Football School Season 1: Where Football Explains the World

Illustrator: Spike Gerrell

Binding: Paperback

Imprint: Walker Books

Book 1 of Football School Series

Age 7+

Association Football), Football / Soccer General Knowledge & Trivia Cartoons & Comic Strips Science & Technology: General Interest Football (Soccer

A groundbreaking new series from two bestselling writers that teaches you about the world through football.

The first book is packed with awesome true stories, real science and fascinating facts and will make you laugh loads. When do footballers poo? Can you play football on Mars? What is a magic sponge? You will find the answers to these questions and more in chapters on subjects such as history, geography, biology and maths. Illustrated throughout with hilarious cartoons and filled with laugh-out-loud gags this is the perfect book for any boy or girl who loves football. Your coaches at Football School, Alex Bellos and Ben Lyttleton, are journalists, broadcasters and award-winning science and sports writers. Their knowledge, enthusiasm and engaging writing make them the perfect team to teach you how to score with your head.


Alex Bellos writes about maths for the Guardian and is the author of two works of popular science, Alex’s Adventures in Numberland and Alex Through the Looking-Glass as well as the mathematical colouring book Snowflake Seashell Star. He has also written Futebol: The Brazilian Way of Life, which was shortlisted for Sports Book of the Year, and he ghost-wrote Pelé’s bestselling autobiography. He lives in West London.

Ben Lyttleton is a journalist, broadcaster and football consultant. He is the author of Twelve Yards: The Art and Psychology of the Perfect Penalty and his football articles have been published in over 20 countries. He is a director of Soccernomics, a football consultancy that helps teams improve their performance. He lives in North London.

Spike Gerrell is a prolific cartoonist known for his "spiky-nosed" illustrations. His work has been published in the New Scientist, Independent, Times Educational Supplement and Guardian. Spike lives in North London.


‘This book will spark a love of learning in any child who reads it. It is intelligent, inspiring, funny, and deserves a large audience!’

Martyn Heather, Head of Education and Welfare, Premier League

‘The perfect book to get football-mad kids enthusiastic about reading’

Paul Brackwell, Head of Education, Aston Villa Football Club

“Am very jealous of Alex Bellos and Ben Lyttleton – I fear they have a bestseller here. Section on poo is especially good.”

Simon Kuper, Financial Times

“This book is superb way for children to learn about such diverse subjects as geography, maths and psychology. I have really enjoyed reading it with my seven-year-old son – and he’s not the only one who has been learning a lot”

Marcus Christenson, Football Editor, The Guardian

“Have you got football-loving kids? This got a massive thumbs-up from mine. Recommended reading.”

Amy Lawrence, The Observer

“My 8-year-old daughter can’t put this down. It’s brilliant!”

Raphael Honigstein, The Guardian

‘We love this book, it’s like a Horrible Histories for football. There is nothing like it on the market….it’s education through the back door – funny, cheeky and a little bit naughty!’

Paul Hawksbee and Andy Jacobs, TalkSPORT.

“NEW BOOK OF THE WEEK – This brilliant new book is a treasure trove of fascinating football facts and trivia”

The Week Junior

A veritable treasure trove for footie mad kids (and adults)”

Justine Roberts, CEO and Founder, Mumsnet

The authors of this very entertaining book claim that there’s no better way to learn about the world than through football. Hence it is divided into “lessons” – Biology, History, Physics etc. – each of which is packed with fascinating football related information. Business Studies looks at footballers’ wages… Zoology considers famous club mascots; Drama looks at goal celebrations… There are lots of diagrams and cartoon illustrations throughout too and as a football/trivia/information book this is really hard to beat.


“Offers lessons on a series of school subjects through football, explaining how the world’s most popular sport is linked to each one.”

The Day

This fun kids’ book uses football to teach youngsters about subjects as diverse as history, maths, and even computer science. Presented as a mix of writing, quiz questions and cartoons, every topic is explored using references to the beautiful game […] Sports-mad fans of the Horrible Histories books will find this hard to put down.

The Sun

“Alex Bellos and Ben Lyttleton identified a complex problem, and addressed it with a deceptively, elegantly simple solution. How to address the growing problem of boys stopping reading, while keeping them engaged enough to tear eyes away from videogames and television and the plethora of immediate entertainment 21st century life is set up to provide? Their answer was to write a football book, in name only—football presented in an entertaining, jocular manner, as a lens through which children could examine history, science and even linguistics for the first time.”


Illustrated throughout with hilarious cartoons, this is a great fact book for any boy or girl who loves football, or anyone who likes to learn facts in non-traditional way. Funny, informative, and hugely entertaining, it is recommend for fans of non-fiction books like The Epic Book of Epicness, Corpse Talk and Horrible Histories.


“There are lots of diagrams and cartoon illustrations throughout too and as a football/trivia/information book this is really hard to beat.”

Andrea Reece, LoveReading


Blue Peter Book Awards
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