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The Italian Job Hardcover – Jun 27 2006


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam Press (June 27 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0593055764
  • ISBN-13: 978-0593055762
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15 x 3.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 640 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #771,706 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Amazon.com: 9 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Excellent! April 27 2006
By Luke - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
As a book this has not been published yet, but I have read serializations of it in the English The Times. I'd have to say that this is one of the few books which give very rare insights into English and Italian football cultures. The writers, Gianlucci Vialli and Italian journalist Gabriele Marcotti, have extensive experience in both countries' footballing leagues, and they draw on a number of respected coaches and managers, amongst them Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho, Arsene Wenger, Marcello Lippi and Fabian Capello, on how tactics, techniques and footballing cultures differ in and shape the two nations. As Vialli says, while England football is played with the heart, in Italy football is played with the brains. If you are concerned about how the English game can evolved to be the best in the world (which I seriously think it could), then, as this book prescribes, we should marry English passion with European astuteness. This is one of the most perceptive books on football that I have read. I find it fascinating and revealing at the same time. 5 stars!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Thoughtful and thought-provoking Aug. 13 2008
By Michael J. Melen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Vialli's "The Italian Job" is a departure from the normal soccer books. It doesn't reminisce except to advance your understanding of his findings. It isn't a 'how to' book. Instead Vialli looks at the way English soccer differs from Italian soccer, and how both might benefit from the other. He is uniquely qualified to discuss these cultures, having had great success as a player in both Italy's Serie A and England's Premier League.

Part of the difference lies in the cultural backgrounds and economies of the two countries, but more lies in the traditions which have developed. Vialli explores the effect that the fans and the media have had on how the game is played, how differently the refs call the game in each country, and how the youngsters are brought up. His observations are interesting and perceptive.

If you are a student of European football, you will like this book. If you want soccer history, tell-all revelations, or finger pointing you would want to look elsewhere.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on the street where they still play football Feb. 28 2008
By Ilia Toumadjanov - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
By far one of the most insightful books written about the game. An interesting amalgam of responsible journalism and football savvy. The authors raise a number of significant issues of which learning the game at an early age is the most salient. What the reader gleans from the discussion of this issue is unequivocal - there is no substitute for the acquisition of skills by children in an environment created by themselves and therefore the one they exclusively control. Skills acquired by trial and error entail self-motivation, passion, obsession, etc. Teaching skills must be conducted in a radically different environment managed and controlled by the instructors. A psychokinetic activity like football is best learnt in a natural setting by children possessing natural ability. The authors quote various cognoscenti on this topic, all of whom regret the disappearance from street football from the urban landscape.
The cultural, socio-economic, geographic-climatic, psychological differences between the English game and "Calcio" are well-researched, relevant, and judiciously taxonomized. Large portions of the book are dedicated to the history of the internationalization of the English game both in terms of foreign players and coaches. While many are are quite valid points, especially with regards to modern training methodologies, acquiring tactical sophistication, nutrition, diet, one question remains -how was it possible for coaches like Matt Busby, Jock Stein, Bill Shankley, Bob Paisley, Brian Clough and others to achieve so much European success? For tactical sophistication just recall Sir Alf Ramsey and the revolutionary system he employed when England had won its solitary World Cup. The players ate steaks and fried cod liver and indulged in alcoholic beverages, that is true. Possibly, the answer could be found in a comment to Claudio Ranieri (horrified on seing his players gorging on fried bananas and cuban rice)by one of Real Madrid's legendary players of the past: "We may have been eating wrong, coach, but we won quite a few games."
Great book Oct. 29 2013
By Ben - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very interesting book about Italian and English football, Vialli and Marcotti do a good job of answering some intrigueing questions about football and calcio
Insight about the differences between Italian and English football Aug. 1 2013
By omair taibah - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am long standing Juventus fan. Having to read what our former captain has to say was the motivation to buy this book. However, the book was a lot more than that. It helped me appreciate the differences in cultures and in footballing schools.

For example, Italians are more serious about their football whereas the English are more laid back.

The book discusses the game from every human aspect. The players, managers, clubs, youth systems, fans, referees, media .. all of it. And by the end of the book you can say why the English and Italians never saw eye to eye when it came to football.

Disclaimer: Football here means Soccer.


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