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The Shield: City's story part II



The last time City won the Shield, the Blues enjoyed an unintentional helping hand from Jim Cumbes, as Mike Summerbee never tires of reminding Old Trafford cricket's top man.

That 1972 clash was decided by a Francis Lee penalty after Summerbee was brought down by Villa keeper Cumbes, who doubled as a fast-medium bowler for Worcestershire in the summer.

Didsbury-born Cumbes, who also played for West Brom and Portland Timbers, hung up his whites in 1982 and is now Lancashire Cricket Club's popular chief executive.

Summerbee said: "Jim pulled me down and Francis rarely used to miss from the spot. Every time I see Jim I have a joke with him that that's the nearest he ever got to me.

"Great big hands he had, and as I was going round him one of them came out - and that was it!"

Summerbee, now the Club's Ambassador, has less fond memories of the 1969 Shield at Elland Road, when coach Malcolm Allison warned him his career was over halfway through the 2-1 defeat by Leeds.

He recalled: "Malcolm had a go at me at half-time, telling me that I was finished. That was the way he used psychology.

It was Malcolm's way of making me up my game


"Afterwards he told me I wouldn't be playing in the first game, so I trained with the B team. Then he called me in and said, 'I'll give you one more chance'.

"I’d got a little carried away with how I’d played the season before and he was testing me. I played against Sheffield Wednesday on the Saturday, we beat 'em 4-1, and I think I made three."
Colin Bell scored for City. Summerbee added: "Leeds were a very good side. They weren’t a dirty side, just a very professional one that played hard. We usually did well against them."

City's last appearance a year later against Burnley brought a 1-0 defeat: "We lost thanks to a free-kick they had, they made it look as if it had gone wrong but it would still end up in your net.

"When I went to Burnley later I got involved with it, it was a con-trick free kick meant to fool the defenders. They were a very good side back then when it came to set pieces.”

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City played in eight Charity Shield matches ... but it is the 1968 spectacular against West Brom that will always stand out in Blues folklore, and with good reason.