FROM Manchester United’s legendary Champions League win in 1999 to the sadness of numerous England tournament failures, Clive Tyldesley’s emotive commentaries have been the soundtrack to a whole generation’s footballing memories.

Now the Radcliffe-born journalist has collected these stories in a new memoir ‘Not For Me Clive’ in which he covers all the big names and bigger moments from the past few decades of the ‘Beautiful Game’.

“One of the reviews described it as a ‘love letter to football’ which I was quite flattered by,” said Clive. “It’s a bit like having a conversation with me in which you don’t get to say anything.

“Because I’m a broadcaster and not a writer it’s quite conversational and it’s me drawing on the experiences of meeting some extraordinary people and what I’ve learnt about football and life itself.”

Clive was educated at Bury Grammar School before beginning a broadcasting career which quickly brought him into contact with some of the game’s biggest characters.

“I was at Burnden Park once doing a feature on Tony Philliskirk and David Reeves and we decided to ask Frank Worthington along,” said Clive. “He started by asking one of them to roll the ball into him and he flicked it over his shoulder, turned and volleyed it into the top corner. Then he did it again.

“He had no idea to explain to them how he did it, but despite being in his 40s and not exactly living the life of an athlete he still had it.”

“Some people are just gifted and some of the most fascinating characters are those managers who have to compute it all and come up with some theories as to how you play football.”

One of Clive’s earliest footballing influences was ex-Bury FC boss Dave Russell who lived next door to him as a child on Radcliffe Road.

“You could walk to Gigg Lane in 10 minutes,” he said. “I felt like I almost grew up inside the game because ‘Uncle Dave’s’ whole state of mind depended on whether it had been a win or a loss in the previous game so I got to see how football affected the professionals.”

Clive, 66, remains saddened at his local club’s demise in recent years., adding: "My generation finds it particularly sad because Bury was a name on the world map as part of the Football League. If you travelled abroad and wanted to relate where you came from it was surprising how many people would know of Bury because of Bury FC.

“With the disappearance of that some of the profile of the town went with it and it’s extraordinary how many England players the town has produced.

“Only three English players have scored in a World Cup semifinal and one of those, Kieran Trippier, is from Bury and who will be commenting on the action in the Euros for ITV? A guy from Bury in Gary Neville and then there’s me from Radcliffe.

“No doubt if England have a wonderful victory and they want a slo-mo sequence to end the programme there’s half a chance Elbow will provide the soundtrack.

“Those four letters on football’s fixture list have disappeared and with it has a lot of the identity of the town and it’s very sad indeed.”

As for the Euros themselves, Clive believes England are in capable hands with a manager he has the upmost respect for.

“Potentially we have a very good team but it is very young,” he added. “But in the last few weeks several of them have played in European cup finals so they’re gathering high-level experience as they go.

“Putting on an England shirt is different though and it carries a little bit extra weight so it’ll be interesting to see if these guys can really express themselves.

“I go a long way back with Gareth (Southgate) and while you might not agree with every decision he takes I can promise there is nobody more capable, thoughtful and more responsible.

“I can’t guarantee we’ll win but I do know we’ll play with a pride in the shirt and they’ll be an easy team to support - that in itself will give us a chance.”