3597
1 min read

For the Tiki-Taka Brigade

The annihilation of Spain by the Netherlands last Friday (5-1) shocked and delighted football fans, pundits and creatives all at once, so much so that European pundits have something else…..

2246
2 mins read

The “Apartheid-era Robin Hood”

I wrote a long piece on Zola Mahobe, a Soweto businessman who died last December (two weeks after Nelson Mandela) and who is credited with transforming Mamelodi Sundowns. The team…..

4928
1 min read

Boss Player

The BBC news presenter Komla Dumor, who passed away this weekend from cardiac arrest, was an exceptional broadcaster; read Nigerian writer Chimamanda Adichie’s obit here. Everyone loved him. He was probably the most…..

1715
1 min read

The Dust Bowl

Sean Jacobs took this picture, enhanced by Instagram, in Fort Greene Park, Brooklyn, yesterday. This is a regular pickup game that’s been in existence for as long as Sean can…..

3511
3 mins read

A Hollywood studio is making a film about Pele

Dramatic films about football–with few exceptions, say “Sixty Six” or “The Year My Parents Went on Vacation“– are usually a bust. It seems hard to recreate on-field action or to make connections to larger themes about the nation, identity politics, institutional violence, capitalism or the romance of the beautiful game. And nowadays professional footballers’ lives off-field can be regimented and organized, drained of any real drama. Mario Balotelli, or before him Lilian Thuram or Eric Cantona are major exceptions.