“Love the game. Love the game for the pure joy of accomplishment. Love the game for everything it can teach you about yourself. Love the game for the feeling of belonging to a group endeavoring to do its best. Love the game for being involved in a team whose members can’t wait to see you do your best. Love the game for the challenge of working harder than you ever have, at something and then harder than that. Love the game because it takes all team members to give it life. Love the game because at its best, the game tradition will include your contributions. Love the game because you belong to a long line of fine athletes who have loved it. It is now your legacy. Love the game so much that you will pass on your love of the game to another athlete who has seen your dedication, your work, your challenges, your triumphs… and then that athlete will, because of you, love the game.”
This is what I hope to embody as a coach. Today, I was finally able to step onto the pitch with the men from all the different camps and nothing else mattered; they were there for one reason – because they love the beautiful game.
You can see it in the way they communicate with each other and the way they listen to what I am saying. They love the game. They are no longer men from different camps and tribes but are united as one, because they love the game.
As the weeks move forward these men will continue to learn from each other, develop, and grow as a team. They will face challenges, be pushed to their limits, and then pushed past those limits, all because they love the game.
Today I learned it doesn’t matter where you come from or where you are going, it matters that we are all playing the same game. The game may be in a different style or use different drills, but at the end of the day it’s the same and we all play because we love the game.