'One of the greatest football novels ever written and a comic masterpiece' DJ Taylor
'But is this story believable? Ah, it all depends upon whether you want it to believe it.' J.L. Carr
In their new all-buttercup-yellow-stripe, Steeple Sinderby Wanderers, who usually feel lucky when their pitch is above water-level, are England's most obscure team. This uncategorizable, surreal and extremely funny novel is the story of how they start the season by ravaging the Fenland League and end it by going all the way to Wembley.
Told through unreliable recollection, florid local newspaper coverage and bizarre committee minutes, How Steeple Sinderby Wanderers Won the F.A. Cup is both entertaining and moving. There will never be players again like Alex Slingsby, Sid 'the Shooting Star' Swift and the immortal milkman-turned-goalkeeper, Monkey Tonks.
It's a comic story about sportsmanship and underdogs; it's also a slightly wistful portrait of village life and provincial decency, as well as a beautifully written hymn to doggedness and eccentricity. This gently humorous novella is the anti-Ronaldo.
An extraordinary performance, simultaneously one of the greatest football novels ever written and a penetrating report card from a world where fiction rarely lingers, at once a comic masterpiece and a study in national temperament that the doughtiest social historian would struggle to match.