Gordon Banks is one of my favorite players from the glory days of the NASL in America. Yes, there was Pelé, Best, Cruyff, Beckenbauer, and Chinaglia. But there was also Banks, who stood out as a classy steward of the game, a player who cared on and off the field. He was and still is the epitome of what the beautiful game is all about: skill, passion, determination, and hard work.
Simply put, Banks reminds us of better times, of a golden age of football. It also reminds us of a player that went on a football journey, one that finished as a world-class player and perhaps the best goalkeeper in England’s history. Put it this way, he wouldn’t have let that goal slip by against the U.S. in the 2010 World Cup as Robert Green did.
Gordon Banks: A Biography by Jim Morris is an instant classic, a great read for any football fan. Morris captures what Banks was all about, tracing the steps from humble beginnings to greatness, from making big plays at the schoolyard to landing perhaps the greatest save in World Cup history.
And all of this comes from the unlikeliest of places, an author that is a psychiatric nurse by trade. Surprisingly enough this is only his fourth book and his first football title, but you would never realize that from reading this incredible title.
This book does Banks justice and that is probably the biggest compliment you could give.