LIFE LESSONS FROM BRAZIL – WORLD CUP

gThe curtains have finally fallen from the Samba nation in Maracana Stadium that hosted the final match of the 64 fixtures FIFA World Cup 2014, that saw Germany, otherwise known as Die Mannschaft clinch the coveted trophy which was marred with drama, sensation, tense moments and painful losses and even deaths after betting and feuds from fans went bad. I have to admit South Africa did a far better job in terms of preparations given that it hosted the maiden World Cup for Africa and vis-a-vis the lackluster work displayed by the committee tasked with organizing the huge assignment not to mention deaths of workers and frequent protests.
That is now water down the drain, what is more important is to pick up the pieces and apply them in real life.

Preparations
Good preparations made things a bit easier for Germany to cruise through the grueling matches; beating Portugal, USA, Algeria, France and even Argentina calls for a machine that is well lubricated and serviced. They did not win by sheer luck, they studied data on everything sports science from climate trends to player fitness in seeking an advantage in this tournament. Same to life, preparations come in handy. Be it in an exam or interview, they build your confidence and boost your chances of succeeding. Just like education is a foundation that is meant to give you knowledge which in the long run enables one to earn a living and more importantly make sound decisions in life.

Discipline
Unfortunately African countries were the most affected. Cameroon not only played mediocre football but also displayed their uncivilized ways of doing things. It only worsens the notion to people who discern this continent to be of primitive people. When players fight each other in the pitch and even drag it to the dressing rooms cannot be justified nor tolerated in modern day society. Someone told me to always make discipline my friend. It is so essential in life, there is no virtue that beats it. It is through indiscipline that one loses friends, get sacked from a good job and even misses out opportunities in life. Indiscipline is a ‘friend’ to failure, misery and all the bad things in life.

Opportunities
If Argentina capitalized on the few chances Gonzalo Higuain and Messi had, perhaps things would have been different after 90 minutes. Maybe they could not have gone for the extra time since games with such high stakes are determined by just one goal. Opportunities are meant to be grabbed and utilized, not caressed nor admired, that should come later if need be. Argentina lost not because they played bad football, but because they squandered their opportunities. In life you will be judged by the opportunities you utilize or miss, life is very unforgiving. To utilize opportunities, you must be alert and well prepared otherwise you will just make a goof.

Over dependence
I grew to love football after watching the ‘original’ Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Rivaldo, Cafu and the likes of Roberto Carlos play amazing football. I fell in love with the Brazil team. Fast forward 2014, it was disastrous for Brazil, not even that added advantage of being the host would help. From the first game when they played Croatia, I smelled trouble. The team with a such a rich history and arguably the biggest footballing country in the world had been reduced to Neymar and Neymar equaled Brazil. Plain and simple. Over dependence on this great lad was too costly for them. In fact they were humiliated, embarrassed and ‘Braziled’ by Germany. Overdependence on people and things is catastrophic, one day you will learn the hard way, be it friends, your employer, your job….Life calls for plan B, C,D,E so forth. You simply never know what tomorrow brings.

Arrogance
Being aloof is a sign of insecurity. Why is it that its only in Africa that players have this ‘bigwig syndrome’ that they are bigger than the team. From Oliech’s of this world, Essien, Etoo, Kevin Prince Boateng and the long list. Lionel Messi with several dozens of trophies remains so humble and laid back. In Germany you can never pin point a bigwig. In March 2010, when Thomas Muller made a debut to international football in a friendly against Argentina, Diego Maradona in a post conference match joked of how he thought Muller was a ball boy. Note that three months later, the latter went on to win the golden boot in South Africa as the former was sacked unceremoniously. Nature has humour. My point is Muller is a typical laid back next door boy. Life is more fair when you try to be humble even when you can’t. The opposite brings along many unnecessary feuds and baggage in life.

Mediocrity
African teams lost for playing mediocre football. I belong to the school of thought that proposes Africa to be given utmost two slots. Otherwise come 2018 in Russia, status quo will be represented by the likes of Nigeria, Ivory Coast and Cameroon because the rest play more mediocre football. Competitiveness and good football structures are the only solutions that can root out this mess. Life applies the same principle, in fact it punishes mediocrity. With your few or many skills, try be as a professional as you can, give more than a 100%, embrace your clients and employees, take time to produce quality products and services, life will reward you handsomely.
Enough said.

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3 thoughts on “LIFE LESSONS FROM BRAZIL – WORLD CUP

  1. Na shem umejua Kisungu. hahaha.

    Its been 40 days since the world cup, so I might not have all the data with me but I’ll try reboot my memory…
    Anyway Andrew you are very wrong on a number of issues. First things first
    1) Africa lost for playing mediocre football. Not true.
    What exactly was mediocre about Ghana when they held Germany to a draw, what exactly was mediocre about Nigeria when they played Argentina, My God did you see Nigeria’s keeper throughout the World Cup, or Musa’s goal against ‘a homly’ Argentina?, What exactly was mediocre about Algeria when they almost evicted Germany in the round of 16, what exactly was mediocre about Ivory Coast against Japan, do you remember Gervinho’s wonderful goal in that game, the Ivory Coast comeback was fantastic. FYI, for the first time in the world cup history two African teams made it past the group stages, would you call that mediocre?, An African team scored four goals in a world cup, mediocre?Ghana striker Asamoah Gyan equalled, and later surpassed, Cameroonian Roger Milla as Africa’s all-time topscorer in Fifa World Cup history in that game against portugal on June 26, Actually Nigeria lost to France just coz of a Joseph Yobo own goal. They had that game, African teams scored a record 28 goals in Brazil 2014, more than any other world cup.Do you recall…… anyway to say that Africa lost for playing mediocre football is ignorant in my opinion

    2)’Unfortunately African countries were the most affected. Cameroon not only played mediocre football but also displayed their uncivilized ways of doing things. It only worsens the notion to people who discern this continent to be of primitive people. When players fight each other in the pitch and even drag it to the dressing rooms cannot be justified nor tolerated in modern day society.’
    With Cameroon yes I agree but I would say that the crisis reflects not the greed of the players but the ineptness of the federations. Football is an extremely lucrative affair and when it comes to international competition, it is the fat cats in federations who eat all the cream.
    In the 2014 World Cup alone, Fifa earned $4 billion (about Sh352 billion) in revenue, a sum that could build 10 Thika super-highways.
    It was to share a bit of this loot with the federations. Each country taking part in the World Cup would receive $8 million (Sh696 million) at the end of the tournament.
    Before kick-off, moreover, federation officials were paid $1.2 million (Sh103 million) to cater for expenses during the tournament.
    Now, say you are a Cameroonian player struggling to earn your keep in some cold Eastern European country. The World Cup is a great opportunity to showcase your talents, true, and it may mean that you could earn a lucrative move to a better league.
    You also love your country, of course, but your elites at home are not famous for doing what is in the national interest.
    Your president, Paul Biya, 80, is rarely ever seen in public, has clung to power for 32 years and the only charismatic thing about him is his colourful second wife, Chantelle, with whom he takes lavish holidays in the south of France.
    Yes, you are supposed to love your country, but the elite show that it is more important to love yourself first.
    Why should you put the nation before the stomach if your leaders don’t? Captain Samuel Eto’o appreciates that not all the players are multi-millionaires like him and so yes, he was right to insist that they should be paid their money before boarding the plane.
    If African federation officials don’t want these embarrassments and if they are keen on seeing teams from the continent perform well, then they should learn to take proper care of players.
    Actually the Cameroonian federation is notorious for not meeting its end of the bargain where player allowances are concerned.
    Cameroon took the World Cup by storm in 1990 and it was expected they would perform better in 1994. But the fellows in the federation wanted the players to slave on the pitch out of patriotism without paying them their dues.
    The players had other ideas and decided to do no such thing, allowing themselves to be thrashed 6-1 by the Russians. True, it’s not a very pleasant situation but then why should the federation officials enjoy the labour of the players while elbowing them from the eating table?It is embarrassing that every tournament brings a crisis among African teams on the payment front, but it is not something the players bear any responsibility for.

    So may be instead of rooting for fewer teams to represent Africa in the world cup, what you should be rooting for Andrew is better governance and institution building.

    3) Preparations
    Good preparations made things a bit easier for Germany to cruise through the grueling matches; beating Portugal, USA, Algeria, France and even Argentina calls for a machine that is well lubricated and serviced……

    Please tell me that you did not just say that Germany cruised past Algeria or Argentina because we all know that they did not. Against Algeria Germany was dancing with death.The Algerians were the aggressors. Germany’s defense appeared sluggish perhaps missing the presence of Hummels and was caught off-guard on several occasions.As Algeria continued to pick off passes and counter with crisp control which could not be said of Germany Özil kept switching wings with the all but absent Mario Goetze. Throughout the game Germany continued to look flustered under Algeria’s offensive onslaught. Many chances kept coming for the Algerians, but they just barely missed the back of the net.
    On one occasion, it briefly appeared as though they scored, but the call was offside. Actually as at the 63rd minute, 18 minutes into the second half Germany had not completed a pass inside Algeria’s box.(BBC Sports)
    Algeria actually continued to fight even after they were two nil down and just a minute after Ozil’s goal, Abdelmoumene Djabou finally put one in for the Algerians,
    This is what the first goal scorer Schuerrle told ZDF, via Miles Chambers of Goal.com:

    ” Obviously we wanted to win the match earlier. But Algeria did well, they pressured us from the beginning. I scored almost the exact same goal in Mainz three weeks ago. So I am capable of it, but of course I had a little luck.
    We had many chances in the last 10 minutes of the 90, but we missed them. Now we are at the quarter-finals. We need to relax, and then play France.” Source:http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2115279-germany-vs-algeria-highlights-and-analysis-from-world-cup-thriller.

    If that’s cruising through you just gave the word a new meaning.

    Against Argentina………. Later coz of time.

    4) Arrogance
    Being aloof is a sign of insecurity. Why is it that its only in Africa that players have this ‘bigwig syndrome’ that they are bigger than the team. …… Due to time, the debate will be continued..

    • That was one long comment. So Africa broke some records well, that’s alone depicts how low our expectations are. So if we go with that pace, when will win the World Cup. I still insist there is a lot of mediocrity.By the way Alex Song apologised after realising what he did was.stupid.
      Germany didnt win the Worldcup by chance, they deserved it. They may not have played to their best in all games but it happens, and they won thanks to their heavy investment in preparations.(preparations includes the mind).

      Next time make your comment brief.

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