If you love the beautiful game it's likely you'll want to know more about some of the sport's biggest names. Here at the Book People we have a fantastic range of football autobiographies and biographies that are guaranteed to have any football fan hooked. To help you decide which of the many autobiographies to read first we have picked out three titles that we believe are an absolute must read for any football fan right now.
Now one of the most recognisable faces in English football, former Arsenal and England striker Ian Wright has come a long way from his days as a plasterer in South East London. Famed for his hawk-like eye for goal and rambunctious personality, Wright's journey from non-league amateur to international footballer to top TV pundit, has been nothing short of remarkable. In his latest autobiography A Life in Football, Wright charts his incredible rise and opens up about the highs and lows he has experienced along the way. Delivered in a characteristically honest and emotive way, this book is far from an average football autobiography.
A must-read autobiography for any football fan, through A Life in Football, Wright relives the stand-out moments from his incredible football career and lifts the lid on his personal struggles off the pitch. From spending a week in Chelmsford Prison to getting his break in professional football at Crystal Palace to winning trophies and breaking records with Arsenal, Wrighty's incredible autobiography leaves no stone unturned. A read that is both funny and inspiring, this book should certainly be near the top of any football fan's reading list. It's one of our favourite football autobiographies right now.
Currently serving an 18 month ban for breaking football betting regulations, former England footballer Joey Barton is one of the most controversial yet compelling characters in English football. Rarely far from the headlines, the former Manchester City, Newcastle, QPR, Marseille, Burnley and Glasgow Rangers midfielder's career has been littered with high profile on-field and off-field incidents. From serving time in prison for assault in 2008 to head-butting an opponent on the pitch, Barton's various antics have overshadowed an otherwise accomplished football career.
In this explosive autobiography, appropriately titled No Nonsense, Barton looks back on events in his life both on and off the pitch. Famous for being highly opinionated and straight to the point, qualities that have helped him acquire a large social media following, in this book Barton invites the reader to get to know the man behind the persona. Delivered in a typically candid and entertaining way, the former Premier League footballer analyses his past mistakes and explains how his up-bringing affected the decisions he made during his career. We believe this autobiography is a particularly interesting read.
In 2015 former Manchester United and England defender Rio Ferdinand's world was turned upside down when his wife Rebecca, mother to their three young children, passed away following a short battle with cancer. In March this year, two years on from his wife's tragic passing, he released documentary titled 'Being Mum and Dad' on the BBC. An incredible piece of television that was both moving and brave, during the programme Ferdinand spoke candidly about dealing with grief and adjusting to life as a single parent. He also explained how making the documentary had proved to be a cathartic experience and how he hoped it would inspire others in a similar position.
Ferdinand's latest autobiography, Thinking out loud, builds on the main themes of the 'Being Mum and Dad' documentary. Opening up like never before he shares the story of meeting, marrying and losing Rebecca and describes the pain his family experienced in the months after her death. As with the documentary the aim of this book is to help others who have recently lost a loved one. Sharing the advice that has helped him and his children most, Rio encourages anyone who is grieving to look for help in the right places and recognise that they are not alone. This autobiography is both inspirational and eye-opening and definitely worth a read.
Once you've worked your way through these must-read books make sure to browse our full collection of football autobiographies and biographies. From Fergie, to Cruyff, to Gerrard, our super selection contains something for every football fan.