Excellently written book that flowed well and reminded me of the events at the time Possibly the best book of it s type that I have read Revie and Clough were fascinating characters Don Revie And Brian Clough Were Born A Brisk Walk Away From Each Other In Middlesbrough, In And Respectively They Were Brought Up In A Town Ravaged By The Depression And Went On To Become Highly Successful Professional Footballers Then, As Young Managers, They Both Took Clubs Languishing In The Doldrums Leeds United And Derby County And Moulded Them Into Championship WinnersDespite The Myriad Similarities, These Two Sons Of The Tees Were As Different In Character As Richard Nixon And John F Kennedy A Bitter Rivalry Developed Between Them, Which In Turn Enlivened And Then Blighted English Football In The S And SIn Clough And Revie, Exclusive Interviews With Players, Relatives And Friends Shed Fresh Light On These Two Intriguing Characters Part Footballing Chronicle, Part Social History, The Book Is A Revelatory Exploration Of The Rivalry Between The Two Men It Brings A Fresh Perspective On Their Early Years In The North East, Tells How They Nearly Became Teammates And Explains Why The Feud Began And What Its Repercussions Were Clough buccaneering, maverick football genius Revie unbuccaneering, unmaverick football genius Can they be friends Of course not Everyone knows that They both got the job done though, so take your pick If you re contemplating reading this book you ll already know about them being born within inches of each other in a teeming Middlesborough alleyway and their conjoined careers thereafter Revie wins the league with Leeds Clough wins the league with Derby Revie leaves Leeds Clough takes over Leeds to win the league better Revie gets the England job coveted by Clough Clough goes to Nottingham Forest and wins the European Cup twice All that stuff All that stuff which, come to think of it, isn t in this book Instead, prepare to wrap up warm and spend evenings in the rainy postwar north east watching Middlesborough Reserves as Hermiston conducts a successful attempt to shed new light on this rivalry to end all rivalries This is unashamedly a book for the connoisseur anorak, and I loved the way in which our man Hermiston brought dusty old team sheets back to life There are some brilliant vignettes star players falling off their bikes on the way home from the pub and missing important games, Colin Grainger supplementing his footballing income by crooning in local clubs, billed as The Voice With A Kick In It loads of them, and they are what makes this book what it is It would ve been nice to have had Clough and Revie s whole careers covered, obviously But if that had happened, there would ve been no room for all those tiny details, and this would ve been a very pedestrian book Instead, it provides a fascinating and entertaining understanding of the lost environment in which the most famous personal rivalry in football was born, and if your boat has ever been floated by that sort of thing, you re going to love it. All books about Brian Clough are enjoyable, and this one is no exception, but it doesn t really bear comparison with Clough s own take on events in his autobiographies Some interesting snippets of information though, and it does help in putting things into perspective An interesting take on some previously well trodden paths, this book suggests strongly than previous works involving the men just how connected their lives were and makes for an interesting read in doing so The author, by way of alternating biographical updates draws out the conclusion that Clough Revie not only grew up in close proximity to each other but would have been influenced by very similar cultures factors, such as the hard times of the 30 s 40 s and the impact of the war Both men s early heroes were Middlesbrough players and both were blessed with a real talent for the game Much of what I read about Clough was familiar to me, but much of the story of Revie was new to me and frankly surprising as he was shown to be a sensitive and decent man I did wonder as reading this book if the author went a little easy on the problems that both men encountered and the flaws in their personalities The story did touch upon the allegations that swirled around Revie in his later life about how he may have tried to buy the results of matches but did not test them strongly A decent case was made, however, for much of the mud that was thrown around being by way of the FA s attempts to discredit Revie after he resigned from the post of England manager and moved to the Middle East The book s biggest impact upon me was the manner in which it made me rethink my attitude toward Don Revie The explanation that he often had to support members of his extended family explained his attitude towards money as did his upbringing in the depths of the depression that beset Britain in the 1930 s There are some gems in this book, such as when Brian Clough hosted Don Revie s son at a Derby County match and spent up to ten minutes before kickoff telling him what a great manager his Dad was Trying to understand why the initially cordial relationship between the two men deteriorated is one of the key themes of the book The author suggests it may have been Clough s disillusionment at what he regarded as Revie s influence over referees Other theories in the book point to the simple fact that Revie s teams were, often than not, successful against Clough s teams Whatever the reason these were both very complex characters and enigmas even to those that knew them This is a good book but one that could have continued beyond the point it stopped 1977 a detailed view of the later years when Clough s drinking took greater hold may have given a fuller picture of quite how similar different these two men were but this was an interesting read.
David Higham Literary, Film and TV Agents
- 352 pages
- Clough and Revie
- Roger Hermiston
- 07 December 2017 Roger Hermiston