In sports, having a short memory is often seen as a desirable quality. Players are taught not to dwell on their past mistakes in order to stabilize their confidence and ability to perform.
So we were surprised to hear that Iker Casillas can remember “98%” of the games he participated in. That means he can remember who Real Madrid was playing, the date of the game, who scored, if he was scored on, and what he did wrong in those instances. He is able to recall all of these details as nonchalantly as he would a recall friend’s name.
This just scraps the whole “short-term memory loss is desirable” notion, doesn’t it?
Sure, the past three years have seen some of the lowest points of Casillas’s career. He was benched by Mourinho at Real Madrid. He struggled for form under Ancelotti when he took over for Mourinho. He nearly lost the Champion’s league final for Madrid because of a goal keeping error. Oh, and then this happened during the World Cup:
But there is no getting around the fact that during Spain’s reign as the undisputed best team in the world, Iker Casillas was the best keeper in the world. He was the vigilant last line of defense that had to come through with a big save when Spain’s wizards of possession somehow lost the ball.
So what is really desirable? Short term memory, or the ability to chose when to remember, and when to ignore? If Iker Casillas is anything to go by, it certainly seems to be the latter.
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