City return to UEFA Cup action on Thursday evening as they take on Schteve McLaren's FC Twente in their first tie of the second round group stage. The Group A clash with the Enschede-based outfit kicks off at 11.45pm (UAE time) and sees the Blues return to Eastlands after a dismal couple of games on the road.
It remains to be seen what long-term damage has been inflicted on the team by the defeats at the hands of two very poor Middlesborough and Bolton sides, but coupled with the dire performance at Newcastle, it is clear that an immediate improvement is required if City are to get anywhere near attaining the goals that the new owners are aiming for.
Twente opened their Group A account a couple of weeks ago with a 1-0 victory against Racing Santander, courtesy of a 7th-minute strike from Dutch striker Romano Denneboom. The club currently sits sixth in the Dutch Eredivisie with an impressive 17 points from 9 games, although the 'Wally with the Brolly' was unable to impart his undoubted tactical genius on his new subjects last weekend, as they slumped to a 2-0 defeat at home to Ajax.
The Players' Lounge is out of commission for this fixture as the resident band will be playing at the same time. Consequently, mcfcUAE will be heading to Barrels Sports Bar in the nearby Majestic Hotel for this game.
I appreciate that it's the weekend, so some of you may already have other plans, but if you haven't, please come down and cheer the lads on. Mark will be in the Players' Lounge early doors on Thursday, so we'll meet there before heading over to the Majestic at around 9.30/10pm. Alternatively, just head to the Majestic Hotel any time after that.