Monday, 1 November 2010

New Book

The London 2012 Olympic Games will see the return of a football team that the world has not seen for more than forty years.

Only in the Olympics have the four Home Nations of the UK managed to unite and a century after last winning the Olympic football tournament, the British side will return for London 2012.

GB United? British Olympic Football and the end of the Amateur Dream is the first and only book to tell the full story of the UK’s Olympic efforts – which saw the team
twice crowned world champions before petering out in the qualifiers for the 1972 Olympics in Munich.

Now, four decades on the Olympic team is being revived as a one-off for London 2012 and the side will be one of the most talked about in world football.

GB United? author Steve Menary said, “The team for 2012 is supposed to be only English players but the British Olympic Association have not given up on the idea of a united team.

"With the tournament following directly after Euro 2012 and Fabio Capello being increasingly pressured to use younger players for the England team, there’s going to be a lot of strain on resources if England qualify for Poland and the Ukraine as the Olympics is an U-23 event, and there’s also still the issue of who the manager is going to be.”

Featuring scores of interviews with Olympic players, GB United? also traces the history of the amateur ethos of the game’s founders and how that credo died ofering up a long-lost world that contrasts starkly with today’s over-commercialised football industry, but still provides an essential insight to the problems facing the current Olympic team.

Examining the successes and failiures of previous managers of the Olympic team, including some of football’s leading names, such as Sir Matt Busby and Walter Winterbottom; while also featuring the leading amateur players, such as Vivian Woodward of Spurs and Chelsea, Bill Slater of Wolves and Jim Lewis, who won the league with Chelsea in 1955 while still an amateur – and wrote the book’s foreword.