Monday, 24 December 2012

Jim's column 22.12.12

Coventry City's current away form is nothing short of staggering. After winning only one league game (and losing 16) on the road in the whole of last season, the Sky Blues have notched five this season and have won the last four on the bounce. That feat equals the club record set in 1963 and equalled in 1992 (under Bobby Gould) and again in 2004 (under Eric Black). City travel to Stevenage on Boxing Day looking to set an all-time club record of five.

In 1963 the run of four was the final game of the 1962-63, a 3-1 away win at the White City where QPR were playing that season, and the first three trips of the 1963-64 season, Notts County (3-0), Walsall (3-0) and Luton (3-1). The run came to an end at Hull (1-2) but City went on to win the Third Division championship that season.

In 1992 City won their first four away games in the newly created Premier League. A midweek win at Spurs (2-0) was followed by a (2-1) win at Wimbledon which took them to the top of the league. The next two wins came at Oldham (2-1) and Sheffield Wednesday (1-0). The run came to an end at Forest (1-1).

In 2004 Eric Black had taken over from Gary McAllister at Christmas and his recrafted side won four consecutive away games at Walsall (6-1), Nottingham Forest (1-0), Wimbledon (3-0) and Cardiff (1-0). The run came to an end at West Brom (0-3).

I mentioned the goals for tally last week and another four at Doncaster made it 37 for the season and seventeen in the last four league games - something they haven't done since 1952. Sixty years ago this month City had a great run up to Christmas winning three home games, Brighton (3-1), Crystal Palace (4-2) and Torquay (7-2) and Swindon away (3-2) for a tally of 17 goals. The best ever run of four games came in December 1933: on Christmas Day City won 4-1 at home to Cardiff and drew the return the following day 3-3 before winning 7-3 at Gillingham and defeating Crystal Palace 5-1 at home. 19 goals in four games and star scorer Clarrie Bourton was out injured! His deputy ‘Rasher’ Bacon netted 12 of the goals including a club record five at Gillingham.

Today is the 50th anniversary of the Sky Blue Song. On this day in 1962 the song, words by Jimmy Hill and John Camkin, to the Eton Boating song tune, was launched at the Colchester home game. Unfortunately fog enveloped the pitch and the game had to be abandoned at half-time with the Sky Blues leading 2-0. The song took off immediately and was sung with great gusto during the 3-0 victory over the league leaders Peterborough four days later. The song has been an ever present ever since and has been sung on most league grounds around the country not to mention Wembley, Trakia Plovdiv and Bayern Munich. The words have changed subtley over the years to reflect the division the club was in. it started off as Proud Posh or Cobblers, Oysters or anyone but for the most part of its life it has been 'Tottenham or Chelsea, United or anyone'. At today's game it is hoped that the CCFPA's Billy Bell will lead a rendition of the famous song by some of the players from the 1960s.

The tragic news of Peter Ndlovu's car crash last weekend shocked every City fan and the death of his brother Adam and a friend also in the car has stunned his family. The Former Players Association (CCFPA) have set up an appeal fund to raise money for some of his family members in Coventry to fly out to Zimbabwe to be with Peter at this sad time. The CCFPA have kicked off the fund by donating £500 and all fans are encouraged to make a donation to help the family. Details of how to donate can be found at and the proceeds of today's Christmas Memorabilia Stall will be going towards the fund. It is hoped that there will be bucket collections at the game today and in the G-Casino.

A Merry Christmas to all the readers and lets hope the City’s good form continues into 2013 and us long suffering fans finally get something to celebrate.

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