Warm up for the World Cup with some children's books about the beautiful game. We've rounded up our favourites, from poetry to picture books. There's sure to be something here to interest your young soccer fan.
My son, now 12, has read and recommends all of these titles. If you have a favourite that's not on the list, please share in the comments. We'd love to know about it.
Kwame Alexander's Booked is an immensely approachable novel-in-verse about a teen who loves soccer, hates reading, and is coping with his parents’ separation. This coming-of-age story is told through poems of varying styles. Poetry has never been this cool! Read our post about it here. (Age: 10+)
Striker, Starting Eleven and The Beautiful Game tell the story of Cody, a boy who had a tumour removed from his leg. He is determined to recover and pursue his love of soccer. David Skuy's series is powerful and inspiring. (Ages 9+)
Football Academy by Tom Palmer follows a group of boys selected to Manchester United's under-twelve team. It's a fast-paced, six-part series perfect for ages 7 and up. Read our post about it here.
Suarez, Neymar, Rooney and Sanchez—these are just a few of the players in Matt and Tom Oldfield's Ultimate Football Heroes. This series tells the stories of real-life soccer superstars, from the playground to the pitch. (Ages 8+)
Bali Rai's Soccer Squad follows Dal, Jason, Chris and Abs—a group of friends who play for the Rushton Reds. The first book begins with the friends trying out for a youth team, and subsequent books follow their football journey together. This is a fantastic, action-packed series. (Ages 8+)
The Wild Soccer Bunch is a group of soccer-loving friends who form their own team. Each book in this popular middle-grade series by Joachim Masannek focuses on a different player. Kids will love the sense of humour, football storylines, and realistic friendships. (Ages 8+)
What happens when a star player ends up on the worst team? In Mike Lupica's Shoot-Out, Jake learns that being a good captain means assisting off the field as much as scoring on it. (Ages 8+)
Matt Christopher has written many exciting, stand-alone sports novels for middle-graders. Dylan has read Soccer Hero, Soccer Duel, and Soccer Scoop. (Ages 8+)
Football Mad is fun collection of four stories sure to please any young reader that loves soccer. (Ages 7+)
Rich Wallace's Kickers follows nine-year-old Ben and his team, the Bobcats. There's lots of footy action to keep readers turning the pages. (Ages 6+)
In Soccer on Sunday, the popular Magic Treehouse series takes Jack and Annie to the 1970 World Cup in search of Pelé. (Ages 6+)
Lisa Wheeler's Dino-Soccer picture book features footy-playing dinosaurs, colourful illustrations, and irresistible rhymes. It’s a combination sure to please the youngest of soccer fans.
Note: Most of our books have boys as the main character. Please see this fabulous list from A Mighty Girl for titles about girls who play soccer.
Two kids, two cats, and a house full of books. We share our favourite picks for young readers.