My Turn: A Life of Total Football (Review)

By January 3, 2017Product News and Reviews

Johan Cruyff is one of the best players to ever play the beautiful game, arguably the best.  It’s quite fitting that his autobiography, My Turn: A Life of Total Football, is one of the best sports titles of 2016.  That’s right; this is a title that goes beyond football.  It is a great text, a beautiful story about a brilliant athlete that would be enjoyed by any sports fan.  Having it as an offering from Nation Books is an added bonus as the publisher has developed an incredible reputation for world-class football literature.

Cover Art Courtesy of Nation BooksCruyff details every part of his life and career, sharing everything with his reader.  You’ll hear about the highs and lows, the successes and failures.  You’ll hear about winning hardware and championships as well as the trials and tribulations of being a world-class player and coach under the microscope.  Cruyff was so great, so brilliant that he could get the job done in both worlds.  He was as influential as a coach as he was as a player.  He is arguably the greatest coach and player ever at both Ajax and Barcelona, two of the world’s best-known clubs and brands.

Cruyff proves to be very honest and straightforward at every moment, and came across as being very, very wise.  His story is a story of Ajax, Barcelona, and the Dutch national team as he was so important to each, a defining figure in their footballing history.  Any fan of those teams will enjoy every minute of reading this brilliant piece of sports literature, learning a great deal about these beloved clubs, all from a behind-the-scenes perspective that only Cruyff can share.

Cruyff proved to be quite bullish on the prospect of soccer in America, sharing the positives of his time in the NASL. His time in the U.S. proved to be a magical time for American fans and a well-deserved reprieve for the Dutch master during a rough patch in his own life.   He made a massive impact on the American game, easily as great as Pele and Beckenbauer.  He proved to grow the game during his stops in LA and Washington, D.C., leaving a legacy in the States that is alive and well today.

His discussion of total football and its influence on the global game was top-notch as you would imagine.  It was easily the best discourse on the Dutch style since David Winner’s Brilliant Orange.  This text is actually a lot of things wrapped in one: theory, tactics, analysis, commentary, and most importantly, incredible storytelling from one of the game’s all-time greats.

Buying this one is an absolute no-brainer for any football fan, but it is a read that would be thoroughly enjoyed by anyone who appreciates sports and competition.  It is an opportunity to touch greatness and hear from a player that, in the eyes of many, has no equal.