Dear Mr Shindler
Thank you for your recent letter in the Daily Mail, where you have very clearly laid out your concerns over your marriage of 50 years to Manchester City Football Club.
The following is in response to a highly controversial article written by a certain Mr Colin Shindler. To view what Vital Manchester City members said, click here.
© Rob Clyne 2009 – aka discopants28
Whilst I sympathise with your symptoms of nostalgia, heartbreak and disillusionment, I see no reason to prescribe any medication. Instead I believe your ailment is a psychological one, which can be cured with a heavy dose of perspective.
You clearly have fond memories of your childhood, and in particular your developing love for Manchester City. This is not uncommon, in fact I too harbour a desire to once again be carried on my father’s shoulders over the turnstiles at Maine Road. However it is important to understand that change is inevitable not just in football but in the world as we know it – and as we grow older, nothing is ever as good as it used to be.
Of course, the good times of the late sixties and early seventies are what permanently etched City into your heart – great players such as Colin Bell, Mike Summerbee and Tony Book the foundations of your love. And despite City’s status as a top club plunging within 20 years to that of a trophyless yo-yo laughing stock, your devotion never wavered. Your affection never waned.
Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse, it did. Third division football in 1998. But still you worked hard on your marriage in these awful times, attending counselling sessions in a number of deplorable venues such as Colchester and Macclesfield. And just when your love was leaving you forever on a miserable Wembley Sunday in May 1999, a 94th minute miracle saved your marriage and you never looked back. Premier League security was ensured by 2003.
It’s what happened next in City’s history that has had an irreversible effect on your marriage – the sale of our club to Thaksin Shinawatra. This is where I believe you took the change too personally and perhaps lack perspective. You harshly accuse your lover of being a ‘whore’ when all she was trying to do was change for the better. You fail to acknowledge that our involvement with Thaksin is now a regretful period within the club, in fact he has been stripped of his life presidency.
Manchester City certainly needed to change for the better, and the Abu Dhabi United Group have allowed us to do this, but without being ‘rotten at the core’ as you put it. Mark Hughes and Gary Cook realise how important the fans are to the club, and the new regime are using our untold riches not just to sign incredible players but also to empower the fans.
Yes, believe it or not Mr Shindler, the new look Manchester City is all about the fans. A superb interactive website unlike any other football club’s, official facebook and twitter feeds, affordable prices for the friendly against Celtic, an open training session. Manchester City are at the forefront of the digital age – an age where the modern fan keeps up to date with club news not by reading the papers, but by searching online. You may use the internet, Mr Shindler, but today’s youth live the internet. The new Manchester City brand is not a soulless representation of an English football club in the far east – it’s a reflection of the die hard Blues most of whom, unlike yourself, are yet to see City pick up a trophy.
Perspective, Mr Shindler. You’ve been fortunate enough to experience great times as a Manchester City fan. Take a look at it from a younger fan’s point of view. You may not agree with the huge amounts of cash being thrown here, there and everywhere – but with two spoonfuls of perspective a day, you’ll eventually find your love for City is stronger than it ever was.