Bert Whalley Blue Plaque

One of the unsung heroes of Manchester football, Bert Whalley, is to be honoured with a plaque in Stalybridge.

My grandad, a United fan, knew Bert and obviously Bert’s death at Munich affected him and all Mancunians significantly. Great to see Bert is being honoured. You can read more on Bert’s life and career here:

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Available Here!

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography is now available. You can order here:

United Kingdom

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – UNITED KINGDOM

Order today for £16.95 (incl UK Postage and Packaging).

£16.95

This 372 page, colour paperback book is £16.95 (including UK postage).

You do not need to have a PayPal account to order – use the ‘Pay with PayPal’ button above and it will give you the option to pay by credit/debit card without creating a PayPal account. UK postage included; outside UK contact me for additional postage costs.

Here are the contents pages:

This is the life story of Peter Barnes who, at the age of 18, scored the opening goal in the 1976 League Cup final. Playing for the team he supported, Manchester City, Peter was idolised by fans and was awarded the 1976 PFA Young Player of the Year award. The following year he made his England debut and was described by one journalist as the ‘saviour of English football.’

These were the days when Manchester City won the League Cup; were runners up in the League (missing the title by a point); and were challenging in Europe but then Malcolm Allison returned as coach and within months Peter, and a whole host of international stars, were on their way out. Peter was sold for a record amount. City’s fortunes suffered while Peter carved out a new career at West Bromwich Albion (where he played for Ron Atkinson).

Another record breaking transfer to Leeds United followed, before spells at Real Betis, Coventry City, Manchester United (playing for both Ron Atkinson and his replacement Alex Ferguson) and Tampa Bay Rowdies.

Written by acclaimed author Dr Gary James, this book covers the highs and lows of Peter’s life with stories about his time playing for some of the game’s biggest clubs and most famous managers. It also discusses Peter’s ongoing involvement with the sport and the significance of his family.

Oh, and if you’re wondering where the cover came from… it’s based on the packaging and advertising for the cult toy from the late 1970s The Peter Barnes Football Trainer.

If you run a book shop and would like to know more about the book please email: accounts@manchesterfootball.org

If you’re a media company interested in interviewing Peter or Gary about the book then please contact author Gary James: gary@GJFootballArchive.com

The ISBN is 978-1-9168852-0-2 and stocks are now available for book shops.

You can listen to Peter in conversation with myself about the book here:

Thanks,

Gary James

Brian Kidd

The news has been released that Brian Kidd has left Manchester City after 12 years in a coaching role there. Brian was of course a truly successful footballer with both Manchester clubs and has been a legendary coach with both clubs too, helping Ferguson, Mancini, Pellegrini and Guardiola find major trophy success.

He is one of the nicest men in football and his presence will be missed.

On leaving Brian has said: “It has been a privilege to be part of such an exciting chapter in this Club’s history.

“I can only thank Pep, Roberto and Manuel for their leadership during a period of huge change and challenges for everyone involved here. I hope to have offered them enough help and support along the way to have made a difference and played a small role in the different teams’ successes.

“Having also played for Manchester City, it was very special to return and throughout the last 12 years I have felt the warmth of the leadership, the staff and of the fans throughout. I am incredibly grateful to all of them.

“I would also like to say what an honour it has been to witness the evolution of the Club under the stewardship of Sheikh Mansour and leadership of Khaldoon Al Mubarak.

“I am a Manchester man, and the work that has been done to improve the City of Manchester and the local community is fantastic. I wish only the best for Manchester City moving forwards.”

When the time is right I’ll post a detailed profile of Kiddo here but for the moment here are links to a few stories already posted to this site:

Remember the old Spot The Ball competition?

Here’s one (above) I’ve spotted from the 1930s at Old Trafford. Can you work out where the ball should be? The winner wasn’t the person who accurately identified where the ball was, instead it was the person who accurately identified where football experts, employed by the newspaper or pools company, said the ball would be.

So where do you think the ball was? Is it in the goal; has it been saved and at the feet of a striker; could it have been curled around the post; maybe it’s flying high over that Trafford Park chimney?

See below for the answer…

Sadly, I don’t know which game this was (and they never said at the time) but it is Old Trafford and it appeared in the Athletic News in January 1931.

The experts identified that the ball would be here:

I can’t make out if that’s in the back of the net (possible – these were bad days for United and the club was relegated this season) or if it’s been curled around the post.

One-nil in your semi-final

From World War Two up to and including 2011 Manchester City won every FA Cup semi-final they played with a 1-0 scoreline.  That’s five games.  In 2013 I caught up with two of the goalscorers – Tommy Booth (1969) and Paul Power (1981) – to discuss their memories of those games. Here for subscribers is what they said:

Subscribe to get access

Read more of this and all the other content when you subscribe today. £20 a year works out about £1.67 a month and you get access to the 360+ articles posted here, including exclusive audio interviews and other archive material.

25 Years Ago – The 1996 Manchester Bomb

25 years ago today (June 15 1996) I was in Manchester Central Library doing some research for my book Manchester The Greatest City when a terrorist bomb went off close to M&S and the Arndale Centre. The explosion was felt across the city and in the library flecks of white paint floated down moments later, creating a surreal site. It looked like it was snowing.

I’ve written about the day before and maybe, when the time feels right, I’ll post more about it here but for the time being it’s worth pointing out that though no one died hundreds were injured. Many of these were seriously injured and it has affected them since.

In addition some lost there homes – there were houses on top of the Arndale centre back then – and businesses suffered too. Many closed down for good (a major loss was the old Corn Exchange – the building survived and was ‘gentrified’ but the small businesses that had operated in there mostly disappeared for ever).

I know we all talk positively of the changes to the city since the bomb but we should also remember those who suffered and the trauma faced.

More here on the day:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-manchester-36474535

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography Update

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography is currently being printed and is anticipated to be available from July 1st 2021. If you haven’t managed to order it yet you can do so now and, if ordered before July 1st, your copy will be signed by Peter and myself and posted before it appears in the shops.

This 372 page, colour paperback book is £16.95 (including UK postage).

United Kingdom

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – UNITED KINGDOM

Order today for £16.95 (incl UK Postage and Packaging).

£16.95

The ONLY way to guarantee your copy is from this site by using the order button above or those for non-UK below. You do not need to have a PayPal account to order – use the ‘Pay with PayPal’ button above and it will give you the option to pay by credit/debit card without creating a PayPal account.

Copies ordered by July 1st will be despatched BEFORE the book appears in any shops. Certain online retailers are advertising the book but, so far, none of these have actually ordered a supply. You can get yours before they do by ordering below (non UK see further down this page):

Here are the contents pages:

This long awaited authorised biography, written by Gary James with the memories and stories of Peter’s career throughout, tells the story of Peter’s life from his childhood in Manchester and Wrexham through to the modern day. With particular focus on his footballing career with Manchester City, West Bromwich Albion, Leeds United, Real Betis, Coventry City, Manchester United, Tampa Bay Rowdies and, of course, England.

Those living in the European Union can now order the book for £28 including postage to an address within the EU and those in the USA for £40 including postage to the States. If you’re in Malaysia it’s £35. Sadly, we have no control over those additional postage costs (we have used the Royal Mail international standard rate).

Outside the UK, EU, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and USA please contact for confirmation of postage costs.

Here’s the order button:

European Union

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – EUROPEAN UNION

Order today for £28 (incl postage and packaging within the EU).

£28.00

United States of America

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – USA

Order today for £40 (incl postage and packaging to the United States).

£40.00

Malaysia

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – MALAYSIA

Order today for £35 (incl postage and packaging to Malaysia).

£35.00

Australia and New Zealand

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

Order today for £38.95 (incl postage and packaging to Australia or New Zealand).

£38.95

If you run a book shop and would like to know more about the book please email: accounts@manchesterfootball.org

The ISBN is 978-1-9168852-0-2 and stocks should be available for book shops after it has been distributed to all subscribers and others who have ordered it here. This is anticipated to be in early July 2021.

You can listen to Peter in conversation with myself about the book here:

Thanks,

Gary James

SUBSCRIBER LIST CLOSED: Peter Barnes Biography

The opportunity to subscribe to The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography has now passed. However, you can still order the book before publication and your copy will be signed by both Peter and myself.

This is the only way to guarantee your copy of book.

Publication is anticipated to be June 30 and copies will be despatched in July BEFORE the book appears in any shops. Certain online retailers are advertising the book but, so far, none of these have actually ordered a supply. You can get yours before they do by ordering below (non UK see further down this page):

United Kingdom

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer UNITED KINGDOM

Order today for £16.95 (incl UK Postage and Packaging).

£16.95

The ONLY way to guarantee your copy is from this site by using the order button above or those for non-UK below.

This long awaited authorised biography, written by Gary James with the memories and stories of Peter’s career throughout, tells the story of Peter’s life from his childhood in Manchester and Wrexham through to the modern day. With particular focus on his footballing career with Manchester City, West Bromwich Albion, Leeds United, Real Betis, Coventry City, Manchester United, Tampa Bay Rowdies and, of course, England.

There are quotes from people connected with Peter throughout his career plus archive material too.

Pre-publication you can order the 360+ page, colour paperback book for £16.95 (including UK postage). Those living in the European Union can now order the book for £28 including postage to an address within the EU and those in the USA for £40 including postage to the States. If you’re in Malaysia it’s £35. Sadly, we have no control over those additional postage costs (we have used the Royal Mail international standard rate).

Outside the UK, EU, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and USA please contact for confirmation of postage costs.

Here’s the order button:

European Union

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer EUROPEAN UNION

Order today for £28 (incl postage and packaging within the EU).

£28.00

United States of America

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer USA

Order today for £40 (incl postage and packaging to the United States).

£40.00

Malaysia

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer MALAYSIA

Order today for £35 (incl postage and packaging to Malaysia).

£35.00

Australia and New Zealand

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

Order today for £38.95 (incl postage and packaging to Australia or New Zealand).

£38.95

If you run a book shop and would like to know more about the book please email: accounts@manchesterfootball.org

The ISBN is 978-1-9168852-0-2 and stocks should be available for book shops after it has been distributed to all subscribers and others who have ordered it here. This is anticipated to be in early July 2021.

You can listen to Peter in conversation with myself about the book here:

Thanks,

Gary James

Manchester City’s “European Heritage” – Facts Not Fiction

With the 2021 Champions League final looming, most City fans know that the Blues possess a great history but in recent years some of the club’s rivals have tended to play down City’s European heritage suggesting the Blues are relative newcomers to the continent’s biggest competitions. So in this article I thought I’d take the opportunity to spell out a few of City’s earliest connections with European competition:

If you would like to read the full article and other pieces like this then please subscribe below. It works out about £1.67 a month if you take out an annual subscription (£20 per year) or £3 a month if you’d like to sign up for a month at a time. Each subscriber gets full access to the 100+ articles posted so far and the hundreds scheduled to be posted in the coming weeks.

Subscribe to get access

Read this article and all other content on GJFootballArchive when you subscribe today.

Peter Barnes Biography – UPDATE

Thanks to all those who have subscribed to Peter Barnes: The Authorised Biography (especially 250 Scandinavian Manchester City fans who have ordered the book!) It really is appreciated.

Emails have started to go to all subscribers to confirm details for the book (these should all be sent by May 20th). There is still time to order the book and get your name printed in it for anyone who hasn’t managed that yet.

Subscribers will receive signed copies (signed by both Peter Barnes and myself) of the book posted out before it appears in any shop AND will get their names printed in the special subscriber section of the book. 

This is the only way to guarantee your copy of the book. All subscriber orders must be made by May 20th.

This long awaited authorised biography, written by Gary James with the memories and stories of Peter’s career throughout, tells the story of Peter’s life from his childhood in Manchester and Wrexham through to the modern day. With particular focus on his footballing career with Manchester City, West Bromwich Albion, Leeds United, Real Betis, Coventry City, Manchester United, Tampa Bay Rowdies and, of course, England.

There are quotes from people connected with Peter throughout his career plus archive material too.

Pre-publication you can order the 350+ page, colour paperback book for £16.95 (including UK postage) and have your name printed in it (or if being bought as a gift the name of another person). Those living in the European Union can now order the book for £28 including postage to an address within the EU and those in the USA for £40 including postage to the States. If you’re in Malaysia it’s £35. Sadly, we have no control over those additional postage costs (we have used the Royal Mail international standard rate).

Outside the UK, EU, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and USA please contact for confirmation of postage costs.

The ONLY way to order your copy and get your name printed in the book is from this site by using the order button below.

The book is expected to be published in June 2021 and all this subscriber offer will be available until May 15, 2021 (orders received after that date cannot be guaranteed to have names printed in the book, so order as early as possible).

Here’s the order button (before publication those who have subscribed to the book will be emailed to ask which name is to be printed in the book, so please make sure you include an email address, in addition to postage details, when asked at time of ordering):

United Kingdom

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer UNITED KINGDOM

Order today and have your name printed in the book. £16.95 (incl UK Postage and Packaging).

£16.95

European Union

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer EUROPEAN UNION

Order today and have your name printed in the book. £28 (incl postage and packaging within the EU).

£28.00

United States of America

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer USA

Order today and have your name printed in the book. £40 (incl postage and packaging to the United States).

£40.00

Malaysia

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer MALAYSIA

Order today and have your name printed in the book. £35 (incl postage and packaging to Malaysia).

£35.00

Australia and New Zealand

The Peter Barnes Authorised Biography – Subscriber Offer AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

Order today and have your name printed in the book. £38.95 (incl postage and packaging to Australia or New Zealand).

£38.95

If you run a book shop and would like to know more about the book please email: accounts@manchesterfootball.org

The ISBN is 978-1-9168852-0-2 and stocks should be available for book shops after it has been distributed to all subscribers. This is anticipated to be by the end of June 2021.

You can listen to Peter in conversation with myself about the book here:

Thanks,

Gary James