The Man Who Hated Football

by Will Buckley

I found this hard to read - I thought the plot drifted a bit. Harder still was all the football detail! It might be better for someone who's into descriptions of the game. Jimmy Stirling is a football journalist who is disillusioned with his job and his life, and does all he can to avoid working at either. Despite all the football jargon, it's actually very funny in places.


'It's a funny old ...' said Green.
'World,' said Stirling.
'Game,' said Green.
There was a lull. Pinot Grigio was drunk, curries consumed, side-dishes wiped clean.
'How many Nevilles?' asked White, mid-bhaji.
'Sorry,' said Pink.
'Gary and Phil? Gary not Phil? Phil not Gary? Neither Phil nor Gary?' said White.
Jesus, thought Stirling, not the Neville debate. This could take hours. There was no more complex subject in the modern game than the conundrum posed by the two sons of Neville Neville. Any top football writer could talk at length about the inherent contradictions and logical implausibilities of accommodating both Nevilles in a back four. Over the years the debate had been waged, that much was now common ground. Everything else was up for grabs. The discussion might last beyond Christmas.


Fever Pitch by Nick Hornby
Time for Bed by David Baddiel

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