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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Memories, 23 Nov 2013
atticusfinch1048 - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Teenage Kicks: The Story of Manchester City's 1986 FA Youth Cup Team (Paperback)
Teenage Happy Memories

In 1986 Manchester City Youth team won the FA Youth Cup in the second leg at Maine Road against that lot from the swamp, sorry I mean Manchester United. Some of the team managed to graduate from the Youth Team in to the first team and well the others had various degrees of a football career and some left football all together. This is book is the story of that journey in the Youth Cup and was a labour of love for the authors Phill Gatenby and Andrew Waldon as they interviewed all members of that team except one, John Bookbinder who has passed over.

This book is well written and as well as interviews with the players and their families they use archive newspaper reports as well as old football programmes. Unfortunately there is no TV or video recording of the game only the memories of those who were there and the declared crowd of 28,000 and personally I swear there were far more there but who am I to disagree with the then Club Secretary Bernard Halford.

This is a must read for all Manchester City fans and those with a general interest in football as it not only tells the story of the tournament and the work that Tony Book and Glyn Pardoe did with the team but what happened to them after their life at Manchester City. This is from the time when if you wanted to make it in professional football your choice was either City and have real opportunity to play professionally or waste your time at United. Alex Ferguson copied the set up at Manchester City to bring through his class of 92.

I went to a reunion of this team while reading this book and the one injustice was finally put right when Andy Thackeray when he was finally presented with his winners tankard. The years may have aged them but the memories were still fresh and that comes through in the book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant look at the class of '86, 26 Jun 2014
Russell Ward - See all my reviews
This review is from: Teenage Kicks: The Story of Manchester City's 1986 FA Youth Cup Team (Paperback)
To me this is a must read for any City fan. All City fans are well aware of the class of '86, and their accomplishment of the clubs first Youth FA cup win. But this is an in depth look at each of the youngsters. Not just for that season but for their careers. How they arrived at City, how they performed for both club and in some cases country and where their football careers took them and where they are now. Great insight into the reasons why many of them were sold on, in many cases dispute their wishes to stay. An important part of the clubs history, despite some claiming we have none.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A terrific Book, 15 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Teenage Kicks: The Story of Manchester City's 1986 FA Youth Cup Team (Paperback)
This is a very specialist book and loses none of it's appeal for its depth and range. The authors have brought together a great group of athletes who are not gallacticos or brand ambassadors. but are people like us. They were amazing at the time of the peak of their powers and now they appear to have developed in to equally decent and rounded grown ups.

I have met both David White & Paul Lake in their post football lives and it was good to catch up with the stories of those lesser known and almost forgotten players. Youth and potential are amazingly attractive things in the football context. I believe most fans would rather see somebody from round our way making their debut doing well rather than the investment of millions of petro dollars in the world's finest. We like us, don't we?

The book has a great deal of detail and it is lovely to have that, as well as well edited stories and bigger emotional pictures. When you consider that some of these players could have been better than Keane, Bell, Lee or Summerbee and most of those type of second level Manchester legends, you can see how fickle and infuriating fate can be.

Having also read Phill Gatenby's Morrissey books I can see here all the joy he invests as the ultimate fan. Whilst I never supported City in the purest sense supporting a club, I always loved this team and ceased to enjoy Maine Road and the City experience after the bulk of them moved on to bigger, and other smaller, clubs. I imagine that Phill loved them too but can also now enjoy the premierships and the Euro nights now because it was always City for him. This runs throughout the book. He isn't inventing and embellishing like a David Peace. His passion is apparent the outcome very engaging and enjoyable.

Whether this will appeal to the city fan who has arrived late for the game, I don't know. I would like to think it should be on every fans reading list because the story it tells is all about every team you ever loved. Every youth team you ever went to see on a cold November night when the best player in school was playing in the Youth Cup first round for your local team against Hereford, if I remember rightly.

It cost so little I would suggest that it is worth a read and if it doesn't float your boat give it to somebody who will find the delight that I found in it.

Go on buy it, for me, Paul Lake and Steve Redmond, and .......
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5.0 out of 5 stars GETTING A KICK FROM CUP SUCCESS - YOUNG BLUE & TRUE, 12 Aug 2013
This review is from: Teenage Kicks: The Story of Manchester City's 1986 FA Youth Cup Team (Paperback)
It was 1986 - 10 years had elapsed since Manchester City had last landed any significant silverware.

Little did the Sky Blue faithful know that their beloved City - having endured a trophy-less decade- still had another quarter-of-a-century of their 35-year sentence to serve, before their heroes were once again to sit down and feast at English football's top table.

When a Roberto Mancini led galaxy of stars, drawn from a global league of nations, lifted the FA Cup on May 14th 2011, it was in stark contrast to the success of a City youth team - 25 years earlier - where the only hint of an international ingredient beyond these shores, came courtesy of the Emerald Isle.

The achievements of Manchester City's 1986 FA Youth Cup winning team were to illuminate the Maine Road outfit, just 12 months before City suffered relegation to the old Division Two.

But amid the despair, the wattage produced by City's swashbuckling youngsters, was enough to shine a way forward as the raw recruits graduated through the ranks to become familiar names on the Kippax.

Paul Lake, David White, Andy Hinchcliffe, Steve Redmond, Ian Brightwell and Paul Moulden all progressed to make their mark to varying degrees in City's first XI.

Authors Phill Gatenby and Andrew Waldon lovingly and painstakingly guide the reader on the pre-amble to the exhilarating Youth Cup-winning odyssey, the aftermath and ultimately,the wildly fluctuating fortunes of the Class of '86 as their careers progressed, simply petered out or, in one instance, led to the tragic death of what was once judged to have been a prodigious talent.

The one immoveable constant at Manchester City - since the late 1960s - is one Tony Book. This remarkable man - affectionately known as `Skip' - captained the club to a glorious era as a player, managed the 1976 League Cup winners and 10 years later, led the youth team to their cup triumph.

Even now he is a familiar figure on match days at the Etihad as an Honorary President, but 27 years ago he was shaping a cup-winning side with the brilliant but understated, Glyn Pardoe as his assistant.

With a foreword from ex-Blues skipper Paul Power, who recently departed the club, `Teenage Kicks' is an engrossing, meticulously researched and somewhat affectionate journey back to a time when City were straw-clutching at any modicum of success.

Amid the craving for something - anything - that resembled recognition, under the Good Cop Bad Cop routine of Book and Pardoe, City finally chalked up a first, when 14 teenagers made a lasting and indelible print on the prestigious FA Youth competition.

The cup win was the forerunner to the acclaimed Manchester City Academy at and its prime architect, Jim Cassells. Under the father-like figure of Cassells, City emulated the 1986 win in April, 2008, sweeping Chelsea aside in front of nearly 20,000 fans.

Only this week City severed their ties with Cassells, begging the question why-oh-why-oh-why?

I digress.

Teenage Kicks is a highly recommended read for any Manchester City fan - no - make that for any football fan who cares to revisit the realities of a bygone era. The book deals with young men who dared to dream the dream of wearing the Sky Blue of City, of becoming revered icons of the thousands who swelled the strangely charismatic Kippax - a stand with all the aesthetic allure of an oversized cowshed!

In essence it's a `proper' football book, one with which thousands of supporters, particularly City fans, will empathise.

Any self-respecting City supporter will be more than aware of the footballing `tragedy' that befell Paul Lake - a man who skippered City at a young age, compared favourably with the legendary Colin Bell and was clearly destined to be captain of England for years to come.

Lakey was the most prodigious talent of his generation but was denied all that he richly deserved by injury. His story is out there for all to read in his wonderful biography `I'm Not Really Here'.

But for me, the most moving and compelling prose is found in Chapter 14 - devoted to one of the lesser known, but abundantly talented young players - John Bookbinder.

John's story had not even begun to be told - until Phill undertook the `Teenage Kicks' project - due to a quirky miscarriage of photo-captioning. The mercurial left winger's name was somehow missed off the original caption of the Youth Cup winning picture 27 years ago and nobody was ever savvy enough to correct the oversight. John could justifiably lay claim to being City's fabled `Invisible Man'.

If Paul Lake's tale is a footballing tragedy, then John Bookbinder's story is a life tragedy. His elder sister, Susan Bookbinder, a successful journalist and broadcaster and lifelong City fan, was asked by Phill, to help give John the recognition denied to him for so long.

She did so with such love and panache that Chapter 14 will move many a reader to tears. I won't give the game away totally but, suffice to say John Bookbinder passed from this world on January 9th, 2006 at just 37 years young. In ever had the privilege of meeting this remarkable man and I can only consider myself the poorer for being denied the opportunity.

But we must end ofna high - Manchester City actually won a cup in the 1980's for God's sake!

Teenage Kicks is £10.95 extremely well spent. It gives perspective when viewing the pampered prima donnas of the contemporary football scene and it gets into the ribs of a time when on field glory meant so much more than off the field advertising endorsements.

A genuinely pure insight into a world of football dreams - some fulfilled, while others are shattered, to varying degrees.

Two words...READ IT!

Teenage Kicks (Empire Publications [...]) written by Phill Gatenby & Andrew Waldon
RRP £10.95
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 15 Oct 2014
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This review is from: Teenage Kicks: The Story of Manchester City's 1986 FA Youth Cup Team (Paperback)
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