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This Is the One: Sir Alex Ferguson: The Uncut Story of a Football Genius [Paperback]

Daniel Taylor
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
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Book Description

25 July 2008

This is the One is a fascinating insight into the mindset and winning temperament of the recently retired Sir Alex Ferguson, the most success manager in English football. When This Is The One was first published in 2007 it was hailed by Michael Crick as 'one of the all-time Manchester United classics' and featured by The Times in their quest to find the 'Best Ever 50 Sports Books'.

Written over the course of two eventful and controversial seasons, it offers a unique portrait of Sir Alex Ferguson from Daniel Taylor’s position behind the scenes as a football writer covering Manchester United for the Guardian.

During the 2005-06 season, Taylor saw Ferguson at one of the lowest ebbs of his quarter of a century in charge, with a failing team, explosive fallouts with Roy Keane and Ruud van Nistelrooy, a disenchanted fan-base and speculation that he might be forced out of the job. The season that followed demonstrated why Ferguson deserves to be seen as the greatest manager the modern game has produced, with Manchester United deposing Chelsea as Premier League champions and eventually seeing off José Mourinho. Ferguson would later call it the 'greatest achievement' of his time at England’s biggest football club.

This Is The One is the close-up, warts-and-all account of what happened during those two helterskelter seasons – the excruciating lows and the exhilarating highs. It is also a fascinating exploration of the many different facets of Ferguson himself, from his infamous 'hairdryer' treatment to the softer, more humane side of the most successful manager in the business.

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This Is the One: Sir Alex Ferguson: The Uncut Story of a Football Genius + Managing My Life: My Autobiography: The Autobiography
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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Aurum Press Ltd (25 July 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845133544
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845133542
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 13 x 2.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 268,862 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


`Taylor offers a fine account of this fascinating period in (Ferguson's) career'

(The Observer)

‘Invaluable and engrossing’

(Four Four Two magazine)

‘For anybody who wants to know more about the enigma that is Fergie, they should read this book’

(The Daily Star)

'An excellent and affectionate portrayal of Ferguson'

(The Independent)

About the Author

Daniel Taylor has been the Guardian’s Manchester United correspondent since 2000. He is the author of two books on Sir Alex Ferguson, This Is the One: The Uncut Story of a Football Genius, and Squeaky Bum Time: The Wit and Wisdom of Sir Alex Ferguson. He supports Nottingham Forest and brought out his first book, Deep Into the Forest, in 2005.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Behind the Scenes 17 Sep 2007
A great insight into how Ferguson operates his regime of alternating fear and fun.Daniel Taylor provides a unique dairy with Sir Alex at Manchester United press conferences; a world completely new to an ordinary punter like me who simply helps to fund the Maseratis of the star players. A good read at a good price from Amazon.
A book which you can pick up at spare moments, enjoy, have a belly laugh and return to later in the day.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
I never expected a book related to football to be so amusing, but "This is the one" really is. It's not just entertaining but intensely informative, with the engaging additional fact that it written from the football journalist's point of view, which I found fascinating. Daniel Taylor certainly knows his stuff, but so much more importantly than that, he knows how to deliver it to his readers. By the end of the book I almost felt as if I knew Sir Alex Ferguson, moreover, although Daniel Taylor does not shirk from describing him "warts and all", his portrayal of the man shows a genuine affection for him which inspires affection in the reader too.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Uncut, right enough. 29 Nov 2010
This book is not about Ferguson's life, or even his time at Manchester United. The book covers two seasons - 2005-06 and 2006-07 - at Old Trafford. The book is in a diary format, and is basically about Ferguson's reaction to significant games and events. So don't expect too much on tactics, goalscorers etc. The events in games are secondary to Ferguson's reactions.

As it states in the book's title it is "uncut" and the language is raw. If you don't like swearing, and in particular the "f" word, then beware.

The book is about Ferguson's personality, and also gives a small insight into the world of football journalism, and the difficulty of trying to work with Ferguson. This is especially the case when something or somebody irks Fergie.

It is an enjoyable read and occasionally funny. The book is funny because of Ferguson's antics, stories of his actions, and the author's one-liners.

There's something in it for both Ferguson's admirers and detractors. I found it an enjoyable book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Govan-er 3 Dec 2007
A great insight into what makes Sir Alex tick.

Treat them mean and keep them kean appears to work for Sir Alex but no one else. Want to know why? read the book.

Up there with the best.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's more interesting when United lose 11 Mar 2008
A thoroughly enjoyable and engrossing account of one of football's great managers and enigmas. This is a fascinating insight in to the fall and rise of United over a period of transitional decline that eventually saw them usurp the billions of Roman Abramovich's Chelsea to be crowned English champions for the 16th time.
The book is laden with some hilarious anecdotes while Taylor's portrait of the tyrant he had to deal with on a weekly basis remains impartially respectable, with no grudges held. Written with fanzine panache, it is not just the essential Ferguson book, but one of the great football books of modern times.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great insight into the mind of a madman 2 Nov 2013
By Sean C.
I don't always agree with Taylor's opinion in the Guardian and find him quick to jump to conclusions and onto bandwagons. However, I am still enthralled with this book, 4 years after first reading it. It's a fascinating, warts and all, portrayal of the great man. Taylor is man enough to lay bare Fergie's faults (of which there are undoubtedly many) but it's heartening to see that after all the frustration and fear Ferguson evokes in Taylor and the mass media in general, this journalist cannot hide his admiration and affection for the great man. A well-written insight into two momentous years at Utd - you'll see the best and worst of Fergie come through here. In addition to the Fergie focus, there are plenty of great side stories that most Utd fans won't know about, like the time masked, baseball bat wielding men turned up at Rio Ferdinand's house in the middle of the night, after he'd been pictured out for dinner in London with Peter Kenyon. I've read this book about four times - do yourself a favor and read it too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely the One 28 Sep 2013
By ScottE
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have always enjoyed Daniel Taylor's articles in the Guardian and he usually knows what's what when it comes to the goings on behind the scenes at Old Trafford. The seasons covered in question were very interesting to cover given the transition between great sides (said with hindsight) when many fans and ABUs alike thought United, and Ferguson were losing it. When things are going good, bad or indifferent, Ferguson usually keeps the reality to himself, so this book really gives you the insight necessary to understand what was really going on behind the scenes. The Keane and Van Nistelrooy insights are some of the most valuable.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great read 11 Sep 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
absolute brilliant book brilliantly written a true insight into a great manager could not put down would recommend to all man utd fans
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
great book
Published 15 days ago by margaret fenton
5.0 out of 5 stars one of the most enjoyable books to read!
Fantastic read...very funny and a great insight into Fergie and the press.

Read the book in less than a week (which is great for me) as I couldn't put it down, and it... Read more
Published 13 months ago by Tom
4.0 out of 5 stars Very open and not altogether surprising
A fairly frank and open book about the relationship between the press and SAF.
As well as many other insights.
A good read.
Published 13 months ago by John
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant!
This book gives a great insight into Fergie as a man and a manager, from a viewpoint you don't usually get...that of a sports journalist. Read more
Published 13 months ago by RichGibbons
4.0 out of 5 stars Very funny!
I found this book hilarious at times with some really interesting insights to incidents that we ,as fans, never get to hear about. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Jan Watts
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read & an intriguing insight to SAF & the press
One of many books on SAF. Whilst coverage of his team & achievements has been covered in many other books, this gave an insight to his press dealings. Read more
Published 14 months ago by cantleyblade
5.0 out of 5 stars great read
Finished this in 5 days. Got to see the otherside of Ferguson without the tv cameras in front of him. Read more
Published 14 months ago by steven connell
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
A great insight into the great man from the perspective of football writers, gives u a lot of stuff u already knew but from a different view point along with quotes you've never... Read more
Published 15 months ago by Chris Grace
5.0 out of 5 stars great insight into Ferguson.
great insight into Ferguson's brilliance and more than occasional petulance, written by someone that is not a United fan. Well worth a read
Published 20 months ago by janine
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny & Insightful
After hearing many good things about this book I finally bought it and read it in a few hours. It is brilliant. Read more
Published 21 months ago by Emmsy
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