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5.0 out of 5 stars Tor, 5 Jun 2013
This review is from: Tor!: The Story of German Football (Paperback)
Very informative book. In depth and detailed history of German football with interesting side stories. Very interesting insight into how German football came to be as we see it today.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very insightful, 3 April 2013
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This review is from: Tor!: The Story of German Football (Paperback)
For any football fan who has an interest in German football this book gives you the context to the modern German game. Very informative and interesting read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Successful present!, 25 Jan 2013
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This review is from: Tor!: The Story of German Football (Paperback)
I bought this book from a list of requests from my partner. He seems to be enjoying it very much (in fact he is beside me reading it as I type!) I cannot comment on the content personally as football is not really my thing, but judging by the engrossed way that it is being read I'd say that it is a good book (he would not persevere if it were not).
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4.0 out of 5 stars deserves its praise, 21 Aug 2010
This review is from: Tor!: The Story of German Football (Paperback)
As a long time fan of German football who had long lamented the relative ignorance of it in Britain, certainly compared to the equivalent knowledge of the British game amongst German football fans, I think this book did a great job of opening quite a few previously not so open minds, and hopefully still is.

Unfortunately, there's a minor howler on the very last page of the 2003 edition, where the author refers to Germany's 2002 World Cup camp in "Seogwipo, Japan." Seogwipo is not in Japan, it's in Korea. In fact, I think that final extra chapter on the 2002 World Cup does give off a little bit of an air of being added in something of a hurry, research-wise, for the updated 2003 edition. There are occasions where the author talks of "Asia" and "The East" as if he's not really sure which far-off country it was actually happening in.

That shouldn't take any of the gloss off the book, however. For a start, most readers won't have sufficient knowledge of that part of the world to either know or care about those points. And, it is a book about German football, the previous chapters of which are all very well written, so one can forgive largely irrelevant errors about unrelated parts of the world.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Book on Football I have Ever Read, 14 Aug 2009
By 
steve b (Dudley England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Tor!: The Story of German Football (Paperback)
Herr Hesse-Lichtenberger has written a most informative book on the history of German football from it's rise in Imperial Germany to it's years of world dominance in the seventies and eighties to its relative decline in the nineties. The book ends with the 2002 world cup final and the death of Fritz Walter, who was the star of the 1954 world cup winning side. Walter was chosen by the German FA as the best ever German player which is quite an aceivement when they could have chosen players like Franz Beckenbauer, Uwe Seeler or Gert Muller.

The book is full of interesting facts like what the various German club names mean, Borussia, Schalke, Hertha etc but it is far from simply being a list of German clubs, teams and games. The writer goes into the various political problems faced by the game in Germany from how it was seen as a foreign English game under the Kaiser, dispite the support of his son the Crown Prince, to it's exploitation under the Nazis. Also of interest is the German FAs long insistance on ameteurism. Until the mid sixties any German player who moved abroad to earm his living was automaticly barred from playing for the national team. The Germans being obsessed by image, one player was sent home for eating an orange on a railway platform, while at the 1966 world cup the team was told and accepted that their status as good sports and gentleman was more important than their performance on the field.

In Britain the image of the German football was one of a well organised team with solid rather that flair players. The author exposes this myth showing how the various national teams fought amougst themselves and with the football authorities. The most bizare incendent being the German FAs baring of the players wives from the dinner that followed the 1974 World Cup Winner. Many players including Gert Muller, Uli Hoeness and Wolfgang Overath refused to play for the national team again.

Written with a light touch, the writer has his favourites, Rudi Voller for instance, but this is book any football fan sould read. It also includes a chapter on the East German game.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars an informative and enjoyable account of German Football, 18 May 2007
By 
T. Lynch (Newcastle Upon Tyne, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Tor!: The Story of German Football (Paperback)
I would recommend this book to any football supporter. Lichtenburger has produced a marvellously detailed account of his country's footballing history, and has presented it in a way which amply explains German terminology and gives even novices a understandable and detailed knowledge of Germany's football history. My only criticism is that I found myself slightly disappointed by the lack of detail of football in East Germany, in comparison to the vast information contained on West German football during the same periods. Nevertheless, Lichtenburger's knowledge and love his subject is evident, and Tor is a valuable, informative and enjoyable read.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An eye opener, 15 Sep 2010
By 
androo235 "androo235" (coc kney.. well ...ish) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Tor!: The Story of German Football (Paperback)
This puts it all into context. Yes they've won it three times (it is three isn't it?), but not since 1990 though they won the Euro's in 96. However read from a German fans point of view it all seems less inevitable.

Did Netzer really play for the German national team for only 20 minutes? He played in the last 20 minutes of the 1:0 win at Wembley that knocked England out of the 1972 Euro's - I think, at any rate it was Germany's first competitive win against England. His English contemporary, Rodney Marsh, got more caps than that but the England team he hardly played for didn't win anything. It's hard for an England fan not to read this through the lens of Englands failure not to win anything since, well you know since when. But, all the same, it's hard not to feel empathy with the writer and through him for German football fans as they win, for them, unexpectedly and against the odds. It's also touching that the writer still seems to have a certain deference and respect for English football - though from here it's difficult to see why? I suppose an arrogant book or one that didn't acknowledge football's English roots would not be marketed in English so it's hard to assess how representative of German football fans the writers position is.

The book also covers club football and I for one was surprised to learn that Bayern's domination of German football is a fairly recent phenomena (Munich of course, though like United - there are other Bayern's though I already knew that - did you!) . It also explains how to understand the numbers and names of German clubs (04 Schalke anyone) - though I admit I've already forgotten and they seem as cryptic as ever. You'd have thought the number simply referred to the year they were founded but apparently there's more to it than that.

The book retains one's interest - though it's slow in places - I don't think it'll convert any non-fans (of football). There are also some clumsy translations or at least attempts to translate the possibly untranslatable that left me puzzled.

Overall I'd thoroughly recommend this book to any football fan who's interested enough to have read this far into this review.
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Tor!: The Story of German Football
Tor!: The Story of German Football by Ulrich Hesse-Lichtenberger (Paperback - 15 July 2003)
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