More really good football books

Three new football books from Fair Play Publishing have hit the stands in the past few weeks with the publication of author and journalist Matthew Hall’s third book, and two books of football fiction from first-time author, Texi Smith.

Matthew Hall’s ‘If I Started to Cry I Wouldn’t Stop …’ takes its title from the opening segment of the book in which Hall recaps an interview with former Socceroos captain, Lucas Neill, following the Socceroos being bundled out of the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

Depending on your perspective, Neill either gave away a penalty or was unlucky to have one called against him in the dying minutes of the second round game against Italy. Not only did the Azzurrigo on to win that game with the subsequent penalty from Francesco Totti, but they also won the World Cup that year.

Hall recounts that Neill told him: “I’m not over it yet. For the rest of my life it will eat away at me …”.

The opening chapter is just the first of 44 that give a snapshot in time of Australian football’s glorious, problematic and cursed path, starting with Mark Bosnich in Sydney in 1996 through to Harry Kewell Istanbul in 2009 and up to November last year.

Hall has written about the characters and events in football in Australia for 25 years for a variety of publications throughout Australia, Asia and the United States where he has lived for almost 13 years.

The two football novels from Texi Smith tell the story of a fictional Australian player called Jarrod Black who is a successful player in the lower levels of English football, but who hasn’t yet made it to the Premier League.

The first book is called Introducing Jarrod Black and takes readers through a tale described by real life football team mates of Smith as “a great piece of escapism”. The second brings together two stories in one when we also meet Jarrod Black’s wife who has to deal with a cancer diagnosis, just as Jarrod’s team is vying for promotion to the Premier League.

Partly based closely on Smith’s experience, $1 from the sale of every edition of Jarrod Black – Hospital Pass will be given by Popcorn Press to the National Breast Cancer Foundation.

All three books are now available in paperback at good bookstores, online or direct from Fair Play Publishing. The digital editions of the books are available via Amazon.

Hall’s book is the fourth book published by Fair Play Publishing following the Encyclopedia of Socceroos by Andrew Howe, Playing for Australia by Trevor Thompson and Support Your Local League by Antony Sutton.

Smith’s novels are the first using the Popcorn Press imprint.

The next book available from Fair Play Publishing will be the Encyclopedia of Matildas by Andrew Howe and Greg Werner, available in May.

/Public Release.