Im sure anyone who used to go to football matches regularly in the 70's, 80's and 90's will have at some point either been involved in or witnessed football "hooligans" fighting, at that time who would have thought that a few years later some of these very same lads would be writing books about the subject and making money out of it !!
Well, that is exactly what has happened with the genre of football hooligan books taking up loads of shelf space in high street bookstores and some of the authors becoming big names, one or two of them even having films made about them !!
Like most lads my age I remember the "good old days" when going to away games was a dangerous pastime and the visit of certain clubs to your home ground almost certain to bring with it the guarantee of it kicking off at some point. Obviously the days of regular trouble are long gone now but it is still of great interest to read these books that reflect on those times.
I have read a fair few of these types of books over the years, some good some bad and some just plain crap so I decided it would be an interesting exercise to put together a site that chronicled the hundreds of hooligan books available.
Obviously theres no way Im going to be able to make it a definitive guide to the various books written covering the hooligan "firms", "gangs", "crews", "mobs" etc that have attached themselves to various clubs throughout the years but hopefully it will be of interest to some people..
It will feature a club by club breakdown of any hooligan books relating to that particular team either in the past or present (yes, its still about) and links to sites where you can buy them.
If you want to see how many of these books there actually are a good place to look is Amazon where there are hundreds of books ranging from generic documentary type "football hooligan" publications, listings of a selection of "top boys", listings of the various hooligan firms by team and more intellectual offerings where the "experts" try and explain in scientific terms why lads fight at football matches.
On the last point theres a pretty simple explanation really without all the crap that these so called experts come up with ... the majority of young lads enjoy fighting !!
In saying that though I am in no way condoning hooliganism but to put it all down to football is just stupid, after all if a gang of lads go into another town and make it known theyre not from that area and start actng up chances are theyll end up fighting with some locals.
Football just gives these groups the opportunity to go to other areas in numbers so it shouldnt come as no big surprise that if they meet another group of like minded lads chances are trouble will follow ..... do we really need professors and lecturers to tell us that?
Obviously football hooliganism isnt as prelevant now as it used to be 20 - 30 years ago, theres plenty of reasons for that such as better police organisation, CCTV, tougher penalties etc etc and this site certainly isnt going to go into all that, theres plenty of books about if you want to explore that area.
One last thing though and one where the experts have got it totally wrong and that is the general assumption that these lads are just going to the matches for the fighting and arent real fans. If you read many of these books you will find that the majority of the people involved in hooliganism actually love their club and are as passionate about the team as the supporter who goes on the official bus and is straight in and out the ground and away back home.
Anyway, enough waffling on, hopefully youll find this site useful and of course if your team isnt mentioned and it does have a book relating to its firm please let me know and Ill add it straight away.
More links to follow