Videos

Relentless Raising Of The Bar And Not Accepting Any Element Of Mediocrity – Pep Guardiola’s Feedback To Raheem Sterling

December 19, 2022 - By Tony Flannigan, Associate, Legitimate Leadership.

This video reflects a great example of relentless raising the bar and not accepting any element of mediocrity. Watch the video (link below) a few times – first to get the context and flow, then to observe the body language and face of the two participants. The context is that Pep Guardiola (Spanish) is the manager of Manchester City (a very good English football team). Rahim Stirling joined Manchester City three years ago as a good but not brilliant player. Pep has coached Rahim to go from good to great – so that now Rahim plays for the England national team regularly. This video was taken after the FA Cup Final three years ago (the last match in England’s Football Association Challenge Cup, the most prestigious domestic football trophy in England). Manchester City won the match easily and Rahim scored three goals (a hat trick). The video shows the immediate aftermath with the ticker tape still coming down. Pep goes to Rahim and after acknowledging that while he did score a hat trick, tells him that his contribution was not to the required standard he had set for him. That is that in the first half of the game Rahim (a striker) had tracked back when Manchester City lost the ball and helped the defence out; but in the second half, after scoring and going ahead, he became complacent and stopped tracking back. Pep reminds him that he wants him to be a world-standard player – that he can actually do it (as he did it in the first half) and that he needs to be at that standard for 90 minutes plus extra time if necessary, to be a world-standard player. Rahim is initially defensive, saying “but I scored a hat trick”. But you can see him then listening intently to Pep, and while he doesn’t like it, he knows Pep is doing it for his own good. Pep has obviously earned the right to be that strict by getting him from good to great in the previous three years. Manchester City has dominated English football in the past few seasons with Pep as coach.

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