By Mike Collett
MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) - Rock star Liam Gallagher, one of Manchester City's staunchest fans, gave an impromptu press conference to amused soccer reporters after City's 1-0 win over Manchester United took them to the top of the Premier League table on Monday.
Wearing sunglasses and beaming a huge smile, the often irascible former frontman of Oasis was in party mood, saying: "What do you want to know lads? ... top of the league. Well done City."
He said he spent some time with Diego Maradona during the match - Maradona was there to watch his son-in-law Sergio Aguero play for City - and then joked that he loved City manager Roberto Mancini.
"I love him, he's so cool, he's almost as cool as me," he said to ripples of laughter.
City's Belgian captain Vincent Kompany, who headed the only goal of the game to give City their victory, walked into the media room where Gallagher hugged him, shouting, "Viva La Belgium" before walking off with his arm around the player.
Oasis, who have since broken up, proclaimed their affinity to City at the time albums such as Definitely Maybe and (What's The Story) Morning Glory were riding high in the charts, while City were languishing in the lower divisions.
The band, formed by Gallagher and his brother Noel who wrote most of their songs, once played at City's old Maine Road Stadium in 1996, long before Abu Dhabi's Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan bought the club and pumped in a fortune to turn them into contenders for England's No.1 club.
(Editing by Martyn Herman)