Things We Think we Think #235


1. Losing 3-0 at Sunderland is a calamity with no positives to be derived. None. Forget the talk of playing well for much of the game, and just look at the state of that scoreline. It’s absolutely terrible, and it’s difficult to stomach any hard luck stories.

2. City did look neat and tidy outside of the two penalty areas, and looked wretched inside them. From practically ushering Jermain Defoe to our goal to ineptly passing up every chance that came our way near their goal, we looked feeble, weak-minded and afraid when it came to the crunch.

3. Let’s throw some blame about, because again, just look at the state of that scoreline. It’s becoming tougher to support David Marshall, for at least one of the efforts that flew past him was eminently saveable. Ahmed Elmohamady is frankly not bothered and a waste of a shirt (we miss Moses Odubajo terribly, if only for his impeccable attitude). Ryan Mason looks frighteningly lightweight for a £13m investment, while Markus Henriksen appeared troubling distant from being Premier League.

4. What of Mike Phelan? There’s no doubt he’s been dealt an appalling hand thanks to the wilful damage that Ehab Allam and his dismal father are inflicting upon the club (of which more shortly). However, we’re in freefall and near-certain to be relegated, and he cannot be entirely exonerated.

5. It’s clear that City need additional investment in January, without which an instant return to the Championship is overwhelmingly probable. Meanwhile, Phelan must labour on with what he has, and somehow he needs to get his sorry-looking charges to improve at both ends of the pitch.

6. Given that three of the players criticised in point 3 were recent signings, there might be some who question the wisdom of giving Mike Phelan a wad of cash to spend in January. However, we’ve no idea just how many of the signings made near to the transfer window’s closure were actually Phelan’s choices, or if all of them were on a Post-It note left in Steve Bruce’s office after he’d grown tired of the Allam machinations and done one.

7. It would be a disaster if Abel Hernández were sold to Aston Villa in January. However, it’s a story that refuses to die, and even if it’s only been kept alive by a mischievous agent it’s still very much there. Dieumerci Mbokani has done extremely well up front, often alone, but if we’re to score the goals we need to reach the promised land of 17th, he needs a partner – and Hernández can score goals. Don’t even think about it, Ehab.

8. In his own mind Ehab probably thinks he’s really clever. In the real world, where publicly stated stupidity is easily searchable on the Internet, his previous utterances keep coming back to show just how dim he is. Remember this? “Clubs should be encouraged – by a penalty system – to ensure crowds are close to capacity. If, for instance, a game is not televised and played at 3pm on a Saturday then the attendance should be at least 90 per cent of capacity, maybe 95 per cent. Anything less and the club will be penalised financially. That would encourage clubs to improve their marketing, pricing structure and the standard of facilities. Get these right and supporters – both home and away –will want to come along. At Hull, it would put the onus on us to get things exactly right. If the prices were too high, we could miss the 90 per cent threshold.”  How’s that onus going Ehab? Have you contacted the Premier League asking them to penalise the club financially for the empty seats as each passing month sees another record set for lowest Premier League attendance at the KCOM?

9. It’s increasingly apparent that the hateful Allam family are not going to relinquish their chokehold on the club voluntarily. It’s also obvious that they cannot be reasoned with, for they are not reasonable men, and it’s a waste of time trying – the name change fiasco demonstrated their total inability to comprehend logic that’s civilly imparted. The time has surely arrived for a greater directness in our attempts to usher them out of the door, before the damage they do ends up taking a generation to repair, and it’s going to take a lot more than protests at the game to achieve this. You don’t cure cancer with aromatherapy and Gregorian chanting, after all. We’re open to all ideas and happy to speak with any interested parties in bringing this about.

10. Thanks to Art of Football for trying to mitigate some of the gloom by offering a reader some free merch. Enter the competition here.

15 replies
  1. Jon
    Jon says:

    How about a petition is started basically saying they are no longer wanted . This can be signed at a home game as well as online etc . Then a March or demonstration is held to deliver the petition to there offices at allam marine or home with plenty of media any demonstration at the stadium is useless as they don’t attend

  2. Jon
    Jon says:

    Would need to get at least 10,000 signatures so the idiots don’t turn round and say it’s from the minority

  3. Ambertigerfan
    Ambertigerfan says:

    What happened to the relatively successful 3-5-2 system of recent? Phelan tinkered without reason: we beat Southampton with Maguire at the back with Davies and Dawson, why change it for shitty Sunderland?

    If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.

    At least Diomande is back for the next game, maybe with Mbokani he can conjure some goals up.

    Hernadez’s scoring record in the Premiership is woeful: one goal only this season. He’s great in the Championship, but spurns the few chances he has in the Premiership. If City can get their money back out, they should sell and find someone with a scoring record at Premiership level. Sunderland have managed at least to find forwards that can score.

  4. John from Brid
    John from Brid says:

    Re 7: I don’t rate Hernandez at all this season, I am convinced he didn’t want to be on the pitch from the first minute against Southampton. I would also go as far as saying he is faking it with the injury he got, I would be quite happy to be proven wrong though.
    Sunderland played two up front, one a bull of a man and the other as agile as a whippet and got a result, take note MP if you have two capable is another thing.
    West Brom a tricky lot but hope springs eternal, UTT.

  5. Mike Coates
    Mike Coates says:

    Truthfull reporting again.
    City were crap.
    We will struggle against Newcastle even.
    Terrorist gate to stop protesting fans.
    Drop Marshall.
    Stay out of our seats till 19.04minites gone.
    Return blowing whistles

  6. Rich
    Rich says:

    Maybe what is happening on the pitch is not as bad as a lot of supporters think it is… We are third bottom of arguably the best league in the world and are very much in the mix of a relegation scrap along with another 7 or 8 other teams. To every person that reads this, please ask yourself what you expected from this season. I expected this, or possibly worse. We have played well in a few games this season and we have played poorly in a few games this season. Yes this favours the poor performances but three have also been highlights.On Saturday we were not good enough at both ends of the pitch and the manner of their goals is obviously a huge concern. However if we continue to play with such fluidity and verve as we did for the majority of a game that we dominated, then we might just survive. This is the season that I thought it would be and I am going to enjoy it, certainly if we continue to play like we did on Saturday. If, as Amber Nectar and a lot of the supporters seem to be, you are intent on adopting a negative and defeatist attitude then why turn up? On the pitch is the only aspect of supporting our club that we have a chance of enjoying so I intend to do that for every game I attend this season.

  7. Rottenborough
    Rottenborough says:


    You enjoyed losing 3-0?

    Flaming Nora.

    What do you feel like when we win?

    No, on second thought, I’d rather not know.

  8. Rottenborough
    Rottenborough says:

    I am left wondering how a supporter who enjoys losing 3-0 actually does support the team.

    Do please enlighten us Rich. How did you support the team last Saturday? For all I know you may well have been standing all game, roaring your support and singing as though your life depended on it. I may be wrong, but somehow I doubt it.

  9. Jon
    Jon says:

    The HDM need to do more; they need to come out and publically condemn the Allams. This needs to be a front page story just like the Coventry Telegraph did a few months ago!

  10. Shuffle
    Shuffle says:

    The performance against Southampton was arguably worse – we were really poor and then somehow managed to score 2 whilst the Saints went for a cup of tea and a lie down. Sunderland offered some hope for us but there was no cutting edge and it has been quite rightly pointed out that Mason, Henriksen and Marshall were all pretty awful.

    Kudos to Phelan for finally playing Tymon. I thought he did a relatively decent job although was at fault for Defoe’s opener.

    Defoe is and remains an absolute class striker. Sunderland have kept up for 3 seasons because of him. There is no chance that this club will ever attract such a striker whilst the Allams are in charge. As to what to do about the spiteful family, it is really difficult to know. I think wholescale protests are needed plus lots of media coverage – the heat somehow seems to gone off them this season…

  11. Emtiger
    Emtiger says:

    Rottenborough, of course Rich didn’t enjoy losing 3-0 but he is analysing the defeat for what it was, in his opinion, a result that is one of many loses that City will endure this season – did you think that they would win more that they would lose? What Rich is alluding to is that the performance on Saturday was encouraging, certainly better than that against Southampton. Instead of wingeing it might be better to get behind them, you never know, with some encouragement, luck and less injuries we might win a few.

  12. Richard
    Richard says:

    Couldn’t have put it better myself Rich. End of the day, two weeks before we beat Southampton. We shouldn’t have on paper, and we should have beaten blunderland on paper. Either way, we’re no worse off! They owed us a beating. They haven’t beaten us in 7 games. We’ve got a lot of injuries, and our squad is very lightweight. But you still get the feeling we can beat teams. I think 352 is the way forward, we do play some attractive football, and always have chances. We just need to finish them. 352 with snoddy playing off the front in a free role would cause havoc! Yes, this was a poor result, but I can already see us gaining 4 points from our next two games which would be massive! COME ON YOU ULL

  13. Rottenborough
    Rottenborough says:


    Whingeing? By saying I don’t enjoy losing 3-0? Eh?

    I’ve been getting behind, encouraging and supporting City for more than 50 years. In all that time I can never, ever, remember “enjoying” watching City losing a game.

    I was on Bunkers in the quarter final against Stoke, when Waggy stuck two past the best goalkeeper in the world at the time, making him look as helpless as a goalie for the local under 11 school team. Did I enjoy that? You bet.

    Did I “enjoy” losing 2-3? Er, no. I was gutted. There was no enjoyment left in me for at least the next week. I really cannot understand how any supporter of any foootball club can “enjoy” a losing performance.

    Put another way, I’m a City fan first and a football fan a long long way second. Strikes me City could do with more of the former and less of the latter at the moment, but hey ho, each to his own.

  14. Bill Carson
    Bill Carson says:

    I was angry after Sunderland. However I agree with Rich, we are probably where we should be, all things considered.
    Off the pitch is another matter, absolute shambles, which is magnifying our on field woes ten fold. #AskEhab

  15. gjhdurham
    gjhdurham says:

    Posted a team that I think could have got a result at Sunderland… But then Phelan does a PB, SB etc and over thinks it because he’s decided to play Tymon! Would only change that post by going for Jacko in goal as Marshall was poor…again! How Shuffle above can blame Tymon for the first goal is bizarre! Defoe got the ball way outside the box and wandered past 3/4 City players before shooting. Maybe Marshall could have done better too. He just doesn’t boss his defenders does he? Dawson was very poor and went AWOL at times leaving Elmo to play centre back… Which he’s not! Davies lets his head go down too easily away from home and Clucas didn’t pick up Anchibe at all for the third. Those who’ve posted how crap Anchibe is in the past should give their heads a slap! He’s just got them 6 points!
    In many ways the difference was taking chances and good goalkeeping by Sunderland. I note Marshall was dropped by Scotland…
    Very puzzled why we didn’t go 3 at the back after a good result. Suspect Davies may be too.
    Especially when Defoe likes to attack down the middle… However, doesn’t matter who you play if you don’t tackle anyone! Just waving legs at the opposition doesn’t work! Get tight and tackle!!
    No idea what team will trot out v WBA, but hope there’s some back bone on display. Not a good time to play a well organised side like them after their last result. Dawson needs to up his game v their big lad up front! Everything crossed…COYH!

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