Twelve Yards

Twelve Yards

3.77 (96 ratings by Goodreads)
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It shouldn't be that hard, should it? It's just a matter of placing a ball into a goal measuring eight feet high and eight yards wide, with only a six-foot man able to stop you. Yet the humble penalty kick has produced an inordinate amount of drama, trauma, boundless joy and shattered dreams since its invention in the late 19th century. And it is not just England who have suffered at its hands.

In Twelve Yards, Ben Lyttleton tells the definitive story of the spot-kick - how to take them, how not to miss them, and the different ways that penalty-takers and goalkeepers approach them, both physically and mentally. And everyone has a tale to tell. Why did Roberto Baggio miss in the 1994 World Cup final? How did Petr Cech dive the right way six times running to help Chelsea win the 2012 Champions League final? What would have happened if Antonin Panenka had missed his famous penalty in 1976? And what has John Wayne got to do with penalties?

Breaking down the statistical likelihood of scoring to within an inch of its life, while weaving together exclusive anecdotes from legends of the penalty with intriguing revelations by psychologists and sports scientists, this is the book that finally provides the answers to one of football's oldest questions. How do you score from twelve yards?
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Product details

  • Paperback | 416 pages
  • 127 x 198 x 26mm | 289g
  • Corgi Books
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0552169951
  • 9780552169950
  • 842,265

Review Text

"Fascinating insight... highly recommended for fans, coaches and athletes in all sports."
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Review quote

"Fascinating insight... highly recommended for fans, coaches and athletes in all sports." * Sir Clive Woodward, England World Cup-winning coach * "Entertaining... splendid... masterful. Footballers of every nation should be reading this." * Sunday Times * "The penalty shootout is like a lottery; you never know what can happen, though I know that there is an outstanding book, Twelve Yards, that proves otherwise." * Gerard Houllier * "A wonderful book: extremely well-researched, well-written and international in its scope. Ben Lyttleton has done something very rare in football writing: he has got access to some of the game's leading players and coaches and got them to talk articulately and thoughtfully about a key aspect of their game. Twelve Yards reveals the level of intelligence that exists within professional football:- a more cerebral zone than many people realize." * Simon Kuper, author of Football Against the Enemy and Why England Lose * "The perfect palliative to ease the anxiety of footie fans, aficionados and players... With the aid of statistics, physics, psychology, body language and interviews with players, coaches and sports scientists, Lyttleton has advice and words of comfort, if not joy." * The Times *
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About Ben Lyttleton

Ben Lyttleton is a European football writer and broadcaster whose work has been syndicated in more than twenty countries. He is also a director of Soccernomics, the football consultancy.
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Rating details

96 ratings
3.77 out of 5 stars
5 20% (19)
4 45% (43)
3 29% (28)
2 5% (5)
1 1% (1)
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