Football writers tend not to reveal which team they support. Award-winning journalist and author Michael Calvin has persuaded celebrated colleagues to share their secret passions. There are protestations of man love for Roy Keane and Stan Collymore. Tabloid titans sit on opposite sides of the North London divide. Heroes abound: Fernando Torres and Xabi Alonso; Ted McMinn and Malcolm Crosby, perhaps the only manager to be sacked by the Pools Panel. Share the lives of Bob and Jean Lucas. Appreciate Portsmouth’s pain. Understand why Fulham fans don’t take themselves entirely seriously. Join Crystal Palace on a Chinese tour, and discover why Montpellier should be twinned with Belfast. If you need to understand Liverpool and Leeds, or relate to the young pro who fears his time at Arsenal is over, read on. This is a unique book, of interest to any football fan. In the words of Rafa Benitez: "These are the writers as you don't normally see them: when they are fans with pens"
Michael Calvin is a columnist for the Independent on Sunday, who has covered seven Olympic Games, and six World Cups. He had the idea for this anthology, which he has compiled and edited, while hosting vodcasts for BT’s website, www.lifesapitch.co.uk. His previous book, Family Life Death & Football was nominated as Football Book of the Year in 2011.
About the Author
The other featured writers are : Adrian Clarke played professional football for Arsenal and Southend United before becoming a sports journalist at the age of 26. He is now an expert analyst for Arsenal TV and BBC Radio Essex, and writes for numerous newspapers, magazines and websites all over the world. John Cross has been reporting for the Daily Mirror since 1988, covering six major tournaments and three Olympic Games to date. Dominic Fifield was born in South Africa but raised a stone's throw from Selhurst Park. He worked for Crystal Palace before joining The Guardian. After six years as Merseyside correspondent, he now covers football in London, where regular trips to Palace compensate for a little too much Chelsea. Alex Hess is an emerging writer who came to prominence through his contributions to the Fanzone on www.lifesapitch.co.uk. Alex is a freelance football writer who contributes to various websites, including Football365 and The Football Ramble. Tom Hopkinson was a Derby County season ticket holder in the 1990s before work intervened. Since then he has written for the Daily Express, Sunday Express and London's Evening Standard, and is now a football reporter for The People. Laure James is based in Belfast, and has written about football for more than ten years. She is trilingual, having both English and French heritage, and contributes regularly to the Daily Mail, Sky Sports and talkSPORT. Dave Kidd is Chief Sports Writer, Deputy Sports Editor and columnist at The People. He was previously a sports writer at The Sun. Martin Lipton has been Chief Football Writer of the Daily Mirror since 2002, having covered every major England game from 1994. Iain Macintosh is a freelance football writer and author. He writes regularly for The New Paper in Singapore, The Irish Examiner, SI.com, MSN and a variety of other publications and websites. Luke Moore is a founding member, co-producer and co-presenter of The Football Ramble, the largest independent football brand in the UK. He is also a well-respected writer and broadcaster and has contributed regularly to BBC 5 Live, BBC World Service, and ESPN. Ian Ridley has written on football for The Guardian, Daily Telegraph, Independent on Sunday, Observer, Mail on Sunday and Daily Express. He is the author of nine books, including the best-selling Addicted, the autobiography of Arsenal and England captain Tony Adams. Janine Self is a freelance sports reporter based in the Midlands, where she worked for The Sun for 15 years. As well as covering football, she has reported on Wimbledon, Formula One, Ryder Cup, Commonwealth Games and Olympics. Janine also co-wrote the autobiography of former football star Robbie Savage. Rory Smith is a football reporter for the Times. Now based in London, he spent three years covering Liverpool for the Telegraph, while his work has also appeared in the Independent and FourFourTwo. Rob Smyth is a sports writer for the Guardian and co-author of Jumpers for Goalposts: How Football Sold Its Soul. David Walker is the sports editor of the Sunday Mirror. He returned to Fleet Street in 2005 after working in football as a director of LeeLeeds United and Barnsley. Before that he was the deputy sports editor of the Mail on Sunday, chief football reporter of the Daily Mail and also worked for The Sun. Dan Willis is the editor of BT s football website, www.lifesapitch.co.uk, on which all the contributors to this book come togetogether. Prior to this he was the sports editor of BT s TV service, BT Vision. Jonathan Wilson is the editor of The Blizzard, a contributor to the Guardian, Fox Soccer, ESPN Star, Sports Illustrated and the Irish examiner. He is author of six books on football, including Inverting the Pyramid: A History of Football Tactics, which was the NSC Football Book of the Year in 2009.