In the net as City fish out the points – Hull City 2 Man City 4

Edin the Executioner, Manuel the Engineer and Lampard the Eternal ensured Manchester City eventually eased to three precious points, in an ‘Ee bah gum’ northern encounter packed with twists and turns.

'Sergical' strike - Aguero scores City's first. Courtesy@MCFC

‘Sergical’ strike – Aguero scores City’s first. Courtesy@MCFC

It came as no surprise that the Champions raced into a two-goal lead over Hull City within 11 minutes, courtesy of a clinical finish from Sergio Aguero and a super-strike from Dzeko.

What followed in a separate 11 minute period came as a massive shock to the men from Manchester.

Hull City’s Tigers had been reduced to new born blind kittens before City’s defensive sensation, Eliaquim Mangala, decided to make generous donations to the Yorkshire cat sanctuary in the 21st and 32nd minutes.

Happy as can be...Edin celebrates his 11th minute wonder strike. Courtesy@MCFC

Happy as can be…Edin celebrates his 11th minute wonder strike. Courtesy@MCFC

The 23-year old French centre back made a dream debut against Chelsea last Sunday, but suffered a first half horror show at Hull.

He powered an unstoppable own goal header past an unsuspecting Willy Caballero, before the nightmare continued, conceding a penalty with a wayward chest high tackle on Hull striker Hernandez.

At 2-2, Steve Bruce’s toothless Tigers had been handed a new set of dentures with razor-like incisors, and they continued to bite and gnaw at their ‘big game’ prey from across the Pennines.

Stay calm and trust our MP - Manuel's tactical acumen and key substitutions won the game. Courtesy@MCFC

Stay calm and trust our MP – Manuel’s tactical acumen and key substitutions won the game. Courtesy@MCFC

Pellegrini’s tactical nous, inspired substitutions and some divine intervention, aligned to Dzeko and Lampard’s killer touch, finally quelled Hull’s hunting instincts.

City bagged a deserved 4-2 victory displaying attacking flair, adventure and enterprise. They pegged themselves back from a winning position, but re-asserted their class and authority to emerge victorious.

This wasn’t happening last year at the likes of Cardiff and Villa.

Pellegrini has learned lessons, improved his personnel and City will undoubtedly reap the rewards this season in their title defence.

Off to a flyer - City raced into a two goal lead. Courtesy@MCFC

Off to a flyer – City raced into a two goal lead. Courtesy@MCFC

Having let the two goal advantage slip away, and conscious of the need for a maximum return, Manuel changed tactics to spread the play wide and give more freedom to playmaker David Silva.

Navas for Fernandinho enabled City to deploy the Spanish speedster and Milner on the wings, Yaya to sit deep and Silva to ghost in behind Aguero and Dzeko, making him harder to pick up by the Hull defenders.

Merlin duly weaved his magic, threaded a pass through to Dzeko in the home penalty area and the Bosnian fired a low precise drive beyond McGregor to restore City’s lead.

Grounded but soon flying high - Dzeko was deadly with two superbly taken goals - Courtesy@MCFC

Grounded but soon flying high – Dzeko was deadly with two superbly taken goals – Courtesy@MCFC

Super Frankie was next on for Aguero. Lamps, who simply can’t stop scoring at the moment, hooked up with Zabaleta to side-foot the ball home – his fourth goal in six days – with just three minutes remaining.

The hero of last season’s corresponding fixture, Martin Demichelis, replaced Silva to help see out the win, on a day when his long-term replacement, Mangala, had been given a Premier League wake up call.

Difficult day - Mangala made a couple of mistakes but Pellegrini has total faith in Eliaquim. Courtesy@MCFC

Difficult day – Mangala made a couple of mistakes but Pellegrini has total faith in Eliaquim. Courtesy@MCFC

Never ones to miss a chance of some City-baiting, the prat pundits on Sky thought it’d be hilarious to label City’s number 20 as ‘Manowngola’ – by gum they missed their vocation as would-be comedians!

The watching nation must’ve laughed until they stopped! Puerile has-beens, the lot of them.

Speaking of which, Robbie – or should that be Lily – Savage, that most ‘cultured’ of players during an ‘illustrious’ career with Leicester, Birmingham, Blackburn and Derby, declared to the world that Joe Hart must leave Manchester City to save his career.

Mischief in the media - Caballero made his Premier League debut as part of Manuel's rotation policy, sparking  Robbie Savage to urge Joe Hart to leave Man City. Courtesy@MCFC

Mischief in the media – Caballero made his Premier League debut as part of Manuel’s rotation policy, sparking Robbie Savage to urge Joe Hart to leave Man City. Courtesy@MCFC

Perhaps Savage should ask for a free transfer back to Strictly Prancing?

How the media and the pundits love to show their appreciation of City’s stylish play! Four goals, a very entertaining match and a good away win but, oh no, they ridicule a player new to English football and try to unsettle City’s top keeper.

But who cares, actions speak louder than words. They hated us last season and little seems to have changed.

Screamer - Yaya hit a booming 35-yard shot that slammed off the post. Courtesy@MCFC

Screamer – Yaya hit a booming 35-yard shot that slammed off the post. Courtesy@MCFC

Back where it really mattered, City could’ve scored more.

Aguero surged forward after 41 seconds, forcing McGregor to a near post save. In truth Dzeko was better placed if Sergio had spotted him in the 18 yard box. Yaya Toure hit an exocet-like 35 yarder which cannoned of McGregor’s post in the 49th minute.

Hull had some near misses themselves, Nikica Jelavic was just inches short of a connection that would have put them one up early on, whereas Tom Huddlestone had a shot deflected in the 85th which would have levelled it at 3-3.

Super Frankie - 4 goals in City blue in 6 days for Lampard. Courtesy@MCFC

Super Frankie – 4 goals in City blue in 6 days for Lampard. Courtesy@MCFC

The visitors with 60% possession, 20 shots and 8 corners won the stats of the day contest and there were no complaints – for once – from Hull boss, Bruce.

With no new injury concerns and the prospect of the imminent return of Fernando and Jovetic, City will now switch their attentions to the Romans.

A Champions League win at the Etihad on Tuesday night is as imperative as yesterday’s Premier League success.

Pellegrini has his priorities…he wants to be champions of England and Europe…so there’s a couple of ‘E’s and, if he and his team succeed it’ll be followed by plenty of ‘bah gums’ in Berlin on June 6th.


By David Walker @ReadButNeverRed @djwskyblu





A special one-off T-shirt has been produced to reflect the international flavour of Manuel Pellegrini’s squad – all you have to do is tell us how many players names and countries are on the shirt?

Number's game - count how many names appear on the special Eitihad Airways commissioned T-shirt and you could win a Man City boxed home shirt with Read But Never Red.

Number’s game – count how many names & countries appear on the special Eitihad Airways commissioned T-shirt and you could win a Man City boxed home shirt with Read But Never Red.

You can enter by leaving your answer in the comments section on the website or alternatively on Twitter by following us @ReadButNeverRed and leaving your answer or posting on Facebook and, if you like us, click the LIKE button 😉

Win with Read But Never Red & Etihad Airways - a boxed MCFC home shirt awaits the winning entry.

Win with Read But Never Red & Etihad Airways – a boxed MCFC home shirt awaits the winning entry.


The winner will be drawn at random and contacted after next weekend’s game away to Aston Villa. Thanks for reading and GOOD LUCK – CTWD.


  1. September 28, 2014  4:59 pm by Dylan W Reply


    • September 28, 2014  8:16 pm by David Walker Reply

      Thanks for entering - the answer and winner will be revealed in the Aston Villa match report a week today.

    • September 29, 2014  5:30 pm by David Walker Reply

      Dylan - we are looking for the names of individual players - not counting them in multiples if they appear more than once. I will make that clear in all the RBNR articles this week. You might wish to have another go? Sorry for any inconvenience.

  2. September 28, 2014  5:35 pm by Richard Cooper Reply

    Last week I said Mangala looked as if he had always played in the PL. Think I should retract that comment.
    Yes, he had a poor game and allowed himself to be hustled and bustled by Jelavic and Hernandez. One poor game doesn't make him a bad player and he wasn't helped by some pretty sloppy play in front of him. YaYa seemed in laconic mode and to me the jury is still out on Fernandinho.
    With Hull finding oceans of space on the wing which was easily exploited by Rosenior half time couldn't come soon enough.
    Thankfully, whatever was said at half time worked, typified by YaYa picking up his pace and thundering that shot against the bar.
    We were on the front row in the corner and from that viewpoint you certainly get a different aspect of a match. Watching the control, awareness and bursts of speed from Jesus close up was pretty good and with Zab commiting himself to coming forward when we were 3-2 up certainly helped City run out 4-2 winners.
    Had that been Chelsea they would have sat back protecting the one goal advantage - perhaps that is why we are Champions !
    Will finish by waxing a bit lyrical : On an Indian Summer of an afternoon once again the Indian Summer of Frankie Lampard continued. If you have a football brain and vision you don't have to be the fastest thing on 2 legs.
    Should he contribute say 10 goals by the time his loan spell expires that will be damn fine !

    • September 28, 2014  8:13 pm by David Walker Reply

      I have no fears on Mangala in the short, medium or long term. He has Vinny by his side, Demichelis in training and Pellegrini as his manager - how can the boy fail? He had a bad day - simples. Lampard has been a revelation. I was pleased when we landed him and will be more pleased if we can extend his loan, especially if Yaya insists on going to the African Cup of Nations...again. Jeez, they seem to be playing that competition every two soddin minutes let alone every two years...and in a World Cup year near as dammit. As for the 10 goals, Super Frankie should have that sorted by the end of October. Cheers RC.

  3. September 28, 2014  6:05 pm by Len Fairclough Reply

    "an ‘Ee bah gum’ northern encounter"


    The type of ill-informed regional 'put down' you would expect from a southerner

    • September 28, 2014  8:01 pm by David Walker Reply

      I'm from the deep south! You have a lovely turn of phrase there fella and a name sadly associated with a soap opera character who had a nasty way with children. Incidentally 'ee bah gum' is officially recognised by the arbiter of correct English, the Oxford Dictionary. I hope I didn't offend you in a small way, I hope I did it in a monstrously large fashion. Thanks for reading!

  4. September 28, 2014  6:56 pm by Toby Teasdale Reply

    I was watched my other love take on Birkenhead Park yesterday (unsuccessfully). And only saw Sky First’s potted version. A big chunk most of first half had been edited out, but we got Hull's 20 minute renaissance in full, no surprise there then! Missed MOTD too (I was watching Paul Smith getting robbed in Germany).

    If you think English Referees are dodgy then take a look at Europe’s boxing fraternity. In particular Spanish judge Fernando Laguna who scored it an incredible 119-109 for the Aging Armenian, Arthur Abrahams. Wayne Rooney sensibly (for him) said “Why have judges if they don't judge correctly? Robbing people of their dreams, the boxing board has to act”. All in all, yesterday wasn’t a good day for ‘Fat Boy’.

    Rant over. Back to the KC and City. The ‘Sky First’ expert doing the post-match analysis blamed Mangala’s own goal on his ‘facing the wrong way’! You couldn’t make it up.

    What I did see, was City doing a bit more than enough to secure the points and keeping their powder dry for Tuesday night. Nasri’s keyhole surgery, presents Jimmy Milner an extended opportunity to show MP he really can cut the mustard. Tuesday night against the Italian champions would be a great place to do it.

    • September 28, 2014  8:08 pm by David Walker Reply

      My thoughts entirely on young Jimmy. This could be fate intervening tell him to stay where the grass is green and it isn't any greener elsewhere. That said, he ought to take a look at himself and not get ideas above his station. He had two very good scoring opportunities but did a Hull KR impersonation in whacking the ball over the bar. I've given up on getting any unbiased opinion on City from the pundits, let alone anyone who leans towards us. It's pathetic - rather like BBC 5 Live Alan Green's commentary when he was entrusted with a MOTD gig. Jeez, how much lifeless and deadly dull could he have made an end-to-end 4-2 encounter sound?

      Didn't see the boxing but I understand Paul Smith was indeed robbed. I have some of his ties and aftershave, he's a very talented chap! ;-)

  5. September 28, 2014  8:56 pm by MUhammed Yasir K Reply


    • September 28, 2014  11:13 pm by David Walker Reply

      Thanks for your entry - good luck.

  6. September 28, 2014  9:17 pm by Glenn Kavanagh Reply

    Very harsh on smith I had him the winner by two rounds. Sagna will offer us nothing in a attacking sense. Zaba is absolutely vital to the way we many assists does he have this year? Lovely ball for "fat" frank. He's doing all right isn't he. Its still early days of course but I feel that he's going to become even more important to us as the season goes on. The 42 should listen & learn about how a pro conducts himself. Frankie reminds me of the time the pool signed McAllister who was 35 at the time(smashing player) there was plenty of raised eyebrows with that one too. He had a huge influence on that side particularly on Gerard who said that McAllister was the biggest influence on his career. Liverpool won 3 trophies that year. Maybe Frankie can have that effect on us as well. He's a great role model for the younglads etc fingers x. Great goals from dzeko I swore after he scored the header against Everton that I'd never say a bad word about him again. Bout time city fans acknowledge his achievements with us. I used to give him major dogs abuse lazy - a girls blouse etc (even if he is a bit) we can't argue with his goal record. We'll see how good we are on Tuesday. Roma are a very good side, we'll have to be on top of our game to get a must win three points. When is Fernando back?? We signed him for these c.l games. A real bummer that he's out.

    • September 28, 2014  11:20 pm by David Walker Reply

      Better news is that Fernando is due back this week, whether it's in time for Roma remains to be seen. Lampard has been a revelation, Zaba is the best fright back in the PL - wouldn't swap him for anyone in that position - and Edin is playing his best ever football in City blue. Let the media kiss up to Chelsea like they did Liverpool last year. We really don't care if we go and make it three out of four PL titles.

  7. September 28, 2014  10:09 pm by DOUGLAS HENSHAW Reply

    Was a good win despite losing a 2 nil lead & it showed MP has learnt from last season. Hope these stupid roumers about Joe leaving are put to bed quickly the media seem intent on stirring it for us. We'll let's keep on winning that will upset them even more.

    • September 28, 2014  11:15 pm by David Walker Reply

      Joe has a £26m, five year deal on the table - apparently. Hope he signs it, it would be foolish not to do so.

  8. September 28, 2014  10:47 pm by Graham Ward Reply

    A blistering start that was then wasted, but we showed good mentality to get to half time without further mishap, and started again in the second half.
    Cracking goals by Aguero and Dzeko, and Lampard is showing the shrewdness of our move to sign him with every passing game.
    We just need to show a bit of patience with Mangala, but this is now a huge game on Tuesday. Interesting decisions for Pellegrini regarding his team to come, no doubt.

    • September 28, 2014  11:16 pm by David Walker Reply

      MP invariably corrects what needs correcting at half time, not always but the majority of the time. We might well have dropped points if that game had been played last season. We can retain this title of ours.

  9. September 29, 2014  12:20 am by Simon Dear Reply

    Top read David , Hull Tigers are no mugs on their own patch and we looked to have blown it , I was surprised that Mangala played having had 3 games in 6 days , having not even played at all, I still think he is one hell of a player for a 23 year old , isn't Boyata 23 ? Different class . Ok he made a couple of errors but they were more down to inexperience than stupidity, there is a fine difference. Can only think that MP will play Demechelis / Kompany as his CB pairing on Tues.
    Great to see Milner getting more game time , hopefully he will sign that new contract soon.

    Just got in from work so already bog eyed so that T-shirt has done me , but at a count - 27 names & 10 countries.


    • September 29, 2014  9:36 am by David Walker Reply

      Thanks for the feedback Simon and your competiton entry is duly noted.

  10. September 29, 2014  7:45 am by Guvnor Reply

    Good read Mr Walker, Savage is usually correct but a long way off this time. MP did say in the week he would give Joe a rest and provide Willy with a couple of games, Joe will be in on Tuesday. Agree this time last year, we might have collapsed.

    • September 29, 2014  8:12 am by David Walker Reply

      As ever, cheers Guvnor.

  11. September 29, 2014  10:35 am by Ian Holloway Reply

    Competition answer: 37 players names and countries

  12. September 29, 2014  10:37 am by Ian Holloway Reply

    I tend to ignore the haters (pundits and fans alike); had enough practice over the years...

    • September 29, 2014  5:24 pm by David Walker Reply

      I feel I have to address the anti-MCFC bias via RBNR otherwise a lot of it goes unaddressed. It also gives me licence to be very rude about said haters ;-)

  13. September 29, 2014  11:29 am by blueinc Reply

    Good read as always Dave. ‘Ee bah gum’ well, I'll go to the foot of our stairs, if milly would of took that rocket off the ball we would of been two more goals up. One point in the game not mentioned was that killer pass from Silva to Aguero that put Aguero through with only one player to beat but the ref blew for a foul? Aguero was fuming.How many times does a ref have a talk with a player before he is shown a card Huddlestone was persistent.
    That said they were no match for the CHAMPIONS..
    27 countries 40 names

    • September 29, 2014  11:44 am by David Walker Reply

      Thanks fella & good luck in the competition - different answers aplenty! CTWD

  14. September 29, 2014  12:25 pm by blueinc Reply

    Miss read the question
    8 individual countries 23 individual player names i'm guessing.

  15. September 29, 2014  1:13 pm by Naylor91 Reply

    52 Names and 27 Countries, Some have been repeated but these are including multiple instances. Great article again though David, a pleasure to read anything you have to say about our City.

    • September 29, 2014  5:22 pm by David Walker Reply

      Adam - thanks for the entry - just to clarify, we are looking for the names of individual players just the once, NOT IF THE NAMES ARE REPEATED. I apologise if this wasn't clear from the start. I will ensure all future communications address this element. Maybe, you'd like to have another try?

    • September 29, 2014  5:19 pm by David Walker Reply

      Thanks for the entry RC - you have as good a chance as anybody!

  16. September 29, 2014  7:25 pm by Toby Teasdale Reply

    I'm not what you'd call numerate and my eyesight is fading, but I think I saw 28 players and 11 countries. Total count 39

    • September 29, 2014  7:44 pm by David Walker Reply

      Cheers TT - The great reveal comes with the Villa match report on Sunday.

      • September 29, 2014  9:37 pm by Toby Teasdale Reply

        I can't wait!

        • September 30, 2014  12:44 am by David Walker Reply

          In a slight derivation of Barak Obama's mantra 'Yes You Can';-)

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