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Fellow Cityzens - Going behind the scenes of Manchester City’s Official Supporters Club in Bengaluru

15:03 BST 17/05/2021
Manchester City
Goal in collaboration with Manchester City and TECNO are going behind the scenes to tell you about the role of Bengaluru Cityzens...

As part of an exclusive series, Goal in collaboration with Manchester City and TECNO are going behind the scenes to tell you about the role of Bengaluru Cityzens and how they are an integral member of the Man City team.

In this interview, we sit down with some of the founding members of the Official Supporters Club from Bengaluru, India.

The Official Supporters Club of Bengaluru was founded in 2013 by Varun Shetty and a group of passionate fans who have been following the English giants for a decade.

“The Bengaluru Cityzens group was formed way back during the 2013-14 season. We were part of a Facebook group called Man City India Supporters and this was managed by a good friend from Kerala. We started catching up on the group and spoke about City. The idea from the beginning was to bring the community together with some like-minded folks who share a common passion for Manchester City,” said Varun Shetty, a founding member of the Bengaluru Cityzens.

Chetan Gowda and Desire D’Souza, who are also an integral part of the Bengaluru Cityzens group, elaborated how the Official Supporters Club has evolved over the years and touched upon all the community work the group has been involved with.

“As a community, we have been growing in every direction. It is not just football but it is also about giving back to the community,” stated Gowda.

“Our latest pre-pandemic activity was participating in the City’s recovery program where Manchester City invited all the Supporters Clubs to participate in their Cityzens Giving Drive. We decided to come together and raise some money and contribute towards recovery globally. We auctioned a kit that was signed by Rodri and we were able to raise around 50,000 INR and that was sent to Mumbai City FC,” said Desire. D’Souza shared her matchday rituals and how she prepares herself before Man City’s matches.

“Of late, my matchday ritual is to light a blue T light. This is something I do before every game and it has worked out very well in this season,” revealed Desire.

Another member of the group, Akash Rajagopal, explained why Manchester City’s Carabao Cup semifinal tie was his favourite moment of the 2020-21 season.

“My favourite moment this season has been the Manchester United game in the semifinal of the Carabao Cup. That game had everything. It was very intense and the way our team showed determination and won the game comfortably. That win made us very confident,” said Rajagopal.

All four members picked their favourite players from this season. While Chetan picked Bernardo Silva and Desire praised young sensation, Phil Foden, Akash and Varun chose central defenders John Stones and Ruben Dias as their respective favourite players.