It might have taken a bit longer than expected to get over the finish line but in 2020 Liverpool finally managed to end the thirty year wait for a football league title. Inevitably, the length of the wait and the size of the club resulted in a number of books all looking at retelling this story. We’ picked three that are among the best.
At the End of the Storm: Stories from Liverpool's Historic Title Win by James Pearce, Oliver Kay and Simon Hughes
When the European version of The Athletic launched in the middle of 2019, it became an immediate success at least going by the feedback of people I follow closely on Twitter. Whilst other outlets seemed to be constantly chasing hits and sensationalising, they went into the opposite direction.
The result - At the End of the Storm - is a series of in-depth, insightful and exceptionally written pieces that aim to engage their readers in an intelligent manner.
With James Pearce and Simon Hughes – two of the finest of writers on the Liverpool beat – on board this quality was never in doubt but the expanded format allowed both to go into depths that they couldn’t previously. This format allowed them to indulge in pieces that look at what Sadio Mane means to his village back home in Senegal or the challenges that Mohammed Salah had to overcome to make it as a professional footballer.
All were great pieces with the only downside being the ephemeral nature of online writing. That has now been fixed as the collection of their finest articles have been brought together in this excellent celebration of Liverpool’s title win.
Perched: Jürgen Klopp’s Liverpool FC – Champions Of Everything by Paul Tomkins
Paul Tomkins is a visionary, not only among Liverpool writers but football writers in general. He was among the very first to truly embrace the power of statistics to shape both his thoughts and articles. Despite the skepticism and occasional ridicule that he was subjected to at the time, he stuck to his belief and in due course he’s been proven right.
Many others have followed in his path but Tomkins’ voice remains as fresh and as forceful as ever. He does not go for the easy explanation of why things work or don’t because the reality is that there is a lot of complexity in high end sport. It is what makes his writing insightful and interesting. It is also why Perched allows readers to get a better idea why this Liverpool sides succeeded where so many others had failed.
This is an extract from Perched, if you want to see what it is like.
Believe Us: How Jürgen Klopp Transformed Liverpool Into Title Winners by Melissa Reddy
Arguably the most anticipated book about Liverpool's title win - it went to the top of a whole host of sports book themed chart upon its release - Melissa Reddy's Believe Us does not disappoint.
Reddy is intensely knowledgeable about the game, a great interviewer and can thread together a story like few others. She is also clearly respected by many with the club who trust her to tell their stories in as fair a manner as possible.
The combination of these factors results in a book that perfectly captures the huge progress that Liverpool have done under the guidance of Jurgen Klopp which progress ultimately resulted in a Premier League win that was a dominant as few others.