No Smoke, No Fire, by Dave Jones
Sunday 27 September 2009
After injury cut short his playing career in the mid-Eighties, Dave Jones planned to get back into professional football as a manager. While studying for his coaching badges, he took a job at a children's care home on Merseyside to pay the bills. While managing Southampton in 1999, that decision came back to haunt him as he was accused of horrific child abuse.
His account of his 18 months of hell as he fought to clear his name form the core of this compelling book, made all the more powerful and poignant by contributions from Ann, the wife who stood by him. All charges were eventually thrown out as it was proven the witnesses were liars, and Jones returned to a successful career, currently with Cardiff City. But the episode scarred him.
"[It] took away something I will never get back: my dignity," he says. Yet as his fundamental decency and honesty shine through on every page, all lovers of justice, and football, who read his story will surely conclude that few, if any, could have handled his ordeal in more dignified fashion.
Published in hardback by Know The Score Books, £17.99
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