The story of English football's most colourful and controversial top-class referee, in his own words
Ever wondered what it is like to step out on to a pitch with 50,000 fans screaming abuse at you while you try and make an informed decision? Or what really gets said between players or managers in the tunnel or the white heat of the game? Or exactly the best way to control 22 angry young men when all hell breaks loose? Well here’s the book that will finally tell you the truth of what it is like out there as no other has before.
Over the course of the Premiership, Jeff Winter became one of our most high-profile and popular referees. Not a stickler, but someone who always tried, as a fan himself, to adapt to the needs of moment. Since breaking all ties with the FA, he is now utterly free to break the omerta that retired referees keep and speak about his experiences with true candidness. This is an insider look at the history and star-studded personnel of the Premiership by someone who was there as it happened. He will talk openly about his dealings with many of the most controversial and volatile players - including Wayne Rooney, Craig Bellamy, Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira - and his experience of the management elite, including Wenger, Strachan, Keegan and Ferguson. Jeff Winter was never one to shy away from necessary confrontation, particularly, as you’ll see, with Sir Alex whom he once sensationally ‘sent off’ at Newcastle.
And Jeff’s own tale is like no other. Before he fell into refereeing, he was someone who once represented everything that is frowned upon in football: a skinhead terrace hard case. His tough upbringing made him an unlikely character to reach the top as a referee, and he will tell of his early years as a boot-boy fan and his volatile relationship with his heavy drinking father; his chance decision to take up refereeing; his progress through the tough local leagues where he had to deal with aggression from players and intimidation from spectators; his appointment as a Football League referee and the pressures and problems that being a high-profile referee have brought on his family. He will also reveal underhand dealings and tell of the lack of leadership given by the authorities to referees. The most honest account of refereeing and the game there has ever been.
Jeff Winter’s career as a referee stretched over some 25 years. Since leaving the game he has become a sought after pundit and a regular guest on Sky and BBC Five Live. Bust-ups have continued into his life as a commentator - with both Sam Allardyce and Steve Bruce banning him from their grounds for his comments. He also referees BBC Superstars
and has appeared as the referee in Sky’s football soap Dream Team
. He is much in demand as a public speaker.
His book will be enjoyed by all those interested in how football has evolved over the past two decades.,Jeff Winter is happy to speak out and lift the lid on his time in the iddle....forthright and frank.,Great fun,Hard to put down,The book they all wanted,Will be enjoyed by all those interested in how football has evolved over the past two decades