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Author Topic: Swindon v Manchester City FA Cup 3rd round pre match chat and matchday thread  (Read 26658 times)
Peter Venkman
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« Reply #825 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 12:33:47 »

Interesting to see the attandances at a lot of clubs for the 3rd round games so far, several Premier and Championship clubs have had very low turn outs so far.

Barnsley 4,755
Birmingham 9,823
Boreham Wood 3,501
Bristol City 7,304
Burnley 7,654
Chelsea 39,795
Coventry 8,896
Hartlepool 4,932
Hull 16,282
Kidderminster 5,178
Leicester 25,710
Mansfield 7,297
Millwall 16,646
Newcastle 51,395
Peterborough 4,937
Port Vale 8,069
QPR 7,153
Swansea not announced
Swindon 14,753
WBA 8,208
Wigan 9,892
Yeovil 7,818
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« Reply #826 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 12:47:38 »

It is strange why the FA Cup is popular with away fans but not home fans
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Peter Venkman
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« Reply #827 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 12:57:48 »

It is strange why the FA Cup is popular with away fans but not home fans
Absolutely, a lot of those attendances the away side made up large (30%+) percentages of the whole crowd, look at the last round with us at Walsall too.
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Peter Venkman
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« Reply #828 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 13:22:22 »

For a team who dont care about us they had a 4 page thread about our game, 1 page taking the piss out of an 18 year old Town youth players surname the inbred fucktards.

https://www.otib.co.uk/index.php?/topic/215376-swindon-vs-man-city/

So who have you guys got in the next round? what? beaten at home by a team in their own division? really?
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« Reply #829 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 13:39:42 »

It is strange why the FA Cup is popular with away fans but not home fans

I expect part of that is - that for the away fans it opens up the possibility of going to grounds they haven’t been to or been to in years….

No doubt the current life long City fans look back fondly on their journey from the Prem to Div2 and back up again. Imagine away to Swindon bought back some good nostalgic memories for those fans of a certain vintage. Anyone younger and it’s a new ground.

Doesn’t explain why we had so many want to go to Walsall a place we’ve visited about three thousand times in the last 20 years…
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« Reply #830 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 13:59:48 »

Cheeky request - could anyone with an Athletic subscription do a little copy and pasting of this?

https://theathletic.com/3046862/2022/01/09/its-fantastic-for-fans-the-clubs-been-starved-of-positives-watching-swindon-v-man-city-with-the-owner-and-chief-exec/

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Enjoyable read.

Quote
“‘Have we got a chance?’ I can’t believe he asked you that, Rob,” says one of the Swindon Town stewards, sounding more than a little affronted after listening to a question in a pitchside television interview on the eve of Friday night’s FA Cup tie against Manchester City.

Rob Angus, the Swindon chief executive and a lifelong fan, smiles back as he continues to make his way around the stadium, thanking the staff for their hard work ahead of kick-off — he seems to know everyone by name — in between stopping to answer the occasional request for a picture. “You could be busy with photographs tonight, Rob,” another fan adds. “You’ll be famous if we win!”

Clem Morfuni, Swindon’s owner, has already told The Athletic that he will be “sliding on the pitch” if that happens. The Australian has invested emotionally, as well as financially, in Swindon Town. On New Year’s Day, when Swindon beat Northampton 5-2, Morfuni swapped the directors’ box for the Town End at half-time and watched behind the goal with the hardcore support, wearing a beanie and a mask that enabled him to go undercover until Angus’ brother-in-law spotted him. “He looked at me and said, ‘You’re Clem!’” Morfuni says, laughing.

It is difficult to imagine Sheikh Mansour, Manchester City’s owner, doing the same. Or, for that matter, playing six-a-side with the supporters 48 hours before an FA Cup tie, which is how Morfuni prepared for City’s visit. “I do it every Wednesday night, not for publicity, I just do it because I enjoy playing football and I’ve got a lot of supporters who are mates,” Morfuni explains. “I’d rather do that than sit in front of the camera talking about what needs to be done.”
That list would be long, albeit nothing like as long as it was in the summer, when Swindon had no manager, no chief executive and only seven registered professionals. Relegated from League One last season, and mired in financial problems under the chaotic ownership of Lee Power, the club was rudderless. Or, as Swindon put it on their official Twitter account on the morning of the Manchester City game, “on the brink of oblivion”.

Morfuni, who made his money in the plumbing industry and was previously a minority shareholder at Swindon, saved the day by completing a takeover with little more than two weeks to go until the start of the EFL season. The transformation since has been remarkable. Playing an attractive brand of possession football under their head coach Ben Garner, Swindon are fifth in League Two. Crowds are as high as they have been for 20 years, and the £4.5 million debt that Morfuni inherited has been reduced by almost half.

Perhaps more important than all of that is the fact that the football club has reconnected with its supporters — something that shines through during the time that The Athletic spent with Angus and Morfuni around the Manchester City game.
Angus taps his trouser pocket. “We’ve got nothing to hide,” he adds. “I carry the banking app on my phone, I say to people, ‘If you want to see what payments are going in and out of the club, I’ll show you them and the current balance’.”
That is certainly not how things worked at Swindon in the past. The Fan Engagement Index, which is based on how clubs communicate with their supporters, ranked Swindon bottom of the pyramid for two years in succession (they only moved up from 92nd to 91st after Bury went bust).

“Our aim is to turn that around and get to first for fan engagement,” says Angus, who was previously the vice-chairman of the Supporters’ Trust and walked away from a secure role as performance director with Nationwide to essentially run the club on a day-to-day basis. “Openness and transparency is the key for us. We want to let our supporters know how things are going. And I always say to people who interview me, ask any question.”

The bank balance that Angus mentioned will be swelled by Manchester City’s visit, which he estimates will generate close to £400,000 in revenue. As per FA rules, the two clubs equally share 90 per cent of the gate receipts, with the remainder going to the governing body. Angus smiles when it is pointed out to him that some Premier League clubs have offered to waive their share of the gate receipts in the past.

“We did ask the question (to Manchester City) and tried to explain the background,” he says. “I think Manchester City are quite careful not to set a precedent and I think that’s their concern. But they have been open to other ideas to help us more broadly outside of the game.”

Swindon have tried to help City in any way they can too, right down to sourcing ice baths for Pep Guardiola’s players. Hills Waste Solutions came to their aid in that respect, delivering two red wheelie bins to the County Ground on Thursday afternoon. Welcome to life in League Two.

Listening to Angus, it sounds as though the County Ground could do with being on an episode of DIY SOS. “You’re talking about a stadium that’s had decades of neglect,” he says. “So we’ve got a failing PA system that we keep on trying to fix, ticketing control systems that don’t work, and if it rains there will be a leak somewhere in this building. We turned up for one game and the TVs weren’t working and nobody could work out why — the electrics in the place are an absolute mess. It’s been starved of investment for a long, long time and we’re starting to put that right now.”

On the field, Swindon have exceeded all expectations. Morfuni set the bar low when he took over — and for good reason. With the start of the season only a fortnight away, Swindon had more triallists than professionals. “I remember going down to Weymouth — we lost against them,” says Morfuni, recalling Garner’s first pre-season friendly in charge. “I thought… (he puffs out his cheeks) this is going to be a long season. My goal was just to stay up. That’s what I said to the press.”

Perhaps he needs to revise that target now? “I was just trying to work out, because I looked at the previous years and you need 46 points average to stay up, we’re on 37 points so I’m still… ” Morfuni’s voice trails off as he chuckles at himself for being so cautious. “Look, if we’re in the play-offs it would be good. Getting Man City was a great boost. But it’s been hard work, and there’s still a lot of hard work.”

As well as operating under an EFL embargo that restricts the club in the transfer market, Swindon are contesting a winding-up petition that relates to an alleged loan that was made to the club when Power was the owner. Angus and Morfuni seem to be forever putting out fires in that respect.

Indeed, the Man City tie feels like a reward for everyone, but in particular the supporters. “It’s fantastic for the fans because the club has been starved of cup success for many years, it’s been starved of positive things, so to have one of the best teams in the world coming down here, and to put Swindon Town Football Club back on the map again, that’s probably one of the most important things,” Angus adds. “This is a club that has won a major trophy, that’s been in the Premier League — so that’s really important for us.”

Phil King, the former Swindon, Sheffield Wednesday and Aston Villa player, is standing at the front of one of the hospitality suites at the County Ground with a microphone in his hand. “Six months ago we never had a football club,” King says, looking around the room at the guests. “Who cares what the result is tonight?

“Have you seen their team? (Kevin) De Bruyne is playing. Gabriel Jesus is playing. (Joao) Cancelo is playing.”
There is some laughter in the room, almost as if people think that King is cracking another joke. “This is serious,” King adds. “I’ve just seen their team downstairs. Even if we go three or four down, enjoy the game please.”

After the applause, which is as much for Morfuni, who is now working his way around the room along with Angus, King points to a couple of signed shirts in frames. The names of (Don) Rogers and (John) Trollope are on the back — two members of Swindon’s 1969 League Cup-winning team. Both men are now club ambassadors and attend every home game, as well as having stands named after them.

“We’re going to auction these shirts off and all the money is going to go to the Down’s Syndrome Group,” King continues.
The shirts end up fetching £4,000. Cliff Puffett, the former club chairman and a patron of the Swindon Down’s Syndrome Group, is overcome with emotion as the bidding gets higher.

By now the team news has reached all the other hospitality suites, where Angus and Morfuni are speaking to guests and sponsors to thank them for supporting the club.

“Beers going down well?” Angus asks a group on one table as he pops into another hospitality room.
“We need them! Have you seen that City line-up, Rob?” comes the reply amid much laughter.
Angus smiles.
“Cancelo’s playing!” says another fan, shaking his head and laughing. “I’m staying here!”
“Oh wow,” adds Angus, looking through the City line-up, which includes 10 full internationals.
“I thought it was going to be academy players,” says a supporter, managing to sound both disappointed and pleased at the same time.

“You should be careful with falling in love with anybody in football, whether it’s a shiny new player or a shiny new chairman,” says Ivo Graham, the stand-up comedian and Swindon fan. “But it is such a leap forward from the situation six months ago.
“The dialogue around pretty much everything at the club has been great. There was a bit of a push-back around the cost of tickets for this game. But even the way that was handled was very open, and I think that’s to be credited. Because as long as that is happening, everyone feels connected to what is going on.”

Graham has managed to navigate his way down to the edge of the pitch to catch up for a chat at half-time. Geno by Dexys Midnight Runners is blasting out over the PA system, which seems to be holding up as well as the leaking roof, and the fact that there are just under 15,000 fans inside the ground suggests that the ticketing system worked fine.

What is clear is that Graham’s voice is filled with hope and optimism when he thinks about the club’s new direction under Morfuni. “I met him very briefly yesterday, when I was doing a bit of pre-match content, and he cares,” Graham says.
“When he’s in Australia there will be videos of him watching matches at 1am in bars in Sydney. He plays six-a-side (with the fans), he was bowling in the cricket nets in the summer, he was driving around handing out season tickets…. well, not handing out season tickets; selling them for a fair price! All that being said, I don’t think there’s going to be a fourth round FA Cup tie to look forward to… this is as far as this particular adventure has come.”

Swindon are trailing 2-0 to City at half-time, which is no disgrace. The disappointment is that some of the damage was self-inflicted. Swindon’s commitment to playing out from the back leads to a mistake for the second goal, which Jesus tucks away after a short goal-kick routine goes terribly wrong. By that stage some of the home fans had already sounded a little frustrated that the ball was not being played forward quicker. In one way, Garner’s refusal to compromise his methods against City is admirable.

“When I come to League Two games here it’s the same sort of thing,” adds Graham, alluding to the style of football. “We’re playing this very expansive, defence-stretching, tiki-taka stuff. The videos of some of the goals we’ve scored this season are fantastic. And at the start of the season, there were all these stats about being among the top passers in League Two, and you can see why — it’s because we start every goal kick by passing at the back.

“Even at League Two games it really splits people because it’s risky and it’s not direct and you’ve got strikers wandering around waiting for the ball. The second goal looked suicidal. It’s a real shame because when there’s only one goal in it, there’s the excitement that anything can happen. Now you feel it’s probably out of sight already.

“But we’re fifth in the league because we’re playing nice football and players are using their creativity, and we’ve got a coach who has studied under some really great managers and been really forensic in his methods. I cannot tell you how ugly and depressing the football was last season, when it was exactly the kind of half-hearted hoof-ball that some of the fans here tonight would want to see. It’s just when you’re doing it against Man City… it’s the wrong dance for those kinds of moves!”
Graham chuckles when reminded of the tweet that he posted about his father a couple of weeks ago, when the two of them watched Swindon draw 0-0 with Stevenage. “Enjoyed predicting how long after the final whistle my father would turn to me and say, ‘Well, I don’t think Man City will be too worried!’, and fair play, a solid 0.5 seconds,” Graham posted.

“Due to a booking error we’re in different parts of the stand tonight,” he adds. “But I would describe him as a classic, impatient Swindon fan who can’t understand why we’re just not tearing through (Ruben) Dias and (Nathan) Ake at the back.”
That moment will come.

There is something truly special about being in the stadium to hear the explosion of noise, and to witness limbs going up and down everywhere, when Harry McKirdy sprints clear on the right before thrashing a low shot beyond Zack Steffen in the City goal. Swindon are 3-1 down and, realistically, there is no way back into the game for the League Two side, but their pony-tailed striker, with socks that are rolled down to his ankles, has given the home supporters a memory to cherish.

There were a couple of others too. Kaine Kesler Hayden, the hugely impressive 19-year-old wing-back on loan from Aston Villa, sprinted back to make a brilliant challenge on De Bruyne, who never seems to have much luck in these parts, and Lewis Ward saved Jesus’ penalty.

Cole Palmer, the star of the show, added a fourth for City but it was McKirdy’s goal that Swindon supporters were talking about as they got up from their seats at the final whistle. “It was huge to see that go in,” Angus adds. “When the whole stadium is alive, and it’s really electric, you really enjoy those moments. And it’s great for this man here to see it as well.”

He is talking about Morfuni, who is standing alongside him outside the boardroom with a smile on his face. “My God, that was unbelievable,” the Australian says, looking genuinely blown away by the whole experience. “They’re a quality side, one of the best teams in the world, so to get a goal against Man City… just unbelievable. Hopefully we can get the stadium like that every week, that’s what we are striving for.”

Asked whether he will be at the next home game, against Bristol Rovers later in the month, Morfuni smiles. “Absolutely I’ll be here. And I’ll be going to Mansfield and Port Vale too.”
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« Reply #831 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 14:52:00 »

For a team who dont care about us they had a 4 page thread about our game, 1 page taking the piss out of an 18 year old Town youth players surname the inbred fucktards.

https://www.otib.co.uk/index.php?/topic/215376-swindon-vs-man-city/

So who have you guys got in the next round? what? beaten at home by a team in their own division? really?


infront of 7k
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« Reply #832 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 15:10:43 »

Enjoyable read.
Thank you!

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« Reply #833 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 16:16:36 »

I really enjoyed the " the beautiful game" of Man C.,  and also our brave efforts of course. A lot to look forward to later this season.
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« Reply #834 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 16:23:01 »

They could pay for our pre season tour down under with an exhibition match on the way there say in Thailand with a night out in Pattaya?
No £9.50p holidays there in the Sun.
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« Reply #835 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 17:53:17 »

For a team who dont care about us they had a 4 page thread about our game, 1 page taking the piss out of an 18 year old Town youth players surname the inbred fucktards.

https://www.otib.co.uk/index.php?/topic/215376-swindon-vs-man-city/

So who have you guys got in the next round? what? beaten at home by a team in their own division? really?

But they don't care about us, they are happy to be shite in the higher leagues these days in a stadium that's too big for them  Smiley
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« Reply #836 on: Sunday, January 9, 2022, 19:32:35 »

Swindle? Wow that is original
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« Reply #837 on: Monday, January 10, 2022, 09:32:53 »

Haven't been on since Friday so as to honour NMH I am posting prior to reading back on other people's thoughts. Having enjoyed an excellent pre-match feed in Los Gatos in Old Town it was great once again to walk down towards the CG, with the floodlights shining in all their glory. So as to avoid faff I had my physical ticket ready and my NHS Covid App opened. The queue to the DRS was obviously bigger than normal at 7:15 and of course by the time the steward asked me to see my Covid Pass, the bloody thing had timed out and I had to log in again. In the end the guy just told me to go ahead anyway. A bizarre thing happened before the game, 2 foreign fans (possibly Italian or Portuguese) were looking for their seats. Eventually they asked a guy behind us who looked at his ticket and it transpired that they should have been in the Arkells! Not quite sure how they were able to get into the DRS with an Arkells ticket. Poor fellas were totally lost and confused!!

As to the game, for us to get anything we needed City to be well below par and for all of our players to be on the top of their game. From the first minute it was evident that wasn't to be the case. After about 5 minutes I had to count the number of City players as it seemed like they had 15 players! Clearly we didn't help ourselves by giving the ball away constantly from goal kicks but at the same time it was good to see we hadn't changed our 'ethos' just for the best team in the country. Sadly for us I felt Gladwin was having an off day and whilst he tried hard things just didn't seem to come off for him. KKH and McKirdy and Simpson looked to be our best chance of success and I was gutted that McKirdy couldn't take the gift from Steffen.

Second half we looked relatively comfortable up to the Gundogan free kick but I feared we might fall to pieces with the penalty. However we then got 2 things to celebrate, a Ward penalty save and then after a pin-point pass by Jonny Williams a McKirdy goal! That was worth the entrance fee alone in my eyes! Palmer's brilliant finish put gloss on the scoreline (one that I had predicted) and overall I think we can be proud of our performance. 22% possession at home is very rare but you can see why against a team that keeps and moves the ball as well as the English Champions. Hopefully the players aren't going to be too adversely affected for the upcoming 2 important league matches.

Finally, whilst great to have a big cup tie at home and on TV and the income it brings, i'm glad it's now over and we can concentrate on the important task of getting promoted. We probably now have a week or 2 of the attendance nonces moaning about where the fans that were at the City game have gone, but regardless of that it was brilliant to see a full CG.   
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« Reply #838 on: Monday, January 10, 2022, 09:43:36 »

Thank you BO!  Wink

From what I remember, you are the first to mention McKirdy missing Steffen's gift. I so wished he'd scored there, especially as Steffen was being a bit cocky by not doing his gloves up!
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« Reply #839 on: Monday, January 10, 2022, 09:57:59 »

Don't know if it's been mentioned on here yet, congrats to Kidderminster Harriers  Smiley
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