In Search of Alan Gilzean: The Lost Legacy of a Dundee and Spurs Legend

BackPage Press
7
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NOMINATED FOR BEST FOOTBALL BOOK OF 2010 IN THE BRITISH SPORTS BOOK AWARDS 
True greatness does not feel the need to proclaim itself from the rooftops. It is happy to state its case quietly, yet with utter conviction. Alan Gilzean was a truly great footballer. Every observer of his talent confirms this as an indisputable fact: from the legendary Jimmy Greaves, who regards him as the best striker he ever played with, to Don Revie, the former Leeds United and England manager, who described the former Tottenham striker as the best touch player in Europe, and Spurs fans whose spine-tingling refrain, Gilzean, Gilzean, Born is the King of White Hart Lane, continues to echo down the generations. 

It is now 36 years since Gilzean retired from professional football and his life and times have become shrouded in mystery and rumour. All that exists are the memories of his greatness ... but how long before even those are forgotten forever? After fans on Tottenham Hotspur online forums claim that Gilzean is living as a down-and-out, James Morgan, a lifelong Spurs fan and sports journalist with The Herald, Scotland's leading quality newspaper, is filled with a fierce desire to separate fact from fiction and sets out on a journey In Search of Alan Gilzean. 


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About the author

James Morgan is a sports journalist with The Herald, Scotland's leading quality newspaper. Born in Northern Ireland in 1974, he grew up on stories of the great Spurs double-winning team of the 1960s and has been a Tottenham Hotspur supporter since waking one Christmas morning to discover a hair shirt of an Admiral kit waiting for him on the living-room settee. Thirty-two years on, he is still waiting for Spurs to repeat the feats that his late father, Jim, was so enamoured by.

He wrote In Search Of Alan Gilzean during the months after his first child was born; in the few short hours between nappy changes, bottle feeds and bath times. There were, of course, floods of tears along the way. Some of them were even his son's.
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Additional Information

Publisher
BackPage Press
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Published on
Sep 7, 2010
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Pages
240
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ISBN
9780956497109
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Language
English
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Genres
Sports & Recreation / Football
Sports & Recreation / Soccer
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Daring, flashy, innovative, volatile—no matter what they call him, Zlatan Ibrahimovic is one of soccer’s brightest stars. A top-scoring striker and captain of the Swedish national team, he has dominated the world’s most storied teams, including Ajax, Juventus, Inter Milan, Barcelona, AC Milan, and Paris Saint-Germain. But his life wasn’t always so charmed.
 
Born to Balkan immigrants who divorced when he was a toddler, Zlatan learned self-reliance from his rough-and-tumble neighborhood. While his father, a Bosnian Muslim, drank to forget the war back home, his mother’s household was engulfed in chaos. Soccer was Zlatan’s release. Mixing in street moves and trick plays, Zlatan was a wild talent who rode to practice on stolen bikes and relished showing up the rich kids—opponents and teammates alike. Goal by astonishing goal, the brash young outsider grew into an unlikely prodigy and, by his early twenties, an international phenomenon.
 
Told as only the man himself could tell it, featuring stories of friendships and feuds with the biggest names in the sport, I Am Zlatan is a wrenching, uproarious, and ultimately redemptive tale for underdogs everywhere.

Praise for I Am Zlatan

“Terrific . . . Far more insightful than your typical jock memoir, Ibra’s book tells his story of growing up as the son of immigrants in Sweden and pulls no punches when it comes to his opinions of some of the biggest names in the game.”—Sports Illustrated

“The most compelling autobiography ever to appear under a footballer’s name.”—The Guardian
 
“The story of Zlatan—from his days as an immigrant kid juggling a soccer ball so he won’t get bullied to his emergence as the genius player who scored the greatest goal ever—is as compelling and fancy-footed as his game.”—Aleksandar Hemon, National Book Award finalist and author of The Lazarus Project

“I love this book. I love it because it’s so much bigger than soccer. I Am Zlatan is a story of hope and grit and what an immigrant kid who comes from nothing can accomplish with hard work and belief in himself. It’s also a beautiful window into our new, more open, more diverse world.”—Marcus Samuelsson, bestselling author of Yes, Chef
 
“Probably the bestselling European immigrant’s tale since Zadie Smith’s White Teeth . . . Once you get past the obligatory snigger prompted by the phrase ‘footballer’s autobiography,’ you can see that Zlatan’s book strangely resembles an earlier immigrant’s tale: Portnoy’s Complaint.”—Financial Times

“He is skillful. He is outspoken. He is Zlatan.”—The New York Times
 
“The best sports autobiography in years.”—PolicyMic


From the Trade Paperback edition.
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