The memoir of former Leicester, Arsenal and England footballer, Alan Smith.
LONGLISTED FOR THE WILLIAM HILL SPORTS BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD 2018
A DAILY TELEGRAPH SPORTS BOOK OF THE YEAR
'Alan's book is like his game: incisive, thoughtful, intelligent and consistently hits the target' Gary Lineker
'A brilliant, articulate, thoughtful man with a wonderful sense of humour: Smudge encapsulates all he is and knows in this fantastic book that will capture the hearts of every football fan' Tony Adams
'It was different back then, at least through Arsenal eyes. This was a young, exciting team full of hope and desire, led by a manager bristling with ambition . . .'
Anfield '89. Copenhagen '94. Two of Arsenal's greatest triumphs in the modern era. Both matches defined by the goal-scoring prowess of one man - Alan 'Smudger' Smith.
Smith's rise in football was vertiginous: playing for Alvechurch in the Southern League one year, competing in the top flight twelve months later. His first three years at Leicester were characterized by a successful partnership with Gary Lineker. When Lineker left for Everton, Smith stepped forward as the main goal-getter. It was Smith's move to Highbury, however, that enabled him to become the winner of two Golden Boots and one of the most highly-rated strikers in the game.
Honest, insightful and authoritative, Heads Up reveals what it was like forging a career in the tough First Division of old before the glitz of the Premier League took hold; the ins and outs of playing for George Graham and rooming with Gazza; the truth behind Anfield '89; which team could easily have gone on to become the first 'Invincibles' had Chelsea not spoiled it one February afternoon; how the highs of the game can quickly be converted into morale-sapping lows; and how injury really does affect a career.
After twenty years of writing for the Daily Telegraph, covering four World Cups, four European Championships and countless club games, Alan Smith has done what few ex-professionals are able to do - describe in his own words what it's really like to play the game . . .
'Very enjoyable and typically honest account by my old mate on a fine career' Lee Dixon