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Manchester City FC

Founded: 1887

Address: Rowsley St., M11 3FF England

Phone: 0870 062 1894

Fax: 0161 438 7999

Email: mcfc@mcfc.co.uk

Official URL: http://www.mcfc.co.uk

Chairman: Khaldoon Al Mubarak

Club Director: Txiki Begiristain

Stadium: The City of Manchester Stadium

Club History
Manchester City can boast of their new found riches at the hands of the Abu Dhabi United Group and Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, but manager Mark Hughes will have to edure immense pressure as the Citizens look to achieve consistent positive results that have eluded them in their recent history. Hughes took over from Sven-Goran Eriksson as the first City revolution under Thaskin Shinawatra gave way to another, and with added funds at his disposal the stakes are high for the Welshman. With the likes of Robinho, Shaun Wright-Phillips, and Shay Given at his disposal, the City fans as well as the new owners are expecting major trophies sooner than later as Hughes bolsters his squad in an ever-improving Premier League.

Although Manchester City were formed as a Limited Company in 1887 when their predecessors, Ardwick, went bankrupt, some historians trace City"s origins as far back as 1880. It was then that that St Mark"s Church, West Gorton, decided to add a football section to their cricket club. The church team was called West Gorton and played first on a pitch in Clowes Street, then at the Kirkmanshulme Cricket Club, Redgate Lane, and then at Clemington Park (nicknamed "Donkey Common" and now called Gorton Park). West Gorton amalgamated with Gorton Athletic in 1884 as Gorton FC and switched to a rented field on Pink Bank Lane before trying another pitch on Reddish Lane. when the landlord threatened to raise the rent in 1887, the team"s captain (McKenzie) suggested that the club establish its own ground on wasteland in Hyde Road. The move prompted a change of name to Ardwick FC in 1887. In 1892 Ardwick became founder members of the Second Division - though their rivals Newton Heath (today known as Manchester United) were elected straight into the First Division. Two years later Ardwick were forced into bankruptcy, but their successors, Manchester City (who were elected to Division 2 on formation), continued to play at Hyde Road until, with the lease due to expire in 1923, the Main Stand burned down in 1920. Declining an offer to share Old Trafford, City chose in 1923 to emulate United, who had earlier moved to a different district of Manchester altogether. Ironically, Maine Road was just three miles from Old Trafford, and away from the club"s east Manchester origins. Maine Road was larger than any other English club ground, with a capacity in excess of 80,000. (In January 1948, when Manchester United were sharing Maine Road while bomb-damaged Old Trafford was being repaired, the highest attendance for any league game - 83,260 - watched United draw 1-1 with Arsenal). City moved regularly between the top two divisions, winning the FA Cup for the second time in 1934 and League championship for the first time in 1937 with a side in which Matt Busby - destined to become a United legend as manager - figured prominently. But the citizens" most successful era was the late 1960s. With Joe Mercer as manager, assisted by coach Malcom Allison, City won the Second Division championship in 1966, then the First Division title in 1968, FA Cup in 1969 and League Cup and European Cup Winners" Cup in 1970. Colin Bell, Mike Summerbee, Francis Lee and Mike Doyle were among the stars of this side. But from 1983 City continued to yo-yo between divisions, though they were founder members of the FA Premier League in 1992. Relegation in 1996 was followed two years later by demotion to the third level for the only time in their history. But under Joe Royle they were promoted via the play-offs after just one season, and immediately earned another promotion, in 2000, back to the Premiership. However, the next season saw them relegated again, and Royle lose his job. Kevin Keegan succeeded him in May 2001 and won the First Division title in his first season in charge. So City had changed divisions in five consecutive campaigns (two relegations and three promotions). Their survival among the elite remains precarious, despite a substantial investment in players by the club and the move, in time for the start of the 2003-04 campaign, to the City of Manchester Stadium in Eastlands, newly built for the Commonwealth Games. City had to battle to avoid relegation in 2003-04. Meanwhile the club's fans, though hopeful, impatient and disillusioned by turns, remain steadfastly loyal. They provide an enviable platform on which a manager such as Hughes can build - if he can only cure City's chronic inconsistency.
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