5 Things the World Cup Teaches About Life!

Waka waka eh eh!!!
Tsamina mina zangalewa!!!
This time for Africa!!!
Shakira Shakira!

“Takes headphones off”.

Oh hello – it’s you again.

Pardon me there, I got carried away – the World Cup is on you see.

Image result for world series of baseball
Just like the World Series of Baseball! Except you know… more than one country is involved.

The four-yearly event has come around and landed in Russia, hands up if you’ve been watching it!

MrsFrugalSamurai and I certainly have been – more the case of me forcing her to watch that is.

“Come on babe! Egypt versus Uruguay!!!”

“Uruguay… is that a fruit?”

Blank expression.

“N…no dear… it’s a country…”

“In Europe?”

Image result for uruguay map
No dear… not in Europe…

Geographical ignorances aside (my apologies on her behalf to all our Uruguayan friends), the World Cup is THE biggest sporting event in the world.

A true global event spanning six continents, it’s the most widely followed and lucrative four weeks on the sporting calendar.

But beneath the glitz and glamour, the drama and action, the heroes and villains, beneath all that – there are 5 key messages to take-away which are transferable to our everyday lives.

Give it a go.

In the World Cup, there are 32 teams from all over the globe competing for the title of world best.

Now as there are so many teams involved, it’s natural to have the big boys pitted against the small minnows.

Image result for minnows
These fish have no fucking chance.

We saw this last night when mighty Argentina (two-time winners) with one of the best players in the world (Lionel Messi), took on Iceland (total population 350,000) and only came out with a draw.

The Icelandics huffed and puffed and gave it their all to more than match their more illustrious opponents.

Key message:

In life, just as on the pitch – it’s not what’s on paper that counts but what is real and measurable. Effort. Hard work. Sweat. A bit of luck.

Life is hard, life seems insurmountable – but give it a damn good go and you never know, you might just come out of it with a result.


But no matter how much effort and sweat is involved, you won’t be able to generate any if you don’t have belief.

We saw this in the Australia game (cue tears) against a much fancied French outfit.

Although France came out with a 2-1 win. The effort and persistence showed from the Aussies was more than admirable.

After the final whistle blew, the Australian Captain – Mile Jedinak grabbed all the players in a circle and delivered what was no doubt a rousing speech.

Image result for australia vs france huddle
“So a Frechman, a German and an Englishman walk into a bar. The Frenchman says…”

The key message is to believe. Believe that you can compete if you give your all each and every time. Believe that you can make it to the next round.

Key message:

Hey look, sometimes after giving your all – you still don’t quite make it, you still aren’t quite there. That’s OK.

If you can retain your confidence in your ability, trust those around to support you, dedicate yourself to yielding a better result next time and look yourself in the mirror and say – I’ve done my best.

Then that’s all anyone can ask for.

Remembering the why.

I wrote about this in an earlier post (here), about not losing sight of the bigger picture in life. Remembering what is important and not approaching life with too narrow of a vision.

Which is why I will stay up to watch Egypt vs Uruguay and why I will wake up early to view Portgual vs Spain

Because as a football fan, the World Cup is the pinnacle event – it happens every 4 years and damn it man if I am not going to catch every possible moment of it.

Image result for gotta catch em all gif
World Cup games – gotta catch em all!

Sure I could function like a normal human being with normal sleep cycles – but honestly, walking around like a zombie for a month is worth it, if only to catch Cristiano Ronaldo’s hat-trick live.

Right there, right there is the why.

Key message:

You might think to yourself, oh there will be another one, I’ll catch it some other time.

Yep, of course – there will be another one and another time. But soon enough, it turns to “I’ll watch her school play another time”, or “I’ll catch up with him next time” – but you know, life doesn’t stop for anyone, there MAY be another one and MAY be another time. But what’s the point of that if you’re missing the details right now?

Dedication and discipline.

For those of you who watched Ronaldo’s hat-trick in the 3-3 draw against Portgual, wow what a performance aye!

Love him or loathe him, you have to admit that he is one of the best players to have ever played the game.

But you know, that hat-trick is a culmination of years and years of hard-work and commitment to himself, on the field and off it. Here just read this article on his training and diet regime. It’s HARD. CORE.

Image result for ronaldo
You too can be like me! Just train 32 hours a day for 9 days a week, eat 8 meals a day and bathe in the milk of Hibiscus flowers 6 times a night.

He has the talent, he has the motivation and most of all, he has the dedication and discipline to continuously work on himself.

Key message:

Some people have the natural talent but not the mental fortitude and commitment to themselves to achieve what they want to achieve.

No one’s asking you to go to the extreme’s that Ronaldo does with his 6 meals a day and 3am ice baths, no – there’s only one Ronaldo, only one LeBron, only one Tom Brady.

Life only gives back what you put in.

If you want to earn a stable $80k a year at a 9 to 5 job, have a loving wife and two kids – then go for it.

But if you’re telling yourself that you want more, need more and willing to work more to get it, but don’t. Then ask yourself why?

Connect people.

Back in the 2006 World Cup, the Aussie team progressed to the second round for the first time ever.

However what I remember best was the feel good atmosphere and general sense of goodwill and community shared across the nation.

Nothing connects people in a unified sense of national pride than your country participating in a major global event.

Image result for australia 2006 sydney streets world cup
Times were simpler then – wake up, go to uni, play FIFA on PS2, watch football, sleep, repeat.

That’s what’s great about sport, it transcends national boundaries, speaks a universal language and most of all connects humans with each other in our social bonds.

From the highest levels to the grassroots foundations, sports has and always will be a social lubricant for new conversations, connections, partnerships and best of all friendships.

So do yourself a favour, if you don’t particularly like sports, or engage in a sporting activity – seriously look into it, it’s a way to introduce new elements in your life.

Key message:

If you don’t want to wake up at 4am to watch a football match, that’s OK, that’s expected.

But if you feel left out in the office, in school, in your social groups because everyone’s talking about sports – then at least consider it.

I’ve made friendships and connections just by participating and following different sports – it’s one of the easiest conversation starters and immediately forms a connection with the other person.

Oh, apparently being in a team environment and running around is healthy for you as well!

Go Australia!

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  • steveark

    Futbol, just can’t get into that game that penalizes you for slipping behind the other teams defense. I mean that’s the whole point of games with goals, the long bomb pass in football, the fast break in basketball, ok hockey has the same crazy rule but at least they get to fight and they have clubs, I mean sticks. But it is cool that there is an international playoff, but nobody is talking about the cup here, we are too busy rooting for the razorbacks in the college world series today!

    • The Frugal Samurai

      hahaha – go the Razorbacks then aye! You’re referring to the “offside” rule right? Don’t even bother watching rugby then!
      I agree with you that football might not have the same play action or frenetic pace as some of the other sports but in which sport do you find an artificial EARTHQUAKE caused by cheering fans?! Your neighbours down in Mexico certainly were up for the game!

      • steveark

        I have to admit it is a great game, how else could it captivate billions? It wasn’t a thing in my area when I was a kid, that probably is why I’m lukewarm about it. And the Arkansas Razorbacks killed the Texas Longhorns yesterday!

        • The Frugal Samurai

          Go the Razorbacks! You know – the thing I most admire about American sports is the sheer hype and coverage of each and every game, High School Basketball? Yep, national primetime TV. College baseball? ESPN front page news – we don’t have that here in Aus but would love to!

  • Bugzy

    Dear Frugal

    My friend Taser told me that u started answering questions re finance. Help pls

    1. I have 400k in equity. 20k cash. Income of circa 70k net. How can i FIRE

    2. Should i play my wildcard this round and get cr7 messi and greeshman. Or should i stick with frugal (cavani), hugzy (suarez) and magic mike cao (lukakku)

    Answer asap pls… have 12 hours til round 2 deadline

    • The Frugal Samurai

      Wow Bugzy – you’re in an envious postion compared to most others!

      1) With $20k cash and $70k net income (assuming this is free cash flow), you should probably look at your expenses first – where do the $50k in spending go towards? Is there any areas you can cut down on? There are plenty of ways to FIRE but depends on your time horizon and risk tolerance – it varies from going to the casino to buying solid long-term assets…

      2) Oh – you’re playing fantasy World Cup I’m assuming? I’m playing that as well but unfortunately not doing so great… oh well… but my two cents is that messi SURELY can’t go wrong two games in a row?

      • Bugzy


        1. Was thinking 3 more properties over next 6 years…. 2 resi 1 retail. Sell one in 10 years time to fund the other 4… does that gimme FIRE or am i gonna pour petrol over myself and set on fire?

        2. Thank u sir. I shall be frugal and transfer out cr7 (£12) for messi (£11)

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