Fear and Loathing in La Liga, a review, aka “It has been forever thus.”

Joan Gaspart: “Barcelona is the defense of a country, a language, a culture.” Okay, I’ll buy that. But you know what? I’m not Catalan, and I HATE Real Madrid. At my first Camp Nou Classic, I almost fell over the rail in a froth-mouthed rage. A complete stranger supported me at the waistband as I… Continue reading Fear and Loathing in La Liga, a review, aka “It has been forever thus.”

Of Ibra, Identity and the Differing Attitudes towards Sports Stars

Because she doesn’t have a mod’s login any longer, I have to publish this under my name. But this is an absolutely fascinating piece on the psychology of Ibrahimovic, and why he didn’t fit it at Barça, by Kari. It’s lovely to have her voice in these parts again, and let’s hope this isn’t a… Continue reading Of Ibra, Identity and the Differing Attitudes towards Sports Stars

Book Review: El Clasico

My advisor in college gave me a dose of academic know-how when I took a class of his my freshman year: when reading a history book, always read the foreword. Any historian worth his salt will have questions he or she is trying to answer and they’ll be succinctly contained in that part. When I… Continue reading Book Review: El Clasico

Book Review: “Pep Guardiola: Another Way of Winning” by Guillem Balague

Let’s get this out of the way right now: If you are looking for an in-depth tactical analysis of the “Guardiola system”, this isn’t the book. If you are looking for a detailed account of Pep’s four seasons in charge of FC Barcelona, this isn’t that book either. Instead, this book is (or claims to… Continue reading Book Review: “Pep Guardiola: Another Way of Winning” by Guillem Balague

La Roja: A Level-Headed Journey Through Spanish Soccer

The fundamental conundrum of watching Spanish soccer is how it took until 2010 for the national team to win on the largest stage. Given the country’s successful domestic league and development of fantastic players that dominated much of the early years of European Cup competition, how did Alfredo Di Stéfano and László Kubala fail to… Continue reading La Roja: A Level-Headed Journey Through Spanish Soccer