Sir Alf: A Major Reappraisal of the Life and Times of England's Greatest Football Manager

Sir Alf: A Major Reappraisal of the Life and Times of England's Greatest Football Manager

Paperback

By (author) Leo McKinstry

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  • Publisher: Harpersport
  • Format: Paperback | 578 pages
  • Dimensions: 129mm x 198mm x 30mm | 559g
  • Publication date: 28 September 2007
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0007193793
  • ISBN 13: 9780007193790
  • Edition: New edition
  • Edition statement: New
  • Illustrations note: 1
  • Sales rank: 999,818

Product description

Since England's famous 1966 World Cup victory, Alf Ramsey has been regarded as the greatest of all British football managers. By placing Ramsey in an historical context, award-winning author Leo McKinstry provides a thought-provoking insight into the world of professional football and the fabric of British society over the span of his life. Ramsey's life is a romantic story of heroism. Often derided by lesser men, he overcame the prejudice against his social background to reach the summit of world football. The son of a council dustman from Essex, Ramsey had been through a tough upbringing. After army service during the war, he became a professional footballer, enjoying a successful career with Southampton and Tottenham and winning 32 England caps. But it was as manager of Ipswich Town, and then the architect for England's 1966 World Cup triumph, that Ramsey will be most remembered. The tragedy was that his battles with the FA would ultimately lead to his downfall. He was sacked after England failed to qualify for the 1974 World Cup and was subsequently ostracised by the football establishment. He died a broken man in 1999 in the same modest Ipswich semi he'd lived in for most of his life. Drawing on extensive interviews with his closest friends and colleagues in the game, author Leo McKinstry will help unravel the true character of this fascinating and often complex football legend.

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Author information

Leo McKinstry writes regularly for the Daily Mail, the Sunday Telegraph and the Spectator magazine on a wide range of subjects. Born in Belfast in 1962, he is a graduate of Cambridge University. He has authored several books on current affairs and two major sports biographies, including the critically acclaimed story of the Charlton brothers, Jack and Bobby, which won the WHSmith Sports Book of the Year Award.

Review quote

'McKinstry's book is a near masterpiece of biographical investigation' Daily Mail 'Delivers the goods...McKinstry's great merit is his ability to debunk some of the myths surrounding Ramsey' Spectator 'An outstanding biography' The Sunday Times 'Magnificent...an eloquent and empathetic book' Glasgow Herald 'The first truly comprehensive biography of England's greatest manager' Irish News 'For those interested in just how much our national game has changed and just how shabbily Ramsey was treated by the establishment, it is truly enlightening.' Derby Evening Telegraph 'McKinstry never shies away from Ramsay's nastier side, and his mistakes. Without passing judgement, he manages to paint a very well-rounded picture of a man who evoked strong feelings from those who knew him.' Cambrian News 'This summer, football enthusiasts should not dare pack a bucket and spade without taking Leo McKinstry's commanding biography of England's first, best and by far most interesting manager.' The Oldie