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Arsenal: The Making of a Modern Superclub Paperback – August 10, 2009

4.4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

'Treat Arsenal as an insight into Arsene Wenger and you won't be disappointed.' Patrick Barclay, The Sunday Telegraph 'An excellent work of reference to a tumultuous period.' Independent on Sunday 'fascinating' The Observer 'shrewd and well-informed' The Guardian 'at last a football club that reflects the age' When Saturday Comes

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Vision Sports Publishing Ltd (August 10, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1905326602
  • ISBN-13: 978-1905326600
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 1 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,968,468 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is highly recommended for both long-term and relatively new fans of Arsenal FC, or anyone fascinated by the business of modern sport or the aesthetics of modern football. Arsene Wenger inherited a core group of players in the mid-1990s, added select players on the cheap through his unique knowledge of the continental game and its players, and parlayed success over the ensuing decade into the money-making machine that is Arsenal today.

For the last six years, Wenger has continued single-mindedly to follow his ideals, even while the club has fallen short in the quest for trophies. But the style of play he insists upon has filled the club's state-of-the-art new stadium with high-paying fans. The true conclusion to this book can be written only when the Financial Fair Play rules take effect. They hold at least the promise that Wenger's methods will once again place Arsenal at the top the English league.

In the meantime, this book is a wonderful history of Arsenal's last twenty years, and provides a window into the growth of the Premier League and world football in that time.
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Format: Paperback
Although this book is packed with all sorts of detail on the Arsene Wenger era at Arsenal, it often gets bogged down in minutiae. I did learn a lot especially why Wenger opted for youth over experience especially in goal and on the backline in recent years. The wheelings and dealings over the Emirates Stadium are fine but often seemed to be going over the same old ground later on in chapters after the author first presented whatever figures.

One HUGE blunder is his misreading of the history of North American major sports leagues. He actually thinks they evolved as leagues first then teams second. Maybe if you're talking about expansion teams from the '60s onwards but all our leagues started because a group of teams formed leagues. Did he really honestly think the NFL began by going, "OK, we're going to start a football league as a business. We need to find a city where we can make the most money possible. I know! Let's place a teams in Green Bay, Wisconsin!" I guess the author had no access to a library or the Internet to research how "our" leagues over here started much the same as "his" precious football (soccer) leagues (and his rugby or cricket ones as well) did.

P.S. Just FYI, I'm a lapsed Arsenal supporter only just now getting back into the club decades later after they transferred my fave player Liam Brady back in 1980. There ya go.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is more of a window into a corporation than a soccer club, which perhaps makes sense given the degree to which a club needs to have financial heft if it wants to thrive in modern soccer. Unfortunately, it makes for a less than thrilling read. The boardroom politics and financial operations dominate the proceedings, so much so that David Dein is more prominent than Thierry Henry. And given that Arsene Wenger appears not to have cooperated with the author, we are frequently left to speculation about Wenger's feelings and motivations, which is a shame because as the fulcrum between the corporate suits and the players he is the single most interesting character in the book.

I recommend this book if you are interested in the economics of running a soccer club, but I can't recommend it as possessing a strong narrative or shedding much light on Arsene Wenger and the players on the field.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The modern history of Arsenal and the ascendancy of Wenger and lots of interesting tidbits in between , especially the bit about squad numbering.

Worth buying, its about Arsenal.
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