Sports Psychologists Join Common Goal

Three Elite Level Experts Pledge 1% of Their Incomes Towards Social Change

Common Goal continues to grow into a movement representative of the entire football industry, after welcoming three sports psychologists to the team.

Pippa Grange, Dino Poimann, and Max Pelka have all become members of Common Goal, pledging 1% of their incomes to help drive social change through the beautiful game.

While the movement began with players it has since expanded to include coaches, clubs, fans, media figures, and many more, with the ultimate goal of a football industry united in harnessing the sport’s worldwide appeal for good.

Poiman and Pelka both currently occupy roles with Bundesliga clubs (VfB Stuttgart RB Leipzig respectively) while Grange will take up a role with Right to Dream Academy following her work with the English Football Association.

But, while the trio might be separated in their work, they are united in their belief that the game can be an invaluable force in the fight for a better world for all.

“The power of football and people’s love of it offer us an amazing platform for change and a chance for us to help create the futures we all want,” said Grange.

“I love that the Common Goal projects go across people but also planet which I think is a very underserved area from a football perspective.

“The stories that football has enabled me to share with the world that is like a way of me giving back. Football has given me all of those stories so it is nice to be able to give back. 

“It just makes sense to me.

“I think football can have some very old ideas attached to it and what I really like about Common Goal is that it is trying to change that narrative a little bit to be more about common humanity and what football can do.

“I would like to see a much bigger contribution in that area of thinking about football as this little vignette of who we are as human beings; it’s something that we all love so much so why wouldn’t we use it as a way to drive a better future.”

For Pelka it was not just the ability to give back that was appealing, it was also being in a position to show what can be possible if the entire industry started to come together as one.

“Regardless of the amount of money I earn in comparison to players, it’s about being able to give back something,” he said.

“It’s about being a role model, a first mover, no matter how much money you can give. It’s not about the amount. Every dollar, every Euro counts and it’s together that we can make a difference.”

And all three are of the belief that a character development and the drive to be a better person will not only bring about social change in the world but can also help drive performance on the field as well.

“Football has immense power in the world and I really got into football as a social movement and doing things together as a movement,” added Poimann.

“But I also believe that strength in character makes a better player. One phrase we use is that character never gets tired and, under pressure, character even gets stronger.

“So if we really want to develop not just good but exceptional soccer players then we need magnificent characters.

“It is important for every player to realise they are not a winner or loser in life depending how the match went. There is a huge value in opening your perspective and knowing there is much more to life than just the football world and that gives a huge benefit to the character but also, ultimately, the football performance.”