I was 11 years old when I first started supporting Manchester United; an arbitrary decision to annoy my Liverpool-supporting older brother, but also linked to the football sticker swapping craze which had spread through the school playground. It was the peer-pressure of youth, centred around the Merlin’s Official Premier League 94 football collection, which led me to give my allegiance to the Red Devils. While most girls’ pin-ups were Take That and East 17, mine were to be Ryan Giggs, Eric Cantona and Andrei Kanchelskis, followed later by Beckham, Scholes, Nicky Butt and the Neville brothers … and many more besides. Heroes in my eyes.
But where would the club be with out the the gaffer, the manager, the boss? Throughout my years as a Manchester United supporter, though players have come and gone, there has always been the constant of Sir Alex Ferguson. Indeed, anyone in their early thirties and younger will never have known any different, but with Sir Alex’s retirement announced this morning after 26 years in charge, a new era is nevertheless dawning. But who will take over? A daunting challenge for even the most experienced.
In our new book, Standing on the Shoulders of Giants (publishing next month) – a history of Manchester United from its origins as Newton Heath in 1878 to the present day – the author Søren Frank dedicates the last chapter to Alex Ferguson and the legacy he has created, but also discusses the possible replacements for the (un)enviable position as manager of one of the world’s greatest football clubs.
So who will fill Sir Alex’s shoes? For a quick insight, click on the cover for a sneak preview of some of the top candidates…
As The Roller Derby Athlete by Ellen Parnavelas launches today, is has inspired me to find out what my roller derby name would be. According to the website Rollers and Revellers my roller derby name is Black Rose.
For those of you that have not heard of roller derby, it’s a unique fast-paced, female-dominated sport that is taking the world by storm. It originated in the USA in the 1930s, but it is the revival that began in 2001 that has inspired this new book.
Roller derby has become one of the world’s fast-growing new sports, and there are now more than 1,000 leagues worldwide.
The Roller Derby Athlete is ideal for beginners and experienced skaters, who are looking for a book that covers roller derby from a practical perspective. The book offers advice on tactics, fitness, training, injury prevention and nutrition.
With the new book, my new roller derby name, now all I need to do is dust off my old roller skates and find a local roller derby team that will have me – wish me luck!
The Roller Derby Athlete publishes today priced £16.99, order your copy direct from the Bloomsbury website or on Amazon.
To find out your Roller Derby name, visit the Rollers and Revellers website.