1932/33 season review
After Peter Hodge left to manage Leicester, the City board asked Secretary Wilfred Wild to take on the Manager’s role for the new season as well as keeping up his adminstration role within the club. City were unlucky to lose their first game of the season at Roker Park, they lost Tilson to a jaw injury just after half-time and despite putting up a plucky performance the ten men of Manchester were beaten 3-2 by Sunderland.
The first home game brought a 1-0 win over Birmingham, however City then lost four games on the trot, 3-2 against Middlesbrough at Maine Road, 3-0 at Birmingham, 3-2 at home to Arsenal and 2-1 at Everton. The early league table showed City second from bottom of Division 1 after six games.
The Blues seemed to have stopped the rot with their first good performance of the season as they beat Blackpool 5-1 at Maine Road, unfortunately that performance was a bit of a one off as City’s bad form returned and they were well beaten 4-0 by Derby County at The Baseball Ground.
With six defeats in the first eight games City brought in half back Jimmy Naylor from Newcastle to bolster the squad.
Naylor didn’t play in City’s next game and they lost again 3-2 at home to Blackburn and then worryingly also lost 2-1 at Leeds and 2-1 at Bolton. With over a quarter of the season gone The Blues were rock bottom of Division 1 with just four points.
City gained their fifth point of the season as they drew 1-1 against Liverpool in atrocious conditions on a quagmire of a Maine Road pitch.
On the seventh time of asking City won their first game of the season away from Maine Road, beating Sheffield United 5-2, and then for the first time in 1932/33 season they won two games on the trot, beating Wolves 4-1 at Maine Road.
City had clearly found their shooting boots and, despite a 2-0 defeat at Newcastle, they then beat league leaders Aston Villa 5-2 at Maine Road, Leicester 2-1 at Filbert Street and Portsmouth 3-1 in Manchester.
misfortune stopped City’s winning ways as they lost keeper James Nicholls to an injury after quarter of an hour at Stamford Bridge, although Brook deputised as custodian to his best abilities, Chelsea won 3-1.
Moving into the Festive period and City beat Huddersfield 3-0 at Maine Road on Christmas Eve, however they then drew 2-2 at Sheffield Wednesday on Christmas Day, and then finished the year with two defeats, losing 2-1 at Sheffield Wednesday and 4-2 at home to Sunderland, to leave them in 17th place, six points above the relegation zone.
The New Year brought more misery for City as they lost 2-0 at Middlesbrough and then in the 3rd Round of the FA Cup they just about avoided the proverbial banana skin as they held on for a 1-1 draw at 3rd Division Gateshead.
Back at Maine Road City showed their true seniority as they trounced Gateshead 9-0 in the replay.
In the league though The Blues were struggling and they lost their fourth match on the trot, 2-1 at Arsenal.
The FA Cup fourth Round tie at home to Walsall got City back on track with a 2-0 win in front of a crowd of over 50,000. In the league City gained their first win in Six games beating Everton 3-0 at Maine Road.
It seemed that City were still in a relegation fight as they lost 1-0 at Blackpool, however they rallied at Maine Road to beat Derby 2-1, but were now just four points above the relegation places.
In an unusual deal City agreed to loan Harry Rowley and James Naylor to Oldham for the rest of the season. The Boundary Park club were in a financial crisis and were struggling to have enough players to put on the pitch.
In the FA Cup 5th Round City beat Bolton 4-2 at Burnden Park in front of a crowd of nearly 70,000, however the Blues slipped to just two points from the relegation zone as they lost 1-0 at Blackburn.
In the 6th Round of the FA Cup City secured a semi-final place with a 1-0 win at Burnley and then helped their Division 1 survival with a 2-1 win at home to Bolton, a 1-1 draw at Liverpool and a 1-0 win against West Brom at Maine Road.
The semi Final of the FA Cup was held at Leeds Road, Huddersfield, and City secured a place at Wembley with a 3-2 victory over Derby.
Back in the league, and two narrow wins, 1-0 at home to Sheffield United and 2-1 at Wolves saw City ease their relegation worries slightly as they moved up to 16th in Division One, five points above the ‘drop zone’.
However, as ever, Manchester City never take it easy on their fans, and they then lost 2-1 to Newcastle at Maine Road, then drew 0-0 with Leeds also in Manchester and drew again, 1-1 at Aston Villa to drop to just three points from the relegation zone with just five games to play.
With a 4-1 victory over Leicester at Maine Road, a 4-0 defeat at West Brom and a 2-1 win at Portsmouth, City guaranteed Division 1 safety, ahead of their trip to Wembley.
The 1933 FA Cup final saw the first occasion that that numbers appeared on the back of players’ shirts, Everton wore 1 to 11 in black on their white shirts and City 12 to 22 in white on their scarlet shirts, with Frank Swift wearing the higher number 22.
City edged it as the bookie’s favourites, however on the day Everton were far superior and beat City 3-0 to lift the cup.
The disappointment of losing the final clearly showed in the final two games of the season as The Blues lost 4-1 to Chelsea at Maine Road and 1-0 to Huddersfield at Leeds Road.
City finished the season in 16th place on 37 points.
Jimmy McMullan announced he was retiring as a player and took up the position as Oldham Athletic’s manager. Harry Race also left the club, joining Nottingham Forest.

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