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Glen Isherwood,
Wembley: The Complete Record 1923-2000
(Sports Books, 2006)

Reviewed by Chris Goodwin
8 September 2006

Due for initial release on 3 April 2006,
delayed until 18 September.

When I received my copy, I will admit that it was with a smidgen of excitement.  I've been aware of this book since its was first mentioned to me back in Christmas of 2005.  I was also in the knowledge of what kind of information that was going into this book, it was complete information, not just a shoddy list.  For want of a better word - this is the official bible of Wembley.

All football fanatics know that Wembley is the home of English football, but this book shows us to what extent this home became, and I don't mean just opening the front-door, peering in, then driving off.  This book will welcome you indoors, show you each and every room, even down to the decor and the lining of the curtains, and if you missed something first time around, it will gladly take you back and show you the pattern on the carpet.... please tell me if I take this analogy too far, but like the book, it knows of no bounds.

We may all know that the very first match at Wembley was the FA Cup final of 1923, but who of us seriously knew that Ealing Association, of the Southern Amateur League, used Wembley Stadium as a home ground for the 1928-29 season.  Simply knowing it is one thing, but to list all those home games is another... and that's just one example on why this book is in a league of it's own.  Nothing comes close, and no doubt, there will soon be the also-rans.

I can probably go on and on about how good this book actually is, but what I must tell you about is what it's contents.... I mean, apart from every football match played there between 1923 and 2000, with an accompanying match report... with goalscorers... and line-ups in the majority.  But every music concert too.... and everything else that donned the sacred Wembley turf, apart from Speedway and the Women's League of Health and Beauty display of exercise.

To put it simply, if you want to know how many football matches were played at Wembley Stadium, then this is for you.  If you need to know which footballer played the most times at Wembley Stadium, then this is also for you.  If you simply must know how many times your favourite team strolled onto the hallowed turf, then, again, this is for you.  If you really want to know if Billy Joel played Wembley in 1998, or who the hell the Women's League of Health and Beauty are, then this is a must.

Good work Glen, and well done on accomplishing one of your dreams.

"Wembley - The Complete Record" is the definitive masterwork on what was the world's most famous football stadium. All 386 of the big matches - internationals and FA and League Cup finals and replays, etc - have a report, as well as the teams, scorers and attendance, while the teams and attendances from all the other games - schoolboy internationals, lesser cup finals - have details only. There is also a chapter on other occasions at the stadium - the horse of the year show, American football games, etc. Glen Isherwood is the 'old' Wembley's official statistician and author of 'Wembley - The FA Cup Finals', published in 2003. -  Amazon.co.uk synopsis

To buy:  Amazon
To buy: Tesco