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The Mixer: The Story of Premier League Tactics, from Route One to False Nines, by Michael Cox (4/5)



This is an awesome book! I have adored Michael Cox's work for The Athletic for quite a while, and have heard nothing but praise for this book before going in. Happy to report all of it is quite justified- The Mixer is a great read.

The Premier League is the largest football league in the world, and has a very distinct identity. It is flashy, competitive, lucrative, and very influential. And yet, it is only 30 years old. This book aims to provide an insight into the way English football changed culturally and tactically since its 1992 inception, and is a pretty solid primer for anyone getting into football as well as more seasoned fans who haven't seen it all play out before their eyes.

Since getting into football around 2009, I have sought out all kinds of media to fill in the gaps in my knowledge, and I'd like to think I have a good grasp of it now. Still, reading about the smaller, niftier tactical changes Sir Alex Ferguson made year on year filled me with a newfound respect for the man. Similarly, the book showed me a side of "Big Sam" Allardyce that I wasn't privy to before. All of these wonderful things come together to form a pretty compelling read, and this in turn is elevated by the great, and often hilarious narration of Colin Mace (who goes out of his way to do impressions of every manager and player named) on the Audible version of the book which I used occasionally.

I've purchased this book as a gift to a friend already, and would recommend it without hesitation to anyone who asked.

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