I am probably one in millions who would want to be a Messi or Ronaldo. They seemingly have everything the world has to offer and whatever they don’t have, they can buy. They are considered godly and praised around the world. Our view of being in their shoes may or may not change after considering what they had to do to get where they are at. Take Messi for example. He grew up somewhat poor in the small random town of Rosario, Argentina and was recruited by FC Barcelona, possibly the best soccer club in the world. He probably practiced day and night, only thinking of soccer and excluding almost everything out from his mind. Still, it is amazing and maybe miraculous that he out of any other soccer fanatic became who he is. He had not lived his whole life positioned to attain the point he is at today, but it was certainly never impossible for him to do so.
What is great about soccer is that it is virtually free for anyone in the world and therefore, anyone in the world has the opportunity to become a Messi. There are soccer superstars who grew up in circumstances worse than Messi’s, even having been raised homeless. But one can kick anything around as a soccer ball, in that aspect making it the easiest sport to play. Assuming that soccer skills are not innate, anyone is free to develop them up to any level. We can think about equality in the world of soccer. Unless it is illegal to kick around something, everyone has the freedom to play soccer. Therefore, everyone has an equal opportunity to become a soccer superstar. Of course, they would need to actually practice endlessly, have a diligent mindset, put in limitless effort, but the basic foundations of freedom are there.
In the soccer system, there are also no salary caps so they do not have the whole lockout problem that the NBA had. Private clubs can buy players for as much money as they want. (The Spanish Club Real Madrid and Cristiano Ronaldo recently made a six year $132mil contract, making him the highest paid player of all time). This also plays to equality because a team can go from being the worst to the best by being purchased by someone rich enough. Basically, everyone in soccer is free to make whatever transactions they want. And there have not been any substantial problems that arose from this. The players, owners, and fans are all happy.
Soccer has the aspects of freedom and universality. It is played all over the world and anyone has the opportunity to become a superstar. It all essentially just depends on one picking up a ball and what one does with it. So what parallels and implications can we draw to the rest of the world? Is it possible for everyone in the world to be free and given equal opportunities to attain anything else? Or is there just too many laws and restrictions that prevent people from being free and equal?