To order or comment - backlist here
 

ISBN: 1901746739
RRP: £10.95

 

ALL SHOOK

BURY FC'S AMAZING CUP STORY

FA CUP WINNERS 1900 & 1903

BY MARK METCALF

This is the incredible true story of the Lancashire team who dominated the world’s first cup competition at the beginning of the 20th century. Bury FC, FA Cup winners in 1900 and 1903, won the famous competition before Manchester United were formed and 65 years before Liverpool fi nally triumphed.

Award-winning journalist Mark Metcalf tells the story of how a small town team took on and beat the cream of Edwardian English football and triumphed twice at Crystal Palace. Illustrated with contemporary photographs, newspaper cuttings and memorabilia, ‘All Shook Up’ is a reminder of when the FA Cup was the ultimate prize in football and Bury the undisputed kings of The Cup.


 

ISBN: 1901746704
RRP: £8.95

 

THE MANCHESTER UNITED PREMIER YEARS

by STEVE BROOKES

“This is a very well written book and a lot of detail has gone into it, it brings back a hell of a lot of great memories and some of the great players I played with.”

DAVID MAY

The Manchester United Premier Years looks back at the last 17 seasons of Premiership football.Featuring in-depth profi les of the club’s chairmen and manager and 23 of the best players to don the red shirt, the Manchester United Premier Years is an essential guide to England’s pre-eminent club.There are also in-depth statistical analyses of every Premiership season, all cup results since 1992 and every result in the Manchester Derby since 1894.


 

ISBN: 1901746682
RRP: £8.95

 

WHEN FOOTBALL WAS FUN

or much ado about nothing-nothing

by Derek Potter
Former British Council Sports Reporter of the Year

Edited by Cliff Butler - FOREWORD BY JAMES LAWTON

OVER 40 YEARS SPENT at the cutting edge of football reporting for the Daily Mirror, Daily Express and Today newspapers, gave Derek Potter a unique insight into the characters of legendary personalities in the game. The only non-London based winner of the prestigious British Sports Council Reporter of the Year award, Derek broke many exclusives and became ‘The Man Football Can Trust’.

Chief among them was the story of Robert Maxwell’s attempt to purchase Manchester United from Martin Edwards, alongside endless exclusives detailing transfers, sackings and bust-ups. Featuring a cast of legends such as Bob Paisley, Sir Matt Busby, Denis Law, Sir Alf Ramsey and Bobby Charlton, When Football Was Fun takes an inside look at the Golden Age of football.

Sadly, Derek died in 2006. His funeral attended by many of the great and good featured in ‘When Football was Fun’, a unique memoire, this book serves as a superb epitaph.


 

ISBN: 1901746623
RRP: £8.95

 

 

THE VILLA PREMIER YEARS 1992-2010

STEVE BROOKES

“A must read for all Villa fans of all generations”
SHAUN TEALE

“This book is a must for all Aston Villa fans as it has all the history
from the Premier League years. Superbly researched and presented;
a great treat for all ardent Villa fans with happy hours to look forward to”
PHIL KING

Looking back over 18 seasons in the Premier League, Aston Villa fanatic Steve Brookes chooses his favourites players and most memorable moments. From Paul 'God' McGrath to James Milner, Steve's favaourites in Claret and Blue are assessed and rated for their commitment to the cause.
Villa began the Premier League era as a team in contention at the top of the table but have yo-yoed up and down the table as fi nances, managers and star names have come and gone. Now, under Martin O'Neill, they are among a number of clubs poised to breakthrough into the upper echelons at the dawn of a new decade.
'The Villa Premier Years' contains Steve's subjective assessment of his favourites, along with profi les of the owners and managers who have presided over affairs at Villa Park. But with a steady partnership of manager and owner at the helm, it seems those troubled times are over.


 

ISBN: 1901746607 - 9781901746600

RRP: £12.95
SPECIAL OFFER £10 INC UK P&P

 

Special offer
Buy 'Old Trafford - 100 years at the Theatre of Dreams'
10 UK
11 Rest of World


(It will appear on statements as
charged to "Ancient Egypt Magazine")

 

By Iain McCartney
Foreword by Paddy Crerand

224pp - over 150 historic photographs

February 2010 sees the Centenary of Manchester United’s first game at Old Trafford. To celebrate this auspicious occasion Iain McCartney has updated his original 1996 book with new pictures of the last 100 years at the famous ground, still widely regarded as the finest club stadium in British football.

Over the past 100 years Old Trafford has hosted World Cup and European Championship matches, FA Cup Finals and a Champions League Final and has witnessed countless United wins, draws and defeats. Yet it endures, above all, as a monument to the vision of the club's founder and first patron John Henry Davies. Recognising football's exponential growth in the 1900s and the need to safely house vast numbers of supporters, Davies recognised that the champions of England and 1909 FA Cup winners needed a more spacious home than tatty old Bank Street, in Clayton, a ground with few facilities and a capacity of less than 25,000.

Built in 1909 and officially opened in February 1910 for the league visit of Liverpool, Old Trafford was instantly acclaimed by one reporter as "the most handsomest [sic], the most spacious and the most remarkable arena I have ever seen. As a football ground it is unrivalled in the world, it is an honour to Manchester and the home of a team who can do wonders when they are so disposed.” Unfortunately the stadium arrived at just the wrong time for the club as United were about to begin a 37 year trophy-free run, the longest in the club's history. Consequently, United's average attendance before the war rarely topped the 30,000 mark, in a ground with a capacity of over 70,000. The luckless stadium suffered a further blows on the nights of the 8th and 11th March 1941 when it was bombed during The Blitz. And so for four seasons after the war United were forced to play their 'home' fixtures at Maine Road.

The arrival of floodlights and European football heralded a new chapter: the stadium is widely regarded as at its best on such occasions and from the first game against the immortals of Real Madrid in 1957 the ground hosted continental opposition and became renowned across Europe. In the sixties the ground had a new cantilever stand added to the west in preparation for the 1966 World Cup Finals and, later, more seats were added at the Scoreboard End and behind the Stretford End. However these improvements were as nothing compared to the dramatic changes brought about in the wake of the Taylor Report. The birth of the Premier League and United's domestic dominance helped transform the ground - first into an all-seater stadium, then steady season-by-season growth saw it swell to hold over 75,000. For a period during the protracted construction of Wembley, the ground even became the national stadium hosting 12 England matches.

Calling on the vast photographic resources of avid Manchester United collectors and enthusiasts, what emerges is a fascinating history of the first super stadium of English football. It also traces the history of United via its home ground, from the post WWI football boom and the record crowds of the 1920s and 30s, to the bomb damage sustained during the Manchester Blitz and the 8 year wait for the stadium to be fully re-built and the beginning, in the mid 1960s, of terrace hooliganism and the club’s attempts to deal with it. Now the stadium, a vast arena holding over 75,000 seats, is valued at over £300m. Not bad for a patch of land once given over to cattle grazing.


 
 

By Justin Blundell

This was the season when Sir Alex Ferguson’s long-held wish to ‘knock Liverpool off their f**king perch’ was made flesh. A season so successful that even European Cup Final defeat to Barcelona couldn’t fully diminish the club’s achievements. Justin Blundell tells the story of United’s triumphs in a punchy, rabidly red-eyed review of every single match and goal. The season had it’s own sensations - Chelsea leading and falling away before Liverpool appeared to pull decisively away only for Rafa Benitez’s infamous ‘fact’ rant to unwittingly de-rail them.

Written with an eye for the humour and pomoposity surrounding the modern game, Justin Blundell brings the matches, goals and managerial spats back to life. From the Ronaldo transfer saga to the despair of defeat in Rome, this is an entertaining, minute-by-minute guide to the matches that mattered. It contains the season’s best quotes from the likes of Ferguson, Benitez, Paddy Crerand and Patrice Evra. Far from following the tired blueprint of stats and dry match reports, this is a book for everyone who lives and breathes United.


 

Special offer from the publishers
Buy "The Complete Eric Cantona"

£8 UK
£9 Rest of World

Price

 

 

EVERY GAME, EVERY GOAL
Darren Phillips

Eric Cantona’s career at Old Trafford lasted only 5 years but its lasting impact can still be felt today. During that comparatively small span, Cantona’s dedication and self-confidence enabled a club to emerge from over a quarter of a century of failure and self-doubt. Cantona’s career before he arrived in England had been nomadic at best, self-destructive at worst.
Yet few could have anticipated the quality that would shine through following his arrival at Old Trafford. For 26 years Manchester United fans had suffered under the jack boot of Liverpool’s domination of European and domestic trophies. Cowed into submission, their fans tended to hope for the best but feared the worst, even 6 seasons of relative success under Ferguson hadn’t changed that mindset. Cantona’s fearless attitude transformed the club, almost in an instant. Never has a football club been so altered from one day to the next by one signing. Never has a club gone from ‘nearly men’ to ‘champions’ at the stroke of a pen.
All of a sudden, the boot was on the other foot and remains so to this day. over 10 years since Eric last kicked a ball in anger. The Complete Eric Cantona details every game Eric played for Manchester United, Leeds United and the French national team as well as potted summaries of his career in France. Darren Phillips, author of The Complete George Best, has painstakingly researched his remarkable career in France, England and in the French national team. The Complete Eric Cantona can be read either as a work of reference or a detailed insight into a career that altered the dynamics within English football for good.


 

RRP: £10.95
SPECIAL OFFER £9 INC UK P&P

 

Special offer from the publishers
Buy 'The Story of the Green & Gold'
10 UK
11 Rest of World


(It will appear on statements as
charged to "Ancient Egypt Magazine")

 

 

By Charbel Boujaoude
Foreword by Iain McCartney

312pp - over 50 historic photographs

The Green and Gold campaign launched recently by Manchester United fans against the club's owners, the Glazer family, took its inspiration from the colours of the original Newton Heath club from which United emerged in 1902. This book attempts to explain the characters and history of that club.

So how did a bunch of railway workers form a club that would eventually go on to be on of the most famous in football? For, unlike other Victorian clubs who were formed by wealthy benefactors wishing to fill empty stadia or well-connected church organisations with high-minded ideals regarding sporting activities, Heath were just a works team formed by lads after a kickabout during breaks at Newton Heath's Lancashire and Yorkshire railway depot.

Relying on extensive research, the author brings to life a late Victorian era where football mushroomed to become the national pastime. The cast of characters who formed the club are profiled in detail - Sam Black, the Doughty brothers, Jack Peden and John Cassidy were legends on the pitch while Mr Albut, the chairman, was charged with the often impossible task of making ends meet by whatever means neccessary off it.

The supporters, many of whom now had more leisure time thanks to that brand new Mancunian invention, the 'weekend', turned up in increasing numbers at the club's first ground at North Road, Monsall, which became infamous for the depth of its mud and later followed the team to Bank Street, Clayton where nearby factories would judiciously belch out a chemical smog whenever Heath needed 'assistance'.

Unfortunately, Heath’s financial health took a turn for the worse following a ruinous court case. The debts dragged the club slowly but surely toward bankruptcy and a date with destiny. By 1902 a decade of Second Division anonymity, ever-decreasing quality on the field and mounting debts forced the club to the brink and, eventually, via Harry Stafford’s famous dog, the salvation of local brewing magnate John Henry Davies and the formation of Manchester United.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Charbel Boujaoude is a Manchester United fan based in Houston, Texas. This is his first book having researched the era in United's history extensively during a holiday in Manchester and been inspired by Justin Blundell's 'Back from the Brink' also published by Empire in 2007.

 


 

£14.95
Hardback
ISBN: 1901746526

 

FROM GOAL LINE TO TOUCHLINE
by Jack Crompton

FOREWORD BY SIR ALEX FERGUSON
INTRODUCTION BY NOBBY STILES

Jack Crompton is one of the surviving members of Manchester United's illustrious 1948 FA Cup winning side and the first to pen his autobiography. Jack served the club as goalkeeper, trainer and caretaker manager across five decades.
His career between the sticks brought the first taste of glory to Matt Busby’s United, starring in a team that helped transform the club from pre-war also-rans to England's best supported club. As a 'keeper Jack was an automatic choice until the signing of Reg Allen and the emergence of Ray Wood in the 1950s.
With the emergence of the Busby Babes, many of whom Jack captained in the club's reserve team, he retired as a player and moved on to coach Luton Town in 1956. But the crisis following the Munich Air Disaster two years later saw him return as assistant to Jimmy Murphy and, after his recovery, Matt Busby in United's re-building.
An integral part of United's coaching set-up throughout the sixties, Jack was a trusted figure for players and management and helped guide the club to honours culminating in the long-awaited European success in 1968.
Later, as assistant to Wilf McGuinness, Jack witnessed first hand the difficulties the club faced following Busby's retirement. He moved on to coach at Preston with Bobby Charlton before managing Fourth Division Barrow. He returned to Old Trafford under Tommy Docherty as reserve coach, finishing his lengthy professional association with the club as caretaker manager during a tour of the Far East in 1981 which could have ended in diplomatic disaster without Jack's forbearance and patience.
In From Goal line to Touchline, Jack talks candidly about the considerable changes in the game and reflects on a career that took in glory and tragedy. His unique insight into the methods and manner of Sir Matt Busby in particular are revealing, as he recalls a career that took him from the back streets of Hulme to the greatest stadia in the world.
Cliff Butler is Manchester United's club statistician and former editor of the United Review. Cliff has contributed to many books on the club including the Official Illustrated History and the Essential History.


 

£8.95
Paperback
£8.95 Paperback

 

 

EVERY GAME, EVERY GOAL

Darren Phillips

George Best is widely regarded as the finest footballer ever produced by the British Isles. His death in November 2005 prompted lengthy analysis of his career and his standing in the game, a debate The Complete George Best will seek to settle.

Known primarily for his rock n’roll lifestyle, this book attempts to shed more light on his often overlooked football career which was, after all, the source of his fame.Taking in every first class match George played for Manchester United and Northern Ireland with lengthy analysis of his later career in America and Fulham, The Complete George Best traces a career that caught light in the mid-sixties and burned brightly for the next 7 seasons.

Many claimed that Best was the pre-eminent player in the world during this period, his performance against Benfica in Lisbon, when he inspired United to a 5-1 win is widely regarded as the turning point for the Ulsterman, after which life was never quite the same as first the birds and then the booze followed fame into Best’s life.

Best's career was inextricably linked with the fortunes of Manchester United in the 60s and Matt Busby's quest for the European Cup following the tragedy of the Munich Air disaster. United's run to the European Cup Final of 1968 saw Best a marked man. By this stage his talent was well-known and George came to life in the semi-final against Real Madrid, scoring in the first leg and setting up an unlikely winner for Bill Foulkes in the second. The final will always be remembered for Best's brilliant goal just minutes into extra time when he found space on the left and skinned the last man before rounding the 'keeper.

Most people regard the European triumph as the beginning of the end. In hindsight, and with medals the sole measure of a career's worth, then it probably was, yet Best was good enough to thrill crowds well into the next decade with famous performances such as his double hat-trick against Northampton on a muddy pitch in 1970 and a famous hat-trick against Southampton a year later. Sadly, alcholism robbed us of the best of George but most players would kill for a career record that read 639 appearances, 229 goals.

The Complete George Best is ideal both as a work of reference and a detailed insight into the great man’s career. Darren Phillips has painstakingly pieced together every game and goal scored by Best from his first team debut against West Bromwich Albion in September 1963.


 

back from the brink

£10.95
Paperback
Includes over 80 
player profiles
ISBN 1901 746 47 X
Order Here

 

Back from the Brink
by Justin Blundell
Published November 2006
"A fascinating account of the club’s austerity years"
CLIFF BUTLER, OFFICIAL CLUB HISTORIAN

"A gripping read, thanks to the author's meticulous research and keen eye for anecdotes and bizarre facts.
A finely crafted, insightful piece of club history"
Jon Spurling, FourFourTwo - Book of the month - Jan 2007 - Full Review

IN THE RICH HISTORY OF MANCHESTER UNITED THERE HAVE BEEN SEVERAL GREAT CRISES - BACK FROM THE BRINK TELLS THE STORY OF THE MOST SIGNIFICANT OF THEM ALL...
In this amusing, irreverent and fascinating account, Justin Blundell traces the events of the club's lost youth between the end of the Great War and the worldwide economic crisis that almost scuppered the club yet ushered in a new era under James Gibson.
Along the way, we re-visit some of the most important events in the club's history; the extraordinary boycott attempt of 1930, the incident on the Moors that almost wiped out an entire team and the birth of the youth policy that paved the way for the Busby Babes and the glorious post-war period.
Featuring over 120 player profiles, from greats such as Billy Meredith, Frank Barson and Joe Spence to the one-game cloggers who lit up Old Trafford afternoons with their endeavour, courage or lack of ability. Blundell's punchy account deserves to stand alongside the many volumes written about the post-war glory years - it tells the story of how United survived the Depression Years and came back from the brink. More...


 

insider's guide to mufc

£20 - Hardback
Illustrated in full colour
with over 100 photographs
ISBN 1901 746 41 0 - Order Here

 

The Insider's Guide to Manchester United:
Candid Profiles of Every Red Devil Since 1945
by John Doherty
with Ivan Ponting

CONTAINING JOHN DOHERTY'S SUBJECTIVE views on each of the 348 men to the end of season 2004-05 who have played for the club at senior level since the war, The Insider's Guide To Manchester United is the definitive Manchester United players' guide. Documenting every player to have appeared for the Red Devils since the war, Doherty (an original Busby Babe and chairman of the United Old Boys committee) candidly reveals the strengths, weaknesses and his personal memories of United's finest.
More...


 

birth of the babes

SOLD OUT!

 

The Birth of the Babes
Manchester United Youth Policy 1950-57

by Tony Whelan
Foreword by Sir Alex Ferguson
Preface by Cliff Butler

The emergence in the 1950s of talented footballers such as Duncan Edwards and Bobby Charlton was a result of the first truly comprehensive scouting and coaching operation English football had known. As a player Matt Busby had learned through bitter experience of the 'sink or swim' approach that prevailed at most football clubs and realised that the harnessing of the full talents of footballers required a more involved approach. If a player had a gambling or drinking problem for instance, this would affect his performance on a Saturday and would therefore become the club's problem. More...


 

This Simple Game

£16.95 - Hardback - ISBN 1901746496

 

This Simple Game - The Footballing Life of Ken Barnes
As Told to Jimmy Wagg

Published December 2005

Ken Barnes was widely regarded as one of the finest footballers of his generation never to have won an England cap. During a distinguished playing career with Manchester City, Ken appeared in the FA Cup finals of 1955 and 1956 and later captained the club before retiring in the early 60s. He spent nearly a decade away from Maine Road as a manager of Wrexham and Witton Albion before returning to Maine Road as a coach under Joe Mercer. Ken subsequently went on to serve under every City manager as either a coach or chief scout from Joe Mercer to Joe Royle. In his time Ken has seen tactical trends come and go - from the ‘deep lying centre-forward’ via ‘wingless wonders’ to today’s ‘holding midfielder’ and is uniquely placed to give his opinions on them all. More...


 

£16.95
Hardback
Includes over 50 
historic photographs
ISBN 1901 746 25 9
Order Here

 


With Dante Friend
Foreword by Fred Eyre

One of the most perceptive descriptions of Manchester City’s play during their glory years was made by Manchester Evening News reporter Peter Gardner who said that “When Youngy plays, City play”. For all the talk in the intervening years of greats such as Summerbee, Bell and Lee, it was the local lad made good who made most impact when it mattered.

A tall, leggy striker with a venomous left-foot shot, Young scored in every significant game for City in the late 60s. Scorer of two goals in the 1968 Championship win up at Newcastle, the scorer of the 1969 FA Cup Final winner and the first goal in the 1970 Cup Winners’ Cup final, Neil Young played as significant a role in the success and style of the Mercer-Allison partnership as anyone. Yet by 1972 he was allowed to leave the club as City began their now familiar relationship with underachievement and mismanagement.

more



Empire Publications, 1 Newton Street, Manchester M1 1HW Tel: 0161 872 3319 Fax: 0161 872 4721