Our idols are people
November 17, 2023
Bojan Krkic on mentoring Barcelona’s younger generation of players, in Sid Lowe’s story for The Guardian:
“Marc Guiu went from 40,000 followers to a million overnight on Instagram,” Bojan says. “That’s madness. ‘How nice, how incredible, a million followers!’ But that’s hard to manage, transformative. With Lamine Yamal, we’re talking about a kid in the fourth year of ESO [secondary school]; we’ve spoken about finishing his schooling. I don’t want to smother them at a sensitive moment, but they know we’re here at their side, that they have the protection they need. People ask: ‘What advice would you give them?’ But it’s not advice. You have to let them live it, experience it, accompany them, help them manage it.
“In the end, it’s empathy. And in football, it can be hard to empathize with a player, what he is living through. We all want immediate results, to win. It’s a wide world, there are so many interests. They’re exposed. You help them so that they are better players and people. I don’t know if mental health problems are still taboo, it’s more visible now, and everyone has the freedom, or should have the freedom, to face life how they want. It’s not abnormal, it happens. If I am externalizing it, it is because I have the confidence and the strength to do so now, and hopefully, that can help others.”
They are professionals and people with lives that can affect how they play. That missed shot could have a deeper meaning. A misplaced pass could be a missed call, a bad day, a bad meal.
We all have bad days. We’ve felt off. They are not allowed to. They’re at work, and we need results.
We get the great news that Bojan will go back to Barcelona, after he retires at the age of 32, to look after players out on loan. A noble end to a promising career of one of the most exciting forwards to come out of La Masia.