An absolutely essential book for every modern football fan, about the development of Premier League tactics, published to coincide with 25 years of the competition.
Back in 1992, English football was stuck in the dark ages, emerging from a five-year ban from European competition. The game was physical, bruising and attritional, based on strength over speed, aggression over finesse. It was the era of the midfield general, reducers, big men up front and getting it in the mixer; 4-4-2 was the order of the day. Few teams experimented tactically.
And then, almost overnight, it all changed. The creation of the Premier League coincided with one of the most seismic rule changes in football history: the abolition of the back-pass. Suddenly defenders had no-get-out-of-jail-free card, goalkeepers had to be able to field and play the ball and the pace of the game quickened immeasurably. Tactics evolved dramatically, helped by an increased foreign influence.
The Mixer is the first book to delve deep into the tactical story of the Premier League, and take a long view of how the game has developed over the last quarter century. From Ferguson’s directness to Keegan’s relentlessly attacking Newcastle outfit, to Mourinho’s cagey, reactive Chelsea, all the way to Ranieri’s counter-attacking champions, The Mixer is one of the most entertaining, rich and knowledgeable football books ever written.
Preparation is easy to praise but very hard to master. No modern coach, in any sport, understands that better than NFL veteran Tom Coughlin. He led the New York Giants to two Super Bowl victories (2008 and 2012) with his system of relentless preparation and
He teaches his players that you can never guarantee a win, but you can always earn the right to win—with focus, consistency, hard work, and anticipation of obstacles. And if you’ve earned the right to win, you can sleep soundly before a big game and take the field with confidence.
Now Coughlin brings his best advice and anecdotes to a wider audience, and shows how they apply beyond the gridiron. As he likes to say, the more you sweat, the less you bleed. He explains his attention to detail and his passion for knowing even the smallest bits of information that might affect a game. He also shows how to build flexibility into your plan and prepare for the unexpected.
Coughlin blends insider stories with practical insights from his forty-year career, creating a powerful guide for leaders in any field.