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Edited by Clive Leatherdale (2005) Paperback. 297x210mm
298 pages. Illustrated
ISBN 1-905328-00-1

The £40.00 hardback edition (1997) is out of print

"A profusely illustrated treasure." Daily Telegraph.
"Book of the Month." Goal, May 1997.
"Beautifully reproduced." Programme Monthly.


The Book of Football is a work of art. It is arguably the most encyclopaedic and lavishly produced volume ever published on the history of British football. The Book of Football was not originally a book at all, but a serialised magazine. It was published in 12 fortnightly instalments during the course of the 1905-06 season. Each instalment cost sixpence. Part 1 appeared on Friday, 20th October 1905 and the concluding Part 12 on 23rd March 1906. This was the year in which motor buses first appeared in London, and when the city's Bakerloo and Piccadilly Underground lines opened. The aim of the 'book' was to explore every aspect of football - the clubs, the league, the transfer system, tactics, training, the manufacture of boot and ball, football in schools and in the Army, the development of rugby and American Football. The Book of Football excels not just in content but also in style. Its various contributors wrote prose of poetic elegance, producing a book that is always enlightening and often hilarious. A treasure trove of fact and fun.

The Book of Football records the early history of (Woolwich) Arsenal, Aston Villa, Barnsley, Birmingham, Blackburn Rovers, Blackpool, Bolton Wanderers, Brentford, Bristol Rovers, Burnley, Burton United, Bury, Chelsea, Chesterfield, Corinthians, Derby County, Everton, Fulham, Gillingham (New Brompton), Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Luton Town, Manchester City, Manchester United, Middlesbrough, Newcastle United, Northampton Town, Nottingham Forest, Notts County, Plymouth Argyle, Portsmouth, Preston North End, Queen's Park, QPR, Reading, Sheffield United, Sheffield Wednesday, Southampton, Stoke, Sunderland, Tottenham Hotspur, Watford, WBA, West Ham United, Wolverhampton Wanderers, plus the big clubs in Scotland, Wales and Ireland.

Meet Willie Foulke, Chelsea's 22-stone goalkeeper. 'Little Willie' was capped against Wales in 1897. Meet the West Bromwich Albion players, out for a 'training walk'. There is 'no sauntering about'. Meet Alf Common, who cost Middlesbrough a record-breaking £1,000 from Sunderland. Read the goalkeeping tips of L Richmond Roose: 'The goalkeeper, like the silkworm, must produce his materials from himself.' Read about the emergence from the Association code of rugby and American Football.

The President of the Football Association Lord Kinnaird
The Antiquities of Football J. E. Vincent
The Romance of Aston Villa William McGregor
The Growth of Modern Football J. J. Bentley
The History of Woolwich Arsenal A. E. Kennedy
The Making of a Player Part I. The Forward Game W. I. Bassett
The Rise of Newcastle United J. H. Morrison
The All-Conquering New Zealanders W. S. Douglas
The History of Sheffield United Anon
Football Fiascos William McGregor
Bristol Rovers Anon
The Association Game in Scotland R. M. Connell
The Making of a Player Part II. Half-Back Play James W Crabtree
The Rise of the Football Association F. J. Wall
The Record of the Southampton Football Club A. E. Jones
The £. s. d. of Football William McGregor
Blackburn Rovers Anon
The Making of a Player Part III. The Full-Back Game Howard Spence
The Chelsea Football Club J. T. Robertson
The Rugby Union C. J. B. Marriott
The Tottenham Hotspur F.C. John Cameron
The Ball and The Boot - How they are Made William Shillcock
Annals of Stoke Football Club W. W. Cockbill
The Evolution of the Playing Pitch H. J. W. Offord
The Making of a Player Part IV. Goalkeeping L. Richmond Roose
Records of Burnley Football Club J. Summersgill
Football in the Army Captain E. G. Curtis
Fulham's Forward Movement H. E. Jackson
The Day's Work: How the Professional Footballer is Trained W. I. Bassett
The Football History of Bolton Wanderers J. K. Fletcher
Birmingham (late Small Heath) Football Club William McGregor
Public School Football: Part I. Association W. D. Nixon
Reading Football Club Records Anon
Public School Football: Part II. Rugby W. D. Nixon
The Rise to Fame of Liverpool Football Club Anon
The Famous West Bromwich Albion Football Club William McGregor
The Association Game: How the Ball should be Played William I. Bassett
Queen's Park Rangers Football Club H. J. Wood
Everton Football Club Louis T. Kelly
Schoolboy Football H. J. W. Offord
Burton United Football Club C. Grewcock
Queen's Park William McGregor
Big Transfers and the Transfer System William I. Bassett
Plymouth Argyle T. McLeod
Sunderland Football Club Anon
The League and the League System William McGregor
Blackpool Football Club J. Rawcliffe
The Progress of Portsmouth Football Club P. G. Whitmey
University Football (Association) Stanley S. Harris
The Famous Sheffield Wednesday Football Club Anon
The Football History of West Ham United E. S. King
The Rugby Game: Part I. Forward Play J. H. Rogers
The Story of Wolverhampton Wanderers B. W. Molton
The Association Game in Ireland J. W. Gordon
The Story of Luton Town Charles Green
The Rise of Middlesbrough Football Club George F. Allison
The Famous Corinthian Football Club Stanley S. Harris
The Rugby Game: Part II. Three-Quarter Play Arthur J. Gould
Annals of the Notts County Football Club Anon
Chesterfield Town Football Club George Oram
A Brief History of the Rugby Game in Wales A. T. Haberstraw
Nottingham Forest Football Club Anon
England's International Teams, and How they are Selected Alfred Davies
University Football (Rugby) H. Mainprice
The Leeds City Association Football Club A. W. Pullin
Proud Preston North End Anon
The Rugby Game in Scotland W. S. Douglas
Manchester United Football Club Anon
Football in America Edward B. Moss
The Art of Captaincy John Devey
Leicester Fosse Football Club Anon
The Principal Amateur Clubs of the Past C. W. Alcock
History of the Bury Football Club Anon
The Rugby Game: Part III. Half-Back Play Rev. R. H. Cattell
The Much-Abused Referee John Lewis
The Scottish Football League and its History R. M. Connell
Barnsley Football Club F. Lodge
A Brief History of Watford Football Club Albert Mills
The History of the Northern Union J. H. Smith
The Brentford Football Club Anon
The Rugby Game: Part IV. Full-Back Play J. F. Byrne
Northampton Town Football Club Howard Sleigh
The Southern League: its Rise and Progress Alfred Davis
The New Brompton Football Club W. I. Groombridge
Records of the Derby County Football Club Anon
Manchester City Football Club Anon