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Summary

The Sunday Times best seller

Pat Nevin never wanted to be a professional footballer.

His future was clear, he'd become a teacher like his brothers. There was only one problem with this - Pat was far too good to avoid attention. 

Raised in Glasgow's East End, Pat loved the game, playing for hours and obsessively following Celtic. But as he grew up, he also loved Joy Division, wearing his Indie 'gloom boom' coat and going on marches - hardly typical footballer behaviour! 

Placed firmly in the '80s and '90s, before the advent of the Premier League, and often with racism and violence present, Pat Nevin writes with honesty, insight and wry humour. We are transported vividly to Chelsea and Everton and colourfully diverted by John Peel, Morrissey and nights out at the Hacienda.

The Accidental Footballer is a different kind of football memoir. Capturing all the joys of professional football as well as its contradictions and conflicts, it's about being defined by your actions, not your job, and it is the perfect reminder of how life can throw you the most extraordinary surprises when you least expect it.

©2021 Pat Nevin (P)2021 Octopus Publishing Group

Critic reviews

"Unusually vibrant and elegant with heroic doses of humour, insight and self-effacement, this is an absolute must-read for the football connoisseur." (Omid Djalili)

"I grew up captivated by Pat Nevin the player. As a man he taught me even more about the beauty of the game. One of football's great mavericks, and Chelsea's greatest players. And he can spin a mean tune too." (Sam Matterface)

"I used to walk miles to see Pat Nevin play football and I'd do the same now to read his thoughts. Always challenging, always entertaining." (Lord Sebastian Coe)

"A heroic outsider - a pleasure to read." (The Guardian)

"A fulsome evocation of football before the Premier League." (The i

"Honest, raw, revealing and very funny. How to live a life and career to the full. Insightful book about the most successful outsider inside football ever...." (Henry Winter, chief football writer, The Times

"Pat is a wonderful one-off...and this is the story of why that is." (John Murray, chief sports correspondent, BBC Radio 5 Live) 

"The biggest influence of my professional career both on and off the pitch." (Graeme Le Saux)   

"A refreshingly honest and thought-provoking autobiography. As deftly delivered as some of Pat's ball skills in his 1980's heyday." (ToffeeWeb) 

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What listeners say about The Accidental Footballer

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outstanding

I absolutely loved it. Waited ages since he firsts spoke about having started this and excitedly flew through it. His story about his dribbles and waves to his Dad always has me hooked and how he tells his side of the game is as interesting as I had anticipated. He would have been a star in today's game of millions and more importantly be far more heard in his beliefs and take on things. A proper man first, footballer second, and a damn good orator.

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  • jk
  • 02-06-21

Enjoyable and Interesting!

What a thoroughly good listen , I really enjoyed this book,I had always liked Pat Nevin now I have the whole story to back that up,thanks for sharing the story!
Well narrated,another string to your bow ?!
From a long time Morton supporter!

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Everything you want an autobiography to be

Enjoyable. Insightful. Showcasing his values and standing up for what is right and what he loves.

Made better by hearing him read it personally.

Recommend to all sport lovers not just the teams he played for.

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Like being in the company of a close friend.

Loved this book. So much so that I've ordered the hardback book too, signed and all by the main man himself.

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Very entertaining

Brilliant account of life as an atypical professional footballer. Funny and Insightful. Will inspire you to do more with your life.

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A Joy Throughout

I have never supported Chelsea, Everton, Celtic, or Tranmere, yet I've always loved watching Pat Nevin play. He is not a brash pundit, and is extremely knowledgeable about the beautiful game, which makes him a breath of fresh air on the radio. Here he talks with passion, eloquence, and insight, about his love for playing, music, and more. I'm only sad it's finished.

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Brilliant

Can't wait for part two Pat!!A very good insight to the world of 80's footballer

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Great read

Enjoyed listening to life as a top player in the 80s,on & off the pitch. The author is an excellent broadcaster & has successfully opened a window on his playing days. A great read.

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terrific offbeat story

The accidental footballer eschews the normal conventions of the sports autobiography right from the start. nevis tells his tale in a funny, self deprecating and honest manner. Would have liked to hear more about his time after Everton but mYbe that's a second memoir

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Wow!

Simply the best autobiography I have ever heard. Wonderfully witty without being self indulgent and beautifully read from a truest interesting man.

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  • Richard
  • 30-08-21

For the love of the game

loved it, for anyone that loves football and music and defining what is important in life, great work Pat, what a footballer you are to .