On Our Summer Reading List: The U.K. Book About Tom Hicks's Days as Liverpool FC Owner
Well, this is certainly is disappointing -- there goes my first book. While using the Google Machine to find something Tom Hicks-related this evening, I came across this: a review published two days ago in The Independent of a book called An Epic Swindle: 44 Months With a Pair of Cowboys, which is about Tom Hicks and George Gillett's tumultuous tenure as owners of Liverpool FC. And, of course, we all know from whence the title came: a statement released by Hicks's attorneys on October 15, following a hearing at the George Allen that cleared the way for the club's sale to New England Sports Ventures.
Hicks's local reps had no idea such a tome was on U.K. shelves -- this one penned by Daily Mirror columnist Brian Reade, oft described as a "long-term season ticket-holder." We'll have a statement tomorrow, fingers crossed. His legal team tells Unfair Park this evening that Hicks's long-threatened legal action over the sale of the club is still forthcoming as well; more details on that tomorrow ... maybe.
But till then, you can read two excerpts from the book -- here and here, the latter of which begins thusly: '"Tom Hicks' favourite camera crew was summoned to his Dallas mansion for the most repulsive PR stunt ever pulled by anyone connected with Liverpool FC." In case you were wondering whose side Reade is on. This, incidentally, is how publisher Quercus describes the tome:
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.
I just ordered a copy -- £6.99, a steal, not a swindle.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Observer's biggest stories.