Following the 1-0 defeat of Man United at Wembley yesterday, Man City, despite the chance of silverware, are in danger of becoming all that they despise…
If the production of words was as simple a task as retching vomit is presently, it’d be some consolation - albeit still too minimal to be enough. That the keys with which I now type are still intact is nothing but a mere testament to the small mercies of doomlordery’s resignations. Alas, and so it goes, as today’s loss unleashes the perils of two fears with bared gnashers: that Man City, who typically didn’t self-implode, are now within a spit of a trophy – and also, more ominously, that today’s result could ignite a cataclysm which will end in a May ruination. Any faint hope over Man City’s reliability in free-falling at the last hurdle lies ruinous now; Bolton and Stoke’s chances -with all due credit, etc - are not, we can all concede, too great. Our year-trickling, time-ticking banner, unfurled from the Stretford End, will soon roll away – though the notion of keeping it aloft, and ignoring City’s -*retches*- glory, would be childishly amusing, all told. Today’s inability to stifle the embittered was a saddening conclusion to what had been, until now, a wondrous week. A humbling, if you will – for Man United, who learned that the recent treble-espousings were mere fantasia. And for City, who in their giddy jaunts to glory, are quickly becoming everything they once professed to abhor.
It had started so promising, of course. Pre kick-off concerns over a Fergie tinker-fest for Man United were proved futile, as a relatively strong eleven -albeit an eye-rolling 4-5-1 set-up - was named. On the sidelines, the spud-faced nipper, condemned for the usage of words, watched on sadly. Not to worry. In Nani and Valencia, Man United named two of the finest wingers in Europe. Tip of the arrow was Berbatov, who, never quite comfortable to the role, had one of those days. Though dominant early on, the gnawing suspicions, particularly as the Bulgarian squandered and then squandered an even more pitiful chance again, encircled. And, eh, that was about it. Carrick, our often derided, slack-jawed, full-time scapegoat, had a sadly familiar episode – and City, as the script was bound to ensure, wheeled away and scored. United puffed, the only modicum of venom attaching itself to the leg of Scholes, who rose it and walked. So the blue bunting rained, as City’s exhaustive quest finally took it upon itself to foot forward. Ick.
Caterwaul your ecstatic sounds of celebration, and thrust yourselves into the new realm of elitism. You did, after all, pay for it
Curiously, arising from the victory-march of celebrating blues, there appears an ironic sense of hypocrisy dancing in tune with their newly-affirmed glee. If the vainglorious scenes at the whistle weren’t enough, the banners, professing betterment and glory, sure as hell were. And, as many a proud City fan will retort, ‘Why not?’ Quite. After all, wave after wave of blitzkriegs on the transfer world should, by right, herald the glory days of today. Yet there is a niggling little oddity, first established post-takeover, and fully abloom now, surrounding City’s charging pursuits. Once famed for purporting to be the essence of the Mancunian on the street, they are now, in their endeavours, readily propelling themselves into the labyrinth of corporate greed, gargantuan spending and ‘selling the brand.’ Ah, now who’s that akin to? It is, of course, a natural progression as teams – either through footballing, or, *ahem*, fiscal ways – charge above the rest. But away from the hubbub of today’s and, surely, tomorrow’s treasuring moments, City’s glee-club would be best advised to afford themselves a humbling. Be careful what you deride, chaps – it’ll only make you look foolish when you become what you once claimed to so viciously despise. Makeshift turbans, it appears, block out brains.
In the mean time, however, they are free to air-punch and sing of ‘wemberlee’ as they so wish. Above all else, it did – despite the best efforts of the media’s melodrama – come down to the simplicity of a 90 minute match-up. The opening 30 minutes aside, United slumped, and a more athletic, and, dare we admit, up for it City outlet deservedly sauntered away. For United, focus now trains in on Tuesday, and a feisty encounter with the erratic Geordies. For City, led by the oafish trails of Gary Coc...Cook, it seems likely silverware will be attained. From then on, anyone’s guess is with merit: world domination, ala Pinky and the Brain, or, perhaps, further attempts at shoving the quiet neighbour who continue, despite today’s slaying, to be exactly where City desire to stand. It’s OK, blues – the derision of all those years was simple goading, we understand. It was but mere jealousy – and more. Caterwaul your ecstatic sounds of celebration, and thrust yourselves into the new realm of elitism. You did, after all, pay for it – it’s yours to be enjoyed. But ask yourself, as moments of glory shuffle forward: was the fan of old really you, or is the one who embraces it all actually you?
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