As Manchester City unveil their latest big money signing in Wilfried Bony, I would pose the question…do we really want success that you can simply buy off the shelf?

Surely in football as in life, the sense of fulfilment and enjoyment is in building up to achieve the success that we achieve. Wealth and success that comes all too easily is never appreciated and the adage that ‘money does not buy happiness’ has been proved on so many occasions in real life.

newcastle fansFor many years Manchester City were the poor relations of that city, the prawn sandwich brigade gradually becoming increasingly harder to please at their wealthy and successful neighbours down the road.

(To feature like Robert, send in your articles for our website to [email protected])

I was a student in Manchester for many years and as is my tendency in life, I chose to support City as the underdogs at that time, mainly because it was much more fun.

City fans shared the passion and despair shown by supporters in Newcastle but supporting them was just so much fun. It was akin to an emotional rollercoaster with optimism and joy punctuated by days of dark despair. The very essence of sport.

I now sense a different atmosphere at City and note the gaps in the stadium as their newly acquired supporters, spoiled by recent success,tend to pick and choose the games that they attend.

They are inured against relegation and the fun and passion that I experienced at Maine Road, are absent in their modern set-up.

Many Newcastle fans pine for a billionaire from the Middle East to acquire the club and pour in the bottomless pit of money that City currently enjoy. Well maybe I am out of step but it is not for me.

Give me the highs and lows that I currently enjoy as a passionate Toon fan, as the escape from the drudgery of working life, that so many of us seek.

Give me the thrill of an unexpected victory over Chelsea rather than the mundane experience of yet another Chelsea or Barcelona home win.

Yes a bit more cup success would not go amiss and maybe less of a willingness to flog off our best players but oil rich billionaires from the Middle East….no disrespect but please take your money elsewhere.

City Hall Gifts - shop.themag.co.uk
  • Maximus Moose

    Course we wouldnt we want to stay a No hope club with 2nd rate players

  • sidkirk44

    yeah…Keegan brought plenty through from the Toon Academy didn’t he….oh wait a minute

  • Double Carpet

    Of course we would – because that was more or less what we did under Hall and Keegan in the 90s. We set a world record for a transfer fee with the signing of Shearer. So in the nicest possible way, don’t be daft. I bet over 90% of fans would happily take the Abu Dhabi millions in exchange for success.
    In current football there is no moral high ground – so don’t try and take what doesn’t exist.

  • RexN

    Success would be good, especially after the side put out against Leicester means no domestic trophy for at least 60 years. The article has an interesting perspective anyway but does it hit at what we really want?
    Yes, in those 60 years we have had some fun, Supermac, Shearer, Gazza, PeterB, the Entertainers, a few cup finals.
    The first line addresses another question, Swansea selling Bony, a player we couldn’t get, likewise Gomis. Is Newcastle a fun club any more, has it been for the last 7 years? Why does a club with half our support show twice as much ambition? Why do they have adventurous managers and we can’t appoint one, having had dullness personified for the last few years?

    It’s another question, would you have more fun if the Swansea owners owned our club, after all, they have won a League Cup recently and seem to aspire to European football? I would be happier with that.

  • Ianash24

    How naive you are always had a soft spot for nufc ever since we played you at Wembley 76 your fans were so gracious in defeat but to say you would not like what city have got please ask the 50000+ every other week at st james park and their response would be in a heartbeat please also when they bought city they saw potential a fan base of 40000+ in the Stuart Pearce era we were averaging 33000 at the stadium and the relevance of our attendances is weak when you look at your own I remember your average crowds when you were struggling pre Keegan the saviour era bought success man utd have bought success arsenal have bought success you don’t win things on a regular basis if you haven’t spent money look at the winners of the premier league nothing against nufc I say again top fans

  • Barton34

    Would i take the Man city route over FCB ownership,to ruddy right i would,i bet they wish they had bought us as well,all the money in the world but you car’nt buy fans,how many emty seats at the Ettihad game after game ? lol

  • vbhgft

    NUFC sell Cabaye 30 months after buying him – “it’s a disgrace from a club with no ambition”.

    Swansea sell Bony 18 months after buying him – “what a great piece of business from a wonderfully-run club full of ambition, if only we had Swansea’s owners”.

    Yeah, yeah, yeah. Swansea still sold Bony. They sold Michu. They sold Joe Allen.

  • AlanWilson

    Barton34 None they’re sold out every league game this year except against Palace, Burnley sold out weeks before kick off that’s Burnley. You really need to stop listening to Utd fantasists who in all fairness should be looking at their own empty seat they seem blind too,. City’s average crowd in 2003 was 46,834, and they had a much worse team and owners than Newcastle, their average last year was 47,080 like in 2003 99% sold out!! City never needed to ‘buy’ fans as they have always been there, in fact they hold the record for the most at a game! The only lol in you Barton.

  • vin1892

    Keegan played Watson, Elliott, Clark and Howey all who came through the clubs academy.Man City do sell out every game they just have the kind of supporters like Arsenal who can’t be bothered to go.

  • Bachman

    I go to city as live in manchester. Def looks sold out most games but atmosphere not nearly as good as it used to be
    Got great fans but it’s a wee quiet on matchdays

  • RexN

    vbhgft The difference is, Swansea will add it to TV revenue to build. What’s the beting that Bony will be replaced in the same transfer window?

  • Bachman

    I’d take it for sure
    I think city have still created something pretty special and worked hard to do that
    I do appreciate what you’re trying to say though
    Living in manchester you see a sense of expectancy from a lot of city fans now, not unlike ourselves in the john hall era
    It’s almost like many have forgotten where they were at a few years back and want a new manager if they’re on a bad run

  • Bachman

    Oh no! NUFC being compared as equal to Swansea
    Maybe we should sell of SJP and get a little 20k stadium? ;-)

  • Nicolaus Copernicus

    Flo is sitting on her couch sighing.
    “What’s the matter, pet,” asks Andy Capp.
    “Oh, I don’t know”, she says,”I’m just a little fed up with having nothing”.
    “It’s not so bad”, says Andy,”after all, wouldn’t you prefer to be poor and jolly than rich and miserable”
    “How about kinda happy and kinda moody!”, she responds.
    It doesn’t have to be entirely Man City, but a few steps in that direction would be sorely welcome.

  • vbhgft

    RexN vbhgft

    Granted, Swansea won the League Cup which was a good achievement. Other than that they will float around between 8th and 14th rather like Fulham did, until they eventually go down. Their season in Europe was less successful than NUFC’s the season before.

  • AlanWilson

    Bachman I a season ticket holder Bachman and I tell you now there’s 10 times the atmosphere than there was under Stuart Pearce so not a clue where you’re coming from. The funnest thing now at city games is away fans singing ‘where were you when you were sxxt’ the answer back being ‘we were here, we were here when etc’ followed by the obvious straight back at them  ‘where were you when we were sxxt’ as for the last few years away fans have started selling out, So another song comes to mind ‘here cos of City you’re only here cos of city lol how hypocritical is that? we’d have had the plus 47,100 instead of 46,834 in 2003 if not for hypocritical away fans, comical

  • Gillo81

    I think they replaced him in summer. Been giving Gomis time to settle which in itself is a distinctly smaeter move thsb anything we see at SJP.

  • cwtoon88

    I would bite anyones hand off who would let us have it the city way. Could anyone say theyd rather not have had man citys 4 years than the 4 we had under Pardew? Seriously? Moneys ruining the game? Iv never heard city or Chelsea fans complain and they were far smaller than we were before the money. Imagine what we could be?
    Keep your highs and lows I would give my left arm to see us win the league cup never mind anything else to  just know what that feels like. I think the feeling would last for years
    Honestly though Id e over the moon to see us work hard play positive, spend money as befits our income and not have to worry about losing any good players every transfer window

  • toon tony

    It would be great !!! All we need is an owner who is a multi billionaire……hang on a minute. ..

  • Brownale69

    Tell me would you rather be watching a Keegan inspired team or a lacklustre shower getting humped at home by Liverpool 6-0 and SAFC games?
    I have been going for 50 years and the excitement in the ground during those years im afraid  will never come back in my lifetime.

  • vbhgft

    Gillo81

    What like giving Perez and Cabella time to settle in you mean?

  • vbhgft

    RexN European football is all well and good, so how come when we qualified for the Europa League only 30,000 were turning up for games, and players like Cabaye, who apparently wanted to “play in Europe” did not play, seemingly happy not to do so? This doesn’t just apply to NUFC – Swansea, Villa, Bolton, Middlesbrough, Fulham Wigan etc, even Millwall, all got appallingly low crowds for European games over the years.

    People blather on about getting into Europe, then they do and no-one turns up. You can keep the Europa League. I’d rather finish seventh and not have to be in it. Poor quality games against Latvians etc, league games moved to Sundays. Nein danke.

  • 1Flyingmag

    Bliddy right a wud !

  • GToon

    Yes, cos unlike those at the Empty stadium or whatever its called we actually deserve success. We fill our ground regardless of the team, performance or the incredible ability of the team to avoid things made of silver. We deserve a trophy or too and also the chance to hold on to our players rather than “appartently” have to sell them cos the billions in Ashleys bank balance aren’t enough. I’d also like to see the development of the “football city” that MCFC have created in Newcastle – the jobs, the academy, the facilities. We deserve them because our city is focussed on football like no other city. But instead of all of that we get ……….Sports Direct.

  • GToon

    AlanWilson Barton34 what are all of those blue seats that we can see very home game then? lots of people going to the loo at the same time? what was the attendance against Mansfield in the cup back in the 90’s? was it about 3,000? I remember nufc.com doing an interesting piece on the “great” support city apparently think they have always had. Don’t think the numbers quite add up. Do you honestly think you would have our gates if your team was as poor as ours? No club in the country would. No club in the country does. Simple as. Despite all of my comments i’d rather see you lot win it than Chelsea or your cheque book wielding mates from the red part of your city.

  • Bachman

    AlanWilson Coming from as far back as the Royle, Keegan eras my friend

    No need to be sensitive though – I love the city fans!

    As for what fans are singing….I wouldn’t take that to heart either ; – )

  • GToon

    Bachman The dreadful thing is we arent their equal. We cant match their set up, manager, management team, coaching staff, playing style, head to head results, recent trophies won, results against big teams. We have more fans than them and thats where it ends. And to cap it all they will sell their best player and use the money to buy our main goal scorer, who we need but will still sell. So no, we are not their equal!!!

  • GToon

    sidkirk44 clarke, watson, howey, elliott, carroll*, thompson to name a few. It was only in the mid 90’s that he tried to buy success or build the team up depending on how you look at it. *2nd spell in charge.

  • radgiegadgie

    Is this not somewhat moot with FFP.  Sure the rules can be bent a bit I’m sure but it’s not like someone can just come in and spend 500m on players right?

  • AlanWilson

    GToon nugget, City are sold out near enough every game, where do so of you get you’re infornation? You deserve nothing as you haven’t won anything not even when you were outspending everyone! You seem to be a bit over zelous with what you think you ‘deserve’

  • GToon

    AlanWilson GToon “deserve” based on support given against trophies won i suppose. deserve is based on football development as opposed to overnight success based on a  sudden rush of money. before the money arrived you were bottom half of the EPL, if you were even in it. the money changed everything. and before you say it yes i am jealous. i cant stand the fact its teams like yours and not mine. ive never seen my team win a thing and im nearly 50. i’d love it if we could buy every title and cup going and i wouldnt care less if fans gave us stick. am pleased for you. just wish it was my club.

  • Leazes_62

    Take it in a heartbeat

  • RexN

    radgiegadgie You have got one of my anorak subjects.
    I’m not sure what your perspective is but there is some flexibility, to encourage home grown players for example. 

    The great thing for the Premier League is that income keeps going up. On the £500m thing, we couldn’t quite do that. However, we have something like £50m profit from last year, it looks like being at least £30m for this year and on those levels, assuming 4 year contracts for new players, we could go up to £200m at least. If Ashley paid the going rate for advertising, it could be £250m.

    Likewise, other clubs with rich owners can short-circuit the system by pushing up sponsorship from their own companies so for City and Chelsea, the sky is the theoretical limit..

  • AlanWilson

    GToon AlanWilson What like the over night success Sir John Hall tried to buy? Or doesn’t that count as the fortune spent won nothing? Before that money arrived I guess you can’t remember where Newcastle were eh? Well I’ll remind you they were near bottom of the second div fighting relegation with a 16k average crowd. Yet you talk about empty seats?????

    You’re nearly 50 but can’t remember buying players like Shearer for British record fees while city were paying 50 pence for Scott Hiley?
     Hmm must have a short memory! You’re that clued up about football you don’t even know if City were in the prem in 2008, WTF?
     You better tell the writer about your jealousy as he doesn’t agree lol. You may well be pleased for City but still talk utter rubbish about ’empty seats’ probably just mirroring the retarded Rags (UTD) as that’s their totally wrong mantra more fool you son.
     I remember when Newcastle bought Asprilla and they came to city with one of the leagues most expensive teams only utd had spent more I though we’re gonna get battered as it goes City’s bunch of misfits got a draw, shame you can’t remember that team though and how much it cost in comparison to ours because I most certainly can and I’m not 50.

    I

  • AlanWilson

    Bachman AlanWilson Not being sensitive my friend, there is a difference but it’s better now than it was under the most boring crap I ever saw under Pearce and there is now a expectation to win some games by the fans as there is with any of the top teams, when you’re the under dog you have a lot more to put out there, believe me city fans know that.

  • DownUnderMag

    Would take any sort of attempt at success over the current stagnation of survival with as little spent as possible.  The Man City model is not sustainable, but sadly there is no other way than to buy success in football these days, and it wasn’t as if Blackburns title came out of being spendthrifts.

    Even so, I believe we could give things a real go at being successful even with our current recruitment system….but just not with our policy of selling our best players.   I don’t think you need to spend big on transfers necessarily, but you DO need to spend the going rate on wages….which sadly we are unwilling to do under Mash.  Eventually, if you are successful then prices will inevitably go up because of the status in the game, but Man City and Chelsea prices are always inflated because the selling clubs know they have the money.

  • magpie9

    cwtoon88  The E.P.L. is the only championship that money can buy. A salary cap & a player squad cap is long overdue. When Chelsea loans out 30 players to play against their opposition & not them it is just a joke

  • Gillo81

    I’m confused? Perez was “one for the future” then tossed in and we prayed he succeeded. Thankfully, he has done very well.
    Cabella has not been given time to settle, but rather been undermined by Pardew.
    Am I missing your point?

  • DownUnderMag

    RexN radgiegadgie I think the main thing to remember, is that if we actually paid the wages players desired and recruited regularly and built on the 5th place rather than shun European involvement, we could easily have had a squad still containing the likes of Debuchy, Cabaye, Ba, Remy and could have added to those and had a truly strong squad.   More success equals more exposure and therefore more sponsor money and external revenue and likely a bigger international exposure…not to mention the pot of gold that is the Champions League as well.  Succes breeds success, on and off the pitch.  We have neither.

  • GToon

    AlanWilson GToon i remember the teams going back to the 70s. cant remember if you were in the prem in 2008 cos until the money arrived you lot were an irrelevant little spot that didnt really matter.
    the overnight success you reckon hall tried to buy was based on the way we played and was because we won 10 on the bounce under kk, stormed through div 1 and wanted to build on that in the prem as the team looked to get better and better. money was added to success rather than money added to rubbish like with you lot. as for the 3-3 draw you think i cant remember what bit of that game do you want me to recall?!!!! i even work with the linesman from the game who stepped in to split up Curle and Tino. Is that the bit i cant remember?

  • AlanWilson

    GToon AlanWilson  You at it again you pillock? LOL it was you lot who were the ‘irrelevant little spot that didn’t matter’ before City’s money 08/09 you weren’t even in the Premier league you total clown, you were relegated!!! LMAO!! You are a wally aren’t you!

    Well actually I reckon Hall trierd to buy it because your squad cost more than anyone else s except Utd’s!! Pretty simple really. You are the gift that keeps on giving aren’t you!

    Success is winning the Ist Div is it??? My god, did they do an open top bus ride? So by that then City getting in Europe isn’t sucsess to build on and they’d of been better getting relegated then coming back up as that’s a real mark of success is it? The fact Newcastle came up from a lower div mean they were much more sucsessful eh? What have you been drinking?? 
    Well if you can remember ‘Tino’ and Curle tell me how much your owner spent to buy that team as it seems you don’t think they spent huge sums on the team how much was ‘tino’? Tell you what I’ll tell you, he was £7m City’s entire team and used subs that day only cost £3m more!!!! But of course Newcastle didn’t spend did they? You must live in cloud cuckoo land pal!

    Mate you have proved yourself to be a complete joker please carry on it’s hilarouis!

  • GToon

    AlanWilson GToon if you think that somehow the money hasn’t changed your team from the joke it once was to a team t rival chelsea then fine. by the way we weren’t in the prem for 09/10 having been relegated in 08/09 but dont let the facts get in the way of what you think. we werent in the perm before 08/09? eh? what a load of rubbish. anyway the point i am trying to make is that our spending in that era was to build upon success – the success of the winning div 1 then finishing 3rd, 6th then 2nd in the prem. your money arrived out of the blue and transformed your team. exactly where in the prem were your team when the money arrived? and lets face it the money was thrown at your club until it eventually produced results. bit different to my club i think. still i’ll leave it there as i don’t think much to people who can’t string a sentence together without including insults in it.

  • AlanWilson

    GToon AlanWilson Let get this straight, you are the big mouth who gabbed off not me. Every thing you gobbed off about has been more than turned around on you. Empty seats? You’re havin a laugh! 16k ave and 6k for a league game???? ‘irrelevant little spot that didn’t matter’ What the team in the UEFA cup Q/F’s that year or the Club who were put out of every cup almost straight away and relegated? Hmm I wonder.

    The team that’s a joke hasn’t won a league title in nearly ONE HUNDRED YEARS!!!! And that hasn’t change even after huge money threw at it in the past. So get that striaght.

    When you won the First Div in 92/93 you had spent that year alone nearly £5m!! That’s more than any other club in that division by miles and even worse more than both premier league City and Utd. Cole £1.75m Sellars £750k, Robinson £500k, Lee £700k, Venison £300k, Beresford £650k and Bracewell £250k. So please stop trying to pull the wool over your own eyes never mind mine eh? It’s clear your money had arrived well before the Prem. Abd you need to face it not me after that good money after bad was squandered to do a great big NOTHING.

    City money arrived because they were a great prospect, 
    great ground, Sell out crowds, lots of expansion room a decent team and mostly always in the World top 20 turn overs. Not just ‘out of the blue’ after all eh? And it produce after two years!!!

    Again I will remind you who came on here with the BIG GOB and that was you not me YOU

  • AlanWilson

    GToon May I add that I generally get on and like Newcastle fans.
    I would never lord City’s position over any (well except the Rags as they thoroughly deserve it lol) and yes we did get lucky as did Newcastle all those years ago. Without investment City would have been a mid table team similar to yourselves with the advent of FFP I would know we’d never join the elite, but we got lucky at the right time you’s didn’t. FFP will keep you where you are for decades. 
    I don’t know why you chose to talk utter crap about City you seem like a bit of a rag, clueless to your own clubs failing, they have made a right dream world around their club! I find you obnoxious, arrogant and deluded.Thank god most of your fellow supporters aren’t like you.

  • GToon

    AlanWilson GToon are you a child? name calling? came on here? its a newcastle forum mate. dont you lot have your own? big gob? its a forum. i dont insult people. enjoy your money…….. bye bye

  • AlanWilson

    GToon AlanWilson It’s a story about my club on man city news now feed with lot of City fans commenting, don’t like it don’t gob off rubbish then you won’t get it back will ya? I’m sorry but you’ve defo got got a big gob who seems to think your club deserves success and mine doesn’t, and I quote 
    ‘ those at the Empty stadium or whatever its called we actually deserve success.’
     That was you wasn’t it? Get real!
    How about this

    ‘ We deserve (a City campus like city’s) them because our city is focussed on football like no other city.’
    Really? Yeah Manchester’s just not is it? COMICAL you really believe that don’t you lol

    The day I’d start going on like you here (attacking another club for ZERO reason) would be the day, you’re totally self absorbed and delusional, insult my club, insult me especially when you seem just as un- knowledgeable about your own club as you are mine. As we say in Manc’ Sling it gobby’

  • GToon

    AlanWilson GToon sling it gobby? your team were [email protected] before the money arrived and the money seems to have got to some of the fans too. last post. bit tired of this now. one last comment though – love it all the more now after my lads academy came and cleaned up the citeh one. still if those kids dont make it you can always buy some more.

  • AlanWilson

    GToon AlanWilson Hahaha Look the jokers back again LOL you want the last word do you?. If City were crap what were the LOWER DIVISON Newcastle at that tiime Deja Vu or what??? Were they better, even the biggest idiot would have to say NO.
     ‘love it all the more now after my lads academy team came and cleaned up the citeh one’
    Do you even know what ‘Citeh’ means, do you think it’s an insult lol.
     City under 21 are really mostly their under 18’s and they’re in a different Division to Newcastle!!!! But City are one point behind the best by far academy in the country, Southampton and are in the final stages of the champions league smashing some of the best in the World. teams like Bayen Munich 6-0 , are Newcastle in it? lol

    Our under 18’s are mostly under 16’s and are third in the table while your lot are 6 places below us with 8 losses, get a lucky win did they? LOL Yes one of them may get into your team as be fair their isn’t much in front of them is there? At City they;ve got to get ahead of World class players all over the pitch! Player Like Rekik can;t get in and he’s a full dutch international!

    Still you can always harp on about how you really for some reason ‘deserve to win’ something and dream of the glory days when you weren’t crap in 1926 lol. You really are a star!