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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Spin bites author, 15 Aug. 2007
This review is from: The McCann Years: The Inside Story of Celtic's Revolution (Paperback)
If you're looking for an objective view on McCann's reign at Celtic, you may not initially feel the book is for you as the author's agenda is to highlight the negatives surrounding his five year tenure. At time the spin would do a politician proud and it is kind to say that it is at best mischievous. For example, references to the booing McCann received when unfurling the league flag in 1998 suggest the whole ground turned against him. I was there and can confirm this was definitely not the case. While vocal, the majority of those attending were not involved and it was by no means a precedent for future successes or in fact for those before.

The various parties providing comment all have an axe to grind with McCann and while it's interesting to hear their side and gain an insight to events of the time; their remarks are by no means balanced. They range from ostracised director's vanquished opponents and most bizarrely David Murray, the Rangers chairman, their closest and most fierce rivals. Furthermore, one a number of occasions the author makes reference to McCann saying he was only looking to make 10% on his investment rather than the windfall he eventually received. In contrast to the remainder of the book, such quotes are without source and something I have no recollection of either before or during McCann's period in charge.

In most cases, reading a book of this nature some eight years after its publication may be a significant drawback. However, hindsight allows a distinct perspective on the author's approach and McCann's legacy. Not only did McCann fulfill all the promises he made on taking control of the club, he provided a foundation for both the fiscal and soccer success to follow. His refusal to entertain approaches to buy his shareholding were visionary in avoiding Celtic becoming tied to venture capitol funding and the ensuing pressure for short term financial returns. More importantly he had no desire to be involved with Dalglish, which was almost prophetic.

In line with McCann's wishes, Celtic are predominantly owned by smaller individual shareholders, thereby ensuring they are not open to the megalomaniac whims of a chairman drunk on power. This ensures there is little chance of the club developing an unmanageable debt as the afore mentioned David Murray allowed.

I appreciate McCann may not have been the most likeable of characters, but he was able to deliver in a results driven business. Notwithstanding the above, the book is a fairly quick and easy read with hindsight allowing the last laugh against the author.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Was this book ghost written by Brian Dempsey?, 31 July 2007
By 
adanield (Glasgow United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The McCann Years: The Inside Story of Celtic's Revolution (Paperback)
The Mccann years by Allan Caldwell focuses on the time spent by Fergus McCann in pursuit and in control of Celtic FC. This should have been a fascinating book as McCann's tenure at Celtic Park is undoubtedly one of the most important moments in the club's history. Unfortunately, Caldwell makes it plain very early on in the book that he doesn't like McCann and generally takes almost every opportunity that he can find to give him a hard time. McCann was undoubtedly a driven and focused man often to the point where he did ride roughshod over other people. But he also put his money where his mouth was and as such was entitled to walk away from the club with a large amount of cash in his pocket. Celtic not Rangers are now the dominant power in Scottish football at the moment, not bad for a club who were less than an hour away from going into receivership before McCann paid the bank and guaranteed Celtic's debt. If you want to read a more balanced look at this pivotal moment in Celtic's history read Archie MacPherson's Flower of Scotland. This book is only for those who have already made up their mind.
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The McCann Years: The Inside Story of Celtic's Revolution
The McCann Years: The Inside Story of Celtic's Revolution by Allan Caldwell (Paperback - 2 Dec. 1999)
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