MAN CITY have apologised to their own fans after being inundated with complaints about an official club guide for “new supporters” who plan to follow the club now they have reached the Champions League qualifying stage and are challenging for trophies.
The Bluffer’s Guide to MCFC was published on the club’s official website after Roberto Mancini’s team confirmed a top-four Premier League finish because “success means we’ll be welcoming a new generation of City fans from here in England and all over the globe”.
The guide offers basic facts about the club – “If asked where we play our football, it’s the City of Manchester Stadium” – on the basis that “Champions League qualification and the FA Cup final will mean hundreds of thousands of people will adopt the Blues as their chosen side”.
It is “a guide to help ‘newbies’ bluff your way through the televised games. It explains how to celebrate goals with the ‘Poznan’ dance, the meaning of Blue Moon, the club’s anthem, and other pointers such as “this is our first FA Cup final since 1981, so don’t try to bluff your way through historical facts. The last trophy we won was in 1976 so, again, get this right or you’ll arouse suspicion.”
The guide advises: “If you are asked who your favourite players are from down the years – your credibility is at stake here – don’t say Francis Bell, Colin Summerbee and Yaya Dzeko. Though these names exist, they are combinations. Have a good scan over the club website and check out who the current favourites are and who the club legends are, and take notes!”
As opposition supporters spread it across the internet, many questioning whether it was a spoof, City have been overwhelmed by the hostile reaction from their own fans, leading to the club’s head of digital, Richard Ayers, offering an apologetic explanation on the website.
“’Cringeworthy’ seems to be the main complaint on Twitter and I apologise to the hardcore fans for the misunderstanding, I’d have thought it pretty obvious, but this wasn’t an article meant for you and it wasn’t meant to be patronising.
“We’ve been getting more people coming to our website, showing an interest in the club’s community and atmosphere, as well as [the] players and the performance on pitch, and these are the people we were trying to help”.
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