I guess in reality most regions had a second city which could be seen as a poor relation. Some may have benefitted from sub-regions, but the likes of Sheffield, Sunderland and Leicester also probably been short changed.
Well, indeed - Sheffield have always argued that telly in Yorkshire is dominated by Leeds, ditto Scotland is dominated by Glasgow. Unfortunately for Granada it's not like they could have done opt-outs because Manchester and Liverpool have the same transmitter. Although they probably didn't help themselves with Tony Wilson doing his best to wind up Scousers.