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August 31 , 2009

Glory Nights: From Wankdorf to Wembley


Tottenham Hotspur returned to play in the European Cup for the first time in 49 seasons in 2010/11. Mel Gomes followed them home and away on their journey, staying on the Champions League Gravy Train for one of the epic series of Clasicos as Barcelona played Real Madrid four times in sixteen days, and then onto FCB’s Final victory against Manchester United.

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This book documents those games, from Tottenham’s nightmare start on the plastic pitch at the Wankdorf Stadium in Berne right through to a front row seat at the Champions League Final at Wembley Stadium, when Lionel Messi starred in a 3-1 victory.

Detailed within are Glory Nights when Spurs put the then European Champions Internazionale to the sword in London, the famous win against Milan at the San Siro, and covers how Pep Guardiola’s new Dream Team took football to a different level. It concludes with an epilogue written at the end of the 2012 Season, after Barca hit the buffers and a top four finish was not enough for a return ticket to Europe’s top table for Tottenham.

There are recollections of years gone by, including Diego Maradona’s one appearance for Spurs at White Hart Lane, past matches across Europe, as well as tales of stolen tickets, white knuckle rides on icy motorways and pickpockets on the Spanish Metro.

Throughout there is an overriding theme of Glory and Escape, as the story captures the flavour of football matches at the highest level and the adventures that come with travel over land and sea, while recognizing the changing nature of a sport where success is now increasingly measured by money as well as trophies.

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