The Damned Utd, Paperback Book
3.5 out of 5 (10 ratings)


This is the hugely acclaimed novel of '70s football and the turmoil of the game's most charismatic and controversial manager, from the bestselling author of GB84 and Red or Dead.

In 1974 the brilliant and controversial Brian Clough made perhaps his most eccentric decision: he accepted the position of Leeds United manager.

A successor to Don Revie, his bitter adversary, Clough was to last just 44 days.

In one of the most acclaimed British novels of recent years - subsequently made into a film starring Michael Sheen - David Peace takes us into the mind and thoughts of Ol' Big 'Ead himself, and brings vividly to life one of football's most complex and fascinating characters.


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Showing 1 - 5 of 10 reviews.

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Review by

This is the best book I have ever read about football, and up there with one of the best books I have ever read. Although you (may) already know what is going to happen the narrative keeps you turning the page to see what will happen next. This book presents a superb insight into the obsessive, backstabbing and corrupt world of 1970's English football with nasty players, self important chairmen and at the centre of it all Brian Clough.

Review by

heightened paranoia through the staccato split narrative; you read about the beginning and end of the reign at leeds at the same time, for the rest of the book, the time at leeds is comapared to cloughie's time at hartlepools (idiomatic?) and derby. another interesting feature is the constant mentioning of the date, like it's a time to remember, but it generally happens on everyday. a great way of heightening the historical senses, or just a drunkard's way of clinging to reality?

Review by

I was tipped off about this book by the only man I know who is obsessive about the game as I and he sold it as the "best book he'd ever read". With such high praise from one so well read I had to get it and certainly wasnt disappointed. A superb account of Clough at his best and presumably worse. This book could be the real thing along the lines of the Turin shroud, I believe it is close enough to the man himself to have been written by him (im sure his family would best answer that claim) Peaces attention to detail with regard to the eras football is outstanding and god only knows who long his research took him, to keep the book as accurate as it was. If there is a criticism I wonder how someone without knowledge of the era of the game it describes would follow the story. The charachters are real and those with knowledge dont need a mental picture, because we know who they are how they played etc. Whether a football inactive would find this quite so enjoyable is debatable but as this doesnt apply to me, stuff em I absolutely loved it. It is particularly ironic to me that two iconic managers despised each other so much. For those unaware of the geography they were practically brought up in the same street in middlesbrough (near as damn it) which again is very strange but good if like me you are from the same place.

Review by

Interesting fictionalisation of Clough's 44 days at Leeds. The endless repetition, endless repetition, endless repetition started to get on my nerves half way through and I had to start skipping lines. It is a good account of a fascinating character and seemingly well researched... but don't believe the hype: if you aren't interested in football [I am a Leeds supporter] and don't remember the 1970's then you probably wont enjoy this book.

Review by

Great book. Rapid paced pageturner all about the fears, doubts, insecurities and machinations of a football manager. </p><p>Found the pace really suited the subject matter, and loved the way the atmosphere was created.

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