Glorious: My World, Football and Me Paul Gascoigne (Simon & Schuster Ltd 2011)
I remember calling my friend Tim Greaves from work while he read the final names for the World Cup ’98 squad off of Ceefax. He told me I wouldn’t believe who’d been left out. I went through everyone before I got to his name. I have never been able to get my head round why Glenn Hoddle left Gazza out. This book touches on that time very briefly and infact if I had to pick a word that best describes this book then ‘brief’ would be it.
It feels very much like Gazza himself hasn’t come to terms with his life yet, which is no surprise, and is only comfortable sharing, what for the most part is, a summary of the stories we are familiar with from the press. There is nothing of his private life. It’s more of a cheeky two fingers up to those who say he squandered his talent, than the usual ‘My Story’ ghost-written stuff we have come to expect from ex-pros and quite an ‘easy’ read.
Less of an autobiography and more of a ‘looking through a press photo-album while your inner-monologue narrates in the style of a bad impression of Gazza’, but worth a couple of hours of your time, if you’re a fan.
I imagine when he’s ready, the book of his life will be truly glorious, and not all in a good way.