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Are You Watching the Match Tonight?
Are You Watching the Match Tonight?

Are You Watching the Match Tonight?

The Remarkable Story of Football on Television


256 Pages, 9.25 x 6

Cloth, $34.95 (US $34.95)

Publication Date: November 2013

ISBN 9780233003887

Rights: US

Welbeck Publishing Group (Nov 2013)
Carlton Publishing Group

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Soccer and television have been intertwined in culture for more than 50 years. Are You Watching the Match Tonight? tells the story of how soccer on television became a national obsession. The first live soccer match in England was the 1938 FA Cup final, and the winning goal was a penalty in the last minute of extra timeâ€â€proof that soccer can deliver the dramatic like no other sport. Soccer on television went from grainy film-edits in the 1950s to the first dedicated highlights shows, such as Match of the Day, which first aired on August 22, 1964. The 1966 World Cup brought live international matches into the public's home for the first time, and the BBC coverage of the final will forever be remembered by Kenneth Wolstenholme's legendary, "Some people are on the pitch ... they think it's all over ... here comes Hurst ... it is now!" Soon commentators, presenters, and analysts such as Wolstenholme, Barry Davies, John Motson, Brian Moore, Martin Tyler, Keith Macklin, Gerald Sinstadt, Jimmy Hill, Brian Clough, and Terry Venables became national figures and their sucessors, Gary Lineker, Gabby Logan, Jeff Stelling, Adrian Chiles, more so. With SatelliteTV, moved almost 40% of all Premier League matches shown live every season; the FA's sale of broadcast rights in 2012 for that league alone brought in £3 billion. Are You Watching the Match Tonight? is full of fascinating stories from in front of and behind the cameras, a remarkable story spanning 75 years. Written by a man who has held every key post in TV soccer, and filled with personal anecdotes and interviews with famous faces, this is a must-read book for all soccer fans.

Author Biography

Brian Barwick was editor of BBC's flagship soccer show Match of the Day. At the BBC, he worked on four FIFA World Cups. He oversaw the transfer of Match of the Day and its iconic presenter Des Lynam to the commercial channel, all the time overseeing ITV's highly-successful association with the UEFA Champions League. He was chief executive of The Football Association from 2004-09. His autobiography is Anfield Days and Wembley Ways. Barwick is now chief executive of the Rugby Football League.