John Murray has acquired a business history of the rise of Premier League football by Wall Street Journal writers Joshua Robinson and Jonathan Clegg.
The Club, about how the Premier League became "the biggest sports franchise in history", will be published in January 2019, following a deal done between Joseph Zigmond, senior commissioning editor at John Murray, for UK and Commonwealth rights and Gráinne Fox at Fletcher & Company.
The Club will focus on how football clubs are being run in the modern age, informed by interviews with football club owners and directors who rarely give interviews, such as Daniel Levy of Tottenham, Martin Edwards and David Gill at Manchester United, Stan Kroenke at Arsenal and Manchester City’s sporting director Txiki Begiristain.
According to Robinson and Clegg, for whom the book is the culmination of a combined decade covering the league as reporters, the Premier League has been exported to a total 4.7 billion people in 185 countries and, since its creation in 1992, its revenues have increased 2,500%.
"What we set out to do was not to tell the story of what happened on the pitch, but to take readers inside the boardrooms, dressing rooms and secret meetings that built the Premier League into a modern empire," the authors said.
Zigmond commented: “The Club is a book that very clearly appeals to readers of both sport and business. Its narrative – the League’s meteoric rise as a pioneering packager and exporter of content – creates a very tidy Venn diagram of those two readerships. This revelatory account explains how, off the pitch, it made this transition from being a backward, paranoid, broke, industrial culture to the 21st Century entertainment powerhouse has never been seriously addressed. In recounting this, the two authors have managed to tell the most comprehensive history of the Premier League yet. Their access and scoops take the breath away on every page – each of which is littered with the colour and foibles peculiar to the super-rich."