‘the miracle of castel di sangro’ written by Joe McGinnis first published in the UK by Little Brown Book Company 1999.
This book has been languishing in the garage for sometime and I should have retrieved it many months ago. If you didn’t know better you would think you are reading a football novel and not a true story.
The well known American author Joe McGinniss who has a love for football decides to follow the the first season of Castel di Sangro FC who have improbably been promoted to Serie B one off Italy’s Premier league after a decade of amazing progress from regional amateur football. He gets himself embedded and accepted within the team and officials and lives their amazing story as they battle to survive in a League that includes some well known former Serie A teams, e.g. Torino, Brescia. Lecce, Empolio and others.
The City of Castel di Sangro is situated in the hills mid way between Rome and Naples and boasts a population of just over 6000 which makes the achievement more amazing.
The tension of the team, manager and games oozes through the pages as does the background wheeling and dealing. Do they survive in the League, do the individuals survive their life crises or does Italian intrigue spin out of control.
Yes it is a a novel, oh no it isn’t.
Don t let the 400 pages put you off, you will read it in a few days because you won’t put this book down.
If you feel the book tells a great story look up what has happened to the team since. Another story to be written?