The referee, an Arsenal scout, spirits him away from Luton Town. Award-winning sportswriter Michael Calvin opens up their hidden world, examining their disconnected lifestyles, petty betrayals and unconsidered professionalism of men who spend long, lonely hours on the road.
Winner of The Times British Sports Book Award 2014.
A fascinating insight into the enclosed world of football scouts in the UK
A teenaged boy plays football in a suburban park. His name is Raheem Sterling. The call is made- "Get down here quick. This is something special".
Another boy is 8, going on 28. His name is Jack Wilshere. The referee, an Arsenal scout, spirits him away from Luton Town.
A young goalkeeper struggles on loan at Cheltenham Town in League Two. His name is Jack Butland. Within months he will be playing for England.
Welcome to football's hidden tribe. Scouts are everywhere yet nowhere, faceless and nameless, despite making the informed decisions worth millions. Award-winning sportswriter Michael Calvin opens up their hidden world, examining their disconnected lifestyles, petty betrayals and unconsidered professionalism of men who spend long, lonely hours on the road.
Michael Calvin is one of the UK's most versatile sportswriters, having worked in more than 80 countries, covering seven summer Olympics, and six World Cup finals. He was named Sportswriter of the Year for his despatches as a crew member in a round the world yacht race, and has twice been named Sports Reporter of the Year. He is currently chief sports writer with the Independent on Sunday, and has held similar positions at the Daily Telegraph, Times and Mail on Sunday. His last book, Family- Life Death and Football, was shortlisted in the 2011 Sports Book Awards. It was a critically-acclaimed study of a season embedded at Millwall, one of English football's most notorious clubs.
"Michael Calvin charts the evolution of the sports' scouts from chaotic beginnings to Moneyball-inspired analysis, and is enough to make you pay close attention when you next pass a kids' kickabout in the park" Shortlist "
Calvin's book is excellent, a highly readable insight into the slog and grind of assessing talent.'" * Tottenham On My Mind * "One of the50 Best Sports Books Ever Written
In The Nowhere Men, Mike Calvin somehow manages to make the job of football scout sound like the most romantic existence imaginable. It also sounds bleak and deeply lonely. It is a fascinating insight into an often misunderstood and under-represented part of the sport, revealing the hours, dedication and struggles of men who love football and don't know what they'd do without it." Daily Telegraph "A magnificent book, full of extraordinary characters and beautifully told" -- Rob Bagchi Guardian "There's a strong contender for the William Hill Sports Book Prize in Michael Calvin's The Nowhere Men, a book revealing the hidden lives of football scouts." The Bookseller
Winner of British Sports Book Awards: Football Book of the Year 2014
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