Ted Lasso season 3, episode 11 features the song “Fought & Lost” by Sam Ryder, begging the question of what the song itself means but also its connection and context to the show.

Ryder’s song has much more emotional meaning to Ted Lasso season 3, episode 11. The song plays toward the end of the episode, bridging the scene of Ted’s heartfelt confrontation with his mother Dottie and his return to Richmond the day after to reveal a truth bomb to Rebecca. Regarding the song itself, “Fought & Lost” has profound meaning both on its own merits and in terms of how it provides context to Ted Lasso leading into the series finale.

One of the significant strengths of Ted Lasso throughout all three seasons has been its soundtrack choices, which often provide added context to the character's stories or play off an inside joke in the script.

The meaning behind Sam Ryder’s “Fought & Lost” song centers on people’s abilities to constantly bounce back from a defeat of any kind. While this could link to a sports team like A.F.C Richmond for instance, it can mean in any aspect of life. From emotional trauma and mental health to physical injuries and everyday aspects of life, the central lyric of “Better to have fought and lost than never fought at all” encompasses the perseverance of humanity.

The song centers on the ups and downs of life, and continuing to fight is better for someone than giving up completely. Lyrics such as “We wanted it so bad, gave it all we had. Oh, but wanting it doesn’t always make it yours. This time was ours to lose. But fortune favors to those who ride the storm and make it through” typify the meaning behind the song. While people may not always win, no matter how much they want something, life will always reward those who continue to fight regardless of whether they will win or lose.

The meaning behind Sam Ryder’s “Fought & Lost” connects to Ted Lasso in two major ways. Firstly, on a more surface-level note, the song can apply to the journey of A.F.C Richmond. Despite losing heavily in Ted Lasso season 1, even to the point of relegation, Ted nor the squad gave up and continued to fight. As a result, they are now being rewarded by being on the precipice of winning the Premier League title.

However, the song also applies to Ted’s personal life, with his realization in Ted Lasso season 3, episode 11 that he misses raising his son. Lyrics like “Everybody falls, and life will tear you down to show you what’s worth fighting for” link to Ted’s realization, as the constant pain and trauma he has been through has torn him down to the point that he realized Henry is what is worth fighting for. Ted’s mother replies that parents just need to keep fighting for their children when Ted reveals his fear of getting close to Henry, something that Sam Ryder’s “Fought & Lost” exemplifies perfectly in Ted Lasso season 3, episode 11.

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