Although Paul Lake's City career effectively ended at the age of 22, he is still revered as a City legend. Why?
Firstly, during his short career at City (truncated by a horrific knee inury) he had already proven to be a star. Captain at 21, often MOTM...he simply didn't do bad performances. He could play almost anywhere - and had all the attributes necessary to make it at the top level. England captain of the future? You can never say for sure, but the consensus was almost unanimous.
Secondly, he was a blue through and through - a fan wearing the shirt. You could see how much he wanted to play, and as fans we saw ourself in him.
Thirdly, he was something to cling onto when things started to turn sour in the early 90s. "It'll be ok when we get Lakey back", was something I heard often at Maine Road.
This book is a frank and thorough depiction of the nature of depression when something you love is taken from you. It's something most people can relate to, athlete or mere mortal. The fact that Lake is so up front about a subject that is still almost taboo can only be a good thing for mental health awareness too.
I really enjoyed the book: it was well written and produced both smiles and tears. It's a refreshing work, not the same old same old football biog.
Thanks for the memories Paul, and I wish you all the best for the future.