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Thread: "In the Shadow of the San Siro" by Martin Bengtsson

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    "In the Shadow of the San Siro" by Martin Bengtsson

    Hi Guys,

    I was in a book shop on my lunch break today and was taking a look at the latest copy of 4-4-2 (English version). I found a book review of a novel by a young man called Martin Bengtsson.

    Apparently, the young man who wrote the novel was Swedish National team Captain (youth team) and left Sweden at the age of 17 to join Inter's Youth team. After spending a period of approximately 9 months in Italy he attempted to commit suicide by slashing his wrists.

    Apparently, Inter sent him back to Sweden to "rest" and he never returned to playing football. The novel documents the pressures put on young players, discusses the use of soft drugs which are apparently widespread at youth team level and mentions young men calling on prostitutes. If only the novel was available in English.

    http://www.panorstedt.se/templates/A....aspx?id=46293

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    J zanetti's Avatar
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    Thanks for posting this. It came at the perfect time as I was contemplating what book to buy. Should certainly be an interesting read.
    Noi non siamo gobbi ba$tardi

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    Tomas Locatelli

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    Yes I heard about this Bengtsson guy. I think he was the problem, not the pressure on young players and such. Countless youngsters succeeded and didn't turn out like him, so it's his fault that he failed. That's one of the reasons why I'm curious to read his book, if I ever manage to find one.

    I also heard that he is a Milansita.
    "Alla Juve non sono dei gentlemen, Ť la mafia" Karl Heinz Rummenigge

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    Quote Originally Posted by M.Adnan View Post
    I also heard that he is a Milansita.
    No wonder he wanted to commit suicide...



    Nah really, drugs, sex, fame and football. Yeah, every teenagers nightmare!


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    I think it was more the case that one of the players got busted with drugs and then the team's management started following the players and their every move. He likened it to being in prison. If the novel is published in English, I will definitely have a read.

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    J zanetti's Avatar
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    His case was highlighted a while ago when he returned to Swe. I think our own Jimmy also told us a few things about this whole thing back then. Anyway, once Iíve read the book hopefully Iíll be able to brief you guys on some of the more imp episodes regarding his stay.
    Noi non siamo gobbi ba$tardi

    "In un mondo di puttane e oportunisti noi avevamo scelto la migliore; Addio Traditore!"

    R.I.P Cipe

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    Forza ragazzi's Avatar
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    Jimmy told us a bit about this, yes. I was going to buy his book back then but completely forgot about it. I'm actually going to Sweden tomorrow, so will pick it up while there.
    "It will be born here, at the "Orologio (Watch)" restaurant, meeting place of artists and it will be always a team of great talent. On this splendid night it's colours will be given: The black and the blue with a golden background of the stars. It will be called Internazionale, because we are brothers of the world."



    Mourinho for Inter coach 2008/2009! --> Mourinho = Inter coach 2008/2009!

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    Il Capitano

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    Poor kid.
    Spoiler: text 

  9. #9
    Jimmy
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    Have the book an read it. Not much to do with Inter, and the only things surrounding our club is quite interesting, especially old players and how it works around the team.

    Bengtsson sadly didn't have the mentality to cope with football at this level and the pressure surrounding it. He more or less complained about EVERYTHING, and the bizarre thing is that he tried to comit suicide when the house-maid had thrown out his music notes. I mean, seriously...

    The book isn't worthwile to buy IMO, unless you're more interested in knowing the life of a failed youth player, in any level he played. Only a chapter or so is actually about Inter.

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    J zanetti's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy View Post
    Have the book an read it. Not much to do with Inter, and the only things surrounding our club is quite interesting, especially old players and how it works around the team.

    Bengtsson sadly didn't have the mentality to cope with football at this level and the pressure surrounding it. He more or less complained about EVERYTHING, and the bizarre thing is that he tried to comit suicide when the house-maid had thrown out his music notes. I mean, seriously...

    The book isn't worthwile to buy IMO, unless you're more interested in knowing the life of a failed youth player, in any level he played. Only a chapter or so is actually about Inter.
    Thanks for the post Jimmy. I'm now in 2 minds to get it now. Yeah, from what you've said he doesnít / didnít seem to have the mental strength to deal with that kind of a lifestyle.
    Noi non siamo gobbi ba$tardi

    "In un mondo di puttane e oportunisti noi avevamo scelto la migliore; Addio Traditore!"

    R.I.P Cipe

  11. #11
    Forza ragazzi's Avatar
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    He was obsessed with training 3 hours a day when he was nine. He didn't give the impression that he was mentally strong at all, at least not for football, as JImmy says. He made things very bad for himself because he didn't do things the right way, really.

    I think the book was interesting, I read it in 7 hours (almost 200 pages).
    "It will be born here, at the "Orologio (Watch)" restaurant, meeting place of artists and it will be always a team of great talent. On this splendid night it's colours will be given: The black and the blue with a golden background of the stars. It will be called Internazionale, because we are brothers of the world."



    Mourinho for Inter coach 2008/2009! --> Mourinho = Inter coach 2008/2009!

  12. #12
    J zanetti's Avatar
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    I too just finished reading it. As both yourself and Jimmy rightly said he wasnít mentally strong. It was evident from very young age as he was extremely introvert and different from other kids around him. As a result he was never a sociable person. On top of that wanting badly to become a pro since the age of 9 didnít help him either as all his aim in life was to train hard in order to fulfil his dream and obviously he paid the hefty price of losing out on so many other things.
    His main argument was that it was hard for him to be himself and at the same time make it big. Because the various clubs that he played for (inside & outside of Swe) wanted to keep their players within a certain framework that they thought would be best for the player (and the club). And he simply wasnít content about that.
    He wanted to be accepted as freethinker and yet be part of the group and obviously that never happened.
    Noi non siamo gobbi ba$tardi

    "In un mondo di puttane e oportunisti noi avevamo scelto la migliore; Addio Traditore!"

    R.I.P Cipe

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