It's what Pelé called the "Beautiful Game" and what millions of fans gather to cheer on. Soccer is showing increasing popularity worldwide, and revamped professional leagues continue to shine in the World Cup. This carefully researched book describes the history of the sport, its legendary players and clubs, notable coaches, and stadiums. There is in-depth information on major competitions at both national and club levels as well as sections on the laws, tactics, and equipment. Complementing the text are lovingly chosen photographs bringing to life the characters and moments that have shaped the world of soccer.