Websites, podcasts, documentaries, and social media are just some ways why supporters find it almost impossible to stay out of the loop, when it comes to keeping abreast with all the latest stories in the footballing world.
One form of medium that a large portion of fans love is, books.
Whether it be autobiographies, deep dives into specific events or biographical pieces. Whatever reading material you prefer, books can provide fans with an incredibly in-depth view of the topic that’s being covered.
Manchester United Books
As a self-confessed Manchester United supporter, please leave your condolences below. The plethora of reading martial at my disposal is eye watering.
This is a club with a legendary 119-year history. Even more if you take the Newton Heath days into consideration before the official name change in 1902.
During that time, the club has witnessed countless heroic players, elite level managers and won their fair share of silverware along the way too.
So, with all the key historical figures and moments throughout the years, it’s easy to see why so many authors have used Manchester United as topics for their books.
Today we’re going to undertake the mammoth task of recommending just five of the best books available to Manchester United fans.
While we tried to avoid the obvious shouts, one or two have snuck in.
Also, we’ve stayed away from books chronicling the history of the club. Honestly, the whole list would just be full of them, and once you checked out one, you’ve pretty much seen them all.
Obviously, we’ve missed out loads here, so do let us know your recommendations in the comment section below.
First things first, some honourable mentions.
Tons of autobiographies had to miss out. Roy Keane, George Best, Nobby Stiles, Eric Cantona and Gary Neville all have truly fascinating, warts and all books.
Duncan Edwards: The Greatest, Too Good to Go Down and Forever & Ever are all highly recommended by the Big Kick Off team.
We’ll even throw in a link to the books below. Who knows one of them might tickle your fancy.
5. My Manchester United Years: The Autobiography
This is the autobiography of the living Manchester United legend, Sir Bobby Charlton.
The man is United through and through. Spending most of his career with the historic club, playing 754 times for the Manchester outfit.
He was one of the original Busby Babes, played with some iconic players and won everything imaginable during his 17-year tenor with United.
Throughout the book he gives the reader an unprecedented look at all these moments, good and bad.
From the dizzying heights of winning the European Cup in 1968. To the gut-wrenching lows of the FA Cup final defeat in 1958, which took place just weeks after the horrific Munich Air Disaster.
His telling of that fateful day in Munich truly makes for some harrowing reading, especially when you remember he was only 20 years old during the experience.
It’s an extraordinary life story, told by one of the true gentlemen of football. His tale would appeal to all fans of the game, not just the Manchester United ones.
4. The Promised Land: Manchester United’s Historic Treble
As the title suggests, this book by Daniel Harris documents the history making 1998/99 season.
A season in which Manchester United won the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League treble. Becoming the first English side to ever do so. It’s also a feat that hasn’t been replicated, the Liverpool one doesn’t count, nice try lads.
This book is a real celebration of the triumphant campaign, one that will make United fans yore for the success of yesteryear.
It follows the team on a month-to-month basis, taking fans back to the breath-taking moments throughout the course of this fruitful season.
The reader is placed into the dressing room, training ground and out on the pitch with this spectacular team.
On paper, the story of a successful team being successful might not seem all that intriguing. However, it’s one full of plot twists, tension, and access to key figures like David Beckham, Dwight Yorke and of course, Sir Alex Ferguson.
Must read nostalgia trip for any Manchester United fan.
3. The Lost Babes…
Jeff Connor brilliantly looks at everything surrounding the devastating Munich Air Disaster in 1958. A tragedy that cost 23 people their lives, eight of whom were Manchester United players.
This book is a celebration of the Busby Babes, and what truly made them special. Matt Busby guided his side to domestic success in 1955/56 and again the following season in 1956/57, while the average age of the squad was just 22.
Jeff Connor charts the rise of the Busby Babes, and how it immortalised falling heroes like Duncan Edwards, Eddie Coleman, and Tommy Taylor.
It’s an extremely poignant book, that highlights the effect of loss, while asking if the club became remorseless to the surviving players and bereaving families.
The author doesn’t shine the best light on United, instead pondering if the club somewhat turned their backs on the families effected by this ungodly tragedy.
2. Forever Young: The Story of Adrian Doherty…
The famed Class of 92 took Manchester United and the footballing world by storm when they arrived on the scene.
However, we may have been deprived of its most talented member, Adrian Doherty.
Doherty was highly regarded as a right winger, one by all accounts would have kept David Beckham out of any team and was reportedly head and shoulders above the great Ryan Giggs.
Oliver Kay looks at the career and life of the seemingly unknown Tyrone native. From his tense upbringing in Northern Ireland, to his unique outlook on life and how his career never panned out.
This book is far from your run of the mill hard luck tale. It’s one that shines a light of the unwavering human spirit throughout massive bad luck and the early demise of such a seemingly talented individual.
Both intriguing and devastating, the story of Adrian Doherty will make you wonder how his name went under the radar of fans for so long.
1. Alex Ferguson: My Autobiography
Essential reading for any Manchester United fan worth their salt.
Sir Alex Ferguson is arguably the greatest manager of all time.
This is the ultimate career retrospective from this irrefutable United legend. Sir Alex spent 26 spectacular years in Manchester, winning every honour imaginable.
The book is an update from his earlier autobiography, post retirement.
It’s an open and honest look at his unprecedented story, from almost getting the sack at Old Trafford to unbridled glory.
Really, it’s a fascinating look at the great man’s psychology to management, complex mind-games, and honest opinions on the famous players he once managed.
Sir Alex reveals all in his usual entertaining and inspirational manner, truly one in a million when it comes to management.