The Away Game: The Epic Search for Soccer's Next Superstars

The Away Game: The Epic Search for Soccer's Next Superstars

by Sebastian Abbot


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393292206
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 03/06/2018
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 143,794
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Sebastian Abbot worked for the Associated Press in Cairo and Islamabad, where he was bureau chief. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Princeton University and a master’s degree in public policy from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. He lives in New York.

Table of Contents

Prologue ix

Part 1 Boys

1 The Tornado 3

2 The Skipper 28

3 The Target 50

Part 2 Trainees

4 The Academy 65

5 Final Tryout 79

6 Sent Off 102

7 Brothers 125

8 Glory and Shame 141

9 The Milk Cup 168

Part 3 Pros

10 Battle of Belgium 195

11 Miracle Land 221

12 Only the Beginning 234

Epilogue 255

Acknowledgments 261

A Note on Sources 265

Photograph Credits 273

Index 275

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The Away Game: The Epic Search for Soccer's Next Superstars 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read quite a few nonfiction books about the business side of sports, particularly soccer, and "The Away Game" by Sebastian Abbot could be one of the more interesting stories I have learned. It follows a class of young African boys who are scouted by Qatar to join their academy with promise of exposure to European clubs, which leads to fame, riches, and success not only for the players but for their families and even villages. Basically the idea is that these boys play so much soccer that they are better than the average player but with no money, they will never be discovered. This is an easy set up for promises, dreams, and a dash of corruption to get the players and their families to agree to almost anything. What makes "The Away Game" work so well is that it does not just tell the story of the academy's pros and cons, but it tells the stories of some of the players, in their own words, following the games that they win and lose, the coaches impressions of them, and the final outcomes of their work. The drama and tension of the players and their dreams are well implemented, and the reader is cheering their victories and agonizing over their failures. The attachment that Abbot gives the readers to these young men makes "The Away Game" much more compelling and dramatic than it could have been in the hands of a less skilled writer. This is essential reading for any soccer fan. I have received this as an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Totally recommend this book to anyone with even a passing interest in soccer, Africa, the Middle East and sports in general. Beautifully written, it is a page turner that takes you into the heart of an epic, international search for soccer's elusive next superstar. You meet the coaches and the kids, who dream big and yet too often come up against the harsh realities of life. The conclusion? That growing up in poverty in Africa is immeasurably stacked against you, but that strength of character and determination can sometimes do more than raw talent in realising your full potential.