Our first league home game of the New Year sees Manchester City and their expensivelyFrancisLeeassembled squad arrive at St. James Park. It is doubtful we’ll be seeing as many goals as on their first visit here however, with United coming out on top 5-4 in a 9 goal thriller with one of the early heroes of Newcastle United; Bill Thompson scoring a hat trick. Thompson was joined by Tom McDonald in 1922 as United players to score hat tricks against City, Alf Hagan scoring the other two goals in a 5-1 win. We beat a City side led by German prisoner of war Bert Trautmann in 1954, with Reg Davies and Alan Monkhouse goals sandwiched in between two penalties from Jackie Milburn; the final score was 4-3. In 1968 Manchester City travelled to St. James Park on the final day knowing that a win would secure them the title, with a superior goal difference to their neighbours Man United despite being level on points. With the scores tied at 2-2 at half time, quickfire goals from Neil Young and Francis Lee won them a game which proved to be academic as surprisingly enough The Mackems had beaten Man United at Old Trafford.

Only a couple of months after our defeat in The League Cup final to the same opponents we welcomed City to St. James Park where we gained some slight revenge, beating them 2-1 In front of 21,000 with our goals coming from Tommy Cassidy and Malcolm MacDonald. City were like lambs to the slaughter in our promotion season of 83/84 when Peter Beardsley bagged a magnificent hat trick to really announce himself to The Gallowgate, the other two members of the holy trinity; Chris Waddle and Kevin Keegan got the other goals in a 5-0 victory. The next time the two sides met they were both in the First Division, and we recorded a 3-1 victory in October 1986 with Tony Cunningham, Paul Gascoigne and Neil McDonald from the spot helping us on our way.

City were our opponents in the 5th round of the FA Cup in the 94/95 season when a miscued cross from John Beresford found its way into the corner of the net and Keith Gillespie bagged a brace shortly after he made his move as a makeweight in the Andy Cole deal. We faced them again at the same stage 7 years later, this time however our manager from 95’ was in the away dugout. Keegan’s side went down to ten men early on as Richard Dunne brought down Craig Bellamy when in on goal, it took Newcastle to the hour mark to make the numerical advantage pay when Nolberto Solano finished off a passing move. In 2004 we played Keegans City again this time with Graeme Souness in charge of United, all 7 goals came in the second half with Laurent Robert and Alan Shearer giving us a 2 goal lead which was thrown away within a matter of minutes when Wright-Phillips and Fowler pulled us back; a rare goal from Robbie Elliott put us back in the lead before Wright Phillips got his second to make it 3-3, in the last minute however, Craig Bellamy popped up to snatch three points in which was to be arguably the fiery Welshman’s last meaningful contribution in black and white before the subsequent fall out with Souness. In 2012 City came needing a win to maintain their superior goal difference to Man United going into the final day, in a tight game it was Yaya Toure who made the difference scoring a goal at the Leazes end in a game of few chances, he scored another on the break and City won the league the week later in dramatic circumstances.