New book tells the untold story of Leeds United legend Gary Speed

Gary Speed celebrates his goal for Leeds United against Bradford City in 1990.
Gary Speed celebrates his goal for Leeds United against Bradford City in 1990.

Family and friends of Leeds United legend Gary Speed have opened their hearts for a new book about his life and tragic death.

Gary Speed Unspoken: The Family’s Untold Story includes “lengthy and emotional” chapters written by the football hero’s widow Louise.

The rest of the book has been penned by respected sports writer John Richardson and features interviews with Speed’s parents, Roger and Carol, as well as many of his former team-mates.

And, in a sign of the enduring affection for ‘Speedo’ that exists among soccer fans everywhere, pre-publication orders have already propelled it into Amazon’s top 20 chart of best-selling football biographies.

Writing about the book on Twitter, Richardson said: “A huge thank you for the positive reaction to Gary Speed Unspoken. It’s been a long time coming but hopefully it’s been worth the wait.”

He added: “Speedo gone but certainly not forgotten. A huge thank you too for all the warm messages of support.”

Flintshire-born Speed started his career with Leeds, playing his first game for the Whites in 1989 at the age of 19 and going on to make more than 300 appearances for the club over the next seven years.

Most famously, he formed part of the unrivalled midfield quartet that proved instrumental in United’s 1991-92 First Division title triumph.

Speed also had spells as a player with Everton, Newcastle United, Bolton Wanderers and Sheffield United before forging a promising career in management that saw him taking charge of the Welsh national side.

A father of two, he was found hanged at his home in Cheshire in 2011, aged 42.

His death prompted a huge outpouring of grief across the football world, with a sea of flowers and shirts being laid in his memory outside United’s Elland Road ground.

Gary Speed Unspoken: The Family’s Untold Story will be published on September 20 by Trinity Mirror Sport Media.