Bob Pointer - CFIL Global
We are all rightly caught up in the euphoria of an England football team for once exceeding expectations and whilst I love the love I feel it will be at a price. Unless we now bring home the trophy the press and many others who now love him to bits, will be queuing up to stick the knife into Gareth Southgate. We seem to love building people up and knocking them down.
We went into the world cup with little expectations and the humiliation of Euro 2016 and defeat to Iceland still very fresh in our minds. We distanced ourselves knowingly or unknowingly from “our boys” THEY haven’t a chance THEY are too young, inexperienced, THEY have no stars, but THEY proved “US” wrong.
Now its not “THEY” its “WE” and the biggest danger is the sudden love and acceptance will prove a block rather than a lift.
So, what is this all about why we, as a nation, seem to be pessimistic by default and then keen to put obstacles or knock down those who try to better themselves and succeed.
Some years ago, I worked as a project co-ordinator for a charity and met two young people who both have had a massive and lasting impact on me. Both it is fair to say had had their problems in their short lives and were quite used to being dismissed or told no but both are by nature irrepressible in spirit and mind.
Will has just returned from a tour of China, runs marathons and seems to be really living and enjoying his life working within the NHS. Emily travelled alone to India and became immersed in the culture and in particular meditation and self- discovery and now is back in the UK a mother and happily settled in Devon. They both refused to be tied down and instead chose to live their lives.
I personally once approached the Essex County Football Association with a proposal to create a football club for disabled children and young adults and was seeking their support in a bid for £10,000 to the FA.
Whilst I received a positive response I was a little annoyed by their lack of expectations for those who would benefit. I laid out my ambition to create a pathway where the players would be able to reach their full potential, whatever that may be, including playing for their country. At this point I was told “it can’t be done”. Those who know me will know that I can be a bit belligerent and stubborn and to me that was a statement not an answer so replied “watch me”. Arrogant? Maybe but I believed in the young people and refused to be limited by their lack of vision or expectation.
In my mind I imagine a similar situation when Gareth Southgate spoke to the FA before the World Cup “I’m taking young untested and internationally inexperienced players and we will bring the trophy home” response “That can’t be done”………………………………
And by the way, I got the grant started the project and Adam a partially sighted and extremely gifted player went on to play Futsol for England.
For Emily and the very beautiful Waverley and Will you both have my utmost respect for just being you.
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