Pele, Neymar and Brazil’s Beautiful Game
An exuberant and entertaining exploration of Brazil, the world's biggest football superpower
In Brazil nothing is more important than football.
If England is the birthplace of football then Brazil – the five-time World Cup winners and home of Pelé, Romário, Ronaldo, Neymar and the rest – is the heart and soul of the game.
Jogo Bonito – meaning ‘the beautiful game’ – takes you on a journey through the Wild West of Brazilian football. On the way we meet an eclectic cast of characters, such as Mario Zagallo, the four-time World Cup winner; the long, lost son of Garrincha; Brazil’s best-loved bad boy player turned politician, Romário; and many more. We take a trip to an away game with the country’s most violent hooligans, visit the home of the world’s largest amateur football tournament and enjoy a boozy dinner with South America’s most famous commentator – he of ‘goooooooool’ fame.
Jogo Bonito is a history, a travelogue and a gonzo-style report into a country which has the sixth biggest economy in the world and yet questionable records on education, healthcare and corruption. The result is a book that not only tells the story of Brazilian football, but also of today’s Brazil.
“Jonsson’s book is a joy, dancing around erratically between the best and worst of Brazil”
“Distinguished by its entertaining originality”
Richard Williams, Guardian
“Jonsson is a fearless, dogged journalist… Jogo Bonito is an artful, spare book. The prose gallops along in an elegant and entertaining introduction to the sprawling intoxicating mess that is modern Brazil”
Francis O'Shaugnessy, Racing Post