How Roman Abramovich Ruined Soccer

Luis Felipe Scolari is the latest casualty of the wasteful attitude that plagues soccer in Europe. He signed on as the new manager of famed Chelsea Football Club in London last summer, and was hailed has the man that would bring success back to Stamford Bridge, the London stadium. Now, seven months later, he finds himself out of a job.

Scolari is not the first to meet this fate. Avram Grant, the previous Chelsea boss, was sacked after an equally short stint on the job.

The man behind this madness is Roman Abramovich – the Russian billionaire who owns the club. Abramovich sees Chelsea as his toy, albeit an expensive toy. For every new manager, there is a collection of bonuses and signing on fees and then when they are fired they look for a compensation package.

Is there nothing better for Mr. Abramovich to do with his money? No charities or people in need that are more deserving of his fortune? The soccer business needs to take a long look at itself. This very same story is unfolding in almost every big club in the world. And the only people benefiting are the big name managers who only have to turn up for a few months and can then disappear.

​There are two kinds of failure – but only one is honorable

Malcolm Gladwell teaches "Get over yourself and get to work" for Big Think Edge.

Big Think Edge
  • Learn to recognize failure and know the big difference between panicking and choking.
  • At Big Think Edge, Malcolm Gladwell teaches how to check your inner critic and get clear on what failure is.
  • Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
Keep reading Show less

Why is 18 the age of adulthood if the brain can take 30 years to mature?

Neuroscience research suggests it might be time to rethink our ideas about when exactly a child becomes an adult.

Mind & Brain
  • Research suggests that most human brains take about 25 years to develop, though these rates can vary among men and women, and among individuals.
  • Although the human brain matures in size during adolescence, important developments within the prefrontal cortex and other regions still take pace well into one's 20s.
  • The findings raise complex ethical questions about the way our criminal justice systems punishes criminals in their late teens and early 20s.
Keep reading Show less

Apparently even NASA is wrong about which planet is closest to Earth

Three scientists publish a paper proving that Mercury, not Venus, is the closest planet to Earth.

Strange Maps
  • Earth is the third planet from the Sun, so our closest neighbor must be planet two or four, right?
  • Wrong! Neither Venus nor Mars is the right answer.
  • Three scientists ran the numbers. In this YouTube video, one of them explains why our nearest neighbor is... Mercury!
Keep reading Show less

Mini-brains attach to spinal cord and twitch muscles

A new method of growing mini-brains produces some startling results.

(Lancaster, et al)
Surprising Science
  • Researchers find a new and inexpensive way to keep organoids growing for a year.
  • Axons from the study's organoids attached themselves to embryonic mouse spinal cord cells.
  • The mini-brains took control of muscles connected to the spinal cords.
Keep reading Show less