"Beattie gets a flavour for each rivalry, often accurately pinpointing the mentality of the two groups of fans." --Jon Crampin, FourFourTwo
"I loved this book... Football fans will love it, it gets right to the heart of why people choose their clubs and what these cities are like to live in... I doubt a finer football book has been written about the game in Britain... Cover to cover a cracking read." --www.booksunlimited.ie
"Beattie combines excellent reportage with a great deal of deftly rendered (and appropriately acknowledged) history to reveal that some of the most prolonged rifts have their roots in the actions of historical individuals." --Andrew Baker, The Telegraph
"The Rivals Game offers a great deal for both partisan and impartial lovers of the not-always-beautiful game." --Simon Redfern, The Independent
"What Beattie has produced is an intelligent and well-written insight into the eight biggest derbies in British football - it does afford Beattie the opportunity to pack the book with information to entertain and interest the reader - there is also plenty of humour." --When Saturday Comes
"It's a real fans' book, that's exactly what it is. Reading about the reasons why you support one team or another, or you are passionate about one team or another, it brought it all home to me and it made sense." --Dotun Adebayo, Radio 5Live
What makes them choose: family ties, geography, politics, religion or perhaps race?
'Rivals Game' author Douglas Beattie spent two years discovering what lies at the heart of Britain's greatest derbies. Beattie takes the reader to the matches that have long been seen as passionate, divisive and vitally important to the entire cities in which they are played.
These are the games that have a history of violence, feuding, social unrest and bigotry. But what is the truth about their origins and how does the enmity, so often displayed by supporters and gleefully by the media, manifest itself in an era which sees top clubs funded by billionaire chairmen and awash with TV revenue?