Scots For City?
Why should Scotland back the blue side of Manchester? Denis Law's backheeler v Man U 1974, Tommy Hutchison scoring at both ends last time City were in a major final in 1981, Asa Hartford, Willie Donachie and Billy McNeil as manager plus the music of Oasis. A few reasons why Man City should gain Scottish support in the FA Cup final.The Scottish legacy on the red side of Manchester has been assured as Fergie gets ready for title number 19 and a possible third Champions League. Scot Matt Busby helped form and then rebuild the great post war legend of Man United and set them on the path for success in the modern era and of course the Scottish players at Old Trafford have been many...Macari, McQueen, Law, Strachan etc etc. However, City too have had their Scottish connections and although the club that plays at Eastlands today is almost totally unrecognisable from the club that entertained us from Maine Road and beyond in the 70's and 80's us Scots should maybe still lean towards blue on Saturday as Stoke and Man City clash in the always anticipated FA Cup final. Many of us heading for half a century will remember City on the telly in the days when Sportscene featured one English game, and Match of the Day was for south of Gretna only, usually City were sandwiched between a predictable Old Firm win and Archie MacPherson regaling us with his point of view as the wind caught his weetabix hair in front of the BBC Scotland Outside Broadcast Unit. The 1981 FA Cup final replay is one of Wembley's most memorable matches. Argentina World Cup Winners Ricky Villa and Ossie Ardiles were instrumental in Spurs 3-2 win over City. Villa scored the winner while 'Ossie' gained Pop Star status on the London's club cup final single in both '81 and '82. Ossie's dream was to "win the cup for Tottingham !" It might have been all so different in '81 however had a second half Glenn Hoddle free kick not flown off the shoulder of Fife-born Tommy Hutchison and past goalie Joe Corrigan for a Spurs equaliser in the first game after the former Scotland International, and oldest player on the Wembley turf that day, had given City the lead with a spectacular first half diving header. Denis Law's backheeler that sent Man United down to the old English Second Division in 1974 is another great English football (and City) moment made in Scotland. Tommy Docherty had given Law a 'free' after leaving the Scotland International hot-seat to take over at Old Trafford in 1972. Aberdonian Denis found himself across the great Manchester divide as he wound down a career that culminated in an appearance at the 1974 World Cup finals for Scotland but the 'Lawman' could not bring himself to celebrate his instinctive strike against United in the infamous 1-0 City win at Old Trafford that relegated the Reds out of the top flight, if only for one season. Scottish left back Willie Donachie and Scottish midfielder Asa Hartford were part of the last City eleven to win a major trophy. That was the 1976 League Cup when a spectacular Dennis Tueart overhead kick helped City to a 2-1 win over a Newcastle side which contained Scot Tommy Craig. It is hard to reckon that Stoke City last won a major trophy just four years before that last City Wembley triumph. Again the League Cup provided the silverware as Stoke beat Chelsea 2-1. I'm sure those of a red and white persuasion on Saturday at Wembley from The Potteries could provide a Scottish connection to Stoke. However, I doubt the legacy is as memorable as that provided from North of the Border from those who have helped Man City to memorable moments. If I have to pick a side at Wembley on Saturday it has got to be City so bung on your Oasis greatest hits pre-match (they got their big break thanks to a Scot ,Alan McGee, remember) and get ready for hopefully another great Wembley occasion. This Scot is "Mad For It" and shouting for Man City... if only for a day !
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