3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 30 December 2010
Having read quite a few books on football, hooligans and the football "heyday", i bought this one thinking it would be similar. Unfortunately it wasnt, and it was more like a diary detailling which teams played who etc.. I got about 1/3rd of the way through it and moved onto another book instead.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 14 September 2010
Didn't know anything about Bill Gardner (aka BG), but was curious since I've read a short story about ICF - West Ham's famous firm. It seems like BG have a strong intention to polish his reputation, and many pages are old friends telling about how nice person he is and that he never in his entire life got a beating. Very little about why he was banned from West Ham's home ground.
This is not a book about casuals...its more like an attempt to rebuild Bill Gardner's reputation as a gentleman. Boring reading I must say
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 8 March 2007
What a surprise another Pennant offering where no-one has every taken a beating, lives by a strict code of conduct, etc etc, yawn. Fair play for milking it for all it's worth but to be honest they're getting embarrassing - see the chap[ter written by an ex doorman mate.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 9 August 2009
It's one of those Pennant books again nobody takes a beating etc and we were so many hundred strong and untouchable. Back in his day he was a member of one of the most feared firms but every firm takes a beating once in a while we all know that. So going on I think not being totally honest it's not one of the better books out there but still worth a read and the ICF were and still are one of the top firms operating today.
15 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on 3 May 2005
Here is the book that ALL fans of this genre of book have been waiting for. Was it worth it? Well, for this reader, the ais nswer is a big YES! As someone who knows the person, this book opened up a new side of Mr Gardener that l never knew about, his private side! This is not another of those 'we did this, they did that' book, but a story of the man himself, written frankly and, best of all, HONESTLY! The only thing that lets this tale down, for me, is that there is not enough of the football fights that, undoubtably, took place. But for this it would have gotten 5 stars! I have read most,if not allm of this style of book and place it within the top 5. The people who should REALLY read this book are the 'normal' fans who despise the, so called, hooligan element. For this book is about a REAL fan, a fan that CARES about his mates and fellow supporters, a fan that supports HIS team against any other. It tells of a man who had the mantle of leadership thrust upon him when he didn't ask for it. It tells of a man who stood tall for those around him, a beacon of hope in a, sometimes, desperate position, You'll read of trips to away games where, in most cases, violence was the norm for most fans travelling, but the thing EVERYONE will get from reading this is the sense of RESPECT the man carried throughout his time as a, so called, hooligan! When serious rivals can put their hand on their hearts and say that Bill Gardener was up there with the best of them, a true terrace legend but, most of all, not the sort of person you would want to get on the wrong side of!
Read this and learn as the likes of Bill Gardener will never be seen again which, to me, is a really sad state of affairs because the world needs people like him to stand up for the 'little' people, the ones that get picked on!!
With this book the legend that is Bill Gardener will live on and long may it do so!!
6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 19 September 2005
As the title says, "Bill is a gentleman" Bill is that link with the past. From the exciting old days that none of us would want back to the now polished Premiership days where cash is king. Bill, like us all, has grown up, but his passion has never died. Clubs nowadays forget the true fans like Bill, and as the gates drop perhaps they will remember them. Bill is proud and when Brighton visited Upton Park Bill went out of his way to make sure I and my children had a good day, and we beat them. Bill knows that kids are the future of football and his book tells how Bill passes that down to his son as we all do with ours. Maybe, just maybe, clubs will realise that without the Bills of the world their world would crumble.