Football Nation : Sixty Years of the Beautiful Game by Andrew Ward & John Williams
Football is at the heart of British national identity, intrinsically linked to our social history. Through more than forty fascinating stories Football Nation reveals the hidden and not-so-hidden history of the game since 1945. From the mass audiences of austerity Britain and the introduction of floodlights at Accrington Stanley in the 1950s, through the escalating hooliganism of the 1970s and the arrival of the first all-seater stadium in England at Coventry in the 1980s, to the Hillsborough disaster and the arrival of the Premiership, Andrew Ward and John Williams reveal the truth about the national game as it once was and is today int he age of the satellite television, celebrity culture and extreme wealth. Looking back at the days when footballers were amateurs who travelled to matches with the fans, right through to the present day when top-flight players command a higher weekly wage than the average spectator can earn in a year, Football Nation is informed, wryly amusing, often surprising and always vastly entertaining. It offers an entirely fresh perspective on the history of the beautiful game in Britain.