Footballers’ biographies: 5 of the worst

Unless you’ve spent the last 24 hours on Mars, by now you’re probably aware that Sir Alex Ferguson’s biography, rather unimaginatively titled My Autobiography, will hit the shelves tomorrow.

The former Manchester United manager might no longer furiously chew his gum on the touchlines, but he’s lost none of the fire that kept him at the top of British game for over a quarter of a century and has ruffled more than a few feathers with his memoirs.

Some consider Fergie’s honesty an unprovoked attack upon some his former loyal servants, other are disappointed at the lack of even juicier details but while writing a biography is always likely to generate discontent in some quarters, at least Sir Alex should be given credit for producing a punching book for, as we illustrate below, it could have been much, much worse for the readers.

Here’s a list of arguably the worst five footballers’ biographies ever written.

1) Wayne Rooney’s “My story so far”

Why would anybody feel the need to release a biography shortly after having turned 20 is anyone’s guess, but the Manchester United striker thought it would be a good idea to release a book documenting his early days in the glitzy world of football.

Completely bereft of any interesting or insightful anecdote, the book isn’t even remotely entertaining, although Rooney managed to get sued by David Moyes for the way he portrayed his former and current manager in the book.

Not happy with his first literary opera, Rooney went on to publish a second book, My decade in the Premier League, which sold just over 6,000 copies.

2) David Beckham’s “My World”

David Beckham’s world is his own world and, as such, remains a universe the overwhelming majority among us can only aspire to.

However, while a glamorous wife, an incredibly attractive look and a huge bank account might remain distant dreams, we know even too much about Beckham’s universe, which has been splashed all over the papers for years and which, consequentially, makes this book look about as entertaining as listening to Michael Owen describing the differences between beige and dark beige.

A polished PR exercise and nothing more, Becks could take some advices from his former manager in terms of writing biographies.

3) David Seaman’s “Safe Hands”

Aptly, given the title, Seaman’s hands – or rather, those of his ghostwriter – were very safe indeed in the writing of the former Arsenal goalkeeper’s biography.

So safe in fact, that the book is painfully boring at times as Seaman fails to add any sort of insightful detail, despite a largely successful career which span over two of the most crucial decades in English football’s history.

The book is probably worth reading for Arsenal fans, but the majority of neutrals will find it hard to get past the first few chapters.

4) Steven Gerrard’s “My Story”

Unlike fellow Kop legend Jamie Carragher, Gerrard’s book is a wonderful cure for insomnia, unless your allegiances lie in the red half of Merseyside, and even then you’d struggle to declare this book a masterpiece.

The England captain’s love for his club shines through as expected, but the book lacks the punch and interesting details one would expect from one of the Premier League’s most iconic players of the last 15 years.

While not as atrociously bad as other efforts, Gerrard’s biography is another overly mundane, run of the mill, book doing nothing to dismiss the notion that footballers live in a world completely alienated from everyone else.

5) Ashley Cole’s “My defence”

‘”When I heard Jonathan repeat the figure of £55,000. I nearly swerved off the road. ‘He is taking the piss Jonathan!’ I yelled down the phone. I was so incensed. I was trembling with anger. I couldn’t believe what I’d heard.”

Sorry Ashley, but there’s nothing that will successfully defend that statement, nor a tragically dull and staggeringly bad written book.

The literary equivalent of losing 38 games in a Premier League season.


Which is your favourite football biography? Let us know below or get in touch via our Facebook or Twitter

This entry was posted in Football Books. Bookmark the permalink.
Follow us now on Facebook and Twitter for exclusive content and rewards!

We want to hear what you have to say, but we don't want comments that are homophobic, racist, sexist, don't relate to the article, or are overly offensive. They're not nice.

  1. Goal says:

    I think you have got it spot on

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>