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Arthur Rowe was a post-war football visionary in an era when the English game was wedded to outdated tactics and thinking. After taking over at Second Division Spurs he won promotion as champions and then the League title in successive seasons, a feat never repeated since. Yet it wasn’t so much the trophies that marked Rowe’s reign as much as Tottenham’s football. His ‘team of no stars’ played the ball first time along the floor and moved as one unit forward and back - a tactic that pre-dated Total Football by two decades and tiki-taka by half a century.

Yet while Spurs' football seemed to be from the jet age, the style of football in the rest of the country seemed to be dragged along by a horse and cart. During the thirties and forties English football had contented itself with bruising international victories over Continental opposition but the visit of Hungary in 1953, whose manager, Gusztáv Sebes, Rowe had coached before the war, exploded the myth of English football primacy as the Magnificent Magyars won 6-3 at Wembley and 7-1 in Budapest a year later.

During the period of navel-gazing that followed many critics pointed out that the solution to their problems lay right under their noses at White Hart Lane in the shape of Arthur Rowe and ‘push and run’. Sadly the enthusiasm for Rowe’s stellar soccer wasn’t shared by either the FA or the directorate at Tottenham and he was given little to spend on an ageing squad.

Arthur moved on to Crystal Palace and, playing the same push and run style as Spurs, they won the Fourth Division that season and, although Arthur stepped down in 1965, they fulfilled his promise by reaching the First Division in 1969.

As Norman Turpin’s extensive illustrated biography makes clear, the tactics of Gusztáv Sebes, Rinus Michels, Johann Cruyff, Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp can all be traced back to Arthur Rowe - a forgotten English visionary whose ideas were taken up enthusiastically by European coaches yet continually overlooked by his countrymen to the detriment of the national game.

PUBLISHED 7th August 2023




A Tale Of Two Cities by John Ludden

Be a Football Artist by Paul Trevillion

BRIAN CLOUGH by Steve Brookes

Bursting the Bubble by John O'Kane

Centurions by Harry Harris

Champions at Last by Harry Harris

Flyin High by Mike Whittaker

Football Wizard - The Billy Meredith Story by John Harding

From The Stars
by John Ludden

In My Blood by Gerry Blayney

In Search Of The Double - Sunderland AFC 1912-13
by Mark Metcalfe

Italia '90 Revisited
by Harry Harris

Kicking Through The Troubles
by John White

Manchester United '19'
by Harry Harris

Old Trafford by Iain McCartney

Red, White & Blackmore by Clayton Blackmore
& Wayne Barton

Sex, Food and Man City
by Kim Malpas

Teenage Kicks by Phill Gatenby

The Boss: Spurs by Harry Harris

The Complete Eric Cantona
by Darren Phillips

The Forgotten Legends
by Charbel Boujaoude,
Iain Mccartney & Frank Colbert

The Killing of Emiliano Sala by Harry Harris


The Red Eye by David Blatt

The Roman Conquest - Chelsea FC Champions of Europe 2012 by Harry Harris

Too Good To Go Down by Wayne Barton

When Football Was Fun
by Derek Potter

We Never Win At Home
by Don Price

You Can't Win Anything With Kids by Wayne Barton


Atkinson for England
by Gary James & Mark Brown

One More Time
by Mick Dilworth

Osprey by Matthew Corrigan

The Carpet King of Texas
by Paul Kennedy

The Devil's Dust
by Brendan Yates



Black Tears

Broken Youth

Covering Up

Grow Wars

Northern Girls Love Gravy

Riding Solo

Sleepless in Manchester

Teabags & Tears

Team Handed

The Lane

The Pudding Club

The Square

The Visitors

You can download all Karen's novels for Ipad here


100 Unhip Albums by Ian Moss

Backstage Pass by Joe Matera

Collyhurst & Moston Boxing Club: 100 years by John Ludden

A Life of Inquiry
by Malcolm Norcliffe Jones

Blazing Squad by Carl Moran

Don't Look Back in Anger
by Cafrl Spiers

by Mick Middles

George Best & Me
by Malcolm Wagner

Grafters: Mancs Abroad
by Mark Blaney

Manchester Mavericks by Colin Blaney

Manchester Musical History Tour by Craig Gill & Phill Gatenby

Morrissey's Manchester
by Phill Gatenby

Pieces of Morrissey by Matt Jacobson

S-172: Lee Harvey Oswald's Links to Intelligence Agencies
by Glenn B Fleming

Sit Down! Listen To This!
by Bill Sykes

The Diary of a Mother...
by Caroline Burch

The Two Faces of Lee Harvey Oswald by Glenn Fleming


Coronavirus Street by Rob Martin

This Country by Rob Martin








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Ian Moss’s second volume of singles reviews, following The Original Soundtrack that covered 1970-79, covers a decade of extreme political upheaval. From the threat of nuclear war and the miner’s strike to acid house and the fall of the Berlin Wall, there was plenty to get worked up about in the eighties, but great societal panics often bring with them fantastic music.

As a part of no tribe Ian runs his eye over the profusion of musical genres produced by the decade from the dying embers of post-punk to early house and garage, the rise of hip-hop, the burst of colour brought by new romantics and synth-pop which sat besides the likes of George Michael, Michael Jackson, Prince and Madonna at the top of the pop charts.

Yet even these stars were soon stopped in their tracks by advances in technology that allowed hits to be composed in bedrooms by innovative and talented artists who would never have got through the door at a major label in previous eras yet became the basis for whole new musical genres.
Ian Moss takes the reader on a journey through arguably the most influential decade in music history.


Ernest Mangnall holds a unique place in the history of Mancunian football as the only man to manage both the city's major clubs, but his legacy runs much deeper than that as he also played a key role in both clubs finding new homes and even oversaw the move of Bolton Wanderers to Burnden Park.

He is perhaps best remembered as the man who brought Manchester United their first major honours following the takeover by John Henry Davies. There he won two League Championships, an FA Cup and two Charity Shields during a nine-year reign and the irony won't be lost on City fans that those achievements were helped in part by the exodus of players from their club in the wake of an FA enquiry which found the club guilty for making 'under the counter' payments.

Yet it was Mangnall's cunning as an administrator that allowed United to cherry-pick the cream of City's players luring the likes of Billy Meredith, Sandy Turnbull and Herbert Burgess to the club. The result was United's first great era but the club soon became mired in controversy as a number of FA enquiries that led to Davies being forced to relinquish control.

Mangnall later moved to City in 1914 where he stayed for a decade guiding the club through the devastation of the war before finding them a new home at Maine Road, a place still that remains in the hearts of City fans to this day.



The first black African team to qualify for a World Cup suffered casual racism and horrific stereotyping in the western media, were accused of throwing games by opponents and learned they were being conned out of bonuses by their own countrymen mid-tournament and as a result ended with one of the worst records in the tournament's history - conceding 14 goals in three games while scoring none in reply.

The World Cup campaign was dogged by controversy. When Zaire players learned that their bonuses had been syphoned off by hangers-on before the second game they threatened to strike and only the threat of violence forced them on to the pitch, where a demoralised team were hammered 9-0 by Yugoslavia.
Upon their return to their homeland players were banned from leaving the country and the most militant were never selected for Zaire again.

Zaire '74 traces the fortunes of the most colourful finalists in World Cup history who blazed a trail for the likes of Cameroon, Senegal and Ghana in subsequent decades yet suffered as a result of the corruption of the Mobutu regime.




7" SINGLES - VOLUME 1 - 1970-79

by Ian Keith Moss - Foreword by Marc Riley

The Original Soundtrack traces the development of Ian's musical taste during his teenage years as a self-confessed 'misfit'. The records selected here provided him with 'an escape from humdrum routine' before teenage emotional crises made them take on even more importance as the 'oxygen' keeping him alive, later admitting that 'without music I was nothing'. This first volume covers Ian's growth from callow teenager to young adult during the golden years of popular music.





Ged Duffy might be the unluckiest man in Manchester music. He could have managed New Order; he could have been the bass player in The Cult; he could have seen his band, Stockholm Monsters, take the mantle of the Happy Mondays and become the breakout scally-band on the coolest record label in the world... but of course none of this happened.

Told with wit and a photographic memory for gigs and dates, Ged recalls his years as a stagehand at the Russell Club and later The Hacienda, touring with New Order and then turning down the chance to tour America with them, leaving Stockholm Monsters when they were about to hit it big, life in the colony of artists, oddballs and dropouts in Hulme and how he managed to successfully avoid fame and fortune.



“A blockbuster from the Sleazebuster gives astonishing insight into the dark side of the Beautiful Game. A must-read.”
Henry Winter, The Times.

When Graham Bean was appointed the Football Association’s first Compliance Officer, he was instantly nicknamed ‘The Sleazebuster’ by the tabloid press and quickly made headlines investigating football wrongdoing on and off the pitch which covered everything from dissent towards match officials by players to alleged financial corruption in the boardroom by chairmen.

After leaving the FA Graham started his own business ‘Football Factors’ which represented players and managers when they were summoned to appear before an FA Disciplinary Hearing. Among his stellar list of clients were Alex Ferguson, Rafa Benitez, David Moyes, Duncan Ferguson and many more and Graham’s work with Fergie in particular led to more headlines as the FA sought to silence the dominant figure in the game.

Graham went on to take up senior positions inside football clubs including working for Leeds United under notorious owner Mario Cellino during one of the most turbulent reigns in football history.







The history of any football club boils down to one thing: great matches; be it a significant win, a great performance, a notable debut, an incredible moment or a disastrous defeat, the big games and historic turning points are what supporters remember. The Making of a Football Dynasty tells the story of one hundred of Manchester United’s most significant games and traces the birth and growth of the club from its humble origins as a railway works team to the biggest football club in the world.





Manchester's Free Trade Hall was the most important popular music venue in Great Britain. After several incarnations, the current building was constructed in the wake of the Manchester Blitz and opened in 1951 as the new home of the city's esteemed Halle Orchestra. Yet it was popular music which would secure the venue its fame as it responded to each wave of popular music from trad jazz and skiffle, through rock 'n' roll and folk to prog, punk and heavy metal. From Billie Holiday to Blondie, Duke Ellington to Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd to Happy Mondays, Rolling Stones to The Beach Boys, David Bowie to The Smiths and Suede, just about everyone who mattered played there. The Free Trade Hall was also the venue for incendiary gigs by Bob Dylan and the Sex Pistols which changed the course of music history.




From being the butt of football jokes to domestic treble winners, Manchester City fans have endured more ups and downs than most supporters over the past 30 years as they journeyed down the divisions before bouncing back in spectacular style under a new owner with unlimited wealth.
Yet throughout this long rollercoaster journey City fans stayed loyal to their club averaging over 25,000 most seasons when other large clubs have seen attendances slump well below that in bleak times.

What emerges is a support still in disbelief that after years of their team being the punchline for jokes by their neighbours and rivals they now rule the roost in English football.



For someone who is seemingly afraid of almost everything Garry Stanley is something of a genius, for he has an innate ability to entertain people or more specifically to understand exactly what will entertain Mancunians sufficiently to make them throw a quid or two in a guitar case.
Garry is the inspiration and emotional glue who holds the most famous busking band in the UK, the Piccadilly Rats, together.

Each of the Rats has led a colourful life on society’s margins; there is former friend of the Krays Ray Boddington, whose pavement performances were so beloved of Mancunian audiences that his untimely death was commemorated on the front page of the Manchester Evening News and bass player Heath whose personal journey led him to cross three continents before finding his spiritual home on the corner of Lever Street and Piccadilly Gardens in Manchester city centre.






Most Manchester United fans know one of the founding fables of the club... of how Harry Stafford and his Saint Bernard dog helped save the club's forerunner, Newton Heath, and pave the way for the formation of the new club. But what became of United's saviour?

In his ground-breaking biography of United's founding father, Ean Gardiner traces Harry's life from cradle to grave and discovers a world of blacklegs, brown envelopes and red herrings inhabiting a ripping yarn of bribery, bigamy, suicide, poisoned beer and a footballing elephant.



‘BIG JIM’ HOLTON was a cult hero for Manchester United and Scotland during the heady early 1970s. Although he had the terrace anthem ‘Six Foot Two, Eyes of Blue’ bestowed on him by fans of both club and country, his eyes were the deepest brown and it is debatable whether indeed he was even 6 feet 2 inches tall!

After a meteoric United career, injury and misfortune led him to move on to Sunderland before helping Coventry stave off relegation. A career in the US alongside Pele and Beckenbauer also beckoned before he retired to successfully run several pubs in Coventry. Jim always kept himself fit, which made it all the more shocking when he died of a heart attack while out jogging in 1993. He was just 42 years old





Foreword by MICK MIDDLES

"When forced to choose between truth and legend - print the legend" TONY WILSON

"A much needed corrective"

Many myths surround the explosion of punk in Manchester and its repercussions. Martin Ryan caught the punk bug in 1976 just like everybody else, it's just that his memory is not clouded by apocrypha.

Concentrating on the years 1976, 1977 and 1978 'Friends of Mine' is a blow by blow account of how punk really happened in Manchester. A much needed corrective.





Manchester United have won every major honour available - yet for supporters of a certain vintage their favourite season of all was spent not battling for top honours but in the second flight of English football. Following a spectacular decline following the break-up of the 1968 European Cup winners, United were relegated in April 1974 and the following season was supposed to be a humiliation for the club. Instead, the reds responded by re-inventing themselves for a new era and attracting a whole new generation of supporters.

As Wayne Barton discovers, the modern day Manchester United was born during their sojourn in the second tier. From training pitch to boardroom and under the guidance of wise-cracking manager Tommy Docherty, the club moved on from a state of post-war stasis and shaped itself for the next quarter century. Without the pressure to maintain a place in the top flight, The Doc helped reinvigorate a club still struggling to come to terms with the modern era.



“Each one of the punches that landed put me in a different place; a club, a pub, a brothel -
scattered memories of crazy nights out,
flashing images; the whiskey, cocaine and the countless girls... What the hell was I thinking?”

Michael Gomez was a talented featherweight with the world at his feet but his meteoric rise through the world rankings was derailed by his activities outside the ring.

If his life had been fictionalised, people would believe it far-fetched; he was charged (and later acquitted) of murder, spent 48 seconds clinically dead after being stabbed, attempted suicide and saw his long-suffering wife finally give up the ghost and leave him.

Perhaps the question should be how he is still here at all...

Acclaimed sports writer John Ludden has brought to vivid life Gomez's dramatic life and ghost written one of the most compelling stories in British sporting history.





Harpur Murray is devastated when her heroin addict brother Brady commits suicide. But why can't her mother talk about the night her son died?

Meanwhile, an internet romance with an old fl ame makes her question if she ever really loved her husband, Neil. Was he just a safe rebound following a violent relationship?

In Karen Woods' labyrinthine Mancunian thriller, Harpur's family seem to hold the secrets to her son's death but will she ever learn the truth?





While Mikey Milne is locked up, his shoplifter mother Rachel is forced to fend for herself. Her life is soon in danger when menacing local gangster Davo fi nds out that Mikey ripped him off for £10,000 and gives her 48 hours to pay up.

Mikey's girlfriend Sarah is from a nicer part of town; as green as grass, she doesn't seem to realise the extent of her boyfriend's involvement with local gangsters or that her well-connected family have threatened to have him bumped off if he ever goes near her again. She's smitten with him and hopes he can change...

In Karen Woods 15th novel, prison walls can't keep the outside world at bay forever as dark family secrets come back to haunt fearless Mikey Milne.




Mother of four Karen Woods uses her experiences growing up on a Manchester council estate in her writing. Having left school with no qualifications, she spent her formative years raising children and suffering domestic abuse.

Karen has been snapped up by a leading literary agent and her first novel, Broken Youth, was staged at the Lowry Theatre, Salford in June 2013. She was recently awarded the Learning for Work Individual Award for 2013.

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