By Tosyn Bucknor
Football is a funny game, possibly the best game ever! It’s fun to watch, great to support, and has a million lessons.
While I have two or three general lessons from football itself, the other ‘tens’ come from Arsenal, aka, ‘Hate it or Love it, but you can’t ignore it’. As with most people, while Arsenal is not my first team (neither is it my second), I have some kind of love for the team. And I am so glad Arsenal fans are cursing less and rejoicing more on twitter these days.
*fingers crossed it lasts*
10. Don’t mix up work and play
What is always fascinating about football is how two teams get on a pitch, do battle, and then members from opposing teams are having drinks at bars while their fans are stabbing one another at bars.
It’s work, it doesn’t make them enemies. When that whistle blows, they are no longer friends, just two men working. And when it blows again, they are friends again. Lesson learnt- know the difference between business and play and don’t take business decisions personal.
9. Play according to the jersey you wear
Another interesting thing about football is how one day, two players fight for the same team, and the next day, they are competing against each other when it comes to their countries playing. Their loyalty at each time is to the jersey they wear, and basically, who is paying the piper. That’s another lesson learnt, especially where different clients are concerned. Your loyalty is to your client and you carry your duties out professionally always.
8. Brace for the change.
Expecting things to be the same at work or in relationships when changes, especially major ones, occur is setting yourself up for major disappointment.
Alex Ferguson resigned unexpectedly and David Moyes only had a few weeks notice before taking over, and it has been a struggle and a half. Even the return of the ‘One’ to Chelsea has not been as smooth sailing as some might have expected. If a major change is coming your way, brace!
7. No one ignores Arsenal… And that’s a fact.
If Arsenal loses a game, you will know. If Arsenal wins, you will also know. None ignores Arsenal, and everyone follows their story. Some hate them, some love them, some cheer them on, some wish they fall, but you would be hard pressed to find a football fan who is indifferent towards Arsenal. It’s great for you to position yourself in such a way that they may hate you or love you, but they won’t ignore you.
6. ‘Life na tininitanana o o o’.
‘Turn by turn’ as they sang in the Kel song. So, Robin Van Persie was sold to Manchester United by Arsenal in one season that changed his life- he won a trophy. But look at him this season, it doesn’t look likely that Manchester United will win any silverware, and he will probably have to watch on as Arsenal , the team he left, picks up a trophy or two.
Ti ni ni ta na na… O o o o
5. And still on that thought…
Who would have thought Manchester United would be 12th on the table? That Chelsea would be struggling with losses, draws and unconvincing wins? That Manchester City would be losing home and away? And that Arsenal would be topping the table?
It is early days yet and so while right now it is an example of how things can turn around, when this season ends, we may have to say, ‘know the difference between a sprint and a marathon’.
4. Loyalty will be rewarded
Arsenal fans must be some of the loyal people in the world, I’d probably hire an Arsenal fan just because I know he would stay faithful.
Look at how Arsenal is now rewarding fans who have stuck with them for eight trophy-less seasons. This looks like a good season for dusting the trophy cabinet, fingers crossed.
3. As will persistence.
Whether people chant, ‘Crucify him’ or ‘Saviour’ is based on results, things they see.
Look at how quickly #WengerOut has become, ‘o Arsene knew what he was doing all along’.
It’s the best example of how, if you have a conviction about something and know what you are doing, you should stick it out and not let the taunts and criticisms wear you down. It also shows that human beings work with results; present results. The fact that you were great six years ago means nothing to them if you are not great now.
2. Never doubt the importance of one man
So what changed with Arsenal? Was it the coup of the season- buying Ozil? Look at how much of a difference Ozil has made. And yet, we keep doubting how one man can make a difference.
1. But always have a team
If Ozil had come in at a time Arsenal didn’t have a team that had already worked together, and well before, he might have just been a world class player playing with high-school class players.
It is always important to build a great team. Now that I am done analysing, let’s go watch a scary game- Manchester United playing without Rooney nor RVP. *sigh*
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