It’s been a big year for Eight by Eight, our second as a magazine. From Wenger and Mourinho to Blatter and the Women’s World Cup, we’ve been working hard to bring you the best stories, artwork, and design in the football world. (We even won a fancy award for it, too!) And now, as winter approaches, we’re ready to unveil our latest issue.
So, what’s inside?
To kick things off, Jonathan Wilson looks at how a strange confluence of events (centering on a lost Saint Bernard named Major) led to the construction of Old Trafford which, in turn, attracted a constant procession of football’s superstars to Manchester United.
In Germany, Bayern Munich is brimming with stars, but we get the most enjoyment from watching our cover boy, Thomas Müller, crash in goal after goal. He’s a different kind of footballer, one who shies away from the glitz and glam of the modern game. Uli Hesse spoke to Müller and found him to be a normal guy who thinks of himself as an “interpreter of space.” He doesn’t have a model wife, nor a flashy haircut or tattoos. “See, I just don’t give a lot of thought to these things,” Müller says. “I just try not to pretend to be something I’m not.”Of course, that’s not to say Müller doesn’t have a ruthless streak; he played a key role in Germany’s 7-1 decimation of Brazil in the 2014 World Cup. Raphael Honigstein examines the complicated, and often surprising, emotions the German players experienced before, during, and after their historic win in an excerpt from his compelling new book, Das Reboot.
Stateside, Andrew Helms profiles Portland Timbers’ midfielder Darlington Nagbe, who, after becoming a U.S. citizen earlier this year, will (most likely) make his international debut this weekend for Jürgen Klinsmann’s stagnant Stars and Stripes. But is he up for the job? As Helms discovers, while Nagbe undoubtedly has huge potential, it still remains unclear whether he can find a comfortable balance between the sweetness of everyday life and the demands of football at the highest level.Corley Miller tackles the debate we’ve all been avoiding: video technology. Miller diagnoses the referee as “the stickler,” someone for whom the rules are the rules, but is continually thwarted by his nemesis, or, in other words, Diego Costa. And when the stickler is thwarted, so are the fans. But isn’t that just part of life?
Of course, there’s much, much more: Simon Barnes explores the footballer’s ego; John Heilpern interviews the original WAG Helen Viollet, wife of legendary Manchester United striker Dennis Viollet; Stan Hey takes a visual journey through the nostalgic world of match-day programs; Jack Williams gets the hour-by-hour breakdown of a day in the life of Rebecca Lowe, Brad Guzan, and David Villa, among others; Uli Hesse picks his favorite imaginary football bands (Zlatan, aka Lord Emerald, is the flamboyant frontman of Scandinavian death metal outfit Dying Secönds), and Paul Thompson tells us how deep down Hamlet was really a football coach.
Oh, and there’s a special gift from us to you inside—but you’ll have to pick up a copy to see what it is.
We’re thrilled about this new issue, and think you will be too. Thank you for continuing to support Eight by Eight and for spreading the word about us over pints, pies, and Twitter. And please do let us know what you think! We value and appreciate your feedback.
-The Eight by Eight team