Broker Check
Soccer Goalies and Portfolios

Soccer Goalies and Portfolios

July 19, 2023

You’re already doing something if you have a plan.  Doing nothing after you have a plan is actually a conscious decision.

Investing can feel like being on a soccer field facing penalty kicks – exhilarating, nerve-wracking, and uncertain. Just like soccer goalies, investors encounter moments of volatility that may tempt them to make impulsive moves. But don't worry, we can learn a thing or two from our goalie friends about staying the course and making savvy investment decisions.

Volatility is part and parcel of being in the market, but it shouldn't spook us. Volatility is the reason that over time we can expect to see returns in our investments, and remember you cannot separate risk from return.  Research on soccer goalies and penalty kicks found that a whopping 94% of goalies dove left or right instead of staying in the center on penalty shots. And guess what? They caught the ball only 30% of the time when diving left and 25% when diving right. But here's the kicker – when they stayed in the center, they caught the ball a solid 60% of the time.  So, let's take a cue from these brave goalies – embrace a rational approach. Make sure you have an investment plan tailored to your goals and risk tolerance. Diversify across various assets, regions, and industries to tackle volatility like a champ. Remember, it's not about making wild changes, or guessing which direction the market will go.  Staying disciplined and patient, even when things get a little tricky, is the key to moving in the right direction. With a bit of inspiration from our goalie pals, we can hit the investment goal and score a winning financial future.



Bar-Eli, M., Azar, O., & Ritov, I. (2007). Action bias among elite soccer goalkeepers: The case of penalty kicks. Journal of Economic Psychology, 606-621.