Sports are definitely one of the most widespread interests around the planet, which gather billions of people who enjoy playing or cheering for their favorite team. Very few other things can compare to the thrill of having your favorite player score a point, or your team winning the game. Of all the sports in the world, football seems to be the most popular one, with almost four billion fans around the world. For those who want a closer insight into the sport, there is data online that can be analyzed, and statistics that can help avid fans have a better grasp of the situation on the field. However, there are also those who wish to enjoy the artistic side of football.
How can that be done?
Football is loved by so many people precisely because it has so much more to offer aside from mere statistics and goals. It is also about the experiences of the players and the feelings they have on the field and when they score a goal; it is about their training sessions and the years they spend together; a football story is also that of friendship. To follow up on that side of the story, you can watch player interviews, or pick a good book about football to see the things from the players’ perspective.
Here are some books that you can check out to get a better appreciation for this wonderful sport.
1. Futebol – The Brazilian Way of Life
This book is a must-have, all-in-one description of the development of football in the country that does it the best. Brazil has, time and time again, confirmed its supremacy when it comes to this sport, and this book documents it all. The author of this book is a journalist, who went to great lengths to document every bit of information about Brazilian football, and put it together quite nicely, in a straightforward book, without too much philosophy.
German football has amassed plenty of stereotypes over the years –it is usually portrayed as bland, boring, square, efficient, and heartless. However, Uli Hesse, the author of the book, manages to subvert and dismantle those myths, showing German players for what they truly are. One of the interesting thing that appears in the book, aside from the part about football in East Germany, is the integration of swearing and insults into the football life; German players insult each other quite heavily, and on a daily basis.
3. A Life too Short: The Tragedy of Robert Enke
Robert Enke was a promising young goalkeeper who suffered from depression and sadly, ended his life at the age of 22, by stepping in front of a train. The book that keeps the memory of his name opened the door for other players to talk openly about depression, in order to prevent things like this from happening ever again.
4. Puskas on Puskas
This is a biography of the Hungarian football legend, which tells a captivating story, full of sports, politics, and history, all fused into one, through his career in Hungary and later in Real Madrid.
5. Fever Pitch
This book differs from others on the list as it sheds the light on how it is to be a fan. The author explains the experience of cheering for his favorite team, and how it helped him overcome numerous crises in life, like his parents’ divorce, lack of meaning in life, and other things.