Richard Whittall:

The Globalist's Top Ten Books in 2016: The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer

Middle East Eye: "

The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer is one of the weightiest, most revelatory, original and important books written about sport"

“The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer has helped me immensely with great information and perspective.”

Bob Bradley, former US and Egyptian national coach: "James Dorsey’s The Turbulent World of Middle Eastern Soccer (has) become a reference point for those seeking the latest information as well as looking at the broader picture."
Alon Raab in The International Journal of the History of Sport: “Dorsey’s blog is a goldmine of information.”
Play the Game: "Your expertise is clearly superior when it comes to Middle Eastern soccer."
Andrew Das, The New York Times soccer blog Goal: "No one is better at this kind of work than James Dorsey"
David Zirin, Sports Illustrated: "Essential Reading"
Change FIFA: "A fantastic new blog'

Richard Whitall of A More Splendid Life:
"James combines his intimate knowledge of the region with a great passion for soccer"

Christopher Ahl, Play the Game: "An excellent Middle East Football blog"
James Corbett, Inside World Football

Monday, March 14, 2011

Former Soccer Player Leads Libyan Opposition

A former striker for Libya’s national soccer team with a passion for Italian soccer, who served until last month as Col. Moammar Gadaffi’s justice minister has emerged as the undisputed leader of the Libyan opposition.

Mustafa Abdel Jalil, a soft-spoken lawyer, who heads the opposition National Council in rebel-controlled Benghazi, has no ambition according to friends, to succeed Gadaffi. He owes his leadership to the fact that he was the only member of Gadaffi’s cabinet who dared criticize the Libyan leader publicly while in office and to his popularity as a soccer player.

Human Rights Watch last year praised Jalil for his criticism as justice minister of the security services, charging that they ignored court orders and held people in attention who had been acquitted by the courts.

Jalil brings to the task of coordinating the resistance to Gadaffi, achieving international recognition of the opposition, securing international military assistance and holding the opposition together a dogged determination not to be defeated.

Abdullah al-Mortdy, an architect and opposition activist in al-Bayda, remembers Jalil’s wild fury when he lost a football match as a boy. It was, Al-Mortdy told the Financial Times, symptomatic of a more important character trait: “He doesn’t like to be defeated.”

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