Book review: El Clasico
It is a football rivalry that has fascinated fans around the world, and now followers of both Barcelona and Real Madrid can become engrossed once more in Richard Fitzpatrick’s offering El Clasico, which will be published by Bloomsbury, set for release on Monday, August 6, available at £12.99 in both paperback and eBook formats.
El Clasico, translated as ‘The Classic’ in English, needs no introduction on these shores with world footballing superpowers Barcelona and Real Madrid at the forefront of history, success and world renowned supremacy.
With Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola trying their best to stoke the great derby once more in recent seasons with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi setting about personal missions to become the world’s greatest player, El Clasico retains its reputation as a rivalry like no other.
Bitterness is an understatement when the pair lock horns, with Barcelona particularly proud of their regional Catalan identity which has even seen the city convey a lukewarm reaction to Spain retaining the European Championship crown earlier this month.
In Richard Fitzpatrick’s release, the author delves into the key political, cultural and historical flashpoints that underpin the rivalry in the two respective cities and offers a thorough resume of the teams involved, tracing their supreme identities back and including stellar interviews with the likes of Luis Figo, Hristo Stoichkov, Joan Laporta and Vicente Del Bosque.
If you are a supporter of either team, a Spanish football fan, or simply a fan of football fan in the general sense, this is certainly a must read.
El Clasico has received superb reviews by various critics:
‘A fascinating and detailed attempt to get to the heart of one of the most complicated and poisonous rivalries in football.’
‘The greatest story in club football is the El Clásico opera. Richard Fitzpatrick delves deep to enhance our understanding of this intense rivalry. Power, politics and most of all the brilliance of the football are all on show in these pages.’
‘In England, we don’t have anything like this rivalry — the two biggest football clubs, star players, the pressure managers like Guardiola and Mourinho are under, the football-addicted press, presidential elections, intrigue in the background. Absolutely fascinating.’