The Problem of Co-Dependence in Football

Back when man was exposed to the harsh conditions of nature and stared death in the eyes, it made sense to stick to the group and conform to it.

Today man has never been richer and small cheap apartments and social media allows him to stay out of the rough weather, and wild predators are rarely an issue in the urban living of modern society.

Still, even when conditions of living change like they have, man’s internal thoughts and programming creates much anxiety, depression and loneliness when he is confronted with everything modern life expects of him.

That’s why most people today find substitutes for what was once their tribe and only way to survive. This conforming comes in form of the local church, sports team, the right political party or the newest show on Netflix.

And many people hold on to the same anxiety needed to survive in the prehistoric world. Anxiety has the ability to shut down all regeneration in the body to mobilise 100% of its power to escape the jaw of a tiger.

Today this anxiety is rarely justified and it unfortunately manifests in form of fear of not having enough money or losing your job, your marriage or people’s approval. It is the same fear that creates illness because the unconscious mind alternates between survival mode and regeneration mode. And if you are always anxious about what comes next you can’t possibly be in regeneration mode.

In philosophy we talk of 3 stages of maturity: (Co-)Dependence, Independence and Interdependence.

Dependence is a big part of you in situations where you can’t take care of yourself. Either at the prospect of getting eaten by wolves or today when you are a vulnerable child or get very sick.

Independence is the necessary stage often when you enter adulthood and look to find your own identity and cherish your own beliefs.

Interdependence is the stage above independence where an independent man or woman with morals and values makes choices based on their belief system of choosing a solution best suited for everyone involved, even on the grand scale of the universe.

The problem today in football is that with the fierce competition for finding the “best” talents the earliest and with all the money and investors involved, the individual gets lost very early in the process.

Young children learn very early to be dependent on a system with a coach and manager deciding on everything related to their livelihood and future in the sport.

I believe that for rural areas of the World, for example island nations in the Pacific to get to a top-professional level, they need to cherish the individual.

In recent years we have seen great talent come out of areas such as Melanesia with very technical teams and players more than capable to compete with bigger teams and players from established footballing nations such as Australia and New Zealand.

You will watch matches involving Pacific teams going toe-to-toe with New Zealand teams, recently AS Magenta and Hienghène Sport from New Caledonia. But for some reason when one thing goes wrong for the island team, there is a big risk of the team falling completely to bits and losing with tennis scores.

When a team of players used to be codependent suddenly lose their established foundation for a winning strategy and need to adapt, the lack of individuality shows through.

If what I have been writing here is true, we need to seriously look at how our entire idea of building a team and players function. It could take many years to get everything completely in tune but I am extremely optimistic about the opportunities of developing football in areas such as the Pacific.

Published by Axel Ljungquist

25 years old from Denmark. OFCe affiliate.

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