Futebol: The Brazilian Way of Life, by Alex Bellos.

BellosIf you only read one book about Brazilian football this is the one. This is not specifically about the great players or the great games. But you will come away from this with a wide and fascinating knowledge of why Brazilians love football and what makes the game such an important facet of life here. The book touches on diverse subject like how Portuguese is shot through with footballing vocabulary, why so many Brazilians play overseas, and why locals prefer Garrincha to Pelé. It’s also great fun to read and pretty much timeless.

Buy it here.

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