‘Football’s a funny old game Brian’ –Jimmy Greaves, footballer (Chelsea, AC Milan, Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham and England –goal machine!).
To some people Cricket, Golf, Tennis, Baseball and Snooker is just as funny. Not to mention Lawn Mower Racing, Tiddleywinks, Croquet and many others.
They are all mentioned in this book of sporting quotes along with the sportsmen and sportswomen who play them. As well as officials, spectators and the press. They can all be relied upon to offer some useful pointers along with often embarrassing insights into their profession.
This is a collection of sporting gems; some to make you laugh, some to ponder on the player’s expertise and other quotes best kept private and not spoken in public. The latter has given rise to what the American’s know as bloopers and what the British affectionately call ‘Colemanballs’ after that doyen of the BBC microphone David Coleman; and there are plenty of them in this book.
It is perhaps not a book to read cover to cover but dipped in to. Sports are listed alphabetically and include poetry, literature and newspaper reviews. There are serious musings on sport as well but as Bill Shankly, legendary manager of Liverpool FC once remarked: ‘Some people think football is a matter of life and death. I can assure them it is much more serious than that’, usually misquoted as 'football is more serious than life and death'.
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About the Author
John Barber was born in London at the height of the UK Post War baby boom. The Education Act of 1944 saw great changes in the way the nation was taught; the main one being that all children stayed at school until the age of 15 (later increased to 16). For the first time working class children were able to reach higher levels of academic study and the opportunity to gain further educational qualifications at University. This explosion in education brought forth a new aspirational middle class; others remained true to their working class roots. The author belongs somewhere between the two. Many of the author’s main characters have their genesis in this educational revolution. Their dialogue though idiosyncratic can normally be understood but like all working class speech it is liberally sprinkled with strange boyhood phrases and a passing nod to cockney rhyming slang. John Barber’s novels are set in fictional English towns where sexual intrigue and political in-fighting is rife beneath a pleasant, small town veneer of respectability. They fall within the cozy, traditional British detective sections of mystery fiction. He has been writing professionally since 1996 when he began to contribute articles to magazines on social and local history. His first published book in 2002 was a non-fiction work entitled The Camden Town Murder which investigated a famous murder mystery of 1907 and names the killer. This is still available in softback and as an ebook, although not available from Smashwords John Barber had careers in Advertising, International Banking and the Wine Industry before becoming Town Centre Manager in his home town of Hertford. He is now retired and lives with his wife and two cats on an island in the middle of Hertford and spends his time between local community projects and writing further novels.