Book re­views

Late Tackle Football Magazine - - CONTENTS -

A look at the lat­est of­fer­ings

BLUES IN­SIDER – A QUAR­TER OF A CEN­TURY WITH BIRM­ING­HAM CITY, BY KEITH DIXON, PUB­LISHED BY PITCH PUB­LISH­ING, PRICE: £12.99, RAT­ING OUT OF 10: 7

KEITH Dixon is a Birm­ing­ham City fa­natic and that cer­tainly comes across in his new book.

As he says, it’s his per­sonal ac­count of what’s gone on at the Blues over the past 25 years.

A Bluenose for more than 60 years, Dixon has im­mersed him­self in the club and has the cre­den­tials to write about what’s hap­pened off the field in that time – and it’s cer­tainly been event­ful.

One of the rea­sons no doubt that the book fo­cuses on the past quar­ter of a cen­tury is that Dixon was man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Tri­ton Show­ers and re­spon­si­ble for them be­com­ing main spon­sors of the Blues from 1992-95.

How much did it cost? A to­tal of £100,000 for three years to be paid by three an­nual pay­ments of £33,333.33! You wouldn’t get much with that money these days…

The book cov­ers the pe­riod when the busi­ness of Birm­ing­ham’s own­ers, the Ku­mars, went into re­ceiver­ship and how David Sullivan, David Gold and Kar­ren Brady came to get their hands on the club.

There is some in­ter­est­ing ma­te­rial in this sec­tion of the book and Dixon re­calls his first meet­ing with Brady.

She said she wanted to rene­go­ti­ate the spon­sor­ship deal with Tri­ton as the con­tract was no longer valid, but he pointed out that the con­tract was with Birm­ing­ham City FC and not the Ku­mars’ busi­ness which had run into trou­ble.

The book cov­ers a lot of ground as Dixon has been in­volved with Birm­ing­ham in a num­ber of dif­fer­ent ways over the years, whether that has been through writ­ing books, magazine ar­ti­cles, be­ing an academy scout and com­mit­tee mem­ber of the for­mer play­ers’ as­so­ci­a­tion.

He also talks about his at­tempts to buy the club and there are in­ter­views with in­flu­en­tial peo­ple be­hind the scenes.

There are also gems dot­ted around the book, too. In a sec­tion called Did You Know That?, Dixon in­cludes a lit­tle story about room-mates Paul Devlin and Rob­bie Sav­age. “It was their rou­tine that Rob­bie went to their room first and hid him­self. When Paul got to the room Rob­bie would jump out and they would fight like Kato and In­spec­tor Clouseau in the Pink Pan­ther movies.” There’s also a story Dixon’s son Ben tells from his days work­ing in the club’s com­mer­cial depart­ment. It came the day after the club’s boozy Christ­mas party. “It was al­leged that I fell asleep at my desk, well I was only rest­ing my eyes…” he said. “There was this loud bang­ing on the desk. It was Kar­ren Brady. ‘I hope you’re not asleep,’ she said, to which I replied, ‘I doubt it as I’m talk­ing to you’. At this point she stormed off…! The book is a bit ran­dom at times and goes off at some strange tan­gents, but if you are a fan of Birm­ing­ham City, there is bound to be some­thing that will in­ter­est you. - John Lyons

THE BEAU­TI­FUL GAME – THE INFOGRAPHIC BOOK OF FOOT­BALL, BY JOHN AN­DREWS, PUB­LISHED BY AU­RUM PRESS, PRICE: £9.99, RAT­ING OUT OF 10: 9

IF YOU’RE a bit tired of bog-stan­dard foot­ball books and au­to­bi­ogra­phies, then The Beau­ti­ful Game is well worth a look. And ‘look’ is the right word – as a col­lec­tion of colour­ful in­fo­graph­ics and Daniel Nyari’s su­perb player por­traits give this book a stylish look. But it’s not just vis­ually where this book hits the mark. Con­tent-wise, there is plenty to en­joy, too, across a wide range of sub­jects. Whether you want to know about the tallest, short­est, old­est, youngest, rich­est, quick­est and most su­per­sti­tious, then you’ll find it here. An­other plus about this fun and factual book is that it cov­ers the world game, so you’ll find fas­ci­nat­ing stats and trivia about foot­ball from Africa to Asia.

You can dip in and out of this book at your leisure and you’ll find some­thing of note. It would make an ideal present for a foot­ball nut.

On the ad­ver­tis­ing for the book, it states: “A graphic guide to the world of foot­ball that is per­fect for any­one who wants to know any­thing and ev­ery­thing about the big­gest sport on the planet…”

It’s a big claim, but this book gives it a re­ally good go. - John Lyons

PRE­VIEW

DRAW­ING THE 92 FOOT­BALL fans are be­ing of­fered the chance to get their hands on a book which has been 12 years in the mak­ing!

After his first sketch of Not­ting­ham For­est’s City Ground in 2005, artist Jamie B Ed­wards has spent a dozen years draw­ing ev­ery sin­gle Premier and Foot­ball League ground in the coun­try in his inim­itable bold colour style, which has now been col­lected to­gether in one high-qual­ity hard­back book en­ti­tled Draw­ing the 92.

Each draw­ing is ac­com­pa­nied by a sta­dium de­scrip­tion sup­plied by Dun­can Adams, cre­ator of the foot­ball­groundguide.com, as well as quotes from fans and ex-play­ers.

The book is set to be pub­lished in the Autumn fol­low­ing a launch ex­hi­bi­tion of the draw­ings at the Na­tional Foot­ball Mu­seum in Manch­ester in Novem­ber. Mark Chap­man, pre­sen­ter of Match of the

Day 2, has writ­ten a fore­word for the book after he bought sev­eral of Jamie’s prints at his mar­ket stall in Manch­ester.

In it he states: “The art­work in this book is beau­ti­ful but what makes it a glo­ri­ous of­fer­ing is that when you ar­rive at the draw­ing of your own spe­cial ground, it will take you back to your own spe­cial place with your own spe­cial memories.”

There is a Kick­starter cam­paign to help fund the book – check out http://bit.ly/DT92_KS

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