Converted into the most popular sport of our era, soccer has millions of fans all over the world. People of all cultures and from all walks of life feel authentic passion for this sport, whose success is largely explained by the simplicity of its rules and the ability to play almost anywhere without needing anything more than a ball.
Dosde's football books allow us to discover more about this global phenomenon, which year after year manages to attract new supporters. In fact, today, in any country it is possible to meet people who enjoy this sport, from those who practice it in their leisure time to those who are part of professional teams, as well as those who follow it through the media.
The history of football
As revealed by numerous soccer books focused on the history of this sport, ancient civilizations engendered games very similar to present-day football. For example, the Romans invented harpastum, which was played on a rectangular pitch divided in half and consisted of sending the ball to the opponent's side, while in fourth-century Japan, kemari was played, where several players had to pass the ball with their feet without it touching the ground.
Despite these historical antecedents, the origin of modern football goes back to 19th century England. During this time the first teams of all time appeared, founded by youngsters passionate about the sport, and there were the first attempts to establish some common game rules, an objective that was achieved in 1863 with the creation of the Football Association in London.
Books on football state that the birth of the Football Association led to a vertiginous expansion of the new sport, both in England itself and on the European continent. This growth resulted in 1904 with the creation of the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA), the entity that would be in charge of overseeing the first important international competitions.
The path to professionalisation
Initially, football was a minority activity, alien to any economic interest and mainly linked to the middle class. As explained in the books on FC Barcelona published by Dosde, the professionalisation of this sport arrived around the 1920's, when the clubs substantially improved their internal organisation and promoted the construction of large stadiums capable of accommodating an ever-growing number of supporters.
At this time, the coach figure started to gain more importance, which meant that the strategic aspects of the game could be reinforced which until then had been neglected, and the first idols started to appear, footballers that were acclaimed for their technical abilities as well as their personal charisma. All this meant that football would leave its amateur side behind in order to become one of the favourite activities of mass society.
A global spectacle
As remarked by football books, throughout the second half of the 1920's football experimented continuous growth. Tournaments such as the World Cup and the European Cup converted into first class spectacles thanks to the television broadcasts, which allowed supporters all over the world to see the evolution of their favourite teams.
Likewise, figures such as Di Stéfano, Pelé, Johan Cruyff and Diego Armando Maradona became absolute legends in a sport that, despite its collective character, has always awarded the ability of individual geniuses.
Over the years, football has been generating new idols capable of beating all records, such as Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, at the same time as it has been expanding its radius of influence in order to gain strength in countries with a great potential such as China, which will probably produce soon some of the latest stars.
Football books are unable to predict the future of this sport with exactitude, but it would seem that the new technologies will carry out a fundamental role in the evolution of the game. In fact, many teams are already taking advantage of the potential of digital tools when planning their matches. The performance of each player is analysed in detail with computer programs, just like the strategies of the rivals. This way, a new world of possibilities is on the horizon, which can further nourish the passion for a sport that refuses to find its limits.