1935 to 36 team group
The City board announced record profits of £5,165, and in June they spent £5,000 of it on Partick Thistle’s Centre Half Bob Donnelly.
It was a great start to the season for the Blues as they beat West Brom 1-0 at Maine Road on the opening day of the season, they then beat Liverpool 2-0 at Anfield. Then despite a 2-0 defeat at Sunderland they gained an early season double over Liverpool thrashing them 6-0 at Maine Road.
The early Division 1 table showed City in second place and they then beat Birmingham 3-1 at Maine Road and champions, Arsenal 3-2 at Highbury. Due to playing less games as their rivals City were now in fourth position but just two points behind leaders Huddersfield with a game in hand.
City then played a friendly in Scotland, beating St Johnstone 4-3 in a Testimonial for their captain, Harry Ferguson.
The Blues couldn’t keep up their early assault on the top of the table, as they drew 0-0 with Portsmouth and lost 2-1 to Stoke , both games at Maine Road.
City then lost 4-1 at Blackburn, The defence was starting to leak goals, and many fans were calling for Sam Cowan to be brought back into the side, however the board had other ideas, and Cowan, who hadn’t played since May 1935, was transferred to Bradford City for a fee of £2,000. On the day he made his debut for The Bantams, City lost again, 4-0 at Preston to bring their Championship winning aspirations into question.
In an attempt to strengthen their squad City paid Belfast Celtic £2,000 for Irish International, Keiller McCullough, he didn’t play in City’s next game, a 2-1 win over Brentford at Maine Road, however his debut ended in a 3-0 defeat at new Division 1 leaders Derby .
Back at Maine Road though City won again beating Everton 1-0, they were now seventh in the league just five points off the summit with a game in hand.
A break from the stress of the league saw City beat a combined Slavia-Sparta side, who they had played the previous season in Czechoslovakia, 4-1 in prestigeous friendly at Maine Road.
Back to the league and with a 3-3 draw at Bolton and 3-0 home win over Sheffield Wednesday , City moved up to fifth place in Division 1.
The Blues then splashed out for two further players, bringing in C Rodger from Ayr United for a fee of around £3,000, and then a raid on Larne of the Irish League for striker John McLeod.
Despite a 2-0 defeat at Middlesbrough, The Blues kept in the race for the Championship with a 5-0 win over free spending Aston Villa, who paraded over £28,000 of new talent in their lineup.
City were then beaten 4-3 in an exciting game at Wolves , before a very disappointing Festive Period. Their game at Maine Road on 23rd December was postponed due to a frozen pitch and although it was fit to play on on Christmas Day they could only draw 0-0 with Chelsea , in the return tie at Stamford Bridge on Boxing Day Chelsea won 2-1 and two days later at West Brom The Blues were well beaten, 5-1.
The New Year was no better as City lost two further league games, both in front of a disgruntled Maine Road crowd, 3-0 against Grimsby and 1-0 against Sunderland, and so the respite of the FA Cup 3rd Round was welcomed in Moss Side as City beat Portsmouth 3-1.
City’s rearranged match against Huddersfield was lucky to go ahead again with the Maine Road pitch frost bound and very uneasy underfoot, City lost 2-1!
The Blues then beat Birmingham 1-0 at St Andrews and in the 4th Round of the FA Cup, over 65,000 fans turned up at Maine Road to see City beat third Division Luton 2-1.
Back in the league and it was a mixed bag as City beat Portsmouth 2-1 at Fratton Park, but then lost 1-0 at Stoke .
In the 5th Round of the FA Cup City were unlucky to be beaten 3-2 at Grimsby as Brook had to replace Swift in goals for a period whilst the giant keeper had to leave the pitch for treatment.
City made it three wins out of four in the league as they beat Blackburn 2-0, and so with a third of the season to go City invested heavily to try and make a late move to win the Championship, they splashed out a club record transfer fee of £10,000 to capture the signing of Irish inside right Peter Doherty from Blackpool, City Manager, Wilf Wild, descibed the player as “the best inside forward in the country”.
Doherty made his debut in a disappointing 3-1 defeat at Maine Road against Preston .
City should have played Brentford away next, however The Football League, in an attempt to put out of business the Football Pools that had started to appear, decided to ‘rip up’ the remaining fixtures and re-schedule the remaining games and, incredibly, unless long distances were to be travelled they were only going to let the teams know who they were playing on the Friday, just 24 hours before the game.
The clubs were in uproar, The Blues’ Chairman Bob Smith issued a statement to say “As a board we are definitely opposed to them, we are not only opposed to the alteration of the League fixtures,but do not agree that pool betting is a menace to the game.” Indeed he advised the club had had season tickets returned by fans who stated that because of the Football Leagues decision they are entitled to their money back on the grounds of breach of contract, and also received letters from fans who stated they would be boycotting games until the League reversed their decision.
As it was City learned on Friday 28th February that they would be playing Everton at Goodison Park the next day, a game they drew 2-2.
The Blues then beat Middlesbrough 6-0 and Arsenal 1-0, both games played at Maine Road.
The board recouped most of the money they spent on Doherty as they sold Matt Busby to Liverpool for £8,000. Also leaving the club were Billy Owen and Ron Dellow, who both joined Tranmere Rovers.
City eventually travelled to Brentford and drew 0-0, before a 7-0 rout of Bolton at Maine Road. The Blues moved up to sixth in the league, but were now 13 points behind leaders Sunderland with just eight games to play.
A 1-0 defeat at Sheffield Wednesday followed before a 1-0 over Derby at Maine Road.
Easter proved to be disappointing for City as they lost 3-1 at home to Leeds, drew 2-2 at Aston Villa and 1-1 at Leeds, and so with just three games left Wild’s team had slipt to eighth.
With an eye on next season City announced that reserve centre half, Hampshire had been transferred to Bristol City, also Corbett, Coulston and Shadwell were placed on the transfer list, and free transfers were given to Davies, Dawson, Harvey, McDonough, Pitt and Love, the rest of the 28 players in the squad made the retained list.
City won their last home game of the season, beating Wolves 2-1 and then in the penultimate game of the season they drew 1-1 at Huddersfield.
Away from the league City played a friendly at Blackpool for the Blackpool Hospital Cup and won 4-1.
The final game of the season saw Grimsby do the triple over City as they won 3-1 at Blundell Park. The Blues finished 9th in Division One on 42 points.

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