A Random History of Football

Overview

A top club can spend millions on a legendary player, but it's the small, random things that can affect a soccer match--like a bottle dropped on a goalkeeper's toe or your most creative footballer fleeing town after a drunken encounter with another player's wife. This witty, trivia-packed alternative history pays tribute to the game's unpredictability…and fans will love every second.
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Overview

A top club can spend millions on a legendary player, but it's the small, random things that can affect a soccer match--like a bottle dropped on a goalkeeper's toe or your most creative footballer fleeing town after a drunken encounter with another player's wife. This witty, trivia-packed alternative history pays tribute to the game's unpredictability…and fans will love every second.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781409103769
  • Publisher: Orion Publishing Group, Limited
  • Publication date: 3/1/2011
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 1,403,838
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Forward ix

1 Fights, Broken Bones and Sudden Death

1 The Referee's a … Duck! - men in black, with guns 3

2 Step away from the Ironing Board - bizarre football injuries 9

3 Til Death Us Do Part … Twice - unfortunate fans and their plight 15

4 You're through to the Final - Have You Got Life Insurance? - Broken bones and damaged ligaments 19

5 Seconds out … Here's the Gaffer - managers lose the plot 25

6 And as We Go to the Judge's Scorecards … - feuding players 31

7 Putting the 'Brat' into Celebration - the aftermath of scoring 37

2 Start the Fans … Please!

8 1 Across - Is This Pen Permanent? (5 letters, anag.) - tattoo disasters 45

9 Martin, to Ball, to Balloon … Goal! - unlikely 12th 'men' 50

10 Furry Fights and Monkey Business - mascots with attitude 55

11 Ball Boys Make Rod for Goalkeeper's Back - ball boys gone bad 60

12 You're not Cycling any More! - the world's only unlucky Brazilian fan 64

3 We Could Be Heroes …

13 It's the Late, Late Show, and Here's Your Host - super subs 71

14 Would You Like That Giant Killing with Fries? - giant killing and the USA 77

15 Roy, Lawrie and the Unbelievable Truth - football's most unlikely hero 83

16 Hello … Quinn Cabs, Can I Help You? - the good guys of football 89

17 Is That Steve McQueen Playing up Front for Oldham? - the greatest escapes 96

18 To Alexandra … with Love - when football matters more than money 102

19 Outfield Players Pay the Penalty - when there's no one else to go in goal … 106

20 I Can Hardly Bayer to Look … - the last word in comeback kings 111

4 Footballing Failures

21 Big Noses and Big Egos - why Cristiano Ronaldo isn't a Liverpool player 119

22 Shrimps, Sell-outs and Shell Suits - the ultimate player bargain hunt 124

23 How Much Is That in 'Real' Money? - worst … signings … ever 131

24 Gone in 600 Seconds - the plight of the luckless manager 137

25 Stirling Effort Lads … How Many Did We Lose By? - worst … teams … ever 142

26 Football's Own Worst Enemies - own goal maestros 148

27 Pass Me the Razor Blades - Sheffield United's brush with Diego 154

5 The X Files

28 Would the Real Luther Blissett Please Stand Up? - moniker madness 161

29 Oh Keeper Where Art Thou? - why keepers are a different breed 166

30 Oh Brother Where Art Thou? … Where? Macclesfield? - poor relations 170

31 How to Score Penalties and Influence People - how to win the dreaded shoot-out 174

32 Does He Know How to Wash Dishes? - the player who didn't want to play 180

33 40 New Managers a Season and We'd Win the League! - new manager effect 185

34 The Scillyest League in the World - the two-team affair 191

35 Did We Win? It's in the Banks! - Gordon's premature celebration 195

6 Breaking the Law

36 Home-made Footballs and Overthrown Governments - the 1930 World Cup 201

37 Hello, Is It Me You're Looking For? - con artists and fraudsters 206

38 I'll Have a Fiver Witch-Way Please … - dead cows and superstitions 211

39 When the Reds Go Marching … Off - red card specialists 218

40 Match of the Uday - when Saddam foiled Chelsea 223

41 Shoot! No, Don't! Yes, Do! I Need to Lie Down - football at its most ludicrous 230

42 Bolivia … Where Cheating Comes Naturally - the heights of foul play 235

7 And When You're Not Playing Football?

43 A Double for the Animal, and a Lager Tops for the Monkey - just Edmundo 243

44 Love Is Blind, Football Is Deaf - footballers' crimes against music 248

45 There's No Smoke without Players - the infamous nicotine addicts 253

46 Badges? We Don't Need No Stinking Badges! - Blue Peter and Sir Les 258

47 Balls, Balls and More Balls - old-school playboys 261

48 Football's Outsized Baggage - the tall, the fat and the ugly 266

8 What Could Have Been

49 Regrets, They've Had a Few - missing out on the big day 275

50 I've Started So I'll Not Finish - abandoned matches 279

51 They Have Their Knockers, But … - the history of ladies' football 284

52 Referee! Are You Blind? Westlake Clearly Dived! - when one sport is not enough 281

53 It's a Chicken and Egg Situation - it's not over until it's over 294

54 The Greatest Never Player - could have been, but sadly wasn't 299

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