Premier League: Manchester focus for football prize
Published: 13th May 2012 12:15:56
In one of the closest ever Premier League contests, the race for English football's biggest prize is focused on one city.
Many Manchester City fans heading to the Etihad stadium will not have been born when their team last won the league title in 1968.
It has been a 44-year wait for City and in that time they have watched bitter rivals Manchester United win 12 titles.
And if City slip up United could snatch the title from them.
City are at home to Queen's Park Rangers and a win will almost certainly clinch the title.
United, who are on the same points as City but with an inferior goal difference, play away at Sunderland and realistically need City to drop points.
Just a few weeks ago City looked to be out of the Premier League race, trailing eight points behind United.
But they have hauled their rivals back and now are favourites to take the title when the final whistles blow shortly before 17:00 BST.
Manchester United fan Ian Sterling, from Salford, said of City's title chances: "It's about time really, 44 years, they've spent a long time waiting and after spending £980m on that team, while we've had £525m taken out - it's about time."
City fan Gaynor Norris, from Irlam, said: "We're a young team, people said you're not going to gel, you're not going to do it this season, but they've played fantastic."
Peter Spencer, sports editor of the Manchester Evening News, said the fight to the final whistle would be "tremendous".
"It reminds me a little bit of last season when City won the FA Cup and United won the league on the same day, and this will be even crazier in the office" he said.
"We've got 20 pages to fill of which 16 are geared towards City, so you can see they way we think it's going to go, but of course it can all change and there'll be 16 United and four City if it goes the other way."
Mr Spencer said feelings run deep in the city as to which team fans support and there "isn't much love lost between fans of the different teams".
"I think there was more friendship in the past. People used to support City and United, but I think they can only afford to support one or the other now.
"People always ask me who I support," he added, "I always tell them Bury - my home town."
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Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Premier League: Manchester focus for football prize [Online] (Updated 13th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1428233/Premier-League-Manchester-focus-for-football-prize [Accessed 25th Jul 2014]
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With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com