Andrew Jennings; Foul!: the Secret World of Fifa; Bribes, Vote Rigging and Ticket Scandals – Book Review

Andrew Jennings is a journalist following the soccer world for years. His findings of the way how the soccer is governed were put in his book Faul!. It is not a pleasant reading as it reminds me of the bad crime novel. A bad one, because the bad guys are winning.

Book Details

Author: Andrew Jennings
Title: Foul!: the Secret World of FIFA; Bribes, Vote Rigging and Ticket Scandals

Hardcover: 400 pages
Publisher: HarperSport
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0007208111
ISBN-13: 978-0007208111

This review was originally published at, the site devoted to good books and their reviews. Unfortunately, the site is no longer online. They gave us permission to republish soccer books reviews.

Book Review

One important notice. If you love football and enjoy the beauty of the game on the pitch, do not read this book. You will be sad and you will understand that external beauty is balanced by shadow backstage.

If you are disgusted from events in your country football association, if you can not say anything good about your country football administration, then this book is exactly for you. Unclean and behind the scenes practices are common for most of the football association, with Fifa at the forefront.

In more than 300 pages you will find a complex picture of misusing of power, corruption, and indemnity by law. The transnational organization, which have more than 170 member states, have all the signs of undemocratic dictatorship. You can not be surprised as most of the 170 member states are not exactly democratic states.

If there is saying, that power corrupts, in the case of Fifa this saying is absolutely true. Everybody who stands at the top of the organization, find himself in a position where he controls millions of dollars in revenues which soccer brings. There are not many people who could resist the temptation of keeping this power forever. You can keep this power if you will redistribute revenues in the right way, to concrete persons with voting right. And that is it. Football Association is about money. External independent control? Forget it.

Andrew Jenning is a journalist, who writes about awkward practices in Fifa for years. He uses style when on small space you will be overwhelmed by plenty of information and facts. Book “Foul!” contains facts and findings of Fifa from the year 1974 till present. Sometimes the reader is lost between names and relationships. The difference between newspaper article and book full of facts is seen. However, if you read this book as a statement about practices in Fifa, you will find a lot of useful information and you will get a clear picture of the state of Fifa.

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