Chasing Gold – That Night in Rio

Solomons-financial-advisor-wimbledon-blogger

Chasing Gold

So Germany won the World Cup, deservedly so. A final game of 120 minutes chasing gold. However, as if to underline my previous post about the tournament, I came across a useful piece on the BBC website. This also suggests that it is not about one month in Brazil – that is merely the end of the competition. Of the German squad that picked up winners medals last night in Rio, six of them were members of the 2009 Under 21 European Championship – who beat England 4-0 in the final to win the tournament. They were Neuer, Ozil, Howedes, Boatend, Khedira and Hummels. By comparison only one Englishman from that same match made it to Rio – James Milner. Unfortunately Theo Walcott was injured, but the rest did not feature in the squad.ThatNightinRio

Success in football or indeed in any walk of life is not easy. Last night we saw one of the best players in the world walk away with a trophy that could have gone to a number of other players, who probably all had better tournaments. There is no doubt that Lionel Messi is one of the most talented players, but simply being so, does not guarantee success. Those that made the decision to give him the golden ball award, should have thought again, Messi from all accounts is a very decent man and looked uncomfortable collecting the award, and yes, whilst I don’t know that he was (who does?) one got the sense that it was more than simply being on the losing team, this smacked of marketing and nothing more.

The same is true with investing, you can simply look up the top performing funds, but this is historic data and any good portfolio is more than a collection of historically well performing funds. It’s about getting the right mix (asset allocation) and then the right level of risk (defence and growth) and then the best value for money that will do the job (so none of the “stars” that played for Brazil). Certainly there are moments when you are likely to need to hold you nerve, but that is all part of the long-term thinking rather than a constant chop/change trying to chase the gold.

Dominic Thomas: Solomons IFA

Chasing Gold – That Night in Rio2017-01-06T14:39:35+00:00

World Cup Winning by elimination – the final 4

Solomons-financial-advisor-wimbledon-blogger

World Cup Winning by elimination – the final 4

The thing I still don’t really understand is the way most sports are reported in the media. Take the #WorldCup2014 as an example, (why not, it seems everyone else has). Anyhow, we were told that the tournament started in June, this isn’t really the case. Brazil is simply the nation that is holding the final stages of the competition. In fact the “World Cup 2014” started in September 2012, perhaps you recall Bosnia’s 8-1 win over Liechtenstein? No… perhaps you remember the 5-0 England victory over Moldova. This is a lengthy process of elimination. Now it is early July the final stages have been reached, with four teams remaining, all 4 are ranked in the top 15 (of 207) and if world rankings are anything to go by, Germany will win this evening and meet Argentina in the final.

world-cup-kits

My point? Well – many people seem to forget that the road to “victory” is rather long and involves knocking out the competition. It’s a rather sad state of affairs when the so-called experts suggest that going for a draw is either sporting or genuinely helpful. The challenge, (to win) as with most sports is to out-score your opponent (unless your game is golf) yet we seem to have entered a sporting age of rather than trying to win, it is more important not to lose, hence the defensive tactics and the inevitable penalty shoot-outs.

Has sport become unsporting?

I couldn’t help but wonder when one pundit and former player suggested that people will forget about how the game was won… but that it was won, then proceeded to wax lyrical about a great Brazilian team of the past that didn’t win the World Cup… not exactly forgotten then? Yes it is possible in sport, particularly in football, to win without being the best –Chelsea’s Champions League, Greece winning the Euro’s, supporters will have a different perspective, but the neutral remembers these finals for their lack of memorable moments, 90 minutes (usually 120) lost forever. However this is just the last 90 or 120 minutes of a tournament and doesn’t reflect the full story, but as humans we remember and focus on the loudest noise (the final). This seems ably displayed by football pundits who regularly write off the USA team, who certainly played with sporting spirit against Belgium but who are in fact ranked 13th best in the FIFA World Rankings, just 3 places behind England (10th) and ahead of France, Chile, Netherlands, Mexico, Croatia and…

There can be only one..

Only one team can win the World Cup and then once this has been achieved, the entire process restarts. We hope that the best team wins, but history reminds us otherwise. How on earth am I going to link this to financial planning? Well… the same sort of enthusiastic optimism creeps in. Many hope for a “win” despite the track record and they tend to only get engaged at the latter stages – when the finish line is in sight – the final straight so to speak. We are by nature, sadly rather short-sighted, forgetting the daily routines that need to be applied to deliver the results we seek. Unlike sport, everyone can actually “win” with their financial planning – provided that they start, know the rules and have an objective in mind. It doesn’t come down to penalties and when your time is up… well its up. We might have our favourites that we would like to win in sport, but only one will (ok there are some exceptions – cricket being one). Make sure your financial plan is not stuck on the bench, left at home or disqualified, it is a “game” that can be won by all, but of course you’ve got to have some goals. OK, so consider this last sporting analogy – reflect on how old you are today and your life expectancy… if this were a sport, how long do you have left? How many minutes of play are left to make a difference? Time for a change of tactics? Time to get in touch…football2014

Dominic Thomas: Solomons IFA

World Cup Winning by elimination – the final 42017-01-06T14:39:35+00:00
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