As a fan of Phil Shaw's writing, I can assure you that he can find something interesting to write even during a nil-nil draw in some obscure, godforsaken, lower-league hellhole. And, more likely than not, something funny. Shaw has a good eye for telling detail - but an even better ear for the absurd. He puts this funny ear to good use in this brilliant compilation of football quotes. We all know players, managers, chairmen, commentators and pundits say stupid things. I have, occasionally, frequented a live TV studio and blurted out something stupid myself. Nothing as stupid, of course, as TalkSport's Ray Houghton's explanation for being late: "I've been playing in a golf day for a boy seriously injured in a car accident. I had to drive like a lunatic to get here." There are many more where that came from. If you are a devotee of Private Eye's 'Colemanballs' - which, some issues, is almost entirely devoted to footballers' mixed metaphors and confused cliches - you will be familiar with this genre. But Shaw is a fan of all football humour, whether deliberate or accidental. He is keen to display the players' wit as much as their Malapropite tendencies. On being asked what he would be if he weren't a footballer, for example, Peter Crouch once answered: "A virgin." Crouchy's great rival as a (Groucho) Marxist is Gordon Strachan. "A quick word, Gordon?" "Velocity." Poor old Strach's dry sarcasm got him in trouble at his last two clubs - Celtic and Middlesbrough. Up in Teeside, they weren't laughing when he told a journalist he would "take drugs, and drink and smoke" to deal with the pressure of management. Two weeks later, he was a goner. As a frequenter of press conferences, I take my hat off to the wee man. And to the big man, Mr Shaw, who has been collecting words of wisdom associated with the beautiful game for the past 30 years. This latest collection has more LOLs - as the kids say - per page than any other tome. It is a welcome and refreshing counterpoint to the self-important halfwits who deal in spin - and a great Chrissie present for anyone in need of a good guffaw in these recessionary times. It's definitely the funniest football book of the year. I've never been so certain about anything in my life. Which is what Phil Neville once said - before adding: "I want to be a coach. Or a manager. I'm not sure which."
Tell Him He's Pele: The Greatest Collection of Humorous Football Quotations Ever! Romantics bruised by tawdry privatisation of the national sport will recover some of their affection for football from this volume of wonderful quotations. Here's the sport that still survives in Burslem, Brechin and Barnsley, captured mostly in the remarks of Football Men but also in the revelatory acts of the grotesque nouveau riche. I swear I could hear Bobby Robson sigh despairingly as he told an anecdote about one "star's" ear-ring. Football's at its most literate, its most passionate, funniest, wisest and saddest the further it gets from corporate-speak and vulgar behaviour. There's no room here for the Scudamores, Coles or expatriate owners. Instead, the gamut of football emotion is expressed fluently on pages that whiff of dubbin and liniment, mud and pies. What made the game beautiful is here - in a compendium edited by one of the sport's most articulate chroniclers.
This is real toilet humour - in the nicest possible sense. Keep a copy in the smallest room in the house and listen to the guffaws from everyone who enters. They're all there - the old ones, some new ones, the wry, the unintended, the downright stupid, lots of Brian Clough and Bobby Robson. Then there's the classic from Gordon Milne, when Leicester manager - `If someone in the crowd spits at you, you've just got to swallow it.' Yuk! At least half-a-dozen smirks on every page.
This is a must read! If sport informs us about life, then this collection of the pithy, the unbelievable, the wise and the downright stupid aphorisms on football will make you a wiser and wittier companion to all who know you. Buy it now. And buy another copy for a friend!
Got the World Cup blues?, are foreign billionaires buying up your best players or ruining your club? - what ever your football woes this book will cheer you up. Laugh out loud moments on every page - it would even put a smile on Vincente del Bosque's face!
I bought two of these books as Christmas for football mad relatives. They haven't received them yet but I've had a quick look & I am certain that they will enjoy the humour. I am very happy with this purchase