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What is the best football book ever? (part 2)

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Roar Rookie
9th October, 2022

A while ago, I wrote an article saying my three favourite footballing books and then asked you for yours. I got some cracking suggestions, with a large variety of answers.

That article was over a month ago, and, as promised, here is a follow-up one. In that time I have read Jonathan Wilson’s Inverting the Pyramid, the book suggested the most by the comments.

So, in this article I’ll include the three suggestions I liked the most, and my revised top three of footballing books, to include Inverting the Pyramid. First, my favourite suggestions.

3. The Soccer Tribe (Desmond Morris, suggested by user Buddy)

From all the tales I’ve heard from my dad, English football in the 1970s and 80s was a crazy time. Morris becomes a director of a football club, and takes the reader through all of his experiences. The twists and turns are offered from a unique viewpoint, and I’m sure it would be a fascinating read.

2. The Away Game (Matthew Hall, suggested by user Snags)

As a European, my view of Aussies playing in Europe is probably quite different to the view of those Down Under. That is why The Away Game intrigues me so much. It is a tale of brave Aussies leaving their shores in a high-risk, high-reward scenario to play in Europe.


It explores the fallout in Australian football after the 2006 World Cup. A charter of the dreams of young Aussie men seems like it could be a great book.

1. Foul! (Andrew Jennings, suggested by users Snags and David Thompson)

Despite being published in 2001, this book is still very topical. It lifts the curtain on the corruption in FIFA’s high offices, something that is definitely not spoken about enough.

This explosive book delves deeper than any book has before, and puts all of FIFA’s propaganda to shame. One I will definitely be reading soon.

Now, for my new top three footballing-related books.

3. One Hit Wonder: The Jimmy Glass Story (Jimmy Glass with Roger Lytollis, 2004)

Keeping its place at number three, Jimmy Glass’ autobiography is a brilliant insight into English football in the 90s, whilst never detracting from Jimmy himself.


Andre Agassi’s former bodyguard, a one-time gambling addict, being the only goalkeeper to score at Wembley, and the scorer of a team’s most famous goal, Jimmy Glass has done it all. Raw, funny, and eye-opening, Glass’ book is everything you want from a footballer’s autobiography,

2. Barca: The rise and fall of the club that built modern football (Simon Kuper, 2022)

Dropping a place through no fault of its own, Barca walks you through the streets of Catalonia, and lets you see what the club means to the city.

More than a recent history of FC Barcelona, it shows you the politics behind the club, the influence of Johan Cruyff as both a player and manager, but also the recent demise of the world’s biggest sports club.

1. Inverting the Pyramid (Jonathan Wilson, 2014)

It was obvious, wasn’t it? Inverting the Pyramid is simply masterful. It takes you on an incredible journey from the ‘rush’ style of English private schools, to Total Football to Saachi’s Milan, to why the English’s style of play is all due to a terrible misinterpretation of one stat. An incredible book, it is a history of football tactics but so much more than that.

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