Bradley’s First

On this day (6 December) in 2004 Bradley Wright-Phillips marked his first League appearance with an 80th minute goal for Manchester City against Middlesbrough. I won’t bother mentioning the final score but you can watch highlights of the game here if you want:

Chelsea Vanquished

On this day (16 October) in 2004 eventual champions Chelsea were defeated 1-0 by Manchester City at the City of Manchester Stadium (now Etihad).  City were the only side to beat the champions during 2004-5 and managed to draw the return fixture 0-0. You can read more on the October game below:

By the time Chelsea arrived in Manchester on 16th October the Blues were 12th on 8 points, while the visitors were second, behind Arsenal, on 20 points.  Chelsea were also one of only two sides unbeaten in the League and were, without doubt, favourites to win this match.  Keegan optimistically told fans pre-match:  “It is still 11 against 11 on the day and we are more than capable of beating the top sides.”  

The manager’s views proved correct as City defeated the eventual champions 1-0 with an 11th minute penalty from Nicolas Anelka.  It was the first time Jose Mourinho had suffered a defeat at Chelsea and was only the second time his side had conceded a goal during 2004-05.  It was also City’s first home victory over the London club in the Premier League.  Sadly, Jihai Sun suffered cruciate ligament damage and was to miss the rest of the season.

The Jihai Sun injury was not the only one affecting Keegan’s side during the first half of the season and, as the Blues had one of the smallest squads in the Premier League, the manager found himself with few players to choose from at times.  

David James

On this day (1 August) in 1970 former Manchester City and England goalkeeper David James was born in Welwyn. Here for subscribers is a profile of James:

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Musampa’s Strike V Liverpool

On this day (April 9) in 2005 a 90th minute volley from Kiki Musampa – his first for the Blues – at the northern end of the stadium gave Manchester City a 1-0 home victory over eventual European Champions Liverpool.  This was Stuart Pearce’s first league victory as City manager.

The Musampa goal was described at the time as a ‘spectacular volley’ – You can judge for yourself here:

Former City and England captain Pearce guided the Blues through the final nine games of 2004-05 after the departure of Kevin Keegan.  Apart from a 2-1 defeat in his first game, the Blues were unbeaten until the end of the season.  This run included the victory over Liverpool and wins over Birmingham (3-0), Portsmouth (2-0) and Aston Villa (2-1).       

As a result Pearce was named the Barclays Premiership Manager of the Month for April. 

On This Day – Shauny Wright, Wright Wright

On this day (15th January) in 2005 – Two goals from Shaun Wright-Phillips helped Manchester City defeat Crystal Palace 3-1 before a 44,010 crowd at the City of Manchester Stadium (now the Etihad of course).  

According to one report it wasn’t just SWP’s goals: ‘which caught the eye; more the sheer panic his appearance on the ball instilled in the Palace defence.

The other City scorer was Robbie Fowler and it was the former Liverpool man who got most of the headlines, though SWP was definitely the star as far as most Blues were concerned. Fowler’s goal came just over two minutes after Shaun’s first.

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