The Final Whistle

The Great War in Fifteen Players

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Author: Stephen Cooper

Publisher: History PressLtd

ISBN: 9780752479354

Category: History

Page: 288

View: 957

WINNER OF THE BRITISH SPORT BOOK AWARDS - RUGBY BOOK OF THE YEAR‘A fresh and fascinating take on the impact of the Great War with a novel and moving focus’ Ian Hislop"Stephen Cooper has written a haunting and beautiful book, [he] tells the story of men from one rugby club but it is a universal narrative of heroism and loss. He writes superbly and has produced a book of commendable scholarship. I cannot recommend it enough." Fergal Keane "a deeply moving book about the loss of fifteen members of Rosslyn Park Rugby Club during the Great War. A War that scarred Britain and took so many fine men, who had they lived would have enriched this country. The lives of these young men, all so promising, are poignantly and vividly recalled" Max Arthur This is the story of 15 men killed in the Great War. All played rugby for one London club; none lived to hear the final whistle. Rugby brought them together; rugby led the rush to war. They came from Britain and the Empire to fight in every theatre and service, among them a poet, playwright and perfumer. Some were decorated and died heroically; others fought and fell quietly. Together their stories paint a portrait in miniature of the entire War. The Final Whistle plays tribute to the pivotal role rugby played in the Great War by following the poignant stories of fifteen men who played for Rosslyn Park, London. They came from diverse backgrounds, with players from Australia, Ceylon, Wales and South Africa, but they were united by their love of the game and their courage in the face of war. From the mystery of a missing memorial, Cooper’s meticulous research has uncovered the story of these men and captured their lives, from their vanished Edwardian youth and vigour, to the war they fought and how they died.

Thirty-One Nil

On the Road With Football's Outsiders: A World Cup Odyssey

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Author: James Montague

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1408851598

Category: Sports & Recreation

Page: 336

View: 881

In a tiny, decaying aluminium smelting town in southern Tajikistan, a short drive from a raging war zone, Afghanistan take on Palestine in the first Asian qualifier for 2014's World Cup in Brazil. Every player on both teams is risking something by playing: their careers, their families, even their lives. Yet, along with thousands of other footballers backed by millions of supporters, they all dream of snatching one of the precious 32 places at the finals; and so begins a three-year epic struggle – long before the usual suspects start their higher-profile qualifying campaigns under the spotlight. Named after the greatest victory (and defeat) that the World Cup qualifiers have ever seen (Australia's 31-0 victory over American Samoa), Thirty-One Nil is the story of how footballers from all corners of the globe begin their journey chasing a place at the World Cup Finals. It celebrates the part-time priests, princes and hopeless chancers who dream of making it to Brazil, in defiance of the staggering odds stacked against them. It tells the story of teams who have struggled for their very existence through political and social turmoil, from which they will very occasionally emerge into international stardom. From the endlessly humiliated San Marino to lowly Haiti; from war-torn Lebanon to the oppressed and fleet-footed players of Eritrea, in Thirty-One Nil James Montague gets intimately and often dangerously close to some of the world's most extraordinary teams, and tells their exceptional stories.

Brian Clough: Nobody Ever Says Thank You

The Biography

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Author: Jonathan Wilson

Publisher: Hachette UK

ISBN: 1409123189

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 388

View: 1819

The final word on Brian Clough In this first full, critical biography, Jonathan Wilson draws an intimate and powerful portrait of one of England's greatest football managers, Brian Clough, and his right-hand man, Peter Taylor. It was in the unforgiving world of post-war football where their identities and reputations were made - a world where, as Clough and Taylor's mentor Harry Storer once said, 'Nobody ever says thank you.' Nonetheless, Clough brought the gleam of silverware to the depressed East Midlands of the 1970s. Initial triumph at Derby was followed by a sudden departure and a traumatic 44 days at Leeds. By the end of a frazzled 1974, Clough was set up for life financially, but also hardened to the realities of football. By the time he was at Forest, Clough's mask was almost permanently donned: a persona based on brashness and conflict. Drink fuelled the controversies and the colourful character; it heightened the razor-sharp wit and was a salve for the highs of football that never lasted long enough, and for the lows that inevitably followed. Wilson's account is the definitive portrait of this complex and enduring man.

Louis van Gaal

The Biography

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Author: Maarten Meijer

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 1473503396

Category: Sports & Recreation

Page: 320

View: 7446

So who is Louis van Gaal? An inflexible ex-PE teacher who only knows how to act like a dictator or a footballing visionary that has made him one of the greatest ever European managers? Wherever he has gone, Van Gaal has been accused of being a domineering disciplinarian and a control freak. He is certainly, by his own admission, a man who leaves nothing to chance. A disciple in the 1970s of Rinus Michels’ Total Football philosophy, he is a fascinating contradiction – an ultra-individualist utterly devoted to the collective effort. He believes in the team over the individual, in always having a plan and a team prepared to follow it. Van Gaal led the young Ajax team he moulded to Champions League glory in 1995, went on to win titles across Europe with Barcelona, AZ Alkmaar and Bayern Munich and served two stints as national coach of Holland. It is a career that has never been short on colour and drama – from fallouts with players to rants at the media wherever he has managed. Dutch football commentator Maarten Meijer’s has written the definitive biography of van Gaal – both the man and his methods. It offers the best psychological insight so far – from his earliest roots to his greatest triumphs – into the man given the task of returning the glory days to Manchester United. **New chapter on Louis van Gaal's first season with Manchester United**

The Munich Air Disaster – The True Story behind the Fatal 1958 Crash

The Night 8 of Manchester United’s ‘Busby Babes’ Died

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Author: Stephen Morrin

Publisher: Gill & Macmillan Ltd

ISBN: 0717167674

Category: Sports & Recreation

Page: 234

View: 9997

Uncover the true story behind the tragic Munich air disaster of 6 February 1958, the night that 8 of the Manchester United’s ‘Busby Babes’ died They were players about to become legends, the famous Manchester United ‘Busby Babes’, the back-to-back title winning side of 1956 and 1957 on the hunt for a third successive league win and seeking glory in the European Champions Cup. With an average age of 22, the ‘Busby Babes’ were the cream of English football and seemed destined to dominate English and European football for years to come. Instead, on 6 February 1958, they were tragically cut down in their prime. On a fuel stopover on their way home from a Champions Cup fixture against Red Star Belgrade, British European Airways Flight 609 crashed on its third attempt to take off in a blizzard from an ice- and slush-covered runway at Munich Airport. The fatal crash claimed the lives of 23 passengers and crew, including 8 Manchester United footballers. 7 United players were killed instantly in the crash. Three weeks later, the legendary Duncan Edwards died in hospital while two other players, Jackie Blanchflower and Johnny Berry, were injured so badly that they never played again. What caused the plane to careen off the runway? Why did experienced pilot Captain James Thain insist on taking off in such treacherous conditions? Why were the Manchester United management under pressure to return to England as soon as possible? The German inquiry blamed the accident on pilot error. However, Stephen Morrin’s The Munich Air Disaster establishes beyond any question that this was not so. Based on his enormous technical knowledge of aircraft accident investigation, years of research and interviews with those involved, Morrin shows that the pilot, Captain James Thain, performed heroically and was shamefully treated by the aviation authorities for many years. The crash at Munich airport swept away a generation of gifted footballers including Tommy Taylor, Roger Byrne, David Pegg, and Liam Whelan from Dublin. Stephen Morrin’s authoritative book is a story of tragedy, a pilot’s heroism in adversity, legal treachery and one of the defining moments in the Manchester United story. It was a sporting disaster that gave birth to a legend — a legend which fifty years later shows no sign of diminishing. The Munich Air Disaster: Table of Contents Introduction In the Beginning Birth of the Babes Kid Dynamite Passport to Europe The Last Season End Game Prelude to Disaster Runway Blood in the Snow Dealing with Disaster Aftermath Scapegoat Captain Thain’s Ordeal Fifty Years On Epilogue

Hell for Leather

A Journey Through Hurling in 100 Games

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Author: Ronnie Bellew,Dermot Crowe

Publisher: Hachette UK

ISBN: 1444789929

Category: Sports & Recreation

Page: 480

View: 9070

Hurling's appeal has never been stronger. Redefined in the past decade by a great Kilkenny team, rejuvenated by Clare's 2013 All-Ireland coup and re-energised by Dublin's grassroots' revolution, the game exerts an obsessive grip on players and followers alike. The achievements of modern teams and players are constantly weighed against those of old, and Hell for Leather chronicles hurling's evolution from the fragile beginnings of the 1880s through to the current era. It takes a new look at the epic teams that saw Tipperary, Cork and Kilkenny become 'the big three', and also traces the emergence of Wexford, Limerick, Laois, Clare, Dublin, Galway, Waterford and Offaly as contenders. It highlights the matches that made legends of the great players and analyses how the swashbuckling hurling of old has given way into a tactically nuanced game that commands global respect for its showpiece occasions. Hell for Leather is an unforgettable journey to the heart of a sport that, at its finest, can truly claim to be the greatest game on the planet.

Final Whistle

The Paddy Russell Story

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Author: Jackie Cahill,Paddy Russell

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 1845969413

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 288

View: 1499

Tipperary native Paddy Russell has been one of the leading referees in the GAA for the past 30 years. His story is a remarkable one, following his rise from humble beginnings to the pinnacle of two All-Ireland finals. Inspired by the late, great John Moloney, Russell took his first steps in refereeing in 1976. He quickly emerged as a leading light and rapidly worked his way to the top of his profession. Russell has enjoyed a successful career but it is also one laced with drama, most notably that arising from the 1995 All-Ireland senior football final between Tyrone and Dublin. Russell later took charge of the tempestuous National Football League clash between Dublin and Tyrone in 2006, which became known as 'The Battle of Omagh', and the stormy showdown between Leinster rivals Dublin and Meath in April 2008. Just two months later, Russell was in charge of the Munster senior football championship tie between All-Ireland champions Kerry and Clare when Kerry captain Paul Galvin slapped the referee's notebook from his hands, earning a three-month suspension. In Final Whistle, Russell reflects on his eventful journey, including these controversial matches, and describes vividly the stresses and strains of refereeing modern-day Gaelic games.

The Test

My Autobiography

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Author: Brian O'Driscoll

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0241962692

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 416

View: 8209

The bestselling autobiography of the greatest rugby player of our time: Brian O'Driscoll. Since 1999, when he made his international debut, there has been no greater player in world rugby than Brian O'Driscoll. In 2010 Rugby World magazine named him its world player of the decade - and since then the legend has only grown. Now, at the end of his amazing career - which culminated in fairy-tale fashion with Ireland's victory in the 2014 Six Nations championship - he tells his own story. Honest, gritty and thoughtful, Brian O'Driscoll's Autobiography is not just an essential sports book. It is an essential book about family, friends, hard work, courage and imagination. 'Honest, charming and revealing - a thoroughly good read' Rugby World 'A thoroughly enjoyable read ... After reading The Test I warmed even more to O'Driscoll as a player and a man. He stood for a new ethos in Irish sport that refused to accept mediocrity or glorious failure' Fergal Keane, Irish Times 'O'Driscoll's honesty ... takes the reader to a place they simply have not been before' Vincent Hogan, Irish Independent 'A must-read insight into the life and mind of Ireland's greatest rugby player' Irish Mail on Sunday 'There are fascinating insights into the lengths he was willing to go to perform at the highest level' Sunday Business Post

England's World Cup Story

From Winterbottom's 1950 to Capello's 2010

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Author: Andy Groom

Publisher: Andrews UK Limited

ISBN: 1908582545

Category: Sports & Recreation

Page: 196

View: 2213

Are you a loyal England supporter? Do you look forward to the World Cup and eagerly follow England’s progress? Would you like to find out more about the history of your national team and their past performance in top flight football? If so, this book is certain to appeal to you. England’s World Cup Story documents England’s journey in the World Cup from 1950 under the guidance of Sir Walter Winterbottom up to 2010 with Fabio Capello at the helm as manager. Packed with fascinating facts, quotes and profiles of many of the all-time great players, this book tells the story of the England team through the years from the many near misses and disappointments to victory in 1966 and beyond. Who can forget the likes of Gordon Banks, Bobby Moore and Sir Stanley Matthews to name but a few? They are all in this book together with more recent heroes such as David Beckham, Alan Shearer and Wayne Rooney. As one of only eight national sides to have lifted the World Cup trophy, this book is a fitting tribute to the England team. This is a must-have for all fans of the beautiful game and anyone with an interest in the history of the World Cup.