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FIFA and the Contest for World Football: Who Rules the People's Game? Paperback – 14 May 1998

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Polity Press (14 May 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0745616615
  • ISBN-13: 978-0745616612
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 2.5 x 23.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 550,910 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description


"I feel quite convinced that your book will arouse the interest of many readers and I have no hesitation in congratulating you in advance on its success." Dr Joao Havelange, FIFA President

"An academic study, but a gripping one, because the story they tell is an extraordinary one. Independent Sunday Magazine

"Insightful..." Total Sport

"Interesting and extremely well–researched study of the history and workings of this shadowy organization..." When Saturday Comes

"A fact–filled study of the history, ambitions and motives of the organisation behind the world′s most popular sport. Highlights include chapters on Fifa′s role in the choice of the host nation and their influence over television coverage and commentators." Independent on Sunday

From the Back Cover

In FIFA and the Contest for World Football Sugden and Tomlinson provide the first full–length study of FIFA (the Fédération Internationale de Football Association) and its role in framing and controlling world football. Interviewing more than seventy influential leaders world–wide and drawing on exclusive documentary sources, the authors demonstrate FIFA′s importance in twentieth–century sport, and in an increasingly global consumer culture.

The first part of the book covers the origins and organizational characteristics of FIFA, and of the European and South American federations. The second part considers how new and powerful players have emerged in FIFA in the wake of the collapse of empires. The book includes analyses of football′s contributions to the growth of nationalism and anti–imperialism; the use of football by ruthless and sometimes corrupt officials and political despots; and its expansion under the influence of increasingly prominent commercial paymasters. Football′s role in Africa, Asia and the USA is also illuminated, and FIFA′s global mission and rhetoric evaluated.

The book is a valuable addition to the politics and social history of sport, and to the sociology of the global system and the changing world order. It will be of interest to students and researchers in the areas of sport studies, cultural studies and the sociology of popular culture, and to everyone concerned with the social organization of one of the world′s most popular sports.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Great book. I read this as part of my MSc in The Business of Football and can say that it is well structured and exceptionally researched.

Don't mistake this for your standard football expose book, this is rigourously academic and by no means a light read. However, for serious students it is well wirth the effort.

As it is now £50+ I'd suggest that readers go for Badfellas which is the dumbed down (although only in relative terms) mass market version of the same book priced at £4.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2.5 out of 5 stars 2 reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This book is for you if you are a big soccer lover like I am 31 Dec. 1998
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book takes you through all of the Fifa soccer teams. It even talks about the teams in depth, like about their past history of goals and victories, and even in losses. It takes you to the best players on those teams and tells the victories or losses that the player had on the team. On the players, it will also tell you all the clubs they were part of and their avarage goals they made in the past. So I think think this book is really good for you if you love a lot of European International Soccer. Even some of it will take you through the Ebglish football scene.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Shoot over the bar. Don't read this! 5 Mar. 2010
By Frederic Andre - Published on
Format: Paperback
First of all the only review of this book on Amazon entered "December 30, 1998" is done
by someone who hasn't read the book and doesn't even guess right about its content.

This is about the history of FIFA and associated confederations (uefa, caf...)
through the reigns of its main presidents (Rimet, Rous, Havelange...).
I will save you the pain of reading it.
The most importants facts I have learned by doing so are:

- The president of FIFA as almost dictatorial powers (including huge weight in choosing world cup hosts)
- The aliance with coca cola and Adidas in the 70's as given FIFA the finance for the developement of the game as
we know it in exchange for giving coca cola intrance in dificult markets like China, USSR. (Having Coca Cola distributed in the host country of a FIFA tournament is compulsary).
- During the cold war, club football in eastern europe was one of the only forms of
contest against russia and the soviet power.
- FIFA is one big ruthless political organisation
- football generates more money than any huge company (general motors ect...)
- The combinaison of a huge political power (for example helping to recognise a country, legitimating a regime ect...)
financial power (exponent of globalisation, sponsors, tv ect...) unequaled world wide apeal make it a magnet
for the most unsavory and powerfull characters.
- On the positive side it has enormous healing and togetherness powers which are far superior
to many humanitarian organisation and somethimes used greatly.

I wouldn't have read this book if I had known... Instead of being a really informative text
on the administration of football it is turned into the most pompous, pretentious Academic pile of bore.
Do you remember how school managed to put you off incredibly interesting stuff like, reading, history and
sience? This manages to make a football book inacessible and incredibly boring just by its style.
A couple of academics peacocks prefering to look o' so clever rather than transmiting their
prety good knowledge of an area that is so unknown to the average fan like me.

I will now leave you with a splendid example of this... Style... Good night.

"Robertson has argued that an historical, comparative and interdisciplinary social science framework
can be developed if social theory is refocused and expanded so as to make concern with 'the world' a
central hemeuneutic, and in such a way as to constrain empirical and comparative-historical research in the
same direction."
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