Vital Football

Latest QPR News

'My Father & Other Working Class Football Heroes'

'My Father & Other Working Class Football Heroes'


Vital QPR member Toboboly reviews the book ' My Father & Other Working Class Football Heroes' by Gary Imlach.

The basic premise of this book is that Imlach's dad was an international footballer who spent his life in the game but when he passed away Imlach found that he knew relatively little of his dads life in football, this book charts his rise from playing in a small fishing village in Scotland through to an FA Cup final and World Cup Finals and the difficulty trying to maintain a career in the game after his playing days were over.

As a younger fan I know relatively little on how football was organised and run pre-Premiership days. This book is great at explaining how in the Fifties players literally were indentured servants and almost 'slaves' as Blatter recently called them. At the mercy and whim of the clubs who paid them less than they could get as a plumber or joiner. And who could not only stop them from joining other clubs but could also not pay them and not transfer them, holding players and their families to ransom or transferring them to the opposite part of the country without any warning.

The writing style is warm and Imlach doesn't shy away from mentioning personal moments or the fact that he may be biased towards his father's side. Tales of the ineptness of the Scottish FA at both the 1958 World Cup finals and at being too tight to give players caps apart from the Home internationals makes the reader feel as angry as Imlach as to the injustices many players went through just to play a game they loved. A large part of the book focuses on Stuart Imlach's man of the match performance in the 1959 FA Cup win of Nottingham Forest. One of the best stories regarding a player who broke his leg during the game but refused to be operated on until he had seen Forest win and his captain pick up two winners medals!

A year after the FA Cup win and the Forest team were dismantled and so began the end of Stuart Imlach's playing career. He moved around the lower leagues for a while before a knee injury stopped him playing and he went into coaching and training with some success. However once again the medieval way football was run meant that he never quite enjoyed the success he could have probably achieved yet Imlach Snr. never fell out of love with the game.

Overall the book gives a fascinating and very personal view of what it took to be a footballer during the Fifties and early Sixties before the money and celebrity came to the game. There are lots of details of the transfer systems which could have bogged the book down but Imlach has researched well and there are always examples which make it both interesting and easy to understand. There are also some very good photo's of Fifties players and Imlach uses many newspaper cuttings so you get a real feel for the time period. Definately one worth reading again.

Score 7.5/10

Do you have a review you want us to feature? Email qpr@vitalfootball.co.uk





Have your say on The Forum

Follow us on Twitter

Become a fan on Facebook - Become a fan of Vital QPR

Writer:Boxer
Date:Monday October 26 2009
Time: 5:30PM

Best of Vital Network

Login to post a comment

Recent Queens Park Rangers Articles

Championship Cost Per Goal So Far In 2016/17

The end of the Championship campaign of 2016/17 is only a month and a bit away from fans across the country but as we go in to the remaining weeks of the campaign...

EFL Goal Of 2016 Contenders Named

Ten EFL professional footballers find themselves nominated for the treasured Goal Of The Year gong for 2016.

More Reliable Than A Championship Octopus? (21/3/17)

Time for the new special computer that crunches the numbers to determine the final Championship positions for 2016/17.

Ngbakoto In Team Of The Week (21/3/17)

Queens Park Rangers are represented in the latest Football League team of the week that has been selected after this week's action.

Archived Vital QPR Articles

Vital QPR articles from

Site Journalists

Boxer
Editor email
Profile
sandydl
no email
Profile
Superhoop50
no email
Profile
danielqpr
no email
Profile
JackSupple
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

MotM v Rotherham
Suggested By:
Smithies1%
Furlong0%
Onuoha0%
Hall6%
Lynch3%
Bidwell0%
Freeman9%
Luongo9%
Ngbakoto69%
Sylla0%
Smith3%
Washington0%
Goss0%
Morrison0%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Newcastle 38 24 6 8 78 38
2 Brighton 38 23 8 7 77 30
3 Huddersfield 37 22 5 10 71 4
4 Leeds Utd 38 21 6 11 69 16
5 Reading 38 20 7 11 67 2
6 Sheff Wed 38 18 8 12 62 9
7 Fulham 38 16 13 9 61 19
8 Norwich 38 16 9 13 57 9
9 Preston 38 15 12 11 57 6
10 Derby County 38 14 11 13 53 3
11 Barnsley 38 14 9 15 51 0
12 Aston Villa 38 13 12 13 51 0
13 Cardiff 38 14 9 15 51 -1
14 Brentford 38 14 8 16 50 3
15 Q.P.R. 38 14 8 16 50 -5
16 Wolves 37 12 9 16 45 -2
17 Ipswich 38 10 15 13 45 -9
18 Birmingham 38 11 12 15 45 -16
19 Bristol City 38 11 8 19 41 -3
20 Forest 38 11 8 19 41 -11
21 Burton 38 10 11 17 41 -14
22 Blackburn 38 9 13 16 40 -11
23 Wigan 38 8 10 20 34 -13
24 Rotherham 38 4 5 29 17 -54
Write for Vital Football
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
The Vital Football Members League

Recent Queens Park Rangers Results (view all)

Queens Park Rangers Fixtures (view all)

Mar 31 2017 7:45PM : Derby County (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 4 2017 7:45PM : Aston Villa (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 7 2017 7:45PM : Brighton & Hove Albion (H)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 14 2017 3:00PM : Bristol City (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 17 2017 3:00PM : Sheffield Wednesday (H)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 22 2017 3:00PM : Brentford (a)
Sky Bet Championship

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.The Uncredibale Hulk33
2.QPR4Me14
3.dustman3
4.Bunyip2
5.ImSitiv1
Vital Football Comment