The Man Who Made A Football Club
Sir Matt Busby, who took Manchester United to unprecedented glory before seeing the club through profound tragedy, created the global entity that spreads from Old Trafford today.
A player with Manchester City and Liverpool before the Second World War, Busby remained at the forefront of football through four decades and made an extraordinary contribution to the game in terms of both style and substance. In this definitive biography, Patrick Barclay looks back at Busby’s phenomenal life and career, including the rise of the Busby Babes in the 1950s, the Munich disaster that claimed 23 lives and the Wembley victory ten years on that made United the first English team to win the European Cup. Denis Law, Pat Crerand and such other members of that great side as Alex Stepney, David Sadler and John Aston are among the host of voices testifying to the qualities that set Sir Matt apart.
This is the story of one of the greatest figures in football history, and of the making of a legacy that will last for ever.
SHORTLISTED FOR THE BRITISH SPORTS BOOK AWARDS 2011
Sir Alex Ferguson is the most controversial and compelling figure in football. For many he ranks as the greatest manager of all time. He is certainly the most successful.
It's been more than ten years since Ferguson's Manchester United triumphed over Bayern Munich in the dying seconds of the Champions League final. Since then he has presided over the rise and fall and rise again of José Mourinho; the arrival and departure of the world's best player, Ronaldo; the removal of one English talisman - Beckham - and the irresistible instalment of another - Rooney. Ferguson has been instrumental in making the Premier League the most successful competition in football, and he has endured while the mountains of cash have turned to valleys of debt.
Throughout, award-winning journalist Patrick Barclay has been pitch-side and spoken to all those who know Ferguson best - fellow managers, former players, colleagues and commentators. The result is Football - Bloody Hell!: the definitive work on the game's greatest living legend.
Patrick Barclay began his career in football writing with the Guardian in Manchester in the mid-1970s, a few years after Sir Matt Busby had relinquished management and joined the Manchester United board. Barclay became one of Sir Matt's many acquaintances in the newspaper world and in 1994, having moved to the Observer by way of the Independent, attended the unforgettable match against Everton at Old Trafford that swiftly followed the great man's death. In that year Barclay was voted Britain's leading sports writer.
He later worked for the Sunday Telegraph, The Times and the Evening Standard in London before retiring from regular journalism at the end of his tenth European Championship in 2016. He covered nine World Cups. Barclay has written acclaimed biographies of Sir Matt's successors Sir Alex Ferguson (Football - Bloody Hell!) and Jose Mourinho (Further Anatomy of a Winner) and is also the author of The Life and Times of Herbert Chapman.