Robin Friday was an exceptional footballer who should have played for England. He never did. Robin Friday was a brilliant player who could have played in the top flight. He never did. Why? Because Robin Friday was a man who would not bow down to anyone, who refused to take life seriously and who lived every moment as if it were his last. For anyone lucky enough to have seen him play, Robin Friday was up there with the greats. Take it from one who knows: 'There is no doubt in my mind that if someone had taken a chance on him he would have set the top division alight,' says the legendary Stan Bowles. 'He could have gone right to the top, but he just went off the rails a bit.' Loved and admired by everyone who saw him, Friday also had a dark side: troubled, strong-minded, reckless, he would end up destroying himself. Tragically, after years of alcohol and drug abuse, he died at the age of 38 without ever having fulfilled his potential. The Greatest Footballer You Never Saw provides the first full appreciation of a man too long forgotten by the world of football, and, along with a forthcoming film based on Friday's life, with a screenplay by co-author Paolo Hewitt, this book will surely give him the cult status he deserves.
Here is the ultimate quiz book on Cardiff City. Informative and fun, this is the perfect companion for those long car journeys to Preston, or wet Welsh nights down the local. An ideal gift for Bluebirds fans of all ages, here’s the chance to interact with the long and eventful history of the club, from formation and name changes to new stadia and Craig Bellamy. From cryptic to convivial, get your Cardiff thinking caps on – it’s quiz time!
“Sheer joy!” – Patrick Barclay “Fascinating, funny and poignant.” – Henry Winter “Brilliant, non-judgemental, superbly researched and anecdote-laden.” – Guillem Balagué “Wonderfully evocative.” – Michael Cox, The Athletic “Cracking tales from the terraces amid betrayal in the boardrooms.” – Tim Marshall, author of “Dirty Northern B*st*rds!” and Other Tales from the Terraces: The Story of Britain’s Football Chants “If 1970s football is due a reappraisal, Get It On is an exhilarating place to start.” – Tom Lines, When Saturday Comes *** Four years after the crowning glory of 1966 and a decade after the abolition of the maximum wage, a brash new era dawned in English football. As the 1970s took hold, a new generation of larger-than-life footballers and managers came to dominate the sport, appearing on television sets in vivid technicolour for the first time. Set against a backdrop of three-day weeks, strikes, political unrest, freezing winters and glam rock, Get It On tells the intriguing inside story of how commercialism, innovation, racism and hooliganism rocked the national game in the 1970s. Charting the emergence of Brian Clough, Bob Paisley and Kevin Keegan, and the fall of George Best, Alf Ramsey and Don Revie, this fascinating footballing fiesta traces the highs and lows of an evolutionary and revolutionary era for the beautiful game. Jon Spurling has been interviewing footballers for twenty-five years, including legends George Best and Jack Charlton, European Cup-winning captains Emlyn Hughes and John McGovern and pioneering black footballers Cyrille Regis and Brendon Batson. Get It On presents these heroes of the era in their unvarnished and uncompromising glory and explores how the 1970s was the most groundbreaking decade in English football history.
Football stadiums are supposed to be packed with cheering fans. It was that way for more than 100 years until the coronavirus pandemic changed all our lives. Football managed to struggle on at some levels but without crowds - just cardboard cut-outs and fake noise instead. There was even a half measure for a while with a couple of thousand spectators allowed in. A banner at Old Trafford read, 'Football is nothing without fans', but what we discovered is that it isn't nothing, it's just better with fans there. Filled with fascinating stories, anecdotes, opinions and social media comments, Football's Better with Fans explores what it means to be a supporter. It's a light-hearted and highly dippable look at the lives of loyal fans, the fun and games they've enjoyed, their songs, banter, commitment, tattoos and traditions. The book doesn't shy away from tragedies, hooliganism or racism, but mainly it's a joyful celebration of football fandom and how we all survived when we couldn't go to games.
A History of European Football in 100 Objects: The Alternative Football Museum reveals the shocking hidden history of European football. In this fantasy football museum, Bollen delves into the archives to uncover idiocy and chaos from across the continent. The exhibits highlight the very worst of the human condition: greed, cheating, match-fixing, bribery, extortion and murder. Learn about the French captain who joined the Gestapo, the notorious football-mad Stasi boss, Erich Mielke and Gaddafi's son playing in Italy, the 1970s Lazio side that put Wimbledon's Crazy Gang to shame and the Romanian club owner who tried to stop hooliganism with a moat full of crocodiles. Along the way you'll meet Dundalk's one-armed super striker, Austrian legend Matthias Sindelar and the Italian George Best. Bollen again proves the ideal curator: passionate, meticulously informed and funny. His insightful take on the game is compelling and at times poignant. It is an exhibition for every curious football fan.
Runnin' Rebel tells the full story behind Tarkanian's many battles with the NCAA, often brought on by his criticism of the organization's blatant hypocrisy; his penchant for giving players he recruited a second chance, and his willingness to forgive player indiscretions when he thought it was justified. While the NCAA looked the other way at other big-name coaches and programs, Tarkanian firmly believes they overly scrutinized him as a punishment for his words about them. Despite all that, his players loved him (including the 42 who were drafted by NBA teams), the fans faithfully cheered him, and some of his achievements in college basketball may never be matches. He offers an entertaining "tell-all" about his spectacular career.
Bottled tells the story of English football's complicated relationship with booze through the experiences of the players who found themselves in crisis when they could no longer put it down - from George Best and Paul Gascoigne to Tony Adams and Paul Merson, as well as many others who escaped the headlines. Footballers play under intense pressure in the unforgiving glare of the media spotlight. But what do their stories tell us about ourselves? Are some challenges they face specific to a player's lifestyle? With insights from those at the sharp end, here is an examination of footballers in need and the help available from the industry. Untangling the complex web of links between alcohol and the beautiful game, Bottled explores the stories that characterised the origins of many of England's clubs, as churches and breweries vied for the souls of young men. From trashed hotel rooms to the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous via the China Jump club, Bottled navigates the journey from the stars to the gutter and, sometimes, back again.
There has been an explosion in the quantity of sports history literature published in recent years, making it increasingly difficult to keep abreast of developments. The annual number of publications has increased from around 250 to 1,000 a year over the last decade. This is due in part to the fact that during the late 1980s and 90s, many clubs, leagues and governing bodies of sport have celebrated their centenaries and produced histories to mark this occasion and commemorate their achievements. It is also the result of the growing popularity and realisation of the importance of sport history research within academe. This international bibliography of books, articles, conference proceedings and essays in the English language is a one-stop for the sports historian to know what is new.
‘A fresh look at the beautiful game’ - NME Welcome back to the inimitable work of illustrator David Squires. Most football fans can only dream of pulling on the shirt of their favourite team and running out in front of thousands of adoring fans. Pitch invaders aside, few of us get to experience that adrenalin rush. Of those who do make it as a professional footballer, even fewer realise the giddy heights of success. In the Illustrated History of Football: Hall of Fame, cartoonist David Squires returns to celebrate those who straddle the game like giants; those talented, determined souls who were juggling tennis balls in the back streets before they could talk. There’s more than one way to attain football immortality though, and Squires also turns his comic eye to the mavericks, the pioneers, the forgotten legends and the anti-heroes. From Pele to Meazza, Maradona to Socrates, you will be taken on an unforgettable journey through the good, the bad and the Hagi.
In His Ownself, Dan Jenkins takes us on a tour of his legendary career as a sportswriter and novelist. Here we see Dan's hone his craft, from his high school paper through to his first job at the Fort Worth Press and on to the glory days of Sports Illustrated. Whether in Texas, New York, or anywhere for that matter, Dan was always at the center of it all—hanging out at Elaine's while swapping stories with politicians and movie stars, covering every Masters and U.S. Open and British Open for over four decades. The result is a knee-slapping, star-studded, once-in-a-lifetime memoir from one of the most important, hilarious, and semi-cantankerous sportswriters ever.