Jimmy Burns was born in Madrid in 1953 of Anglo-Spanish parentage. His mother Mabel is the daughter of the doctor and writer Gregorio Maranon and his father Tom Burns, who died in 1994, was a publisher, journalist and diplomat. A senior writer for The Financial Times, he has also contributed to many other media organizations around the world over the years including the BBC, CNN, National Public Radio, and Fox News. Winner of newspaper awards as an investigative reporter, he has also won the prestigious Somerset Maughan prize for non-fiction with his first book. His previous books are When Beckham Went to Spain: Power, Stardom and Real Madrid (Penguin), The Hand of God: The Life of Diego Maradona (Bloomsbury), Barca: A People's Passion (Bloomsbury), Spain: A Literary Companion (John Murray) and Papa Spy (Quercus). He lives in Spain and London.