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[Archived] City Away - Monday 11 January 2010

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CITY vs ROVERS – Monday 11 January 2010


And so here we are, right back where we started from – or at least it is the return fixture from the opening day ambush at Ewood. That was the first opportunity this season to stroll away down Tweed Street saying “We played pretty well there and maybe could have won it”. It wouldn’t be the last time we said that in those early scratchy weeks.


Luckily, I rarely miss the away game at City these days as I live in South Manchester and have a few mates who follow the blue side rather than the dark side. City fans are always a pessimistic bunch, and usually they get proved right. Their last major trophy was in 1976 when they won the League Cup – they haven’t won the League since 1968 (42 years and counting!). In the meantime we have managed to squeeze in a Premiership title, League Cup and Full Members Cup and six cup semi-finals, but we are not a Big Club like them.

A number of players have moved between us in the last few years – most recently RSC when City gave us £17m for him to swap warming our treatment table for warming their bench, which sounds like good business to me.

I have managed to scratch together an ex Rovers/City eleven by bending the rules to include coaching staff and overloading with strikers, but I am still a bit short – can anyone suggest any others?

Flowers – Hendry Faz Reid(N) Morrison – Dobing Flitcroft Hughes Bellamy – RSC Dickov

A bit of background for the stat geeks: Our record Away to City is pretty good. P 55 W 15 D 16 L 24 F 68 A 96 but since that win in December 1994 we have won only one of the last nine - although incredibly we have scored in ten of our last twelve visits.

The games themselves almost always throw up drama: Simon Garner’s 3 goals the same day as Hillsborough; the 3-1 win at Maine Road (‘Super-Acko’) and the rain-soaked home defeat (Big Col) in the glory season of 94-95; the home defeat when City were promoted at Ewood in 2000 was more painful (I did get on the pitch). They’ve all been brilliant entertainment.


So what of more recent times?

Last season I took my seven-year old (in full kit) to the game at Wastelands, a day which became a tribute to Tugay after his retirement was announced – the singing brought a tear to my eye. Then, having gone 3-0 down we fought back bravely to 3-1 (son thrown in the air) and all sang heartily “You’ve got Robinho, we’ve got Keith Andrews….” oh the unbridled joy, the heavy sarcasm. Leaving the ground, carried high on shoulders, my boy said “We played pretty well there and maybe could have won it”. He had a point, but we didn’t. I fear his life is now set on the hard road we have all taken together in Blue and White halves.


My mate Chris the Barber put down the scissors for a minute to give a Blue perspective (I usually treat him to a pre-match lunch in the Bulls Head Wilpshire before Ewood games so he owes me one) :

What is the fans view of Hughes departure and what of Mancini

It was a disappointment to see him go as things were improving. The big surprise was his replacement being Mancini who would not have been on any shortlist drawn up by City fans – time will tell.

When will RSC get a game

Never! He was Hughes’ man and is up against Bellamy and Tevez so completion is hard. I think we’ll also buy another striker in January.

How much more money will it take to break into the Big Four

About £100m should do it. More to come in January but the defence is main priority – why did Hughes let Dunne go?

What is your best memory of the title win in 1968 and when will City win it again

I don’t remember winning the league last time but I think we could win it next year.

Favourite City-Rovers memory (please, not promotion at Ewood)

Promotion at Ewood. Second would be winning at your place when you won the League.

Which Rovers players do City most fear

Dunn if he plays. McCarthy maybe if he’s on form.

Where do you think Rovers and City will both finish this season

City Fourth – Rovers about 15th.

Prediction for the game (including crowd size)

City 2-0, crowd around 46,500

So that’s it – onward to the Monday night sizzler with all its comedy potential. It will be pleasant not to be playing Villa for once. What sort of side will Big stented Sam put out? To play either one or two up front is now the great dilemma. Despite City’s recent improvement, I still feel a draw coming on so will go for an optimistic 1-1, and maybe a goal from Keith – lightning does strike twice sometimes.

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Nice preview.

Citeh look more resolute under Mancini but with the same prowess going forward.

I'd love to be wrong but I can see us getting soundly beaten here - we're away, they're on an excellent run, we can't win, can barely score and have conceded a fair few.

3-0 or 4-1 Citeh I'm afraid.

I agree with this. To be honest we need a good result against Villa tomorrow or, unless we pull off a major surprise on Sat, Sam will be under serious fan pressure next week if the mood on this board is anything to go by.

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Yes this game is on ESPN and can see us not getting anything away at City again this season just like last season, although if we do beat Villa tomorrow night I'm sure many will think we can build on that and beat City but i doubt we will :)

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I'm not allowed to expect to win this game as they've spent lots of money and are a top six club. I usually go but there's no point as we'll roll over, have our tummies tickled and effectively throw the game. Might go to the pub if nothing better to do. 3 - 0 to City.

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I know we havent been playing well away from home recently but i think that we might suprise a few people in this game and the palyers have a long enough beak after tonights games.

Lets get behind them a support our team and we might win :o

ps i am going and when i bought my tickets we were on coach 2 so not many but that was about a week ago

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This games takes on even more significance now with the postponement, an unexpected win and it takes the pressure off for the Fulham game and by implication the two Cup ties.

Lose and we really need a win from the Fulham game which means we will be faced with absolutely having to win two home games in three days then absolutely having to not lose the third game three days after that.

Same for Villa I suppose but they have a bit more leeway with their League position.

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We are going to lose this almost certainly, but I think we should experiment a bit as our standard tactics away from home have been abject:-

---------Di Santo--------Kalinic






The set up would surpirse city a bit, and if Olsson and Emerton work hard defensively we can effectively go 532 and make it difficult for City's wide players. Bring McCarthy and Chimbonda on second half.

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I'll be honest, our chances are so slim at the mo' my heart is saying 0-2, and my head 0-6.

Yep. Man City have already picked it up due to Manchini, and now we will see the real team of Tevez, Bellamy, Robinhio, Adabeyor, or whoever starts anyway. It just doesn't look good.

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