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An Epic Swindle: 44 Months with a Pair of Cowboys [Kindle Edition]

Brian Reade
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

AN EPIC SWINDLE is the inside story of how Liverpool FC came within hours of being re-possessed by the banks after the shambolic 44-month reign of American owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett. It is the tale of a civil war that dragged Britain's most successful football club to its knees, through the High Court and almost into administration.

Players Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher tell of their anger at the broken promises, as well as their pain at watching loyal fans in open revolt. Manager, chief executive, board members, leading fans and journalists reveal the turmoil at a revered sporting institution run by two men at war with each other, who trampled Liverpool's cherished traditions into the gutter.

No story sums up the naked greed at the heart of modern football quite like Hicks' and Gillett's attempt to turn a buck at Liverpool. No-one has had as much access to the truth, or tells it with as much passion, wit and insight as Brian Reade.
AN EPIC SWINDLE is the riveting story of how close one of the great football clubs came to financial implosion.


Editorial Reviews

Review

'The riveting inside story of how Liverpool FC was dragged to its knees' Daily Mirror.

About the Author

Brian Reade is a Daily Mirror columnist, Kop season ticket holder and author of the book 43 Years With The Same Bird. He lives in Liverpool.

Product Details

  • File Size: 670 KB
  • Print Length: 353 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0857385992
  • Publisher: Quercus; Reprint edition (December 22, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857385992
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857385994
  • ASIN: B004XHDSSW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #479,085 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Epic Reade May 7, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As a long time Liverpool fan, and a fan of Brian Reade's previous work, I was quite excited to get this book for my kindle and I devoured it in one day. That's not to say there isn't a lot of information here, there is. Reade just simply writes in a manner which makes this a book which is hard to put down.

Reade starts off with the events of 6 February 2007, a day which will live in infamy for every fan of this great club. Reade describes his hesitation to welcome the (at the time) new American owners, Tom Hicks and George Gillett. Things already seemed wrong. The owners were walking around with their brand new Liverpool scarves and their smiles. Many of the promises the new regime made that fateful day would not only be proven to be outright lies, but would come to haunt them (and the fans) in the next 3 1/2 years. Things like, "We're not people to come here and milk the fans", "This is not a takeover like the Glazer deal at Manchester United. There is no debt involved" and "The shovel needs to be in the ground in the next sixty days." These statements and more would prove to be blatant lies. The debt was to be loaded onto the club (as much as possible). The stadium would never be built and the new owners were there only to bleed the club dry and sell it on for as much money as possible.

Reade does a great job of following the story from the start to the nasty conclusion in the High Court in October of 2010. In between he brings up all the events which turned the euphoria of February of 2007 to the lurid events of November of that same year, when the fans were warned by Rafa Benitez that something was rotten at the heart of Liverpool FC, and it was the new owners.
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Format:Paperback
Reade is a passionate fan of Liverpool Football Club and that passion is evident here, driving his retelling of a time during which one of the most famous football clubs in the world came perilously close to disappearing from view completely.

Unfortunately that passion drives embarrassingly bad writing. The pages are soaked with sophomoric accusations that undermine his case even though everything he reports is based on fact. Odd pot shots at Wayne Rooney's intelligence, a continual immature treatment of Hicks and Gillett and a writing style utterly devoid of anything approaching complex analysis or even basic respect for its reader combine to present a remarkably disappointing book. The quality of the writing itself, characterized by amateurish metaphors and attempts at cultural references, is a good distance short of what I would expect of someone paid to write professionally.
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5.0 out of 5 stars must read for all LFC fans January 9, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A bright beacon that lights the murkiest period of the world's greatest football club. Well researched and passionate.

Jft96

Ynwa

D
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4.0 out of 5 stars Passion can't be stolen November 29, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Sometimes being too close or biased in the view of the author spoils the telling of the story. Not here. Reade's acknowledged love for the Liverpool Football Club and disdain for what was happening to it drags you into this tale. I am a long term overseas supporter who had no real idea what was being done to my club. I'm now horrified, proud and in the end relieved. Fascinating story, passionately and effectively told. You Will Never Walk Alone!!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Loved Every Word of it November 17, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Bitterly disappointed when it came to the end as I wanted it to go on and on, there was not one word I didn't like in this book, Brian just keeps you captivated.
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5.0 out of 5 stars For any LFC fan, a must read. November 2, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Facts about a terrible pair of Americans who nearly put LFC into administration because of their greed for a quick buck !!!!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Tears for the Liver-Bird August 15, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
By the time that F-O-G (Friends of George Dubya Bush) George Gillett and Tom Hicks took control of Liverpool Football Club in 2005 the idea of American owners for top flight English Football clubs was not that unique. Credit card mogul Randy Lerner had taken control of Aston Villa and the Glaser family had completed their buyout of Manchester United. Add to that Roman Abramovich's purchase of Chelsea and many thought you almost had to have foreign ownership if you were serious about competing for the top prizes in Football. Liverpool's English ownership either didn't have, or weren't going to spend their money to keep Liverpool at the top.

In came the Americans (or more specifically the Texans) oozing charm and making promises. The English ate it up. I suspect the pair had every intention of making good on their boasts, as long as they didn't have to use any of their own money to pay the bills. AN EPIC SWINDLE is an up-close account of how they bought, how they tried too charm their way to the top, and after 3 and a half years how everything fell apart.

BRIAN READE gives the reader a detailed account taking special care to explain how the deal was financed. He writes about complicated financial manipulations with no small amount of humor and wit. This is a skillfully told tale. If there are bad guys beyond greedy Americans, the list includes the team's previous English owners, the manager who knew better but climbed in bed to save his job, and the fans who believed it was Liverpool's birthright to always be champions. If there are victims they include the team's current English stars Jamie Carragher and Stevie Gerrard along with past heroes.

Greed, even among the good is a destroyer of dreams. To this day Liverpool has not won the league championship they used to win almost every season for more than 20 years straight. Now that the Texans have flown the coupe, we don't know if they can ever win again. The future in not written.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Read
This is an interesting read for all Liverpool fans. While, it is short in terms of releasing anything 'new' that the public don't already know - Reade writes it in such an engaging... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Deeee
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book and must for any  football fan!
This book is an excellent read! l am  not a Liverpool fan . The club l support is Chelsea, but  l was aware of the problems Liverpool was having financially. Read more
Published 21 months ago by Anthony Burton
5.0 out of 5 stars An Epic Swindle
"An Epic Swindle" is a must read for any serious football (soccer) fan, particularly if Liverpool is your team. Read more
Published on May 15, 2012 by Nuge
4.0 out of 5 stars what really went on
A great book, an easy read. All the information on what the two yanks where about during their reign at Anfield. A must for ex pat Kopites.
Published on March 31, 2012 by lomika
3.0 out of 5 stars Agenda driven author shows bias
The author provides an interesting look at the Hicks/Gillette ownership period. He has clearly adapted stereotypes as his identifyer of personalities. He writes often of Mr. Read more
Published on January 10, 2012 by Weekend golfer
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read
Compelling stuff for all Reds fans
Some photos and a chronology would have been welcome additions
Easy to read, journalistic style
Published on October 4, 2011 by Andrew Carroll
4.0 out of 5 stars A must Red
I was first made fully aware of this book trough an interview with the author in the last edition of The Kopite - the official magazine for the Scandinavian branch of the LFC... Read more
Published on June 21, 2011 by Mikkel
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