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The Professional Footballer – from Ross to Rooney

Professor of History, Prof Matthew Taylor examines how the occupation, and attitudes towards it, changed from the 1880s to the emergence of the Premier League in the 1990s.

Professional footballers have always had a contradictory public image. Criticised by some as overpaid and badly behaved ‘prima donnas’, yet idolised by others as role models and community heroes, they have embodied the values and beliefs, aspirations and anxieties of those who watched and read about them. Drawing on wider historical research on the working conditions and lifestyles of sports professionals, this lecture examines how the occupation, and attitudes towards it, changed from the 1880s to the emergence of the Premier League in the 1990s.

Matthew Taylor was educated at the University of York. He taught at De Montfort University and the University of Portsmouth before returning to De Montfort in 2007 as Professor of History in the International Centre for Sports History and Culture. He is currently editor-in-chief of the journal Sport in History and co-editor of a new book series on sports history with Peter Lang. He is the author of over thirty academic articles and chapters, and a number of books, on the history of sport and recreation in Britain and Europe. His most recent book was The Association Game: A History of British Football (2008). Current projects include a social history of boxing in twentieth-century Britain and a global history of sport.

Please book online or contact our Events Office on (0116) 257 7452 or eventsoffice@dmu.ac.uk


Conductor: Matthew Taylor | talks | www


Date and Time:

9 June 2011 at 6:00 pm


1 hour



Hugh Aston Building
De Montfort University
The Newarke

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Organised by:

Professorial Lecture Series
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Available from:

To book a place or for more information please email Daniel Jones at djones@dmu.ac.uk or telephone 0116 257 7452

Additional Information:

Places must be booked in advance as there are limited places. There will be a free drinks reception afterwards for guests to be able to further discuss the event.

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