Book: When Friday Comes

7 Officials pray before matchSyria warm up with ball2 Gaza 2009 Referees take a moment before matchI was living in a house in Spain with no electricity or hot water when I tried to write When Friday Comes. It was a four year labour of love. For the first few years I was living in Dubai. The football-politics-power correlation was pretty obvious. So I travelled around the region, country to country, talking about football to people who would normally not talk to me about anything. There was no way I could have ever spoken to the upper echelons of Hezbollah, for instance, if I wasn’t speaking to them about football.

It came out in 2008. Looking back it was a strange book. Part football book, part reflection on the very moment before the region exploded. And whilst I was trying to write it I was stuck on a mountainside outside Valencia, without electricity, a pot to piss in, living off the land, looking after four dogs and two cats whilst falling out of love. But I am intensely proud of it.

Was it worth it? Maybe.

Anyway, here it is if you fancy buying it. If only for Zoran Lucic’s amazing cover…

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