Scottish Football

Scottish Football


Requiem or Renaissance?

Henry McLeish

ISBN: 9781912147595

Binding: paperback

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About this book:

Did I only dream about Archie Gemmill scoring one of the greatest goals ever in beating Holland 3-2 in the 1978 World Cup?

Did Jim Baxter really play ‘keepie uppie’ and torment the life out of the weary World Cup winners England in 1967?

Were Celtic really the first British team to win the European Cup?

Have we obsessives become untethered from reality? 

Are we hanging on to a world real or imaginary, where football dominated our lives to such an extent, that it ‘was more than a game’, indeed ‘more important than life itself’?

Has my natural childhood football environment and each of its overlapping parts – cultural, religious, identity, class, political, intellectual, psychological, sociological, philosophical and, sadly, tribal – created the conditions for distorted and highly selective lapses of memory and reality?

I don’t think so.

In this personal and thought-provoking book, former footballer and First Minister Henry McLeish examines his own and his country’s dysfunctional relationship with football. Read this book and rethink your own relationship with the beautiful game in the country that took it to the world.


This is a thorough, fascinating and ultimately optimistic state of the Scottish game address from one of its wisest figures. Alan Pattullo, The Scotsman

Well researched, forward looking, passionately argued in favour of the sport we love. Gordon Brown, former Prime Minister

A must read for anyone who cares about the future of Scottish football. Paul Goodwin, co-found of the Scottish Football Supporters Association