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One of the worlds most famous and enigmatic footballers retired from football at the age of thirty when many thought he was at the peak of his game. Eric Cantona has never returned to football but instead become a successful actor working most recently with Ken Loach on the film ‘Looking for Eric’. Here Philippe Auclair writes with authority on Cantona, having spoken to those closest to the man. It is a fascinating insight not only in to the great footballer but also the inner thoughts of a complex and thoughtful character. This will be the book to read on Eric Cantona.
`Illuminated by finely turned phrases and vivid insights' - Richard Williams, Guardian Sports Books of the Year. Thierry Henry - gifted, charismatic and a genuinely world-class footballer - has passed into Arsenal legend as the hero of a team that finally ended Manchester United's dominance. But as he approached the autumn of his career, Thierry's crown began to slip - from the infamous `Hand of Gaul' incident to a dismal World Cup 2010 campaign. Suddenly, a player who Arsene Wenger once dubbed `the greatest striker ever', a man who had spent his career at the very top of the game, began to learn how lonely such a position could be. Drawing from numerous interviews and impeccable sources, as well as his own observations over the course of Henry's entire career, award-winning author Philippe Auclair has produced the most complete portrait of the Arsenal hero ever to be written. Clear-eyed, lyrical and passionately argued, Thierry Henry: Lonely at the Top is as raw, shocking and thought-provoking as it is celebratory of Henry's outstanding flair and talent.
'An artist, in my eyes, is someone who can lighten up a dark room. I have never and will never find difference between the pass from Pele to Carlos Alberto in the final of the World Cup in 1970, and the poetry of the young Rimbaud' - Eric Cantona Football, and art. Eric Cantona - legend, maverick, troubled artist or just plain trouble - never saw a need to make a distinction between the two. For all the heat and noise surrounding his infamous Crystal Palace 'kung-fu kick', it is for the sheer exuberant beauty of his play that Eric Cantona is chiefly remembered by English football fans. At Leeds United he transformed the team into title contenders, but became a true talisman at Manchester United, where to this day fans sing of 'King Eric'. And yet the effortless style of Cantona's play could not hide a darker side to his temperament. In his own words, 'I play with passion and fire. I have to accept that sometimes, this fire does harm.' In Cantona: The Rebel Who Would Be King leading French football journlist Philippe Auclair has interviewed over 200 key protagonists in Cantona's career, searching for the man behind the myth. Marrying a deep knowledge of Cantona's impact on the pitch with soulful, pin-sharp insight into the heart and inner thoughts of this most complex of characters, this is nothing less than the definitive biography of a one-time rebel of the French game, who rose to be the King of Old Trafford. 'I'd give all the champagne I've ever drunk to be playing alongside Cantona in a big European match at Old Trafford' - George Best