Football, My Life
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Football has dominated Lou Macari's life. Taken on as an apprentice by Celtic in the wake of their 1967 European Cup triumph, Macari learnt his football the old-fashioned way. He quickly broke into the first team, winning Scottish league titles and Cups in both 1971 and 1972, but it was at Manchester United, following a shock transfer in January 1973, that the attacking midfielder's prowess turned him into a fans' favourite and a household name.
Macari went on to score 97 goals in 401 appearances for the Red Devils, including the winner against Liverpool in the 1977 FA Cup final. He also won 24 caps for Scotland and represented his country in the infamous 1978 World Cup Finals in Argentina. After leaving United in 1984, Macari moved into management with Swindon Town. It was there that he was wrongly implicated in a betting scandal which blighted his managerial career.
In his long-awaited autobiography, Lou Macari tells with typical candour of football then and of football now, of the glory days and the truth behind the scandals, and of the perils that threaten the beautiful game today. It is a story like no other.
us. The players were not so sure, but again the Doc called it right. We had pace out wide, strikers who could find the net, and in Gerry Daly another freak whose batteries never ran out. And he smoked. I reckon he must have spent his early days in Dublin running away from people. The 1975–76 season could not have started better for United, or for me: I scored both goals in a 2–0 win at Wolves. Three days later we won by the same score at Birmingham, Sammy McIlroy getting both goals. Old Trafford
over the terms of a contract). We were only talking �12,000, so instead of paying him �4,000 a year over three years, the club paid in full. That was against the rules apparently. It became a big issue when the shit hit the fan. But we could not have attracted a player like Steve from Sheffield United to Swindon without offering him some sort of deal. In my view we did nothing wrong. We were simply trying to improve the standing of Swindon Town. Today it would not be an issue. Sadly, that was not
citing 'fundamental things I found difficult to accept'. Eventually I would have my day in court, and I'll come to that later. In my mind the fight was always against McCann, never Celtic. I went to court believing he was my enemy, not the club. How could it be otherwise? Celtic are my team, the club I supported as a boy. I am and always will be a fan at heart. There is nothing in the world that can change that. 23 FAREWELL VICTORIA I RETURNED FROM THE WORLD CUP WITHOUT A JOB. BUT I didn't
stadium and facilities were much improved. He deserves credit for that. I just did not agree with his understanding of what a manager should be, nor did I comprehend his management methods. While I was in charge that obviously became an issue. McCann made much of my physical absence from Celtic Park. He took exception to my not being at the club on a Monday. I gave the players one day off a week. That day was Monday. Since pussy was a cat, that had happened at Celtic, under Jock Stein and
help. Barry Rubery, the owner of Huddersfield, had great ambitions for his club. I remember Steve telling me just before Jonathan's death that he had been approached by Rubery. He was promising �10 million to build a team. That was a fair amount of money. But like a lot of business people coming into football, Rubery probably got the shock of his life when he saw how clubs operated, how difficult it is to make an impression. He took Steve on to shape this brave new world at the McAlpine Stadium,