With great success comes even greater jealousy. Manchester City know this more than most.
A club that has been on a wild ride, and experienced more than most, being Manchester City has not been easy. And one could argue that being a City supporter has been even less easy.
I don’t speak for all Blues; but I know I would not change a thing or have it any other way.
The “no history” narrative
Since 2008 the club have been under new owner Sheikh Mansour, and what a success we have had following that.
However, since the takeover the narrative from many other clubs (not only rivals) is that we have “no history”. It is as boring as it is lazy and factually incorrect.
It started with the younger generation of football fans who had no clue football itself existed before the 2000’s. Or a generation younger than that who only know social media jibes.
Be that as it may, Manchester City have continued to dominate English football and build presence around Europe. Breaking records and writing new chapters of which will one day be mere history.
Which is why now, even the older generations of fans have the audacity to make the preposterous claims.
There is a difference between “no history”, and forgotten history. Forgotten or blatantly ignored, anyway.
While City’s history is rooted in 1880, we officially became Manchester City Football Club in 1894. After Ardwick AFC reformed to be inclusive to a club across the whole of Manchester.
Eventually followed by the creation of Tottenham Hotspur; Arsenal; Liverpool; Chelsea; and Newcastle. A nod to the traditional top six and current top six. Though many more came after us.
The boys in blue were the first ever to gain automatic promotion to Division One in 1889. Not long afterwards, winning the FA Cup in 1904. Being the second top six club to do so after Spurs in 1901. The first Manchester club however.
In 1923 our home at Hyde Road was destroyed in a fire, and we were moved to the soulful Maine Road.
1926 was a rollercoaster year. Making more history by being the first Manchester Side to feature at Wembley in the FA Cup final. Despite being relegated we claimed a 6-1 Manchester Derby victory (yes, another one).
Although in 1928 we popped back up as Champions of Division two and reported the “best supported” club in the Football League.
Adding more silverware
Despite coming runners up multiple times and hanging around the top three. We won our first league in 1937. Nevertheless only three years before this achievement we won our second FA Cup and recorded the highest crowd at Maine Road – not bad for a club with no history, eh?
Manchester City has held this record since the 1930’s. Almost a century. Beaten only in 2016 when Spurs called Wembley home. We still hold the highest attendance record outside of Wembley. Why? Because we have always had incredibly loyal and passionate supporters.
Manchester City the charitable neighbours
During World War 2, significant damage occurred to Old Trafford and Manchester City allowed United to use Maine Road as their home ground while their own home underwent repairs.
Manchester City lost revenue to accommodate their neighbours who perhaps would not exist had the Blues not stepped in.
Manchester City continued the with the ups, downs, twists and turns. Through the 50’s and 60’s being promoted, adding more silverware and facing heartbreak. As former City goalkeeper Fank Swift fell to the Munich Air Disaster.
Again, the Blues offered their support to Manchester United. Who tragically faced devastation as a result of the disaster.
Nevertheless, the 70’s saw Manchester City take a huge step and cement themselves into the history books once more. Proudly becoming the Champions of a double; the League Cup and European Cup Winners Cup.
We were big spenders long before “Sheikh Mansour came to town in his Lamborghini”. In 1979 the club broke the transfer record with the singing of Steve Daly for over £1m. Going on to become the first side to sign three players (Daly, Kevin Reeves and Trevor Francis) with fees in excess of £1m.
The Blues continued bringing the drama as more promotions came and finals competed in.
When the Premier League was formed in 1992 Manchester City vs. QPR was the first ever Monday night football – no punditry by the chuckle brothers then though.
1999. Wembley. Gillingham. Dickov. Promotion. Need I say more?
In 2007, before shiny new owners, City set a new record with nine consecutive home League wins.
City in the Community
City in the Community is Manchester City’s official charity. Founded in 1986, they have been supporting people across Greater Manchester through various schemes. Not to mention the years of local support provided prior to City in the Community launch.
Sheikh Mansour era
The Abu Dhabi United Group became our new owners in 2008. And the rest, as they say, is HISTORY! History? Fancy that.
This is part of the story that all football fans conveniently remember. This part of the story is why we get under their skin.
Did we get lucky? Absolutely. We won the lottery. But there is not a better club to have benefitted from this windfall.
A club with a rich yet tumultuous history. Supporters who have seen it all. Yet remain proud, passionate and loyal through all of the time periods.
Older generations of City support may remember some of these times well. Younger generations will be told the stories of how we became such a dominant force. Not because of money, but because of everything before that.
It’s not where we are now. It’s where we came from. It is “Superbia in proelio”.