The Football Village

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More About This Title The Football Village


Glenbuck is a name that resonates through the history of soccer in Britain. Once a tiny village in the Ayrshire coalfields, it produced an unprecedented roll call of professional players. Its most famous son, Bill Shankly, shaped not just Liverpool's destiny, but exerted a huge influence on the evolution of the modern game. And yet virtually all that remains of "Shanks's" birthplace is his marble memorial. Glenbuck has not only been physically erased by de-industrialization, but from soccer's consciousness. The pitch which once rang with the shouts of players and partisan fans is now a boggy, neglected field. It is eerily, unforgivably silent. The Football Village brings back to vivid life the birthplace of Shankly and the exploits of 49 other wonderful characters. Glenbuck's sons range from stars of English and Scottish soccer to more parochial heroes, all combining to form a compelling story of the British game across the divisions.


Robert Gillan is a former player with Clyde FC and a youth coach with international experience who has set up the Glenbuck Academy to help aspiring local soccer players. Adam Powley is a journalist, lecturer, and author of more than 20 books, including a collaboration with Pelé, 61: The Spurs Double, Spurs Miscellany, and The Boys from White Hart Lane.