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Leading from the back

Josh Miller
April 10th, 2021 · 2 min read

Be the goalie

It might not be apparent from the uproar of the crowd when a forward scores a goal, but yes, the man or woman standing in the back—who might not even be a captain—is the leader. Take retired U.S. goalie Tim Howard for instance. Remember that time they lost 2-1 against Belgium; however, Tim gave the world the best game of the entire World Cup? Howard allowed only two goals to be scored out of the 18 possible shots giving him statistically one of the best games ever as a goalie.

USA Goalie Tim Howard

Goals begin from the back of the field.

Growing up playing soccer it was without question that the goalie was the one who received blame for missing a block. However, that negligence of team responsibility isn’t the actual case when looking at a game. Playing defense, we rarely get the glory moment when the crowd cheered; but, you did get the respect and admiration for helping make it possible after the game. The goalie, essentailly captain of the defense, commands from the rear because she can see the lay of the entire field. What that means in terms of business and life might seem obvious but let’s dive into what the other players are doing.

Goalies possess the ability to command their team in such a way to both protect the net and prevent the ball from even coming near the goal.

When the game is happening, the rhythm of the ball being maneuvered back and forth passed between players a good goalie possesses a watchful eye—ever vigilant—and is on her toes should the offense move onto her team’s half of the field.

Great goalies are decisive.

They know when it’s important to give their team a break and when to let the offensive team push forward a bit. But, defense is as much preventative as it is battling back. If you ever watch a professional match you’ll see how the defensive players along with the goalie will swing the ball from one side of the field to the other to try to create a different momentum. Then, when the time is right, the goalie and the whole team move forward together with the ball. Should they be lucky enough to score, you’ll be able to trace game film all the way back to when the goalie first touched the ball.

The defenders, halfbacks, and strikers who get a lot of the glory receive a lot of TV time and actual ball time.

We often tend to feel our work is tough, but we should see our teammates too.

As a teammate, strive for empathy Put yourself in your teammates’ shoes Understand their perspective Understand where they are coming from

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