Football: Lining up in wait for his Hoddleness

"GLENN HODDLE Book Signing, 25 August, 1-3pm - Postponed." It didn't seem the best way to attract sales, but maybe they were scared of being crushed to death in the rush.

Fortunately for me and the few genuine fans, the notices outside Borders Bookshop in Oxford Street, London, were only partially accurate. The postponement referred to the original signing session, scheduled for last week and put back presumably in the light of all the bad publicity which surrounded the extracts serialised by The Sun.

By one o'clock a line of a couple of hundred apostles was waiting to be anointed by his Hoddleness, while the paparazzi had already formed an impenetrable ring. "Another 10 minutes" a lackey barked, giving rise to a collective groan, but time flies when you are queuing for an autograph, so it seemed like the very next moment when the great man finally appeared. The flash bulbs started popping as the photographers launched into their feeding frenzy.

We'd been told he wouldn't be answering any questions but one hardy soul still gave it a try. "How do you think the public will react to the book, Mr Hoddle," he ventured. No reply. "So you've got nothing to say about the book at all?" Nothing at all.

The first lucky lad to have his version of the Hoddle testament signed was James Bundock, from Eltham. "He's one of my childhood heroes, cos he played for Tottenham," he said. "I think England are going to do it one day with him. I think he did a really good job in the World Cup".

John Hudson, from Eastbourne, echoed those sentiments but with a hint of dissent. "I think he's doing a marvellous job and it's a shame the way the press has been on his back. But I don't think he should have written the book at the moment. If you are going to write a book like that, perhaps he should have waited until he has finished being manager of the England team."

Giving it an international flavour was Tracy from Australia: "I am actually buying it for a friend," she said. I suggested that's what they all say and tested her knowledge of the subject. "All I know is that he's a very unattractive manager and he used to be manager of England."

But from Tokyo, Souichiro, a true believer, said: "He's my favourite player since I was young. I saw him playing for the first time when I lived for 10 years in France and I am still playing football because I was very touched by his way of playing. I am on holiday here and today is the most beautiful day of my life. He's my idol, my god."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Parts Advisor

£16500 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the leading Mercedes-Ben...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developer

£27500 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Telemarketers / Sales - Home Based - OTE £23,500

£19500 - £23500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Experienced B2B Telemarketer wa...

Recruitment Genius: Showroom Assistant

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This global company are looking for two Showro...

Day In a Page

Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor