A football player could react in a number of different ways, depending many different factors. In a high profile game like a world cup match, there is an enormous amount of pressure put on players. The world cup is the biggest sporting event in the world, with thousands of TV cameras, media hype, huge advertising campaigns, millions of pounds and not to mention the entire country plus other countries watching watching your every move. It is a huge ask for professional footballers to keep there head and to stay focussed.
Football players are not robots, they are human beings all with different personalities, if you put any player in a high pressure situation, and they will all behave differently. Here are a few examples: DAVID BECKHAM: The England captain in the 1998 World cup, was famously sent off after ‘lashing out’ after an opposing player caught him late in the tackle. At the time, Beckham was a young player with relatively little experience in major tournaments, still learning the ropes, he paid dearly for a split second of madness.
Maybe if he was an older player with more experience or if the manager had taken a bit of extra time in talking to the player about pressure situations, then this might not have happened. RIVALDO: Possibly one of the best players in the world at the time, and one of the most famous players in the world, in one split decision went from a footballing God to a second rate actor, and with it lost all credibility.
Turkish footballer Hakaan Unsal kicked the ball in frustration at Rivaldo who was due to take a corner kick, Unsal was frustrated as the team where being beaten, unfortunately for him the ball struck Rivaldo, who immediately went to ground holding his chest. Unsal was red Carded. In some ways you could say that Rivaldo was being extremely clever. He was a very intelligent footballer and at 29 had bags of experience, which he used to ‘trick’ the referee. Knowing full well, with all the media attention surrounding the game, the spotlight would be on the referee.
Would he do the easy thing and send off Unsal? Or would he make the controversial decision and send off the best player in the world at the world cup in front of millions of viewers? Terry Butcher: playing for England, cut open his head in a brave tackle in which the ball needed to be won. With terrible gash to his forehead, Butcher refused to leave the field of play. He never tried to get anyone sent off, and never complained about the challenge. All he wanted to do was get stitched up and continue playing. As I said before, players are human beings with contrasting personalities.
In this case, Terry Butcher was playing for England, being a Patriot, this was his dream and all he focussed on. Because of his high concentration level, he was able to forget the media hype and attention and turn his energies to the game in hand. A cricketer refuses to walk after being given out * BRIAN LARA: At the time was the most famous Cricketer in the world, the biggest hitting batter in the world, who was famously given out for a ‘DUCK’. Lara as stunned and did not leave the field of play. In many sports it can be cruel, and Brian Lara was on the receiving end of his bat for the first time.
Professional spots people spend there whole lives on a day to day basis practicing and focussing on there game getting themselves in perfect condition both mentally and physically. For someone of Brian Lara’s profile and reputation, being bowled out for a duck was hard to swallow, all that preparation, and his huge reputation had been destroyed in one swing. It’s hard to take and Brian just had to take it on the chin. This happens to many cricketers; other cricketers accept immediately and then leave the field of play. But because of the media hype surrounding Brian, I’m sure he was thinking of the back pages of the newspapers the next day!