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The Mavericks: English Football When Flair Wore Flares [Paperback]

Rob Steen
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

15 Sep 1995
Cocky, coiffeured strikers meet David Bowie and Gary Glitter; Gola boots exchange kicks with "A Clockwork Orange" and "The Likely Lads"; Admiral sock tags, platform heels and kipper ties mingle with cod wars, Harrods bombings and three-day weeks. In this, Steen recreates the early Seventies, the era when football joined the vanguard of English youth culture. This personal account revolves around seven Englishmen who followed in the trail blazed by football's first tabloid star, George Best - Stan Bowles, Tony Currie, Charlie George, Alan Hudson, Rodney Marsh, Peter Osgood and Frank Worthington. Proud individuals amid an increasingly corporate environment, their invention and artistry were matched only by a disdain for authority and convention. Their belief in football as performance art, as showbiz, gave the game a boost, and elevated them to cult status. During their heyday, nevertheless, they were largely ignored by a succession of England managers, none of whom were able to assemble a side competent enough to qualify for the World Cup finals. Against a backdrop of increasing violence on the field and terraces alike, of battles between players and the Establishment, this book examines an anomaly at the heart of English culture, one that symbolized the death of post-Sixties optimism, the end of innocence.

Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Mainstream Publishing; New Ed edition (15 Sep 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1851587403
  • ISBN-13: 978-1851587407
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 12.5 x 18.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 391,975 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A laugh a minute 27 Mar 2006
I got this book out of the country library here in Lincoln and when I first scanned read I thought I would enjoy this and I was proved right. It was very funny with various antics of the footballing mavericks especially in one incident the legendary Tony Currie a man who should have had more then 17 caps and is now running youth development for his beloved Blades. Once took the ball with his back to goal. flicked up into the air when the first tackle came back tackler ended up on his back. Currie takes the ball back down on his foot and starts blowing kisses to the crowd. Then another tackler comes diving in Currie drags back second tackler also ends up on his arse Currie blows more kisses to the Bramall Lane faithfu
The cheeky swine! But that was the pure brilliance and arrogance and the author loves his mavericks and he does feel rightly agreived about the fact no England manager had the courage to play Frank Worthington, Rodney Marsh, Currie and Peter Osgood!. Just 3 or 4 games. We would have won the world cup if we had these mavericks playing!!.
The author is hysterial and laid back in his style of writing which makes it a joy to read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliantly encapsulates an era 16 Dec 2008
Primarily a loving tribute to a bygone age of English football, this marvellous book also evocatively brings to life the music, movies,and fashions of the 1970s. It also reminds those of us who were teenagers at the time that we never had it so good. Rob Steen loves his subject and loves the era. He celebrates the talents of Osgood, Hudson, Worthington etc but laments the fact that the people who ran the English game deemed their skills unworthy of building an England team around. And I write this as a Scot! A brilliant read, highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why England Fail 5 July 2010
We may still fluke it through to the final of the 2010 world cup, after all, get to the knock out stage and its a 4 game version of the FA cup and if Sunderland can win the FA cup back in the 70's then one year somebody is going to fluke the world cup. If that happens with England then I may look a little stupid, but be under no illusion, an England victory would be a fluke. A defeat however will no doubt bring out the simple solution mongers having a day off from duties as team members for Racing for Change. Sack the manager, change the board games in the hotel or maybe the ball was not regulation type. The truth is that we are technically inferior to too many other national sides and always have been. These days the illusion that we are perhaps up there with the Brazils of the world is intensified by our strong league, strengthened of course by overseas players. Lets ban or restrict them I hear you say, well this did not help in the 70's and 80's. No the real problem is we do not know how to teach soccer. It's not quite as bad as the 70's and 80's when I played and any player threading a 15yd pass and looking for a return at the edge of the box was told by nationally recognised coaches to stop fannying around. Indeed who can forget Jack Charlton's immortal words when watching a group of Argentinians youngsters put on a ball juggling demo at half time in the Argentinian world cup of the 70's. Things are no better today, as I have witnessed myself through my young son who was being coached by a county level coach. Youngsters are still groomed at the age of 7 to play in 11 a side games and by this raw age are labelled as centre half's or full backs. Read more ›
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2.0 out of 5 stars Not impressed 10 Feb 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Not one of the best football books. Struggling to get through it. Only bought cos Rodney was on the front cover
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4.0 out of 5 stars Mavericks 4 Mar 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Memory seems to suggest there were more Mavericks in the past, can that really be true. this is a good read. The sort you might do on the train as you can get through a chapter between Bushey and Harrow and Wealdstone. perfect commuting fodder.
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