Date:16th February 2013 at 3:42am
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Healthy rivalry is always a good thing, unless your name's Carlos

Healthy rivalry is always a good thing, unless your name’s Carlos

We all love footballing rivalry it’s what makes the beautiful game, or even the peoples game all that much more meaningful and passionate.

Last season was arguably the hardest most Reds have had to endure, which sounds insane considering United finished second by a whisker in the Premier League. Walking round Manchester, or even living here, during the Summer was an exercise in humility as City fans seemed to appear from everywhere constantly reminding us of THAT Ageuro  goal, THAT performance at the Etihad and THAT 1-6 result.

Manchester City have always been local rivals  to United although more often than not the two football sides have been fighting different battles. Although one of my earliest football memories was coming to terms with the 5-1 loss at Maine Road for much of my time supporting the Reds, City have been nothing more than a bit of an afterthought.

I know most Blues will be foaming at the mouth now, but I’m only stating a fact when I note that as United were winning titles and challenging in Europe, more often than not City were something of a yo-yo club fighting to establish themselves as a Premier League side.

Obviously Sheikh Mansour’s billions changed all that and whether we like it or not City are now United’s title rivals as well as our local ones. Over the years we’ve seen attention of United fans focused on sides such as Blackburn, Newcastle, Arsenal and Chelsea due to title races rather than anything more historic or geographic. The old favourites Liverpool have always held a special place in the hearts of United fans, not one of fondness of course, somewhere sat between hatred and more recently amusement as the club seems to stagger from the offensive to the ridiculous.

Leeds United will always be worth a mention but as they’re more ‘rivals’ to  the likes of Derby County and Millwall.

CIty have now firmly established themselves in the hearts and minds of many Reds as the focus of their anger and hatred, there’s nothing wrong with that of course, after all we are rivals, but it seems to almost becoming a tad too much.

I’m not for one minute saying we should all go out and “hug a blue” or politely applaud when they come to Old Trafford, but I can’t shake the feeling that some United fans are in danger of getting a bit ‘obsessed’ with our ‘noisy neighbours.’

The “who’s that ‘chap’ from Argentina” chant was funny and needed when it first came about, I even taught it a few Brazilians in South Africa, There came a point though where it seemed to be chanted almost continuously at United games, no sooner had it stopped than it would start up again.

I’m not for one minute saying we shouldn’t chant anti-City, or Tevez songs but I can’t help but notice more often than not United fans seem to be singing more about ‘them’ than our team.

Its the same on the inter web, United play and I’m seeing tweet after tweet about City from Reds, even when it seems there’s no real reason to be bothering about them. I understand the need to comparison and the fact we’re still in a title race with our ‘noisy neighbours’ but even when United produce a fantastic performance in the Bernabeu, half of my timeline is taken up with tweet after tweet about City.

I even received a tweet once that said “I don’t know what makes me happier, United winning or City losing!” It’s comments like this that make me feel many Reds may be taking this focus on the ‘Bitters’ a bit too far.

Ive grown up in Manchester practically all my life and felt the pain of last season’s title loss just as much as any other Red. I would happily see City embroiled in a relegation dogfight and have no qualms about singing about them or taking the p*** out of Blues. I just feel as I listen to chant after chant about City, see so many comments, tweets and status updates about them even when they’re not playing, are we in danger of becoming the very thing we’ve accused the ‘bitters’ of for all the years.

Is it now time to ‘forget’ about City, at least a little and focus more on getting behind United?

Am I off my rocker? Do we need more City hatred not less, or is there some credence to what I say? Feel free to comment, suggest and abuse below: