Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year
At the age of 52, a British writer gets the sudden call-up to play for the England soccer team in the World Cup competition. The team can’t find a goalkeeper and he’s going to have to come out of retirement. No it’s not a nightmare. The team is the England Writers XI, a chronically-unskilled collection of scribblers who can’t let go of their fantasies about being real footballers. Simple Goalkeeping Made Spectacular is a riotous footballing memoir about the loneliest position on the field, looking back on schoolboy triumphs and adult ignominy. From the chaos of coats-down park soccer mobs to the casual violence of pub teams, from the excitement of schoolboy shield winners to knackered old World Cup squads, it’s the goalie who always gets it in the neck. Every goalkeeperand every goalkeeper’s wife or girlfriendshould read this book.