The Weekender: A Big Liverpool Book Special

Nov 12, 03:55 PM
Neil Atkinson speaks to several writers, from the Merseyside patch and beyond, about books on Liverpool, Everton and more that have been released recently.

Featuring Melissa Reddy on her book 'Believe Us', Simon Hughes on The Athletic's 'At The End Of The Storm', the Magic Spongers on 'From The Jaws Of Victory', David Prentice on 'A Grand Old Team To Report' and Dan Gray on 'Extra Time'.

Believe Us: How Jürgen Klopp Transformed Liverpool Into Title Winners

Journalist Melissa Reddy reveals the inside story of Jürgen Klopp’s astonishing revival of Liverpool, culminating in the club’s first domestic league trophy in 30 years.

Featuring incisive and insightful reporting, and the thoughts of players, management and club hierarchy, 'Believe Us' paints a vivid picture of this titanic sporting success.

Reddy’s unparalleled access to the club brings interviews with everyone from fans and key backroom staff to players including talismanic captain Jordan Henderson, and of course Klopp himself.

This is the story of Liverpool's title win in the longest season, as told by the writers of The Athletic, with their blend of inside access and expert analysis; great ideas and beautiful writing.

Articles include profiles of each of Liverpool's title winners by their former youth team coaches; Oliver Kay watches Sadio Mane score against Manchester City in the company of the striker's family, in his hometown in Senegal; James Pearce spends 90 minutes analysing Virgil van Dijk; plus there are exclusive interviews with Jürgen Klopp, and the club's US owners.

Read the stories behind a unique and historical season from a team of writers every bit as good as the footballers they were following.

Through the eyes of the UK's finest sports writers, 'From the Jaws of Victory' pays homage to club and international sides who captivated, inspired and astounded in equal measure, only to fall short of football’s biggest prizes.

The destination of these stories may be the same, but the journeys are equally glorious. The three best teams never to have won the World Cup can be found here - Hungary’s Golden Squad of 1954, the Netherlands’ Total Football exponents of 1974 and Brazil’s celebrated 1982 vintage - along with brilliant club sides through the ages, from Bolton Wanderers, humbled in the Matthews final of 1953, to Liverpool, devastated as the Premier League slipped from their grasp in 2014.

This comprehensive history ensures that though these teams might not have their names on the trophies, their influence on the game remains undimmed.

David Prentice is the Sport Editor of the Liverpool Echo, the city's famous newspaper. His fascinating book charts almost half-a-century of Everton Football Club's history - from a unique insider.

It is a fan-fare and a news report. A travelogue and a social comment - and a poignant reflection of how football and journalism has changed forever.

Despite its flaws and excesses, modern football is still sprinkled with simple yet beguiling delights. In his previous book Saturday, 3pm, Daniel Gray captured many of them. Now he is back with a further 50 short essays of prose poetry dedicated to the game's charming, technicolour minutiae.

From club lottos to undeserved wins, and from pitch-invading animals to the roar after a minute's silence, Extra Time is another romantic celebration of football fandom and its shared joys, habits, eccentricities and peculiarities. It is a salute to keepers going forward for corners, match balls landing on stand roofs and goals scored in quick succession.

These chapters offer a gleeful antidote to disillusionment with modern football, VAR and all. They are reminders of why we care and justifications for our devotion. Each warmly evokes this sport's blessed capacity to offer escape and diversion. Let us share the delight once more.

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