Why Messi could be the best goalkeeper in the world

The direct relationship between intelligence and success applies to any social setting, however, this rationale appears to be on the sideline of what really happens in a soccer field. Is it the random chance of being born with an unparalleled natural talent the only reason why the Argentinian has become the best player in history?
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or those who suffer from soccer and literature with an equally excessive obsession, few suggestions can be more pleasurable than the delightful collection of Cuentos de fútbol argentino selected and prefaced by Roberto Fontanarrosa, whose production might be the one that best assembles both disciplines.

This collection, subtle and discreet, in line with the personality of its main protagonist, holds one of the most beautifully crafted fictitious accounts with a spherical ball as the connecting thread. The author is the Argentinian journalist Juan Sasturain, aka Campitos.

Without wishing to reveal much of the story, Campitos narrates the story of a man who takes care of the grass of a soccer field from a badly reputed soccer club in the Buenos Aires province. The story describes how this man lies behind the creation of the local term semillero, which defines a low category sports club. The word comes from seed, the basic component of the agricultural engineer José Campodónico. ‘Campitos’, the grey antihero Sasturain, expert in land, plantations, harvests and soccer players develops a pattern which allows him to identify the perfect defender or striker. The pattern works as if each specialist in the soccer field were a seed for a concrete plant that grows at a specific location and time of the year.

The storyline, exaggerated, just like anything surrounding the world of soccer in Argentina, is a delicious narration that intends to set up the formula of talent by making associations between agriculture and soccer. However, the concept is not as chimerical when seeking analogies with the current society. Take as an example business schools. Certainly, they select and shape the best specialists in each field, informing multinationals about the source of obtaining the best professional profiles with a quite high degree of certainty. The one with the highest educational level, the one imposing a business model over the rest, the one who positions his business sales at the highest level. Such milestones help weaving a close relationship between intellectual brilliance and success as well as finding logical explanations on why certain professionals share a career path and similar results that enable them to succeed in their respective fields. Seeds, soccer fields and soccer field positions depending on the student, formative centers and professional profiles. A natural talent for intelligence. This does not seem so senseless, does it?

Doing what the Argentinian does on the soccer field, one needs a high IQ, even though society attributes his success to a mere genetic gift

However, why, in the sports world, natural talent appears to justify success? Why is intelligence the origin and cause that makes the difference in business, science and politics, but is not a concept commonly used to analyse success in the sports world? In other words, Messi is dumb but he won the lottery when he was born with the unique ability to master a ball. But there is a turn of the screw. Doing what the Argentinian does on the soccer field, one needs a high IQ, even though society attributes his success to a mere genetic gift, which Sasturain disregards in his collection.

In fact, and defying the ‘Campitos’ logic, Messi could become the best goalkeeper in the world if he really put his heart into it. This is a rather provoking statement but, it is true that his brain can anticipate the moves from his teammates, opponents and ball at a higher speed than the rest of us, and that makes him capable of making a difference in any position in the field, even as a goalkeeper. It is obvious that the number 10 striker of FC Barcelona has a limited height that only enables him to be more comfortable when controlling the ball with his feet rather than his hands, touché; however, brilliance in soccer, like in any other sport, does not lie in the hands or feet but in the head.

If one is capable of dodging the blinding light that emit his surreal goals, extra-terrestrial assists and dribbles more commonly seen in videogames, it is only then when that person will discover details of someone that are unique and different from the average. Messi senses when to press against his opponent and decides to do so only when there are real chances to steal the ball, which tends to happen most of the times. Messi can also sense the rhythm of the match and what the needs of the match are, so he positions himself in areas of the field that enable him to flow and be lethal in the last few meters. He chooses to be either at the center of the soccer field if the team struggles to keep the ball under control and knows that the team cannot make it without him, or on the sides when the defensive pressure is too high despite the magic he is able to craft with a ball on his feet. Messi senses when to jump, when to stop and when to accelerate to avoid being hit by an opponent, which has prevented him from getting injured or receiving a severe blow caused by a bad tackle. Messi, Messi, Messi. Intuition, intuition, intuition.

Intuition is the unconscious information stored in the limbic part of our brain which allows us to take millions of daily decisions automatically. As an intelligence indicator, it is quite reliable, and few people, just like any other, have been able to use their intuition like the soccer player from Rosario to foster their talent to unprecedented heights. Thus, if Messi were to take on the challenge of becoming the best goalkeeper on the planet, he would because his superior intelligence in the soccer field would make him the best in any position in the field, in contrast to the ‘Campitos’ theory.

As a matter of fact, Sasturain’s ficticious character did not need to meet the Argentinian to understand that the talent of a soccer player cannot be categorized exclusively on the basis of quantifiable indicators. By the end of the story, when a dark soul discovers and attempts to exploit his method, ‘Campitos’ confesses that some players escape his formula. “With all these data in their power, not only will they try to harvest them but to fabricate them. With years and years of anticipation. Imagine, the worst that could ever happen. And after that they won’t accept, recognize or stand exceptions. And that would be the end: that would be the end of soccer”, confesses.

Due to his talent, however, not only due to is talent, Messi has become the most beautiful exception in the history of soccer.

Why Messi could be the best goalkeeper in the world

The direct relationship between intelligence and success applies to any social setting, however, this rationale appears to be on the sideline of what really happens in a soccer field. Is it the random chance of being born with an unparalleled natural talent the only reason why the Argentinian has become the best player in history?
F

or those who suffer from soccer and literature with an equally excessive obsession, few suggestions can be more pleasurable than the delightful collection of Cuentos de fútbol argentino selected and prefaced by Roberto Fontanarrosa, whose production might be the one that best assembles both disciplines.

This collection, subtle and discreet, in line with the personality of its main protagonist, holds one of the most beautifully crafted fictitious accounts with a spherical ball as the connecting thread. The author is the Argentinian journalist Juan Sasturain, aka Campitos.

Without wishing to reveal much of the story, Campitos narrates the story of a man who takes care of the grass of a soccer field from a badly reputed soccer club in the Buenos Aires province. The story describes how this man lies behind the creation of the local term semillero, which defines a low category sports club. The word comes from seed, the basic component of the agricultural engineer José Campodónico. ‘Campitos’, the grey antihero Sasturain, expert in land, plantations, harvests and soccer players develops a pattern which allows him to identify the perfect defender or striker. The pattern works as if each specialist in the soccer field were a seed for a concrete plant that grows at a specific location and time of the year.

The storyline, exaggerated, just like anything surrounding the world of soccer in Argentina, is a delicious narration that intends to set up the formula of talent by making associations between agriculture and soccer. However, the concept is not as chimerical when seeking analogies with the current society. Take as an example business schools. Certainly, they select and shape the best specialists in each field, informing multinationals about the source of obtaining the best professional profiles with a quite high degree of certainty. The one with the highest educational level, the one imposing a business model over the rest, the one who positions his business sales at the highest level. Such milestones help weaving a close relationship between intellectual brilliance and success as well as finding logical explanations on why certain professionals share a career path and similar results that enable them to succeed in their respective fields. Seeds, soccer fields and soccer field positions depending on the student, formative centers and professional profiles. A natural talent for intelligence. This does not seem so senseless, does it?

Doing what the Argentinian does on the soccer field, one needs a high IQ, even though society attributes his success to a mere genetic gift

However, why, in the sports world, natural talent appears to justify success? Why is intelligence the origin and cause that makes the difference in business, science and politics, but is not a concept commonly used to analyse success in the sports world? In other words, Messi is dumb but he won the lottery when he was born with the unique ability to master a ball. But there is a turn of the screw. Doing what the Argentinian does on the soccer field, one needs a high IQ, even though society attributes his success to a mere genetic gift, which Sasturain disregards in his collection.

In fact, and defying the ‘Campitos’ logic, Messi could become the best goalkeeper in the world if he really put his heart into it. This is a rather provoking statement but, it is true that his brain can anticipate the moves from his teammates, opponents and ball at a higher speed than the rest of us, and that makes him capable of making a difference in any position in the field, even as a goalkeeper. It is obvious that the number 10 striker of FC Barcelona has a limited height that only enables him to be more comfortable when controlling the ball with his feet rather than his hands, touché; however, brilliance in soccer, like in any other sport, does not lie in the hands or feet but in the head.

If one is capable of dodging the blinding light that emit his surreal goals, extra-terrestrial assists and dribbles more commonly seen in videogames, it is only then when that person will discover details of someone that are unique and different from the average. Messi senses when to press against his opponent and decides to do so only when there are real chances to steal the ball, which tends to happen most of the times. Messi can also sense the rhythm of the match and what the needs of the match are, so he positions himself in areas of the field that enable him to flow and be lethal in the last few meters. He chooses to be either at the center of the soccer field if the team struggles to keep the ball under control and knows that the team cannot make it without him, or on the sides when the defensive pressure is too high despite the magic he is able to craft with a ball on his feet. Messi senses when to jump, when to stop and when to accelerate to avoid being hit by an opponent, which has prevented him from getting injured or receiving a severe blow caused by a bad tackle. Messi, Messi, Messi. Intuition, intuition, intuition.

Intuition is the unconscious information stored in the limbic part of our brain which allows us to take millions of daily decisions automatically. As an intelligence indicator, it is quite reliable, and few people, just like any other, have been able to use their intuition like the soccer player from Rosario to foster their talent to unprecedented heights. Thus, if Messi were to take on the challenge of becoming the best goalkeeper on the planet, he would because his superior intelligence in the soccer field would make him the best in any position in the field, in contrast to the ‘Campitos’ theory.

As a matter of fact, Sasturain’s ficticious character did not need to meet the Argentinian to understand that the talent of a soccer player cannot be categorized exclusively on the basis of quantifiable indicators. By the end of the story, when a dark soul discovers and attempts to exploit his method, ‘Campitos’ confesses that some players escape his formula. “With all these data in their power, not only will they try to harvest them but to fabricate them. With years and years of anticipation. Imagine, the worst that could ever happen. And after that they won’t accept, recognize or stand exceptions. And that would be the end: that would be the end of soccer”, confesses.

Due to his talent, however, not only due to is talent, Messi has become the most beautiful exception in the history of soccer.