Episode #17: My german debut

One important thing to remember is that you can reach your best performance when your body, mind and emotions are all stable and intact.

I felt that difference on my own skin when I was with the Croatian National team played left defense and I scored two own goals in an official world cup qualifying game against Germany on live television in Frankfurt which we lost 4-0.

It might just seem like a bizarre occurrence to some just looking at the facade of the events from the outside because the same players scoring 2 own goals within a matter of 6 minutes is not something that happens very often. Actually almost a third one even so I don’t think I’ve ever had 10 minutes of worse luck in my whole soccer career.

But the truth is, on the inside, my mind and my emotions had not been entirely stable for the whole week of preparations before the game due to stress from school and recent deaths in the family and I might have subconsciously lead that negative attention to myself, even though something as accidental and embarrassing as scoring 2 goals on my own net and watching my own goal keeper struggle to defend them.

So, my advice is, when you have a lot going on don’t expect yourself to be perfect. I found myself hiding my feelings and emotions and keeping thoughts to myself but all of that seemed to find another outlet to escape from when I closed all of the obvious doors. Sometimes the game can be a great way to vent and express yourself when going through a hard time in the personal sphere but sometimes it can turn into an even bigger disappointment, especially when luck is not on your side.

I think one key thing to remember is to try and focus on every moment as it comes, not thinking about the past or the future but just the present here and now. And also accept that a career will have its ups and downs just like Billy Balmer who is the highest own goal scorer on record with a total of 8 or Stan van den Buys who scored a hat trick of own goals in one game which his team then lost 3-2.

So when things are bad, they could most likely always be worse. And when you feel like you’re caught in a wave of bad happenings or bad luck, just be patient and wait it out, eventually that wave will crash along the shore making room for a new one to form.
If it’s safe to say that I scored one own goal for each family member I had lost prior to that game, then I’m not ashamed of them at all.