Search for your sports books:

Featured Publisher: Pitch Publishing
The incomparable range of sports books produced by Pitch Publishing over the past few years has ensured theyÕve secured a place as one of the UKÕs leading publishers of sporting material.

From the unashamedly nostalgic Got, Not Got and the thought-provoking If Only: An Alternative History of the Beautiful Game, to Andrew MurtaghÕs superbly-written Gentleman and a Player, Pitch Publishing are always likely to come up with something different. Take a look at their current range: www.pitchpublishing.co.uk




Read Review
<back to archive

Living on the Volcano By Michael Calvin

Release date: 01st November, 2015
Publisher: Century

List Price: £19.95
Our Price: £12.74
You Save: £7.21 (36%)
Buy Now

Cardiff City manager Russel Slade began his managerial career at Notts County more than twenty years ago when he was asked to take on the caretaker’s role, a job that lasted until January 1995. It was not a particularly glorious stint in the hot seat and Slade had to wait a further three years before he was invited to manage another club, this time Sheffield United, where he also acted as caretaker twice in the same season. At the time of writing, Slade has sent out 732 teams as a manager.

Perhaps his most successful spell came at Leyton Orient, a club he saved from relegation after being appointed with half a dozen games of the League One season to go. By 2013-14, he was the division’s Manager of the Season.

Yet having served a lengthy apprenticeship and gained deserved recognition, Slade was undermined when new foreign owners took over at Brisbane Road. They confronted the manager in front of his players and threatened to sack him if he failed to win his next game. Classy eh?

This anecdote, taken from Michael Calvin’s outstanding Living on the Volcano, offers one reason why football supporters should stop and think before slipping into default criticism mode, ie berating the manager when the 11 guys on the pitch are incapable of passing the ball to each other.

A few years ago, Calvin wrote the equally compelling Nowhere Men, a brilliant portrayal of football scouts, and he’s adopted a similar formula here, observing managers from League Two up to the top flight, providing a wonderfully descriptive insight that only this illuminating, fly-on-the-wall style can accomplish.

Calvin speaks with managers such as Ian Holloway, a man who has moved house 32 times in less than 20 years as a football manager. Then there’s Martin Ling, formerly the manager at Leyton Orient and Torquay, who was so badly affected by depression that he underwent a course of ECT (electroconvulsive therapy). Such is the degree of job insecurity, confirmed here by Shaun Derry and, movingly, by Adie Boothroyd, that depression is unusually common amongst football managers.

In Leagues One and Two, managers last an average of seventeen months; in the Championship, the period is an astonishing eight months, or slightly less than one season.

Managers have become easy targets for abuse and criticism while those on the pitch escape censure. After reading this absorbing book, however, no-one will want to automatically pin culpability for indifferent performances upon the man on the sidelines.


<back to archive


MoneyMapp


SBOTM Current Top 10

The Ruhleben Football Association: How Steve Bloomer's Footballers Survived a First World War Prison Camp By Paul Brown
Goal Post
Read Review Buy Now
No Way but to Fight George Foreman and the Business of Boxing By Andrew R. M. Smith
University of Texas Press
Read Review Buy Now
The Boss: Jurgen Klopp & the new Anfield Bootroom By Harry Harris
Empire Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
To Hell and Back: An Autobiography By Nikki Lauda & Kevin Eason
Corgi
Read Review Buy Now
A Race with Love and Death By Richard Williams
Simon & Schuster
Read Review Buy Now
Salt On My Skin By Sarah Kennedy Norquoy
Welford Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
One Long and Beautiful Summer, By Duncan Hamilton
Riverrun
Read Review Buy Now
Really Wild Cycling: By Chris Sidwells
Robinson
Read Review Buy Now
Splash! : 10,000 years of swimming By Howard Means
Allen & Unwin
Read Review Buy Now
Never Leave A Man Behind By Mick Dawson
Robinson
Read Review Buy Now

Amazon’s top 6 best-sellers

© Sharks Media Ltd 2004 – 2012. Site designed and maintained by Marcus Hamblett for Furydesign.