How Not To Follow A Humdrum Strategy

On the night of March 08th, 2017, the football world saw one the major upsets of the tournament; at the highest level.

The #ChampionsLeague is no small town kid. It’s the crown which every European football club yearns for. It’s a show of strength, desire, and something to kill for.

A giant club from France (Paris St Germain or PSG) battling it out with another giant from Spain (Barcelona or Barca).

Those Petious Six Goals (#PSG) changed the way world looked at #Barcelona; for those who still had any inhibitions about this club.

For those who don’t know, there are two fixtures between the same two teams, in this tournament – one home game and another away game.

During the first meet, PSG knocked a heavy blow on Barca, leading the night 4 goals to nil.

Very few people would have thought that Barca would be able to overcome such a mountain of a task.

Plain and simple, it was impossible.

Well, those of you who don’t know Barca’s might would not know that they don’t give up till it’s the end.

So, all they did was to make impossible to I’m possible!


You have to watch it to believe it.

The energy they had, they pace with which they moved, and the rage which was evident from their body language. They could kill, if they had any weapons!

Was it enough to make such a comeback?

Absolutely not!

These are key ingredients which you need, but the ingredients don’t mix or bake on their own.

They need a binding agent, a purpose, and a role which each of them plays.

So, after their defeat in the first leg, Barca made changes to the team. The coach started mixing his strategies and kept his opponents, guessing!

The two things which stood out for me: Reorganising and Rotating.

When to tame the opponents and when to go for the kill – know that and all you have to do is wait for the right time. Wait for the opponents to make a mistake and present you with a weak spot.

You don’t always get a high ground, and you don’t always win from a high ground.

Agility, which comes from challenging and perfecting different scenarios, giving yourself more data to prepare, and a cutting edge!

The next thing, is to know who could make that killing. It’s not always the sniper who has the best spot to kill.

Sometime, he could be there to cause a distraction or make you run for cover, while the man with the knife waits for the opportunity and makes the silent kill.

Never let your work be monotonous, have a thorough SWOT analysis, keep more information, and know what works for you and what not.

When you put yourself in different scenarios, you will know the weak areas. And, if you could stumble upon those then others could, as well.

You have to try!

Take a calculated risk!

Or, go blind!

You’ll learn something out of it, for sure.

But, eat only what you can stomach.

In between, the first match and the return match, Barca played other games and corrected their new ways of working.

When the time came, they were better prepared!


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I Went To Learn Football, Instead I Learnt …

From this day to the ending of the world, but we in it shall be remembered – we few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he today that sheds his blood with me. …” ~ William ShakespeareHenry V

A group of people who come together for a common cause becomes a group, a band, a gang, or a team. Every member of the team has his unique capability and has a role to play, even if it to stay at the side lines and boost the morale of others. Every member gets involved and can be rated individually but the end result or the performance is collectively measured.

Since my childhood days, I was actively involved in sports and played various sports. Football was one of my favourite sport. At the time, I didn’t know much about it or the different leagues which were played around the world. The only names I knew were the likes of Ronaldo, Rivaldo, Beckham, and other famous players. The football world cup was the sporting event we all waited for and watched with all the enthusiasm. While playing football at my school, all we did was run behind the ball without any plan or formation. Gradually, I started understanding the game, the positions, the tactics, and other related fundamentals.

Playing and following the game for quite some time now made me realise it was not just about learning the game, it was about learning important lessons before you could learn the game.

Importance of a Good Coach – It takes a lot of practice, learning, and experience. A person who has been there and seen it all knows the nitty-gritty of the game. And, no one can coach you better but a person who has seen the highs and lows. Moreover, not every coach is or can be good. Nonetheless, the significance of a good coach is nonpareil.

Coming Together as a Team – A coach will do everything in his capacity to train you, give apt feedback, present opportunities to you, and make pertinent strategies. But, the end result lies in the way the team plays individually and collectively. Every member should understand the basic of a team play; supporting each other, looking out for potential threats, covering the weak links in the team, and working towards common goal. One can only grow if the team grows. After all, there is no “I” in the team rather “am” which means I’m part of the team too.  Things don’t change overnight, consistency and persistence will lead you forward, one step at a time.

Need for Creativity & the Burning Desire – One idea may have worked for a team. It may work couple more times, however it’ll not work forever. Failure to bring in creativity would eventually bring downfall. Whether it’s the coaching methods or the individual player’s style of playing – both need to be flexible to learn new ways and open to change when required.  Ever wonder why a team has an unbeatable run? It’s because every person on the team has the passion to go for the kill, the itch to succeed, and give a performance better than previous day. If you are not hungry for more, you may sit out than giving a mediocre performance. Once you start something, prepare yourself to see it out till the end, no matter what challenges yous face or if your personal aspirations are not met along the way. Always remember, best transfers happen at the end of the season. If you get the gist of it!

Nothing Works Without Planning – The formation in any game is as important as deploying personnel for a battle. If the analysis of opponents’ behaviour and playing pattern is not done, a plan of play is not put on the board, or the right formation is not prepared then you leave your team exposed. Every situation forces you to be dynamic and keep you on your toes. Who plays where, how the play should be made, when to be on the offensive and when to defend, and similar things need to be planned well in advance. Like any other work, for instance software development, planning is the first stage before any play (execution) is made.

Every Player has the Potential to be a Star – Every person has a role, a designation, and skills to perform with in the team. While it is important to be good at what you are responsible for, it does not hamper you from honing new skill. You may have a liking towards one role, but you don’t know your true potential till you try something else and are able to compare with. Never be shy to learn. There are defenders in every team, but not everyone plays for best teams. They all have a distinguishing factor than the rest of the lot.

Out of every one hundred men, ten shouldn’t even be there, eighty are just targets, nine are the real fighters, and we are lucky to have them, for they make the battle. Ah, but the one, one is a warrior, and he will bring the others back.” ~ Heraclitus

Nothing is Over Till the Whistle Goes Off – Ever seen Manchester United play on their home turf? How Sir Alex used to tap his watch and the playing time was extended. Likewise, there are many teams who have made a difference in those closing seconds. Similarly, nothing is over till the clock is ticking. Don’t lose hope if things are not going your way, it’s a matter of time before things will turn around. Every bit of effort you put in will be rewarded. Often, we work very hard throughout but become complacent towards the end. Your approach and your attitude in those crucial moments towards the end make all the difference between winning and losing.

It’s not just about the game, some things don’t change and remain applicable to everything you do in life. Hope there was a learning for you in this too!

It is fatal to enter a war without the will to win it.” ~ Douglas MacArthur


Author speaks: I’m not here to change the world; I intend to make an impact on one soul at a time. If you like my work, please press Like, or better yet put a Comment; perhaps a feedback. However, the best appreciation of my work will be to Share this with your friends and your social circles (FB, Twitter, LinkedIn, G+, and others).

Thanks in advance!