Arsenal’s invincible Gilberto Silva talks teamwork

February 3, 2022

There is a brilliant interview with World Cup-winning midfielder Gilberto Silva on the BBC World Football podcast that's well worth a listen. It's fascinating to hear him talk about teamwork. Gilberto played for Arsenal when they went an entire Premier League season unbeaten in 2003/04. He explains how understanding his role and playing to his strengths helped the club achieve something that may never happen again while allowing him to flourish too.

"I always understood my role in the team. I played with great players, and I knew I didn't have their ability to score goals. For example, Thierry [Henry] and Dennis Bergkamp. I had other abilities I had to use in my favour. On the other hand, they didn't have mine! Getting the ball and giving it back [to them] ... playing simple is the hardest thing in football. This is what I have done, carried the piano. Many people called me this, 'the piano carrier', I'd say yes "It's important to carry the piano, and it's very important not to let the piano fall down".

Our teamwork session for young people on BEK Development encourages them to think about their own skills in the same way as Gilberto. What can they contribute to the teams they belong to — be it a sports team, their class at school or their family — and how can those teams get the best out of them?

You can find the full interview with Gilberto Silva here.