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Names are almost as important as victories
Djurgården - Gefle 2-1
Give a good name to a dog. That is what “Be the best person in the world” –books always say. Yes, I have actually read a few of those... but as we all can pretty easily confirm those haven’t made me one. Still I agree that hearing our own name gives us highly needed feeling of importance. You need to call people with their right names – especially women but that is a different story. I’m now talking about the practicality of knowing your team mates.
So there I was in my hotel room trying to learn names from our club photo. I had been in a new country, new city and new team barely half a day, trained once and next day was going to be my debut. Not ideal situation for the game, or the names... plus I have never understood why they take those dim club photos without telling beforehand after pre season training session when nobody has bothered shave and everyone’s hair is half a way to Norrköping. Introductions are not helping much either. You know when you walk in to a new room and hand shake 20 people in a minute, your odds of remembering any of them are thin, especially with Swedish pronounciation. To be honest, names were least of my concern. Normally I would start now 8 weeks pre-season, suddenly I had to survive only with 8 days... even with footballers math that is not much.
So only with poor condition and knowledge of my team mates, I was about to start a new challenge. On the other hand, that is why I chose it from many otherwise much bigger options – because it was new and it was a challenge. And the real deciding factor was that I felt I can win something here. Most of my career I have been fighting to win a promotion or avoid the drop and even if Finland is known from its elevator industry I don’t want to tell my grand children one day only about how I went up and down all my career. I want to be a champion. There are no real silver wear in my shelf, just boring consolation trophies. I have come to Sweden to change it. If I haven’t won anything when I finish here, both me and the club have made the wrong choice. That is my challenge – to win with this club.
So at least the start is good after winning against Gefle. With the great home support, I have never felt as welcome in my first game than I did now. So never has the first victory been as sweet either. It is only a start, though. There has to be more. Much more. Victories. That is the right name to my dog.