The Reading List: The European Cup

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The Independent Culture


50 Years of the European Cup and Champions League by Keir Radnedge, £25

A complete history of the tournament, from its inception in 1955 to its 50th anniversary in 2005. Including an interview with a legend from each era and a full statistical analysis of each tournament's final, from the Lisbon Lions in 1967, the tragedies of Munich and Heysel, and the advent of the Champions League in 1993.


The Beautiful Games of an Ordinary Genius by Carlo Ancelotti, £16.99

Upon arrival at Chelsea in 2009, Carlo Ancelotti remarked: "I am here to win the cup with big ears." We now know that dream will not be realised, but Ancelotti's obsession with the European Cup runs deep. As a player, he saw his beloved Roma lose on penalties to Liverpool and rubber legs Bruce Grobbelaar at the Stadio Olympico in 1984, before back to back successes came with Milan in 1989 and 1990. He repeated this success in 2003 and 2007 as a manager, becoming one of only six men to win the trophy both on and off the pitch.


The Team That Wouldn't Die by John Roberts, £8.99

A well-respected former sports writer for the Daily Express, Daily Mail, Guardian and The Independent, John Roberts' 1975 book remains the pre-eminent work on the Munich air disaster of 1958. Complete with interviews from the survivors and relatives of the deceased. As well researched as it is poignant


The Damned United by David Peace

The European Cup is an ominous, if not prominent, presence in David Peace's story of Brian Clough's ill-fated 44-day tenure of Leeds United. Clough's determination to beat Don Revie's Leeds United causes him to play a full-strength team the game before Derby County's second-leg European tie against Juventus, a game they go on to lose. The novel charts his rapid decline at Leeds, which went on to reach the 1974 European Cup final.


Europe United: A history of the European Cup/Champions League by Andrew Godsell, £17.99

This gives every result ever recorded in the competition (up to 2005) and includes more statistics than you could shake a stick at.