Belfast Telegraph

Unearthed film reveals George Best genius during Manchester United win over Coventry in 1970 at Old Trafford

By Nevin Farrell

Vintage footage focusing entirely on footballing genius George Best over the course of a 90 minute game has been rediscovered after more than four decades.

Eight cameras were dotted around Old Trafford with one mission during a match in 1970 - to follow Best on the pitch and capture the grace and poise of the east Belfast legend.

However, the footage languished in the vaults for years until being recently found again and given a new soundtrack by Dublin composer Matthew Nolan.

Now lovers of the beautiful game will be able to feast their eyes on Best's individual skills.

And George really was at his best in scoring a goal and setting up the other for Bobby Charlton in a 2-0 win over Coventry City.

Football as Never Before was filmed in 1970 and produced for a documentary the following year.

The Guardian has reported the German arthouse film has been given a fresh lease of life after being set to a new soundtrack.

Mr Nolan brings a 'requiem-like' accompaniment to the film by German director Hellmuth Costard. Costard's eight 16mm cameras even followed Best off the pitch and kept rolling at half-time.

Nolan said that he hopes the film can help rescue Best's image, tainted by his later alcoholism.

He told the Guardian: "My specific aim here is to offer a celebration of a sporting icon which looks to return Best to that arena where he was peerless.

"There is something quite pure about Costard's film and given how the media distorted Best's image in later years, it feels only proper that an attempt is made to get back to the sublimely gifted footballer."

The new score to the film is set to make its premiere at the George Bernard Shaw Theatre in Co Carlow on November 25 - the 10th anniversary of Best's death.

Best's brother-in-law, Norman McNarry, said he and his wife Barbara were "pleasantly stunned" to learn about Costard's film.

"As far as I can recall I have never heard about this film before, nor has Barbara. We would both love to see it, to see him again in all his glory in this film," he said.

Belfast Telegraph


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