The Odd Man Out



The Odd Man Out - out now! - is Graham Denton's fascinating story of Ron Saunders' reign at Aston Villa. It's an exhaustive account of how Saunders became the only manager in over a century to guide Aston Villa to English football’s summit.

It examines how he took the Midlanders to promotion from the old Division Two in his first season; how he created and dismantled arguably the most exciting Villa side of modern times, and how he achieved two League Cup triumphs in three years.

Ron Saunders’ tough-guy reputation has long overshadowed his achievements. Author Graham Denton now casts the man, his methods and successes in an entirely new light.

The Odd Man Out is the story of the forgotten manager of English football, Ron Saunders. It tells how...

  • He won Norwich City their first-ever promotion to the old First Division, also taking the Norfolk club to its first Wembley final
  • The boxing fan from Birkenhead battled his way back to the very top only months after being sacked by Manchester City
  • He earned a personal niche in soccer’s history as the only manager to have taken three different sides to three successive League Cup finals
  • In 1975, he led out Aston Villa in the first (and as yet only) English cup final contested by two teams outside the top flight
  • Against a Liverpool side that, later that season, went on to win the European Cup for the first time, his Aston Villa team scored five goals – before half-time!
  • He was the first manager to twice win the Manager of the Year award, and is the only one to do so whilst managing the same club (Villa) in two different divisions
  • Saunders was the last man to lead a team to the league title under the old two-points-for-a-win system – and did so using only 14 players!
  • He became the first ex-Villa manager to take over at neighbouring St Andrew’s

Click here for more information, or to read a sample from The Odd Man Out