Things We Think We Think #203


1: An excellent week, again. A safe, historic and exciting path was followed to the quarter finals of the League Cup, then a stout and dominant win in the Championship against one of the less troublesome sides in the division. Steve Bruce and his players have every reason to feel proud.

2: It’s all well and good saying “only Leicester”, as though defeating them was somehow inevitable, but it really wasn’t. They obviously won’t remain in their present position in the Premier League table, but they are there right now, so it’s no mean feat to overcome them, and even better to thoroughly deserve it, despite rather than because of the interventions of the officials. City absolutely deserved this victory and played terrifically well for it.

2a: Five penalties out of five, too. And a corking save from the much-maligned Eldin Jakupović too. City were once notoriously awful at these, but have we ever enjoyed a more faultless penalty shoot-out?

3: City have enjoyed fairly kind draws in this competition thus far: a tick ground and terrific night at Accrington, home to a plodding League One side, a tough-but-winnable match home to a middling Premier League side, then a repeat of the latter. Away to Manchester City is none of the above, and the trip to the likely English champions is as difficult as we could have had – already, City are being quoted at 12/1 to win the game. So, our thoroughly enjoyable League Cup adventure is likely to end in Manchester on December 1st – but it’s a shot to nothing, and whatever happens, history has been made and the our cup run has been great fun.

3a: As an aside, this game had better not be touted by our own club as “City v Tigers”, as that’d be the sort of deliberate provocation we ought to be leaving behind.

4: The game at Milton Keynes was a merciful exercise in domination and professionalism, much required because of the otherwise unseemly feeling that goes with an enforced visit to football’s ever-hateful franchise outfit. Their stadium is colossal, grey, isolated. The team unambitious, frightened, star-struck. And that doesn’t even come close to the adjectives that one can use when describing the very existence of this club. That City were able to win, and win well, and win comfortably (in the end – we still didn’t look hell bent on killing them off when we had chance), was at least a saving grace for the day itself.

5: Mind you, if you believe the local newspaper down there, Milton Keynes Dons were in total control, massively unlucky and comparable to 1970s Ajax in the way they made the football chirrup like a budgerigar and their opponents fall to their knees, blessing their great good luck. We understand that website reporters reliant on club coinage have to be unduly partisan, but local newspaper reporters who have been to journalism college really should know better. Funny, but embarrassing.

6: A mention for the spine of City’s team in Buckinghamshire is worthwhile. Michael Dawson and Alex Bruce were imperious at the back, Abel Hernández a fantastic line-leader at the top, and especially we should hail the central pairing of David Meyler and Jake Livermore, who bossed the game entirely. Livermore looks sharp, fit, focussed and creative. Meyler just ran after everything, and until his late booking prompted a slight withdrawal from proceedings, got everything he chased.

7: Incidentally, that song about Meyler is horrendous. Meyler has been key to our team since pretty much the day he signed on loan. He has been a rock in midfield while scoring crucial goals in our promotion season and FA Cup run and deserves much better than the charmless guff sung in his name at recent games.

8: Brentford next, who are also on a run of wins and not prone to conceding goals. Tuesday night could just be a bit of a cracker. If you’re going, lucky you. Then we’re at home to Middlesbrough, another side not exactly acting the shrinking violet right now. Another big, relentless, testing, exciting week of football is ahead of us. Catch your breath when you can.

9: The Yorkshire Post carried some interesting comments by Ehab Allam last week. We enjoyed the mental image of the Allams huddling around a television screen to watch live feeds of City games when they have a perfectly serviceable executive box at the stadium they could watch them from, but never mind. Most striking was the suggestion that a new chief executive could be appointed during this season. We can only hope they’re not planning to bring Paul Duffen back to the club.

10: The third kit seems a bit superfluous, doesn’t it? The racing stripes are interesting though.

7 replies
  1. Clock Stand
    Clock Stand says:

    The Meyler chant is offensive and according to twitter he has commented on it. The next time any disrespectful supporters sing that ditty the sensible fans should drown them out with an alternative song.

  2. Bill Baxter
    Bill Baxter says:

    Re:Man. City, let’s hope Bruce & the players haven’t surrendered the game already like most of the fans seem to have done.
    I know Man. City will be odds on favourites but it’s a cup game, look at all the upsets over the years, this could be one as well as long we’re not defeated before we’ve even stepped onto the pitch.

  3. Hardly Academical
    Hardly Academical says:

    Well the way I remember it the last time we played them at their place that man Myler popped up with a goal and we looked quite comfortable until Huddleston stuck his foot out for someone to fall over…….of course time and alcohol do have their effect on memory.
    But why can’t we go there do it this time.
    I am cheerfully dilusional

  4. JohnK
    JohnK says:

    re man city. Would prefer to go out to them than Sheffield Weds and a shock could be on the cards for a cup competition that is no stranger to shock results. Really pleasing that we are scoring and not conceding of late. This week will be a big test. Another 2 tough games on paper, both being a good yardstick to how things might shake up come May. Brighton’s excellent run will end at some point and we are there to take top spot right off them if we can keep our own run going. Oh for those conceded goals against Wolves and Blackburn…….the what ifs are starting already.

  5. Northampton Tiger
    Northampton Tiger says:

    I challenged some idiots singing the Meyler ditty on Saturday and asked them how do you think it makes Meyler feel if he hears that song? At first they were defensive (‘we’re only having a laff’) but then looked sheepish and when a few of them tried singing it again not many joined in. I would urge you all to challenge these idiots

  6. Haltemprice Tiger
    Haltemprice Tiger says:

    re. 3a. The club could always tout the game as Hunter v City!

    re. 7. Could not agree more that this song is absolutely ridiculous. A group of half a dozen or so idiots behind me started singing it on Saturday – thankfully nobody else joined in,

  7. gjhdurham
    gjhdurham says:

    Re 8: Brentford are a big step up on MKD. Would hope enhanced confidence doesn’t lapse into complacency. Need to be on it from the start! Brentford are quite capable of denting the fine defensive record… Bit worried about SB’s team selection…as usual? Will he rest Abel, and if so, who’ll pose the striker threat? Hope we’re not distracted by Saturday’s game v Bro, which also need our best efforts. One game at a time!
    Re 3a: Haven’t got the Tigers paranoia, and would love to hear “The Tigers” chant sounding out loud and proud again. The general media will call the Mancs “City” whatever we think, so I have no objection to them using the Tigers nickname. Time to shelve the precious reaction to this IMO.
    Seen somewhere that they have a lot of games in this period, and we have a decent record against them. Nothing to lose, so go for it! We have a strong squad, and two managers recently have said we’re a PL team, so let’s show it!

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