Book Review: FOOTBALL>ANYTHING – How football has brought out the worst in so many for the sport they “Love” by Chris Roberts
First and foremost, this is a book with good intentions and a positive purpose, and readers will come to see that:
- It has been cathartic in the authors battle with mental health since the loss of his father.
- Roberts hope is that the book can also help others.
- The book demonstrates that he enjoys the research side of writing, which provides him with the ability to focus away from the dark thoughts that he is unfortunately plagued with.
- Proceeds from the book will go to the organisation Sean’s Place based in the Liverpool area https://seansplace.org.uk/ which has provided Roberts with support during a difficult time in his life.
Football is obviously a major part of the authors life with his love coming from his dad introducing the young Roberts to the world of non-league football and the realities at this level of the game, which then as now is a million miles away from the professional level and the monster that has become the English Premier League. Nevertheless, Roberts reflects in the books Introduction how the pressures of winning games is stressful for players, managers and owners alike whether at Anfield or Avro.
With this in mind Roberts provides his views backed up by a range of statistics in looking at how the game has become affected by the pressures of a win at all cost mentality and the impact on the game and those involved in it both on and off the field. In doing so he looks at the darker aspects of the sport in terms of gambling, drugs, as well as corruption that exists within the top echelons of the governance of the beautiful game.
Unfortunately like many independently published book, it suffers from a lack of editing and proofreading, to the point that the typos become a point of distraction and do take away from the experience of the read at times.
Despite this however, Roberts should be applauded for taking on such ‘big’ topics within the global game and that whilst football means so much to him, ultimately his message is that LIFE>ANYTHING.
(Publisher: Independently published. February 2023. Paperback: 252 pages)
Buy the book here: Football>Anything