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WH Smith and the City shop
Silva-----------7.47 (21 games ) last season 7.68
Hart-----------7.36 (22 games ) last season 6.94
Aguero -------7.26 (19 games ) last season 7.50
Milner -------- 7.21 (19 games ) last season 7.00
Toure -------- 7.05 (19 games ) last season 7.42
Lampard ----- 7.00 (11 games )
Nasri --------- 6.93 (16 games ) last season 7.54
Kompany -----6.80 (15 games ) last season 7.35
Zabaleta ----- 6.80 (20 games ) last season 7.31
Navas -------- 6.76 (21 games ) last season 7.24
Mangala ------6.75 (16 games )
Dzeko -------- 6.70 (10 games ) last season 6.80
Fernandinho - 6.65 (17 games ) last season 7.36
Clichy ---------6.64 (14 games ) last season 6.80
Demichelis ----6.54 (22 games ) last season 6.05
Jovetic --------6.50 (12 games ) last season 7.26
Kolarov -------6.40 (15 games ) last season 6.80
Fernando -----6.37 (19 games )
Sagna -------- 6.35 ( 7 games )
Caballero -----6.25 ( 6 games )
Here are the marks for last season which I published in my May notes of City 2015 and it is interesting that my top three were the same as the Etihad Player of the Season voted for by City fans.
Down on last season as expected. Minimum of 6 home games to be included and at least 20 mins on pitch if a sub. Only games I have watched live are included
Well at last the first major signing of the summer has been confirmed.
Our new number 7 will be Raheem Sterling from Liverpool - seen here playing against City last August
. He should be arriving in Australia shortly to play in the pre-season games. This particular transfer has caused a lot of controversy with many sources saying that the 49 million transfer fee was far too high. I guess we will have to wait to see how he shapes up in the opening games of the season. My own feeling is that his speed and ability to beat defenders will be more than a useful addition to our attacking options
The player we really want is Paul Pogba from Juve who want over 70 million for the player. We will have to wait with baited breathe for this one.
A more possible new signing is attacking midfielder Kevin de Bruyne from Wolfsburg.
It was of great personal interest to learn that City had organized a friendly against Vietnam following the games in Australia. A long time ago -1956 I refereed an Asian Cup game between Vietnam and Israel in Hong Kong. For the record Israel won 2-1 that day but it was not the best of games and I doubt any of the players who turned out for Vietnam will be playing against City!!!
a couple of cuttings from the Hong Kong Tiger Standard
A bizarre turn-a-round by Fabian Delph has resulted in City signing the Villa player for 8 million pounds.
The 25 year old mid-fielder had said he wanted to stay at Aston Villa but now he will be wearing the number 18 sky blue shirt of City
Yet another new signing is Patrick Roberts from Fulham. He is only 18 and a striker or winger and made his debut for Fulham against City in March 2014
. He has several caps for England under 16,17,18 and 19 teams.
In Australia City have won both their opening 'friendly' games against Adelaide ( 2-0) and Melbourne City (1-0) . Nasri who will have to fight for his place in the City team next season scored a cracker against Melbourne to win the game late on. The game against Roma ended in a 2-2 draw but City won on penalties - Joe Hart saving two and scoring one!.There was also a goal by Sterling -his first in a City shirt
The very first move of the summer saw Turkish youngster 18 year old Enes Unal arrive at City from Bursapor.He is a 6ft 1in striker who has played once for Turkey after many caps for their junior sides.
He will be wearing number 83 and he made his debut for City against Adelaide United in the friendly and came on as a sub against Melbourne City and a late sub against Roma
The season gets nearer and after a 8-1 win over a poor Vietnam side City finished their pre-season campaign with a 4-2 defeat to VB Stuttgart. This last result was very worrying as the back four of Sagna, Kompany, Mangala and Kolarov conceded four goals in the first 30 odd minutes. It was horrendous defending and I just hope everything is sorted before the game at West brom.
Still no news of Kevin de Bruyne arriving but Jovetic and Dzeko have departed to Italy. The young Turkish striker Enes Unal has gone on loan to Genk in Belgium.
A good start to the season as City went 'top of the league' after beating West Brom away with ease by three clear goals. How long we will remain there is another story but it could and should have been more than three goals but I suppose City were saving themselves for the first home game against Chelsea who have already dropped a point.
Star of the away win was David Silva who was magnificent and it was good to see Yaya Toure back to form with one great strike for the second goal and a fortunate one for the first goal. One incredible fact was that we scored the third from a corner!! Vincent Kompany doing the business. It was the league debut of Sterling and though he showed some promise by fitting in well he missed a very good chance. Joe Hart had little to do in goal as the back four produced better form than that shown at Stuttgart. The only slight weakness was Bony who did little to show he will be a first choice in front of Aguero. In midfield Fernandinho worked hard but gave away too many fouls.
Nicolas Otamendi who I spotted at the Chelsea win
has finally passed his medical and signed for City from Valencia.
He is 27 and plays as a central defender. He is 6ft in height and will wear number 30. He was a regular for the Argentina team having played 25 times for them and for Valencia he scored 8 goals in 35 games. He was one of the best defenders in the Spanish League so is likely to be Kompany's partner in defence when he has settled.
This is City's 4th major signing of the summer - Sterling, Delph and Roberts being the others.
Perhaps one more to go - when the Kevin saga is finished!
The two nil win at Everton equaled the club record of nine successive wins that was last achieved in 1912 - 4 wins at the end of season 1911-12 and a run of 5 victories at the start of 1912-13 - the sequence ending with a draw against Sheffield United away. The goals for and against then was 17 -2 - and despite what some might say I did not watch any of them! This time the goal difference is 26-4.
Our record away at Goodison Park has not been all that good so it was no surprise that the win on Sunday was much difficult than that over West Brom. Two excellent goals by Kolarov and Nasri clinched it for City for whom Kompany and Silva were magnificent. The late goal by sub Nasri was a great little dink from a terrific pass from Toure.
City were fortunate in the first half when Lukaku's big toe was given offside! Generally though the City back four once more helped Hart to keep a clean sheet. It looks like Kompany is back to his best and Silva was yet again the magician. He worked well with Kolarov and Sterling down the left wing.
With the days before the end of the transfer period rapidly diminishing 'Kevingate' continues to frustrate us. One day morning news is that his medical is imminent. A few hours later it's 'negotiations are continuing' !! No doubt 'my spies' in John Lewis and Waitrose will ring me if there have been any sightings!
In the meantime the draw was made for the Champions League and once again City have got a strong trio of clubs to beat - Juventus - Sevilla and Borussia Monchengladbach. The last time we played Juventus at home was in Sept 2010 -the game HERE
- and it ended one all.
At last the Kevin de Bruyne saga is over. He has now signed for City and he will be wearing number 17 shirt. The fee of over £55 million is a club record and the second largest British fee after the Di Maria signing by United.
He has signed a six year deal and the 24 year old 5ft 11in attacking mid-fielder had played 33 times for Belgium scoring 8 goals. He started at KRC Genk (where young City striker Enes Unal is on loan) and for Wolfsburg last season he netted 16 goals and had 28 assists and was named the Footballer of the Year in Germany for 2015.
So how will he fit in at City. Lat season City only really had a plan A - now the improvements to the squad enables more flexibility. I believe he will start on the right - replacing Navas. If Aguero needs more help up front Sterling can move inside and Kevin could easily move to the left. Otamendi is likely to replace Mangala but other than that I doubt there will be any other changes.
So now we know the comings and goings of City players. At least we didn't have to stay up to midnight to know the result of the transfer window. So coming into City are the following.
Kevin De Bruyne £55 million from Wolfsburg
Raheem Sterling £49 million from Liverpool
Nicholas Otamendi £32 million from Valencia
Fabian Delph £8 million from Aston Villa
Patrick Roberts £8 million from Fulham
Enes Unal £2 million from Bursapor (gone on loan to Genk in Belgium)
Alex Garcia from Villareal
Faupala from Lens
Departing from City were
Negredo £21million to Valencia
Karim Rekik £3.6 million to Marseille
Scott Sinclair £2.5 million to Aston Villa
Boyata £1.5 million to Celtic
Edin Dzeko to Roma on loan
Jason Denayer to Galatasaray on loan
James Milner to Liverpool
Stevan Jovetic to Inter Milan on loan
Nastasic to Schalke
Micah Richards to Aston Villa
Jordy Hiwula to Huddesfield Town
John Guidetti to Celta Vigo
Frank Lampard to New York City
A brilliant display of goal keeping by Joe Hart against Borussia Monchengladbach kept City in the Champions League. His penalty save and other vital saves enabled City to stay in the game and a last minute penalty by Aguero gave City the three points. The defence lacking Kompany were often outplayed in the first half and I hope he's fit soon.
While much has been said about Vardy's scoring recently don't forget City too had a record breaker many years ago. Billy McAdams back in 1957 scored in 10 consecutive Division one games. It started against Sheffield Wed on Oct 4th with a goal in a two nil win and finished on Dec 2 nd with two goals against Everton in a 6-2 win. Also in that match against Everton Ken Barnes scored a hat-trick - of penalties! Alas not all of Billy's goals were scored in City wins - the full list - Sheff W 2-0, Leicester 4-3, Blackpool 5-2, Luton 2-2, Arsenal 1-2, Bolton 2-1, Leeds 4-2, Wolves 3-4, Sunderland 1-2, Everton 6-2.
When I checked in my records I found that I was only able to see one of these games as at the time I was just back from Hong Kong and was then stationed in Norwich and rarely got home to watch City. The game I saw was against Wolves on Nov 23rd. The City side that day was - Fleet, Leivers ,Sear: Barnes, Ewing, Warhurst:Barlow, Hayes,Johnstone, McAdams, Fagan. City scorers were Barnes 2 and McAdams.
City finished 5th that season scoring 104 goals but conceding 100 !
Denis Law and Francis Lee have been awarded CBE's at the New Year's Honours List
Law who had played for another side in Manchester was best known for his back heel to win the game for City against United in 1974.
Lee made over 300 games for City scoring 143 goals and was a key player in Joe Mercer's side and he eventually came back to City as Chairman in 1994.
Now here's a surprise! We are going to have a change of manager at the end of the season!
Pep Guardiola is taking over on a three year contract. It's been the news of the day on the last day of the transfer period. We have been expecting it for quite while now so now it is official. He won 14 trophies in 4 years at Barcelona and his record at Bayern Munich is not bad either.
It will be interesting if we play Bayern in the Champions League! In total as manager he has only lost 19 games out of 239.
With no major movement of players other than the loan of Roberts to Celtic in January speculation now concerns the transfers in and out in the summer. I think those that will depart will include Toure, Bony, Demichelis, Mangala, Kolarov and possibly Nasri. I think we can expect some major stars to arrive and names already mentioned include Pogba, Neymar, Lewandowski, Messi and Stone.
Will Feb1st 2016 be remembered by City fans as a special day in its history as the moment our manager for next season was officially announced.
My other special days are
1. Wembley May 30th 1999 the promotion play-off against Gillingham when Paul Dickov made it two all and City won on penalties after extra time. The story and pics HERE
2. 2008 when Sheik Mansour took over from Thaksin Shinawatra
3. May13th 2012
The winning goal
scored by Aguero in added time to win City the Premier League
Just under 11 years ago I visited Carrington to take pictures at a City training session under Kevin Keegan and among the players there was a certain young goalkeeper by the name of Schmeichel. At the end of the training session which started in a snow storm but ended in sunshine I took some pics of Keegan shooting in at Kasper. As well as taking the odd snap I also had to act as ball boy! More on the 2004- 05 season can be found HERE
. The images of KK would be one of the final ones of him at Carrington as shortly after news came that he was leaving and Stuart Pearce would be taking over.
Macken and Shawn Wright-Phillips
McManaman, Wright-Phillips and Pearce
Reyna shoots past Schmeichel
Little did I think then that 11 years later he would be saving goals against us for Leicester City
Yet another famous player has passed away. Johan Cruyff who played for Ajax and Barcelona and of course Holland died on March 24th. I only saw him play once - in Dec 1966 when I went on a rare visit to Anfield to see Liverpool play Ajax in the European Cup. There were 58.000 there to see the two all draw. Ajax won 7-3 over the two legs. Cruyff scored both goals for Ajax. The Liverpool team that day was - Lawrence, Lawler, Milne, Smith, Yeats ,Stevenson, Callaghan, Hunt, St John, Strong, Thompson.
Hunt scored Liverpool's goals
Plenty of atmosphere at the Etihad Stadium for the home game against Real Madrid
I was fortunate enough to see one of the great European Finals in 1960 when Real Madrid beat Eintracht Frankfort 7-3 at Hampden Park. Puskas scored 4 and Di Stefano 3 and the progamme cost one shilling!
I also saw them beat Man United 3-2 at Old Trafford in Oct the next season.
The last time I saw City play them was in Nov 2012 - pics HERE
Tonight May10th is the final game at Upton Park home of West Ham United since 1904. I first visited the ground in Jan 1958 when stationed in Norwich - West Ham beat Blackpool (including Armfield and Matthews) 5-1 in the FA Cup and the last time was in May 1963 when City lost 6-1. I was in the main stand invited by City left back Cliff Sear who I knew. Alas City were relegated that season conceding over 100 goals and manager Les McDowell was sacked. The City team that day was - Dowd, Kennedy, Sear: Oakes , Leivers, Gray: Young, Dobing, Harley, Hayes and Wagstaffe. The West Ham side included Bond, Bobby Moore, Brabrook and Hurst. As City had been beaten in the home game against West Ham by 6-1 too it must be one of the worst double defeats in City's history! In the home defeat Bert Trautmann was sent off for kicking the ball against referee Stokes - Alan Oakes going into goal!
Harley heads for goal in the City game away at Upton Park in 1963
Well West Ham won a terrific game last night so all City need next weekend is a point at Swansea to stay in 4th place and the Champions League next season.
Kompany ............7.81 (8 games)......last season 6.80
De Bruyne ..........7.55 (19 games)
Fernandinho........7.38 (25 games)....last season 6.65
Silva.................... 7.37 (19 games)...last season 7.47
Cabalerro.............7.30 (6 games).....last season 6.25
Aguero.................7.28 (21 games)...last season 7.26
Hart......................7.14 (25 games)...last season 7.36
Nasri.....................7.10 (5 games).....last season 6.93
Otamendi..............7.02 (24 games)
Fernando .............7.00 ( 17 games)
Iheanacho............7.00 (8 games)
Toure ...................6.98 (24 games)...last season 7.05
Sagna....................6.93 (21 games)...last season 6.35
Delph.................... 6.88 (8 games)
Zabaleta.................6.83 ( 12 games).last season 6.80
Sterling..................6.81 (21 games)
Navas.....................6.80 (23 games)..last season 6.76
Clichy.....................6.80 (15 games)..last season 6.64
Kolarov..................6.75 (16 games)..last season 6.40
Mangala.................6.72 (20 games)..last season 6.75
Bony......................6.19 (13 games)
Demichelis .............5.72 (9 games)....last season 6.54
Here are the final stats for the season just finished.
Minimum of 5 home games to be included and at least 20 mins on pitch if a sub. Only games I have watched live are included
So we are all set for a busy summer with lots of goings and comings. I wonder how many of the following will be arriving -
Gundogan, Laporte, Kroos, Lewandowski, Aubameyang, Stones, Sane, Nolita, Wilshaw, Moreno Gaitan, Pogba, Reece-Oxford, Rose ,Ederson, Carvajal, Rulli -
and are these the favorites for the departure lounge -
Bony, Demichelis, Zabaleta, Kolarov, Navas, Toure, Caballero.
and depending on age, injuries etc there must be some doubts about -
Mangala, Otamendi, Fernando, Clichy, Sagna and Nasri
Joe Hart's very first kick in his first game against Sheff United in Oct 2006
Joe Hart taking free kick against Arsenal -May 2016 -click on image for slo-mo and real time
Joe's first save against Sheff United
His first dive - the ball hit the bar
You can see pics from his first game HERE