England invented football, codified it, became champions of the world in 1966 but humiliatingly then forgot how to play the greatest game of all. England took their eye off a ball they arrogantly thought they owned, allowing other nations to run off with it.
It has been 50 years of hurt since Bobby Moore lifted the World Cup trophy at Wembley, and in this groundbreaking book Henry Winter addresses the state England are in on the golden anniversary of their greatest moment. Part lament, part anatomy of an obsession, both personal and collective, it analyses the truth behind the endless excuses and apportions the blame for the crimes against English football but is also a search for hope and solutions.
Fifty Years of Hurt weaves more than 40 exclusive interviews with the biggest names in the game - Jack Charlton, Alan Mullery, Peter Shilton, Glenn Hoddle, John Barnes, Chris Waddle, Gary Lineker, Ian and Mark Wright, Alan Shearer, Michael Owen, Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard, Roy Hodgson - with a narrative dissection of the highs and lows of five decades of football.
And as well as players and managers, Henry Winter talks to the fans, to agents, to officials and to the governing bodies about every aspect, good and bad, of English football to provide answers to the question: where did it all go wrong? It is a passionate journey by a writer with vast personal insight into the national team, with unprecedented access to all areas of the game, but also by a fan who wants his England back. The 50 years of hurt must end.
©2016 Henry Winter (P)2016 Random House Audiobooks
A mediocre read, quite repetitive in content (use this old player more, use that player more) didn't particularly rate the narrator. An ok read for football fans but there are much better (ferguson s book) fairly disappointed
Jumps around a bit but overall a really good analysis of what is wrong with England football and what needs to be done.
Narrator needs to brush up on some pronunciations of players' names though (Peter "Withee", Ugo "Ehiogoo" etc) but that's a minor quibble really.
Excellent analysis of the state of the English Game. Interesting contributors but felt slightly dated by the release prior to England's appalling exit to Iceland - could do with an update.
Would still recommend a listen though.
Good story ruined by the narrator, who started well, but seemed to get tired as the chapters went on
He was poor!
It made me cry (not really as it is only a game of soccer) when once again England went out in the quarter final against Iceland, you could not make it up! I would love to hear what Henry Winter would have said about Roy our illustrious manager then...
Good book, shame about the narrator.
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