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4.6 out of 5 stars
The Busby Era [DVD]
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on 18 June 2009
Sir Matt Busby became manager of Manchester United at the end of the second world war and along with assistant Jimmy Murphy, built three successful sides during his quarter-of-a-century at the helm; this was the era which made the club legendary and the story of success and tragedy is recounted faithfully herein. This dvd includes footage which I had not seen previously and other than the narration by Dean Lennox Kelly includes no commentary, just 95 minutes of football played the Matt Busby way.

The story begins during Busby's playing career with Manchester City before the second world war, before chronicling how he put together the team which won the FA Cup in 1948 and the League title in 1952, including Johnny Carey, Jack Rowley, Stan Pearson, Charlie Mitten, Jimmy Delaney and others. By the time the club became League Champions, the team was ageing and Busby revolutionised football forever, rebuilding the team by putting his faith in youth.

In 1995, after the opening day of the Premier League season saw Manchester United defeated at Villa Park, Alan Hansen said, somewhat infamously, that "You can't win anything with kids"; United's team that day included "Fergie's Fledglings" Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Gary Neville, Phil Neville, Nicky Butt & David Beckham and the club would win the double of League and FA Cup at the end of that season. With a sense of history, Hansen might have thought twice about such a comment, as it echoed Busby's pioneering philosophy which led to the "Busby Babes" winning the League in 1956 & 1957. The team was built around the captaincy of Roger Byrne (sole remaining member of the 1952 team) and the awesome talent of Duncan Edwards, still a teenager when he won his first championship medal.

In 1956, Busby led Manchester United into European competition; the club's second attempt at winning the European Cup would end in tragedy on 6th February 1958 when the aircraft carrying the team home from a victorious quarter-final in Belgrade crashed attempting to take off from Munich airport. Seven players, along with a number of club officials, journalists and others, were killed instantly, whilst two others would not recover sufficiently to play again; Duncan Edwards would die from his injuries 15 days later, whilst Matt Busby's fight for survival saw him given the last rites on two occasions.

Busby would recover and resume his role at the club, rebuilding his shattered team around Munich survivors Harry Gregg, Bill Foulkes and Bobby Charlton, the latter becoming known as part of the "holy trinity" along with Denis Law and George Best. Ten years after Munich, Busby's third side would fulfill the promise of the "babes" so cruelly fated in 1958 by winning the European Cup.

The club which appointed Matt Busby as manager in 1945 was not the giant of the game it is today; having spent many of the years between the two world wars playing second division football, the club had not won a major trophy since 1911 and its stadium had been reduced to rubble by German bombing raids. By the time Busby stepped aside, the club had equalled the record of Arsenal and Liverpool in winning seven League titles (five of which had been under Busby's stewardship), become the first English club to win the European Cup and boasted one the best stadia in Europe. It was in this era that the name Manchester United became known worldwide, partly because of Busby's vision in taking the club into Europe and partly because of the talented players he allowed to express themselves with confidence.

This dvd chronicles the period which made Manchester United a household name in greater detail than Manchester United - The Official History 1878 - 2008: 2 DVD Set and includes previously-unseen footage, including amateur film in colour from the 1950s and scenes from the Wembley dressing room following the 1968 European Cup triumph. In my opinion, this is essential viewing for all true Manchester United supporters, especially those not old enough to remember the period which made the club great.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 21 December 2011
I did not expect to find much that I hadn't seen before on this DVD, so content wise, it was much as expected.

What annoyed and let it down was the voice over commentary, which had several silly errors. Any United fan knows that Eddie Colman was not a winger; to state that Shay Brennan scored 3 against Sheffield Wednesday in the first game after Munich, when later the Pathe News reporter states correctly that he scored 2 is just stupid.

Early on, when discussing the 1948 team, Stan Pearson's picture is shown, not once but twice when talking about Charlie Mitten.

I also found it odd, and a little tiresome, that footage of Spurs in Europe should feature on a DVD of United! Padding?

Overall, it needed editing by someone who knew a little about United. Clearly this didn't happen.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 4 March 2011
A very good DVD. It makes you laugh , it makes you cry, it makes you remember why you support the greatest team in the world. Some brilliant old footage included, it's a must see for every red
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on 4 January 2014
Born in the middle of Busby' reign and one year after Munich. I was 8 when Utd won the European Cup so it was completely enthralling to have ten years of fuzzy memories enhanced. But to then have an incite into the ten years of work before Munich was particularly riveting. Now I understand why Sir Matt was so revered and loved, not just by Utd fans.
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on 26 March 2013
Great footage of some of the best players not only England but the world has ever seen. They are all here, marshalled by one of the best managers of all time. A must for Manchester United fans.
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on 14 May 2013
An interesting DVD with early footage of the early Busby Babe years. A rare trip down memory lane recalling forgotten highlights for Man United followers of the period, well worth a viewing.
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on 2 June 2015
Bought as a gift, together with Manchester United Legends, for my 80-year-old father who absolutely loves it. Said it really took him down memory lane when football was really played!
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on 28 January 2014
this was the second order for this as the other had been stolen in break in. after watching it it was interesting to learn the facts behind the story of Sir Matt Busby.
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on 6 April 2013
An enjoyable trip down memory lane for the older generation or someone interested in footballing history or the Busby era.
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on 14 April 2014
Great item,arrived exactly within the time I was given,item as described,very happy with this purchase
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