City’s first venture into European football ends in disappointment against a disciplined Fenerbahce. The defending English league champions took on the Turkish champions in the European Cup first round, first leg at Maine Road, but Joe Mercer’s side came into the game in the midst of an awful run in the league which had seen City win just one of the opening nine games.
Malcolm Allison’s pre-match claim that City would “terrify Europe” didn’t have quite the effect he’d hoped with a wily a well-organised Fenerbahce grinding out a 0-0 draw and tipping the balance firmly in their favour ahead of the second leg in Turkey.
City travel to Poland to play a friendly against Legia Warsaw and lose 2-1 in front of 40,000 people, most of whom had turned out to see former skipper and club legend Kaziu Deyna who had scored 96 goals in 300 matches for the Poles. Deyna plays a half for each side - and scores for both teams, too on an emotional evening Warsaw.
With just four points from a possible 15, Kevin Keegan’s City gain a vital away win at basement club Crystal Palace. After a goalless first half at Selhurst Park, Nicolas Anelka scores on 55 and 64 (the second from the penalty spot) to put City 2-0 up and though Andrew Johnson pulls a goal back from the spot, Keegan’s men see out the game to move up to ninth in the Premier League table.
In an end-to-end game, City recover from a goal down to beat Cypriot side Omonia 2-1 in the UEFA Cup first round, first leg.
City had struck the woodwork twice and missed numerous chances before falling behind when Albanian midfielder Klodian Duro put the Nicosia side ahead on 49 minutes with a superb free-kick that gave Joe Hart no chance.
City fight back with Brazilian striker Jo scoring on 59 and 72 minutes to put Mark Hughes’ side in the box-seat for the second leg.
Shakhtar Donetsk are brushed aside by City at the Metalist Stadium in Ukraine in a Champions League group stage clash. Riyad Mahrez opens the scoring on 24 minutes and Ilkay Gundogan adds a second on 38. City wrap up the points with a third from Gabriel Jesus on 78 minutes as Pep Guardiola’s side make the perfect start to the Group C schedule.