has become a star in Scotland. So much so, that Celtic skipper Stephen McManus wants the £6 million striker to join The Bhoys permanently. There's an argument that the Scottish Premier League, like the Dutch League Samaras shone in, does not have the same intensity as the rigours of The English Premier League, but I am of the view that the lad's confidence was shattered at City as he and his team mates every touch were screamed at by Stuart Pearce. I think this effectively saw Samaras off as a Blue and his brutal performances left him with a psychological mountain to climb at Eastlands. I think Sven will sell and it will be interesting to see at what price.


We asked 'If we ever play with two strikers again, who's your preferred injury free partnership?' Well, 50% of our visitors would like to see Danny Sturridge and Valeri Bojinov storm Premier League defences together. Their full fitness cannot come quick enough when you weigh up Benjani's recent efforts. In fact, the pair of them on crutches would probably be more effective...Second choices in the absence of The Boj were Benjani and Sturridge with 18% of the vote.!


It wasn't just the football that looked poor last weekend. City's kit combination was a sight for sore eyes. We all remember "Losers Yellow" which finally got ditched this season. The return of the maroon second strip has been pretty well received as has the third strip which debuted at West Ham that magical summer afternoon but the maroon shirts with white shorts and white socks looked cheap and nasty at Reading and looked as if Les Chapman our kit man had forgotten the maroon shorts and socks. These kit clashes and bemusing mix and matches that are just not Manchester City won't be resolved until the red and black stripes return. Le Coq Sportif, are you listening?


Richard Dunne: Surely it will be a bridge too far for the Future Ireland Captain to meet Spurs so soon after the nasty ankle cut sustained in that full blooded tackle with Reading assassin Stephen Hunt? Options at the back are something we don't have right now.

Micah Richards: Freshly interviewed two weeks after his knee knack surgery, the City and England star declared he will be 'giving it 100 per cent to be fit as soon as I possibly can. I will be back and I will be back with a bang." Again, that can't be quick enough as we prepare to face Spurs with a back four of full backs...

Valeri Bojinov: The Boj is still working on building up the muscle in his leg after that serious injury and remains out of competitive action. I'm for holding the dynamic hitman back as long as possible to get him right for next season.


Any lingering hopes Svennis has of European qualification will be finally extinguished should City fail to beat the busy in all directions Spurs on sunday. Under Juande Ramos, Spurs' resurgence needs no introduction and they have the players to kill off any underperforming side with relative ease. Their defence, though improving, remains suspect and the likes of Elano need to be on top form to unlock it. Anybody seen Geovanni around, by the way?

Spurs Form Last 6 PL matches: W,D,D,W,L,W
City Form Last 6 PL matches : D,L,W,L,D,L

In the City sin bin: Petrov, Hamman

Johnny on the spot?: City 4 Spurs 3
- We're well overdue a thriller.

The journalist

Writer: Johnny Baguette Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday March 12 2008

Time: 12:25AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Who on earth is going to get the four goals ???
Report Abuse
12/03/2008 11:00:00

Alphie, I though for a minute that Frank was coming back to get his boots on.
Buzz Lightyear
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12/03/2008 12:12:00

We can't go on not scoring forever, fellas and in football you never know. Especially where Manchester City is concerned. If we can net early against Spurs, anything can and probably will happen. I wonder what impact Frank's return will have on the squad?
Johnny Baguette
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12/03/2008 12:44:00

Another factor that could have a bearing on how the game goes on sunday is how Spurs fair tonight in Holland. They've played a lot of football in all competitions recently and been very successful outside of that drubbing at Birmingham. Whatever happens they go into the clash with us as favourites and it's been when seen as absolute underdogs that this City side tend to get results. Either that or I have become increasingly desperate in search of a classic City win!!
Johnny Baguette
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12/03/2008 12:54:00

To be able to score you need to play the same team so they bond, its like two strikers they need to know each other. When we had a settled team we were scoring, but injuries suspensions have caused problems. It just takes time, but first you need stability then the goals will come, it is no use changing every game it does not work.
Buzz Lightyear
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12/03/2008 16:49:00

Sam Harris, the SPL is about his level and I like the guy but I hope Celtic buy him.
Buzz Lightyear
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12/03/2008 16:50:00

The Boj should be kept until next year, there is no panic here. I am sure we will finish in the top 10, which is a good season most points etc. Sturridge sgould be used in short burst of substitutions. What we need at present is some maturity and the goals will come. I know I have said we should play a 442, but changing the system after playing the same way all season sometimes does not help and we know we can play better than we have recently.
Buzz Lightyear
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12/03/2008 16:53:00

I wonder if Frank will get a 10% discount for his boots in the City Shop?
Buzz Lightyear
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12/03/2008 16:54:00

You've hit the nail on the head there Buzz. Will Sven risk changing the system for Spurs? Surely he should have done that against Reading and Wigan! Maybe Frank will have a say...or play??!!
Johnny Baguette
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12/03/2008 18:01:00

So down to 9th place this morning following Pompey's victory. City's lowest league position of the season, reflecting the fantastic position we were in at the turn of the year and our form since then. On the positive, 6th place has to be the realistic target for the players if Sven can lift them. Villa were thankfully pegged back by Boro leaving us 5 points behind them. I say 5 because goal difference is not an option for us if we are to reach Europe! Still do-able!
Johnny Baguette
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13/03/2008 08:28:00

Problem is now it is out of our hands as the only team we play in our remaining fixtures that are challenging for UEFA spot is Pompey. That means we have to rely on the likes of Everton, Villa, and Blackburn to drop points whilst we are winning....Definitely are tall order.....
Report Abuse
13/03/2008 10:18:00

Tell you what, though alphie, those sides have yet to go into a rough patch of form this year. Villa were unable to beat Boro at home. Weive been all but written off now and the pressure and weight of expectation is shifting to those teams who hold the qualifying positions.
Johnny Baguette
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13/03/2008 10:37:00

I doint know how many get into europe, but I think we can take pompey out of the equation as they will qualify via the fa cup, so really its vill blackburn and the scousers, we wont catch everton and I think they deserve 4 th place .
Buzz Lightyear
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13/03/2008 11:24:00

The way things have gone in the FA Cup this year Buzz I wouldn't count on Pompey winning it, even getting to the Final is not guaranteed.
Report Abuse
13/03/2008 13:31:00

Agreed alphie. The story goes for UEFA Cup this year, 5th place guaranteed, 6th a possibility.
Johnny Baguette
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13/03/2008 14:28:00

Looking forward to this 1 again 2attacking teams should be a cracker. Gonna be sat with the city fans again i got a bottle thrown at my head last time in the carling cup quarterfinal when i over celebrated Steeds goal, but it was worth it! Wel probably have King out aswell so with Dunne out also expect goals a plenty.
Report Abuse
15/03/2008 12:20:00

I think this is a too close to call job again, HuddersfieldYiddo. We're desperate for a win and City have to contain that desperation if we are to get a result. Ramos is no mug and a class act. We're without Dunne I'd say unless the man mountain defies the odds again. Of deeper concern is that experienced heads Hamman, Petrov, Ball and of course the young Richards are all out. This is a real chance for the younger players to shine.
Johnny Baguette
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15/03/2008 20:23:00


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