Carlos Tevez (C, black hat) sits with his teammates on an open topped bus in Manchester
AFP – Paul Ellis
Joyous Manchester City supporters gathered outside the city’s town hall on Monday for the start of a victory parade celebrating the club’s English Premier League title success.
Around 100,000 fans were expected to line the route of an open-top bus parade in honour of City being crowned champions of England for the first time since 1968.
City won the title in dramatic fashion on the final day of the season on Sunday, beating Queens Park Rangers 3-2 at Eastlands in a match where they scored twice in stoppage time after being 2-1 down.
Victory ensured they pipped defending champions and cross-town rivals Manchester United, the defending champions, to the title on goal difference.
Manchester City players stand with their manager Roberto Mancini as they celebrate at Manchester Town Hall
AFP – Paul Ellis
“It’s great for everyone that we can have the trophy and these celebrations,” said City captain Vincent Kompany. “It’s for the fans.”
City’s Italian manager Roberto Mancini, reflecting on the extraordinary climax to Sunday’s match, added: “We had the best five minutes of our life. It was an incredible moment.”
Meanwhile, Sergio Aguero, who scored the all-important winning goal, spoke through team-mate and fellow Argentinian Pablo Zabaleta on Monday to say he had cried “a little” in the celebrations.
“Thank you — you guys have been amazing,” he told the massed ranks of fans who had gathered in front of the town hall in Manchester’s Albert Square.
“Thank you, thank you, thank you.”
Manchester City and England goalkeeper Joe Hart confessed he feared the club were about to lose out on the title as the game approached the final whistle.
“I didn’t think it was going to happen, to be perfectly honest,” he said.
“The place was shaking, I was shaking. You lose control in situations like that. It was one of the best and most dramatic days of my life.”