Reading is one practice you don’t want to lose the knack of, sports is another. Fortunately for us sports management buffs, these two come together as very important teachers to learn from. With FC Bayern Munich’s historic 8-2 win over FC Barcelona or Club Lyon’s simple escape against Juventus, one can understand that it may take just one bad day for a manager to lose his job the very night, the guys really go through a lot of processes that we don’t get to see.
We at ESM today take you through a small compiled list of books to read if you aspire to get into the business of football, or dream of becoming a football manager my word.
Books you could read if you’re in it for more than the game…
1) Alex Ferguson: My Autobiography –
“There’s nothing in the world more powerful than a good story”, said Tyrian Lannister in the Game of Thrones finale.
Likewise, first on our list is this epic tale written by one of the most celebrated managers the world of football has ever known. This is Sir Alex’s second autobiography which covers his years as the manager for Manchester United from 2000-2013 with special emphasis on his relationships with once-in-a-lifetime wonders like Cristiano Ronaldo, David Beckham and other football heroes. He has finetuned this read for any football fan with his honest thoughts on notable events in the world of football, and no, we aren’t just throwing words around, you have to read this.
2) Carlo Ancelotti: Quiet Leadership
Hailed by many as the best manager in Europe, Carlo Ancelotti expresses his experience as one at the top making your experience as a reader very thoughtful and intriguing.
The book aptly tells you what it’s like for someone who started small and ended up operating at the top and owned it. The mindset while making decisions and the ability to absorb the pressure are critical constituents of a good manager, Ancelotti does not fail to educate you there. Very good learning curve really. This is especially an interesting read for those who actually want to make a career in football (not as a player please).
3) The Real Madrid Way by Steven G. Mandis
It is the most successful football club on the planet, isn’t it? Why do we even have to explain?
Okay facts apart, The Real Madrid Way is a properly investigated written document by Steven G. Mandis that focuses on how the club functions and why it is where it is. The unique part about the book is that it includes observations of a third-person through the thick and thin of the club. It is almost a textbook with a story. And for those who are Real Madrid fans and sports management enthusiasts, this is just the perfect diet.
Also read: How to make a career in Sports Psychology
4. Always Managing: Harry Redknapp
Always Managing is not limited to the insights of a football manager’s career, it is rather a holistically summed up journey of one of the most captivating football biggies from England. Harry Redknapp with his incredible career of over 50 years has a lot of compelling plots to tell you with all the drama, passion and humour one would expect from the man. Those afraid of going through lots of information but enjoy learning through stories should definitely get hold of this one.
Also, he’s an uncle to current Chelsea Manager Frank Lampard in case you Gen Zs didn’t know
5) Big Sam: My Autobiography
With over 40 years of involvement in professional football both as player and manager, Sam Allardyce brings up a thrilling piece of hard-hitting opinions and characteristic insight while intriguingly talking about the changing face of players and managers quoting good reads. Falling just behind Arsene Wenger as the longest-serving manager in Premier League history, Big Sam is all yours if you are a keen follower of British Football.
PS: This one’s really underrated.
6) How Not To Be A Professional Footballer
This one’s cute. You may read this for the laughs, might pick up one or two things on the way. But it’s actually good, Paul Merson’s really pulled of a stunner here.
The list is not too big we know, but the article will get updated every time we read a new one and have something to say for it.
Do let us know which one you like the most among these in the comments.
And just in case you don’t want to read through the books, we have also compiled a list of Sports Management movies and shows. Binge watch it!
Also if you have a relevant book in mind that you think should be added in the list, please mention it in the comments below!