Cover image for Soccer : the ultimate guide to the beautiful game
Soccer : the ultimate guide to the beautiful game
Gifford, Clive.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Kingfisher, 2002.
Physical Description:
96 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 29 cm
Presents the game of soccer, including its basic rules, structure, playing positions, needed skills, and great players.
General Note:
Includes index.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV943.25 .G55 2002 Juvenile Non-Fiction Childrens Area

On Order



From the sublime skills of Pelé to a day in the life of a professional soccer player, this gloriously illustrated book explores every aspect of the game. Rules, skills, and tactics are clearly explained and presented with state-of-the-art digital diagrams and photographs. This newly revised edition of a worldwide bestseller offers both practical advice as well as an insider's view of the history of the game, profiles of legendary players, great clubs, and women's soccer. Now including a two-page guide to U.S. domestic leagues and competitions and with dazzling action photos of today's top stars, from Ecuador's Clever Chala to Norway's Margunn Haugenes, Soccer is a must-have for fans of the game.

Author Notes

Clive Gifford is a highly experienced journalist and author with over 170 books published and more than 800 features and stories written for adults and children. Clive is an unique author who likes to work in both fiction and non-fiction. Perhaps this reflects his unusual life which, so far, has seen him travel to over 70 countries, be held hostage in Colombia, go parachuting, coach several sports and run a computer games company. His title,The Official Rugby World Cup 2015 Fact File, made The New Zealand Best Seller List.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 6^-9. This attractive book covers the history, skills, and strategy of soccer. Succinct text and plenty of color illustrations explain different aspects of the game on double-page spreads. Computer-generated images show many of the skills, and although these are not as effective or as striking as color action photographs would have been, their similarity to video game images will make them familiar and even comforting to many readers. Almost all of the pictures in this British import show European players and teams; however, a small section describes the history of American professional soccer teams. Unfortunately, women's soccer, although mentioned, gets inadequate attention in both the text and the photographs, and there is surprisingly little mention of the World Cup. Web sites include information on both the U.S. and international forms of the game. A glossary is appended. --Todd Morning

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-8 An all-encompassing book that covers the history of the sport; basic rules, skills, and tactics; information on stadiums, soccer media, and "A Pro's Life"; as well as biographies of important players. Few women are mentioned. Small blocks of text are interspersed with a variety of digitally created illustrations that often lend a slightly eerie and surrealistic look to the figures. Color photos enhance the text. The left-hand margin of each page contains see-also topics and page numbers that will allow readers quick access to related information. The final sections include summaries of great competitions and games, one-paragraph biographies, statistics, and a one-page glossary. Web-site selections cover a wide variety of topics from the author's own Web site to "Ask the Ref" and women's soccer. Libraries that own Gary Lineker's Soccer and Hugh Hornby's Soccer (both DK, 2000) probably won't need Gifford's title. However, it will be a solid addition to those in constant need of books on the sport. -Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

The Global Gamep. 6
From Earliest Beginningsp. 8
The Field and Playersp. 10
Key Rulesp. 12
Fouls and Misconductp. 14
Ready to Playp. 16
Ball Controlp. 18
Passingp. 20
Advanced Passingp. 22
Movement and Spacep. 24
On-ball Skillsp. 26
Tacklingp. 28
Volleying and Shootingp. 30
Headingp. 32
Small-sided Gamesp. 34
Fancy Skillsp. 36
Position and Play
Goalkeeping Basicsp. 38
Goalkeeping Choicesp. 40
Attacking Skillsp. 42
Opening up Defensesp. 44
Defendingp. 46
Defending as a Unitp. 48
Set Pieces
Restartsp. 50
The Corner Kickp. 52
Free Kicksp. 54
Free Kicks in Attackp. 56
Penalty!p. 58
Managers and Coachesp. 60
Formationsp. 62
Tacticsp. 64
Tactics in a Gamep. 66
A Pro's Game
A Pro's Lifep. 68
Teams and Fansp. 70
Soccer Mediap. 72
Stadiumsp. 74
The Greats
Great Competitionsp. 76
Great Gamesp. 78
Great Playersp. 84
Soccer Historyp. 88
Stats and Factsp. 90
Glossary and Websitesp. 92
Indexp. 94
Acknowledgmentsp. 96