From the publisher:
'Powerful and poignant' Henry Winter
'Empathetic and poignant ... the game's answer to A Journal of the Plague Year' Harry Pearson
'The Durham City midfielder wore the resigned look of a man trying to find a jar of harissa in Farmfoods. Up front for Jarrow, a centre-forward darted around frenetically, as if chasing a kite during a hurricane...' When football disappeared in March 2020, writer and broadcaster Daniel Gray used its absence to reflect on everything the game meant to him.
That bred a pledge: whenever and wherever fans were allowed to return, he would be there. The Silence of the Stands is the result of that pledge: a joyous travelogue documenting a precarious season, in which behind-closed-doors matches and travel restrictions combined to make trips to Kendal and Workington seem impossibly exotic. Offering a poignant peek at a surreal age and a slab of social history from the two-metre-distanced tea bar queue, this is the moving, heartfelt and surprisingly uplifting story of a unique season that no one wishes to repeat.
Daniel Gray is the author of Extra Time, Black Boots and Football Pinks, Saturday, 3pm and Scribbles in the Margins. He has written eight other books on football, politics, history and travel. His recent work has included screenwriting, presenting social history on television, editing a football magazine and writing across a number of national titles. He also presents the When Saturday Comes podcast.