Soccer Reading & Viewing

Soccer-Related Books, Films, and Other Media

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A Captain’s Tale is a Fun Little English Football History Lesson

February 4, 2021

The full title of the film A Captain's Tale includes the phrase "World Cup," as in fact it's the true story of what some folks call the "first World Cup." That, for me, is a stretch in the extreme, but it's still an interesting story, and the film itself is a fun little jaunt in the…

shaolin kung fu soccer bicycle kick

The Shaolin (Kung Fu) Soccer Movie is Good, Flying Fun

January 29, 2021

Sometimes I believe we overthink things like movies and football, and we forget they are supposed to be good, clean, even silly fun. If you need a reminder of that, watch the Shaolin (Kung Fu) Soccer movie. Even if you know nothing beyond the title -- which, for the record, was Shaolin Soccer in Hong…

david cross as bert trautmann in the keeper

The Keeper Tells (Some of) the Remarkable Story of Bert Trautmann

January 21, 2021

If all you knew were the very basics of Bert Trautmann's story, it would be remarkable: a German soldier in World War II, captured by the British, winds up playing goal for Manchester City, finishes and wins the 1956 FA Cup Final despite breaking his neck during the game. Of course, there is more to…

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Green Street Hooligans is Well Worth a Watch

January 12, 2021

Green Street Hooligans is yet another film about hooligans among English football fans, and yet another football film that divides opinions across the Atlantic. While the 2005 film is no more about football than Rocky is about boxing, it's still the case that a combined US-UK production that features an American plus a Brit with the…

Nazi flag soccer players lift Sylvester Stallone in Escape to Victory movie

“Escape to Victory” is a Classic Soccer Movie

January 5, 2021

Whether it's a football film called Escape to Victory, as Brits would know it, or a soccer movie called Victory by Yanks, the 1981 motion picture with Sylvester Stallone and Michael Caine is one that soccer fans should watch. Even as I write that, though, I find myself wanting to add some caveats. It's not…

Sir Bobby Robson statue at Newcastle United St. James Park

English Football Documentary Reveals Sir Bobby Robson

December 3, 2020

Here's an interesting trivia question: Name an individual in English football who was honored by a statue at more than one club. I can think of two. The other one we'll get to, but for now I want my readers to meet Sir Bobby Robson, legendary manager of Ipswich Town, Newcastle United, the English national…

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Fever Pitch: Soccer Book & Film Review

October 26, 2020

Fever Pitch: Soccer Book and Film Review Please note that this is mainly a review of the soccer book called Fever Pitch -- less so the movie, and certainly not the American film of the same name. It's a very important distinction, because if you say "Fever Pitch" to most Americans, they think of this…

Premier League Leeds fans holding supporter scarves

There is a Second (Mini) Season of the Amazon Prime Leeds United Show

September 18, 2020

The behind-the-scenes documentary from English soccer clubs has become quite the rage of late, and one of the best now has a second (mini) season. Take Us Home: Leeds United is back for two episodes. Why only two? Well, it looks like they were back for last season to follow Leeds' pursuit of promotion to…

“Among the Thugs” and Inside the Heart of Violence

July 11, 2020

As long as I have been into soccer, I have heard about Bill Buford's book, Among the Thugs. But I never read it because I just wasn't interested in tales of the bad old hooligan days. Now that I have read it, I am somewhat glad I did, mainly because it was not at all…

Classic Football Film: When Saturday Comes

July 5, 2020

I've just finished watching the 1996 film When Saturday Comes, and I can't decide if it's an epic collection of clichés or one of the more down-to-Earth football films I've seen. I've decided it's probably both. Let me check myself here; it is most definitely an epic collection of clichés, and I suspect that's one…

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