Published in hardback by Orion, £14.99
The Anatomy of England, By Jonathan Wilson
Sunday 13 June 2010
Is hindsight a wonderful thing? It is in this thought-provoking reappraisal of 10 key games in England's football history.
Rather than relying on received opinion, Jonathan Wilson has forensically examined these matches again kick by kick on film or video, or in the case of the earliest games, from newspaper reports, drawn from both countries involved. He dates England's slide from supremacy back to a 4-3 defeat against Spain in 1929, their first loss to continental opposition.
Wilson also gives the highs due credit – 1966, plus a 3-1 beating of France in 1982 and the 4-1 demolition of Holland 14 years later. Wary of generalisations, he cites "the lust for speed and fear of thought... hard-wired into the personality of English football" as a problem, instancing the hoofing of long balls for the final 13 minutes of the European Championship qualifier against Croatia in 2007. Whatever happens in South Africa, this book should be required reading for all future England squads.
Arts & Ents blogs
St Patrick’s Day 2014: The worst Irish accents in film history
Under The Skin, film review: Scarlett Johansson is full-blooded as femme fatale alien
Best films on Netflix: 32 movies that will put an end to your scrolling
Game of Thrones star Sibel Kekilli wants more male nudity in the show
Disney's Frozen is 'very evil' gay propaganda, says Christian pastor
Katie Hopkins continues campaign to become Britain's most hated talking head with poorly timed Bob Crow tweet
No EU referendum under Labour: Ed Miliband to reveal that vote on membership is ‘unlikely’ in next Parliament if party wins power
Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
The rise of Ukip: Study warns Labour that Eurosceptic party's electoral base now 'more working class than any of the main parties'
Europeans have ‘got whiter’ due to natural selection in past 5,000 years, scientists say
Fracking is turning the US into a bigger oil producer than Saudi Arabia
- 1 Is your name now 'banned' in Saudi Arabia?
- 2 Exclusive: World’s most pristine waters are polluted by US Navy human waste
- 3 Nemanja Matic interview: My family were in tears when we left Lisbon
- 4 Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Jet ‘hijacking’ began soon after take-off
- 5 'Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 plane found in Bermuda Triangle!' Facebook links are profiting hackers