Thirty-two teams. One golden trophy. This summer, an elite selection of extraordinary footballers finally comes together to play the most beautiful game on earth in COLORS #90 – Football. In this issue, a mechanical striker winds up to score at the 2014 RoboCup, a Saudi goalie dives for the save on a top secret pitch for women, and players from the streets of Sao Paulo to the fields of Dharamsala break out their bicycle kicks. For the 226 million footballers who play on streets, at school, at work, in jail and everywhere other than under the spotlight, COLORS presents the world’s most popular game as FIFA has never dared show it.
Today, China has the most footballers of any nation and local billionaire Xu Jiayin plans to turn them into the world’s best, too, at the world’s biggest football school: Evergrande Academy, staffed by a squad of ex-Real Madrid coaches. Back in Spain, a group of West African footballers have formed their own football club inside a Melilla detention center as they wait for their asylum applications to be processed, while convicted criminals pass the years in Brazil’s Geraldo Beltrao Maximum Security Penitentiary by playing against the very guards that lock them into their cells at night.
COLORS’ starting lineup also stars: indigenous-only teams from the Amazon forest and Andean heights, a Danish squad of elderly gentlemen, the Czech Republic’s blind Avoy MU club, a team of South African lesbians taking the field to fight homophobia, Tanzania’s Albinos United playing against persecution, Italian priests, Egyptian ultras, and a group of match-fixing imposters from Togo. Each team appears with its own stats, flags, footnotes and crests.
In football’s long tradition of sticker albums, every issue of COLORS 90 – Football comes with a pack of player stickers. Swap with friends to collect the anonymous revolutionary Mexican striker; the Dharamsala sweater salesman Tenzin Kachoe, aka star midfielder for the Tibetan National Team; or a hologram of the trophy that one team is bound to win.
Plus stories and strategies from the game itself: illustrated diagrams demonstrate how to scout a child champion, listen for the ball, and play in a bubble, on a skateboard, against Situationist philosophers or with a flaming coconut. In the back, a mini-book of yellow cards recounts the world’s most unusual on-field offenses, to stick in your pocket on the way to the pitch.