Red on Red
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What to expect
The untold story of the most contested fixture in world football
Liverpool and Manchester. Two gloriously independent-minded, eclectic, culturally vibrant places. Yet the inhabitants dislike each other with a passion that is visceral. It is a divide that spans generations, across class, gender and ethnicity. And it has grown over the years, largely driven by one thing: football.
The dark, malignant loathing shared by the followers of Liverpool and Manchester United has seeped into every aspect of life in the two cities. Football is not a barometer of disdain, as it is in places like Glasgow or Istanbul or Moscow. In northwest England, it is the engine of animosity.
How did it come to this? Why did things turn so nasty? And what does it say about the two cities in which the clubs are based?
Written by a Scouser and a Manc in a rare collaboration, Red on Red addresses the divide by talking to those involved in ten seminal football matches. It speaks to the characters who patrolled and provoked the rivalry: Alex Ferguson, Kenny Dalglish, Steven Gerrard and Gary Neville, among many others. Also questioned are the fans, the administrators, the referees, the police, and politicians. And through each legendary game, its authors tell the full story of the most extraordinary division not just in football, but in modern Britain.
This is Red on Red, a rivalry like no other.
‘A great insight into this ancient rivalry, the rants, duels, the reasons…A must read.’ Henry Winter, The Times
‘Superb – if you have been brought up on the greatest rivalry in football, you will love this book.’
Daniel Taylor, The Athletic
‘Fascinating…a must-read not just for the fans of both of these great clubs but anyone with a passion for football.’
John Cross, The Daily Mirror
‘White and McNulty’s writing is so astonishingly powerful and vivid. It brings back so many memories – of famous battles on the pitch, and on the streets outside. They capture it all – the noise, the tension, even the smell. The glory and the fear. This isn’t just football history, it’s football literature.’ Michael Crick, author of The Boss: The Many Sides of Alex Ferguson
‘Phil McNulty and Jim White have delved into the most ferocious of rivalries. Two clubs. Two winners. The animosity for each other was a natural spin-off from their geographical closeness. As a player, you couldn’t show weakness. The way it should be. Red v Red.’ Jim Beglin, Liverpool and Republic Of Ireland defender
Praise for Jim White’s Manchester United: A Biography…
‘A wonderfully entertaining history.’ Sunday Telegraph
‘Championship sportswriting.’ The Guardian
‘Engaging.’ The Independent
‘When historians 1,000 years from now try to fathom the cult of Manchester United Football Club, White will be a good place to start.’ Financial Times
Praise for Jim White’s You’ll Win Nothing With Kids: Fathers, Sons and Football…
‘The Fever Pitch of the junior league.’ Sunday Times
‘A fizzingly funny, sad, thoughtful book.’ Sunday Telegraph
‘Touching, involving and really quite enthralling.’ Daily Telegraph
‘A pleasure to read.’ The Independent