Followers of 21st Century football are unlikely to be familiar with Hope Robertson. However, the centre-forward cum wing-half was one of the great characters in the early years of professional football and one of Everton’s first ‘Kings of Anfield’ – winning the Football League Championship in the 1890-91 season. That is just the tip of the iceberg when exploring the life of this remarkable man, who made a key contribution to the early years of Partick Thistle and Arsenal, in addition to the Toffees.

I’ve been lucky to have access to a memoir written in 1910 by the Scot, giving a unique insight into the glory, disputes and intrigue of football in the late Victorian era. Hope candidly describes his Everton teammates, including Andrew Hannah, Dan Doyle and Johnny Holt – and his sometimes difficult relationship with the Everton hierarchy, which culminated in him stealing a crossbar from Goodison Park. These ripping yarns also take in a voyage to Egypt with clubmate Bob Kelso and fighting in the Boer War.

The result is The Hope Robertson Chronicles, an 80-page booklet now available as ‘print on demand’ via Amazon, priced at £3.50 plus postage.