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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eye Opening
David Yallop is, for me, the world's greatest investigative writer. If anyone thinks otherwise then please let me know as I am looking for new authors. He has written only a handful of books over a 30+ year career and to my knowledge nothing he has ever uncovered has been disproved.

How They Stole The Game is about football and Yallop probes to the very heart...
Published on 21 Jan 2007 by J. Mellor

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Used to the scandals by now...
It probably says more about me and the times we live in than about the book but I didn't think the book was half as scandalous as I had expected it to be. It was with a sense of, 'Yeah but I figured this was going on already' that I read this. Perhaps it is also because I started reading this book a little bit too late and it's now perhaps slightly out of date. Having...
Published on 11 Dec 2009 by Remco Weeda


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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eye Opening, 21 Jan 2007
By 
J. Mellor "stayleyvegas" (Manchester, UK) - See all my reviews
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David Yallop is, for me, the world's greatest investigative writer. If anyone thinks otherwise then please let me know as I am looking for new authors. He has written only a handful of books over a 30+ year career and to my knowledge nothing he has ever uncovered has been disproved.

How They Stole The Game is about football and Yallop probes to the very heart of FIFA. More specifically, the FIFA president from 1974-1998, Joao Havelange and how he abuses his power to create his own fiefdom and abuse, control and corrupt his way to the top job, stay there for 24 years and furthermore, ensure this continues after his reign comes to an end.

This is the book that the FIFA president tried to ban and having read it I can understand why. If there was a single untruth in the book then I am sure Havelange would have taken matters further legally although to my knowledge, 8 years after publication, nothing has happened. Is this because the accusations are true?

A very well researched, detailed book that is fascinating and the story infuriating because, as ever, it is the fans who are the ultimate losers.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Used to the scandals by now..., 11 Dec 2009
By 
Remco Weeda "Remco" (Brighton) - See all my reviews
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It probably says more about me and the times we live in than about the book but I didn't think the book was half as scandalous as I had expected it to be. It was with a sense of, 'Yeah but I figured this was going on already' that I read this. Perhaps it is also because I started reading this book a little bit too late and it's now perhaps slightly out of date. Having said that, if you replaced the name Havelange with the name Blatter and changed the dates, my guess is that the book is as up-to-date as anything.

Other disappointing things for me were Yallop's obsession with Maradonna's handball and other incidents that somehow disadvantaged the English squad and his strange symbolism of Brazilian football with the beautiful game. I agree that the Brazil team with Pelé were nothing short of magical, of what I have seen on videos. However, pre-Pelé and certainly post-Pelé there have also been numerous times that we saw the ugly, boring and cheating sides of Brazilian football. To say that Havelange stole the game and that game was or is epitomized by Brazilian football is a over the top.

For me this is an issue because he writes at length about the state of Brazilian football and how Havelange's son-in-law has corrupted it. I am sure this is the case but I am sure this is the case elsewhere too and for such a great investigator to ignore this was disappointing.

On the upside, this is a tremendous body of work in terms of Yallop's research. It is written very clearly and believably and it basically a good read. What is also prevalent is Yallop's passion for football. He shares the normal person's love for the beautiful game and is obviously aggravated by its decline. I, too, have sat in virtually quiet stadiums without any atmosphere and as an Arsenal fan, there was quite a lot of sad truth in the last line of the epilogue but I'll let you read that for yourself.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Game Of The Working Man ?, 13 July 2000
Anyone with an interest in the world game should read this book. Recent events with the farce over the 2006 World Cup vote should read this and you won't be suprised by the dodgy dealing, back scratching and back stabbing that goes on to ensure that someone gets a big fat slice of the pie that a FIFA tournament brings to a country.
Yallop's investigations into FIFA make you wonder about the power and corruption going on in full view of everyone with an interest in football.
The game of the masses ? Don't make me laugh.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Want to Know about FIFA - Read this!, 5 Aug 2013
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David Yallop is an exceptional author. His books ar captivating and impossible to put down. Sepp Blatter shown in all his splendour.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How they stole the game review, 22 April 2013
By 
P. J. Hack "peejayh Dorset" (Dorset England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: How They Stole the Game (Paperback)
The current FIFA president and his villainous predecessor are shown up for what they're worth. How did the football world put up Havelange for so long? And his successor is cut from the same cloth.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rotten to the Core, 9 April 2013
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Greed and corruption abound in the bent world of FIFA in this well researched piece - a good if depressing read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for football fans, 8 April 2013
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Brilliant book. It is worth reading this book for the entertainment alone,
additionally I would advise anyone to read it who might ever consider
placing a bet on a football match.
From on-field antics to decisions made at the very top, the corruption
is sinister and deeply embedded. The same people who were running
it then are still running it now.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars essential reading, 21 Jan 2013
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This review is from: How They Stole the Game (Paperback)
Let me start with the negatives: it is not made clear on the amazon site that this book written was written in 1999, then with a 2011 edition, containing just an Epilogue extra. The 2011 'Epilogue' has typos and punctuation errors - see on p 430 where the important name of Julio 'Grondona' is misspelled as 'Gordona' - an efficient and knowledgeable proofreader (I know of just such a one!) could have rectified this kind of mistake.

That said, I found Yallop's book to be one of the most fascinating books I have ever read - it opened the eyes of this reader further than wide open. The detailing of Joao Havelange's, the ex-FIFA president's, dealings while in office (and out, as a supporter of Blatter) are astonishing and I have no reason to doubt the varacity of the book's findings - it is a very well-researched book. In fact, to quote a trite cliche, it was 'unputdownable'. The beautiful game has indeed been bought but the way Pele for example has tried to rise above the seedy, the sleaze and dubious deals shines through. Others should be ashamed of themselves.

I had long thought a certain soccer match between Argentina and Peru was a rather 'remarkable' and 'convenient' result in the circumstances for the host country and I am now even more convinced. It is all so sad that the romance has gone out of the game and the 'prawn sandwich' brigade/suits have taken over (and not just football).

I will be investing in Yallop's other books.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Eyes wide open..., 1 Aug 2014
By 
G. Henman (Luton UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: How They Stole the Game (Paperback)
This book will confirm your worst fears about FIFA and certain individuals. ...and then still shock you at the depth of their corruption and self aggrandisement.
You will never look at anything involving FIFA in the same light again.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 22 Oct 2014
Bought as a gift and it was well received.
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How They Stole the Game
How They Stole the Game by David Yallop (Paperback - 15 Sep 2011)
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