The Man Who Restored Pride – David J. Mooney
By Ric Turner, Wed 31 July 2013 21:46
David J. Mooney's new book about Roberto Mancini's reign as City manager makes for an enjoyable read
Roberto Mancini delivered Manchester City's first league title for 44 years, but was sacked as manager and replaced by Manuel Pellegrini just twelve months later. The Man Who Restored Pride is David Mooney's second book about the Blues (following Typical City, published in 2012) and looks back at the Italian's tenure as Manchester City manager. The author will be familiar to many from his involvement with the excellent Bluemoon Podcast, and as a presenter on Blue Moon Live.
Mancini's appointment as City manager in 2009 was greeted with some scepticism, particularly amongst the press who felt that his predecessor Mark Hughes had been dealt with harshly by the club. However, he soon won the majority of fans over with an immediate improvement in performances and was affectionately nicknamed "Bobby Manc" by supporters. Although he failed to secure Champions League qualification in his first season in charge, Mancini took City to the 2011 F.A. Cup Final, where victory over Stoke City saw the Blues lift their first trophy for 35 years. The Italian had delivered on his promise to rip down "that" banner at Old Trafford, metaphorically at least.
The following season saw Mancini's team go a step further, memorably winning the league title in the final seconds of the 2011/12 season, as Sergio Aguero's late goal against QPR secured an unlikely comeback to deprive United of the title. Despite lifting the Charity Shield at the start of the following season, City's title defence was lacklustre at best and fans were polarised about whether or not Mancini was the man to take take the club forward. Defeat to Wigan in the F.A. Cup Final meant that his subsequent dismissal came as no great surprise.
Both "inners" and "outers" will find much enjoyment in this book, as Mooney gives a balanced, fair appraisal on Mancini's time in charge. The author's engagaing style and sense of humour make this an enjoyable, light read.
The analysis of the Mancini era is interspersed with occasional snippets, such as stats, facts and match reports, making it a book you can also revisit and dip into from time to time. A recommended read for fellow Blues.
You can buy the book from David’s website or from Amazon.