Culture

Ronaldo and Messi exiting the World Cup early may be a good thing

I know zilch about soccer. Well, what many in the world refer to as futbol. I guess I also wouldn’t say I know zilch. I know what a goal is. And I think I know what is not allowed in terms of personal hits. Otherwise, I know zilch. I do know when Mexico has done well in the World Cup as I live in Los Angeles and the fire crackers go off for hours on end. I also know that soccer players are fairly fit. Ok. That’s all I generally know about soccer.

It is with that mind set that I caught a game at a restaurant. I watched Uruguay vs. Portugal. I haven’t been to either country but they are both in my top 15 countries-to-visit list. So, I didn’t go in wanting any particular team to win. However, as the game progressed, I came to root for Uruguay. I liked their uniform better and they seemed really spirited in their play. I had no idea I was rooting for a legend to not win.

After Uruguay won, I saw that Argentina and thus Messi had lost. Another legend was down and out. And, for some reason I was shocked as I had heard of them both and knew of their legendary status. But after initial two-second shock, I noted that it was actually a good thing that they both lost.

Let me explain.

See, I come from the HIV field where leadership transition from one generation to another has been difficult. Those who belong to Generation X are often bypassed while waiting for their turn. I decided to not wait. But this is not only in the HIV field. You see such patterns all throughout varied workplaces and industries. Leadership often gets stuck and rooted. They don’t want to move on for a number of reasons, i.e. they are scared to, like feeling powerful, do not believe others can be just as good and so forth. I know of longstanding leaders who promise up-and-coming leaders that they will transition them in and then fail to do so. They just can’t believe that their time is up and those who were the promised ones end up disillusioned.

Messi and Ronaldo are great. Or so I have heard. But others will be as well. It is just the way it is and has to be. It doesn’t mean they will be forgotten. They will continue to be legends and the legends of tommorrow. I don’t know what former soccer greats end up doing once they retire from the sport, but I am sure they will still be able to get great seats at their favorite restaurants.

2 replies »

  1. Unfortunately, I think there are so many “pseudo-leaders” these days, that one is lucky, skilled and/or self-aware, to be in a position to be able to honestly “lead” one’s one life, in any and all aspects (religion, family, business, social, sports and of course politics) with integrity and authenticity. If anyone really wants to lead and gets some true followers, that would just be gravy!

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