Financial Soccer Application Part 2 – Being a Financial Midfielder


Do you have what it takes to be a defender and an attacker?

To play in the Midfield you need a level of ruthlessness that applies to defending and then applies to attacking. The same is true for personal finances. My coaching mentor might add his phrase, “You have to defend first.” On the soccer pitch as with money, if you are constantly attacking, you leave your house or goal defenseless. Set aside a part of your training (research) and play (goals) for attacking, yes, but set aside a greater amount for defending (saving). There are three possible ways to approach playing the midfield.

One, Central Midfield should be the heart and soul of the team on the field. You might even break this first thought down to an Attacking Midfielder and a Holding (defensive) Midfielder. In the financial 4-5-1, it is possible to set up two Holding and one Attacking. In our current financial situation, this would work best as we start the game having to play defense and hold off the other teams superior attack by “holding” and then building our own attack from the back. This formation would be represented as a 4-4-1-1.

Second, and continuing with the 4-4-1-1, you would use two outside midfielders. With the mindset of “defend first”, you would guard against an attack by placing your best defending outside midfielder on the Outside Left. This is due to the other teams strategy of placing their own best attacking outside midfielder on their right facing our goal. In our attack, the outside mid’s do want to move up the touchline, but being defensive minded and playing it conservative as we start getting out of debt, we hold the outside players back just a bit to conserve their energy and maximize their time on the pitch. An outside player, whether on the left or right, will be run ragged. At the highest levels of the game and finance those players must be in the best shape of any player on the pitch. Vigilance, patience, and quick reactions are the keys of success for them. Applying those keys to your personal finance means that you must, as Dave Ramsey says, “Take care of business.” Do not let your OM’s slack or be caught ball watching. The worst thing they or any player can do is to be caught flat footed.

Third, the midfield in the attack. The easiest way to think of the midfield in the attack is to visualize the positions of a team in 3 layers. To get from one layer to the next and realize the most success, you have to transition the ball (money) through the middle layer. We have tried in the recent past to bypass our midfield and go for the long, quick strike of success. We refer to that as “hoofing” it or “Boom Ball”. This is like trying the lottery or similar get-quick-rich schemes. Boom ball may work, but the surest way to success is “building from the back”. Use your defensive backs as a way to move the ball out of pressure and then to your outside backs. You maintain possession as you move down the pitch passing and combining using proven tactics and as you get closer to the goal you put the ball back into the middle for either your forward or attacking midfielder to strike the ball home into the goal. This all takes time, practice, failure then success, and learning your team.

Using your midfield will get you to your goal, but your midfield sometimes can let you down. If you put your flashy player out wide and they do not pass and move or they dribble the ball into the corner while double-teamed, you will not see a goal scored. Do not get sidetracked when you are so close to goal. Stick with your training and trust your teammates. Do not waste your training playing 1 vs 11.

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