Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop All Amazon Fashion Up to 70% off Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Shop Amazon Fire TV Shop now Shop Fire HD 6 Learn More Shop now Shop now Shop now
Start reading Bamboo Goalposts on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here or start reading now with a free Kindle Reading App.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device


Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

Bamboo Goalposts [Kindle Edition]

Rowan Simons
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £7.99
Kindle Price: £6.25 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
You Save: £1.74 (22%)
* Unlike print books, digital books are subject to VAT.

Free Kindle Reading App Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.

To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition £6.25  
Hardcover --  
Paperback £7.99  
Kindle Books Summer Sale
Kindle Summer Sale: Books from 99p
Browse over 600 titles from best-selling authors, including Neil Gaiman, John Grisham, Jeffrey Archer, Veronica Roth and Sylvia Day. >Shop now

Book Description

Rowan Simons has lived (and played football) in China for over twenty years and Bamboo Goalposts is his amusing and insightful account of what it’s like to live, work and play there. He presents and works with Beijing TV and runs his own media company, but his real passion is getting China to embrace the social and health benefits of amateur football. Which isn’t easy in a country where for decades it was illegal for more than ten people to congregate for the purposes of a recreational sporting activity.

Rowan built a football pitch and clubhouse and now heads Club Football - – whose growing membership has given him genuine hope that by the time the Beijing Olympics begin in 2008 he might be getting somewhere. No other book communicates more clearly, more humourously and more affectionately what contemporary China is like when viewed through Western eyes. Rowan speaks fluent Chinese and his love of the country and its people shines off every page. He has lived there for so long that he understands what it takes to get ahead, but at the same time he is still very much a down-to-earth English football fan who just wants to share his passion for the beautiful game.

Bamboo Goalposts is a personal odyssey inspired by the selfless pioneers of amateur football who took the game around the world in centuries past, but somehow missed China.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Page of Start over
This shopping feature will continue to load items. In order to navigate out of this carousel please use your heading shortcut key to navigate to the next or previous heading.

Product Description


'Bamboo Goalpost is a highly unusual and very entertaining sporting book.'
-- Irish Mail on Sunday

`His great passion in life is football, and in this often hilarious book he describes his attempts to convert the Chinese to the joys of the amateur game. Since the authorities have an elitist attitude towards sport and regard any gathering of more than ten people as politically subversive, it's been an uphill struggle.' -- Mail on Sunday


'Bamboo Goalpost is a highly unusual and very entertaining sporting book.'

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 707 KB
  • Print Length: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Pan; Reprint edition (30 Nov. 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004E9T0H2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #598,601 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a Sweet F. A. 10 Feb. 2015
When it comes to football, I'm in agreement with the great Bill Shankly when he said: "Football is not a matter of life and death, it's far more important than that". When it comes to China, my knowledge is limited to what I've seen on the TV recently about the earthquake, the Olympics and the protests; vague memories of Tiananmen Square and a love of the cuisine, or at least the version that comes from my local takeaway. Like many in the Western world, I have no concept of what life is truly like in China.

After an enjoyable "have football, will travel" opening, telling of Rowan's encounters with South America we then hear about how he came to be in China in the first place and his first attempts to play football while he was there. Having got there and decided to stay, he attempts to build his career, his life and the game of football in China.

The opening part made me think of one of Tony Hawks' travel books, as Simons writes with a similar relaxed feel that makes you think he's just one of your mates in the pub. Given that he's essentially talking about football and a holiday, this may not be so far from the truth. This light tone continues as he recounts his days as a student in China and I was starting to feel that this was going to be something akin to Tony Hawks "Round Ireland With a Fridge", except with a football.

Once he becomes more involved in living and working in China, the tone becomes a lot more serious, especially as he saw the events of Tiananmen Square first hand, although even these sections are easy to read, if less pleasant. Part of this is due to the Chinese way of life being so different to the English one that he's not just having to tell us about his life, he's almost having to explain it.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars People's football - one man's revolution 27 Aug. 2008
A must for all those remotely interested by either football or China and preferably both! Englishman Rowan Simons manages to effortlessly entertain, amuse and inform us as he leads us on his own one man odyssey for the right to play amateur football in modern China. He combines his often hilarious anecdotes and extraordinary experiences with a rare insight into the history and culture of the game in a country he has clearly come to understand profoundly. From his student days in Tiananmen Square to his unlikely role as Chinese television's favorite soccer pundit, Simons treats us to a rare insight into the complexities of modern China. For anyone who has ever played the game, from Sunday league upwards, this is a fascinating, sometimes unbelievable and always enjoyable read. Highly recommended to all lovers of sport in general and football in particular, this book has to be read to be believed!
Was this review helpful to you?
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Problem with China 13 Jan. 2009
I've long wondered why the Chinese national men's soccer/football team hasn't had anywhere near the success as their women's squad. Many of the ingredients appear to be there: large sports infrastructure, huge talent pool, a sport that doesn't favor a particular body type, and generally strong team spirit. Well, this is a book that attempts to answer that question and mostly does a pretty good job of it.

Simons is an Englishman who came to China as a university student in the late '80s, fell in love with the country, and hustled his way into a position to return and make a life there. He combined a few contacts in sports promotion and media with his Chinese language skills and an entrepreneurial spirit to build a multifaceted career in the just-developing Chinese television market. Be warned, it takes a good 100 pages of his backstory before the soccer content really gets going. But that's OK, because his stories about being a Westerner in Beijing when Westerners were relatively scarce are well-told. They're also en excellent reminder of the rapidity of China's growth and opening to the outside that's happened in the last 20 years. Indeed, probably the best part of the book are Simons' eyewitness accounts the Tienanmen Square protests and the bloody response.

The latter 2/3 of the book cover the choppy (and often corrupt) history of modern Chinese soccer, both at the national and and club level, along with the story of his own efforts to start an English-style amateur football club,and all the logistical, financial, and bureaucratic obstacles that faced. Simons lays the lion's share of the blame for the pathetic state of Chinese pro and national soccer at the door of the central government.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Holiday book i could not put down 2 Sept. 2008
many football books about other countries just talk about how they have developed and grown and talk about their famous teams. This cannot be written about china as their football is not developed in such a way. The football history they have starts in the 3rd century with a game credited as the birth of football. fast forward 800 years and Rowan Simons could not find a place to play. This book is as much about a foreigner in china as it is football. This is the story of one mans mission to change a countries sporting psyche taking him from the tiananmen square protests to tv personality.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars bamboo shoots saved 11 Sept. 2010
An interesting book on China but Rowan can come across as a bit too clever for his own good. Worth a read to maybe get a feel for what China thinks about football but not for those looking for a more human interest story
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for similar items by category